Green Building Rating Tools & Schemes

Sustainable Buildings Research Centre, Fairy Meadow NSW

Green Building rating tools and schemes aim to assess the sustainability of buildings, infrastructure, materials and building products. Some of the main schemes in Australia include:

  • Green Star™;
  • IS Rating Scheme; and
  • Living Building Challenge.

Green Star™

Launched by the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) in 2003, Green Star is an internationally recognised rating system setting the standard for healthy, resilient, positive buildings and places. Developed for the Australian environment, Green Star has certified thousands of sustainable fitouts, buildings, homes and communities across the country.

The Green Star rating tools assess the sustainability attributes of a project through impact categories. Each category groups a number of issues related to a certain sustainability impact; these are known as ‘credits’, for which varying numbers of points are awarded. Each credit defines a clear outcome that a project must meet. Once all credits are assessed, the total number of points achieved is compared against the available points in the rating tool and a certified rating is awarded.

There are various Green Star rating tools, including: Buildings, Design & As Built, Communities, Homes, Interiors, Performance, and Railway Stations.

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How can steel manufactured by BlueScope in Australia assist in gaining Green Star credits?

Green Star - Buildings

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable Requirements

Various steel products

Credit 5 – Responsible Procurement (up to 1 pt)

BlueScope's approach to responsible sourcing practices and conduct may help demonstrate compliance with responsible procurement practices, including human rights, labour practices, environment, etc.

For more information on BlueScope's commitment to Health, Safety, Environment and Community (HSEC) see our HSEC Policy, Code of Conduct and Sustainability Reporting.

Select products: 

  • COLORBOND® steel1
  • XLERPLATE® steel
  • Welded beams and columns

Credit 6 – Responsible Structure (up to 5 pts)

Many of BlueScope's products can score points under the Responsible Products Value framework through the following initiatives:

Select products:

  • COLORBOND® steel1
  • XLERPLATE® steel
  • Welded beams and columns

Credit 7– Responsible Envelope
(up to 4 pts)

Many of BlueScope's products can score points under the Responsible Products Value framework through the following initiatives:

Roofing products: 

  • COLORBOND® steel2

Credit 19 – Heat Resilience (up to 1pt)

Select BlueScope roofing products may comply with minimum Solar Reflectance Index (SRI) requirements, typically light colours:

  • Roof pitched <15°: 3-year SRI ≥64 or initial SRI ≥82
  • Roof pitched >15°: 3-year SRI ≥34 or initial SRI ≥39

Product-specific SRI test data may be available upon request.

Products with EPDs:

  • COLORBOND® steel1
  • XLERPLATE® steel
  • Welded beams and columns

Credit 21 – Upfront Carbon emissions (up to 6 pts)

BlueScope can provide product-specific 3rd party verified Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) to support claims of carbon in products, as required by the credit.

Products with EPDs:

  • COLORBOND® steel1
  • XLERPLATE® steel
  • Welded beams and columns

Credit 26 – Life Cycle Impacts (up to 2 pts)

The Life Cycle Impacts credit encourages the use of local data for LCAs, preferably from EPDs certified to the EN 15804 standard, which take precedence over generic or global data:

  • BlueScope's EPDs are product-specific, 3rd party verified and compliant with the EN 15804 standard; and
  • They can be used to accurately represent the impact of BlueScope products in whole-of-building LCAs.
  1. An EPD is available for COLORBOND® steel for exterior roofing and walling (XRW) at Base Metal Thickness (BMT) 0.42mm and 0.48mm. The EPD is not applicable to COLORBOND® Ultra steel, COLORBOND® Metallic steel, COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel, COLORBOND® Intramax® steel, COLORBOND® steel products with galvanised (zinc-coated) steel substrate, and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

  2. Excludes COLORBOND® Intramax® steel and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

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Green Star - Design and As Built v1.3

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable Requirements
Various steel products, depending on strength grade and application

Credit 19 - Life Cycle Impacts
(up to 7 pts)

  • Credit 19B.2 - Life Cycle Impacts - Steel
    (up to 1 pt.)

BlueScope products can help:

  • Demonstrate the environmental impacts/carbon emissions reduction of the project vs a reference building using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA); and/or
  • Demonstrate a reduction in the mass of steel framing compared to standard practice through the use of 'high strength steel' or a '5% mass reduction compared to a suitable reference building'. Minimum strength grades required for steel products:
    • 550 MPa Roof and wall sheeting
    • 550 MPa Profiled steel decking
    • 450 MPa Purlins, girts and light steel framing systems
    • 450 MPa Cold-formed sections
    • 400 MPa Welded sections
    • 350 MPa Hot-rolled structural steel sections and plate

Note: BlueScope products with Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) can be used to represent the impact of BlueScope products in whole-of-building LCAs

Various steel products

Credit 20.1 – Responsible Building Materials – Structural and Reinforcing Steel
(up to 1 pt.)

BlueScope meets the following responsible steel maker requirements:

Various steel products

Credit 21 – Sustainable Products
(up to 3 pts)

Depending on the product, BlueScope may be able to meet transparency and sustainability requirements through the following initiatives:

Roofing products: Select COLORBOND® steel1 products

Credit 25 – Heat Island Effect 
(up to 1 pt.)

Select BlueScope roofing products may comply with minimum Solar Reflectance Index (SRI) requirements, typically light colours:

  • Roof pitched <15°: 3-year SRI ≥64 or initial SRI ≥82
  • Roof pitched >15°: 3-year SRI ≥34 or initial SRI ≥39

Product-specific SRI test data may be available upon request.

  1. Excludes COLORBOND® Intramax® steel and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

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Green Star - Communities v1.1

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable requirements

Various steel products (e.g. XLERPLATE® steel, Welded beams and columns, DECKFORM® steel, etc.)

Credit 26 – Materials
(up to 5 pts)

BlueScope meets the following responsible steel maker requirements:

Note: BlueScope products with Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) can be used to represent the impact of BlueScope products in whole-of-building LCAs to meet the requirements of 26A.1 LCA – Performance Pathway.

Roofing products
Select COLORBOND® steel1products

Credit 31 – Heat Island Effect 
(up to 1 pt)

Select BlueScope roofing products may comply with minimum Solar Reflectance Index (SRI) requirements, typically light colours:

  • Roof pitched <15°: 3-year SRI ≥64 or initial SRI ≥82 
  • Roof pitched >15°: 3-year SRI ≥34 or initial SRI ≥39

Product-specific SRI test data may be available upon request.

  1. Excludes COLORBOND® Intramax® steel and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

Table

Green Star - Interiors v1.3

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable requirements

Various steel products

Credit 21 – Sustainable Products
(up to 19 pts)

Depending on the product, BlueScope may be able to meet transparency and sustainability requirements through the following initiatives:

Table

Green Star - Performance v1.2

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable requirements

Various steel products

Credit 21 – Procurement and Purchasing
(up to 3 pts)

BlueScope’s approach to responsible sourcing practices and conduct may help demonstrate compliance with the requirements of ‘21.1 Sustainable Procurement Framework’, including human rights, labour practices and environmental aspects.

For more information on BlueScope’s commitment to Health, Safety, Environment and Community (HSEC) see our HSEC Policy, Code of Conduct and Sustainability Reporting.

BlueScope, as a responsible steel maker, can also help meet the requirements of ‘21.3 Refurbishment Materials’ criteria for steel:

Table

Green Star - Homes

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable requirements

Roofing products:
Select COLORBOND® steel1 products

Heat Resilience

Select BlueScope roofing products may comply with minimum Solar Reflectance Index (SRI) requirements, typically light colours:

  • Roof pitched <15°: 3-year SRI ≥64 or initial SRI ≥82
  • Roof pitched >15°: 3-year SRI ≥34 or initial SRI ≥39

Product-specific SRI test data may be available upon request.

  1. Excludes COLORBOND® Intramax® steel and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

 

The inherent properties of steel —strong and durable— translate to a range of design possibilities that can help accrue points under Green Star credits.

Steel can be an ideal material for adding volume to existing buildings and can allow historic facades to be incorporated into new designs. The durability of steel also allows it to be successfully used in adaptive reuse and designs for disassembly.

The strength-to-weight ratio of steel also means that large spatial volumes can be enclosed in a single space which, along with other design factors, can translate to better levels of natural ventilation, light, heating and cooling. This can help improve both energy efficiency and indoor environment quality.

COLORBOND® steel with Thermatech®1 solar reflectance technology can also indirectly help accrue points in the Energy category by helping to reflect the sun’s energy away from the roof and the building, which could help to reduce the energy use associated with mechanical air conditioning.

  1. COLORBOND® steel for roofing and walling's (XRW) core colour range in the Classic and Matt finish (excluding Night Sky®) features our scientifically designed Thermatech® solar reflectance technology. Thermatech® technology may not be available in other colours, and is not included in COLORBOND® Metallic steel, COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel or COLORBOND® Intramax® steel. See colorbond.com/colour for more information. Results will depend on roof colour, level and location of insulation, type and location of building shape and function.

Infrastructure Sustainability (IS) Rating Scheme

Developed by the Infrastructure Sustainability Council (ISC), the Infrastructure Sustainability (IS) Rating Scheme is a comprehensive rating system for evaluating sustainability across the planning, design, construction and operation of infrastructure programs, projects, networks and assets.

The IS Rating scheme has a strong focus on governance issues, such as sustainable procurement, resilience and innovation.

The IS Rating differs significantly from other rating tools in that it is less prescriptive and allows more options for evidence to prove compliance. This evidence needs to pass the assessment of an appointed assessor.

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How can steel manufactured by BlueScope in Australia assist in gaining IS Rating credits?

IS Rating v1.2

BlueScope Products IS Rating Credits Applicable Requirements

Various steel products

Was-2 Diversion from landfill 
(up to 3.5 pts)

Products that have demand and existing recycling/re-use options can help achieve this credit by supporting higher landfill diversion rates.

  • Steel’s magnetic properties mean that it can be easily separated for recycling, and the intrinsic economic value of steel results in a high recovery rate of all steel waste.
  • The steel in BlueScope’s steel products is 100% recyclable without loss of quality.

Various steel products

Was-3 Deconstruction/Disassembly/ Adaptability
(up to 1.5 pts)

Material selection that considers future impacts, and that have high quality, will retain value and/or be more feasible for re-use and recycling can help achieve this credit. 

  • Steel is a strong, durable and versatile material. 
  • BlueScope’s steel products lend themselves well to structures that are designed for long life, resilience and flexibility to accommodate multiple future reuse options without reinvestment in structural alteration and refurbishment.

Products with EPDs (COLORBOND® steel1, XLERPLATE® steel, and Welded beams and columns)

Mat-1 – Materials life cycle impact measurement and reduction 
(up to 6 pts)

The use of BlueScope’s steel products with EPDs can help demonstrate the environmental impacts/carbon emissions reduction of the project vs a reference building using LCA or ISC’s Materials Calculator

Products with EPDs (COLORBOND® steel1, XLERPLATE® steel, and Welded beams and columns)

Mat-2 – Environmentally labelled products and supply chains 
(up to 1 pt)

Depending on the product, BlueScope may be able to meet environmental labelling requirements through the following initiatives:

  1. An EPD is available for COLORBOND® steel for exterior roofing and walling (XRW) at Base Metal Thickness (BMT) 0.42mm and 0.48mm. The EPD is not applicable to COLORBOND® Ultra steel, COLORBOND® Metallic steel, COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel, COLORBOND® Intramax® steel, COLORBOND® steel products with galvanised (zinc-coated) steel substrate, and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

Table

IS Rating v2.0

BlueScope Products IS Rating Credits Applicable Requirements

Various steel products

Rso-4 Resource Recovery
(up to 2 pts)

Products that have demand and existing recycling/re-use options can help achieve this credit by supporting higher landfill diversion rates.

  • Steel’s magnetic properties mean that it can be easily separated for recycling, and the intrinsic economic value of steel results in a high recovery rate of all steel waste.
  • The steel in BlueScope’s steel products is 100% recyclable without loss of quality.

Various steel products

Rso-5 – Adaptability 
(up to 2 pts)

Adaptable materials chosen considering future impacts, and that have high quality, will retain value and/or be more feasible for re-use and recycling can help achieve this credit. 

  • Steel is a strong, durable and versatile material. 
  • BlueScope’s steel products lend themselves well to structures that are designed for long life, resilience and flexibility to accommodate multiple future reuse options without reinvestment in structural alteration and refurbishment.

Products with EPDs (COLORBOND® steel1, XLERPLATE® steel, and Welded beams and columns)

Rso-6 – Materials life cycle impact measurement and reduction 
(up to 4.5 pts)

The use of BlueScope’s steel products with EPDs can help demonstrate the environmental impacts/carbon emissions reduction of the project vs a reference building using LCA or ISC’s Materials Calculator

  • BlueScope products with Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) are a plus, as they can be used to represent the impact of BlueScope products in whole-of-building LCAs and the IS Materials Calculator v2.0

COLORBOND® steel1, XLERPLATE® steel, and Welded beams and columns

Rso-7 – Sustainability labelled products and supply chains 
(up to 1.5 pts)

Depending on the product, BlueScope may be able to meet sustainability labelling requirements through the following initiatives:

  1. An EPD is available for COLORBOND® steel for exterior roofing and walling (XRW) at Base Metal Thickness (BMT) 0.42mm and 0.48mm. The EPD is not applicable to COLORBOND® Ultra steel, COLORBOND® Metallic steel, COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel, COLORBOND® Intramax® steel, COLORBOND® steel products with galvanised (zinc-coated) steel substrate, and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

Living Building Challenge

The Living Building Challenge (LBC), is one of the most rigorous benchmarks of sustainability in the built environment. It assesses living buildings that are:

  • Regenerative buildings that connect occupants to light, air, food, nature, and community.
  • Self-sufficient and remain within the resource limits of their site.
  • Create a positive impact on the human and natural systems that interact with them.

The LBC consists of seven performance categories, or ‘Petals’: Place, Water, Energy, Health + Happiness, Materials, Equity and Beauty. Each Petal is subdivided into Imperatives, for a total of 20 Imperatives, each of which focuses on a specific sphere of influence.

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How can steel manufactured by BlueScope in Australia assist in achieving LBC Imperatives?

Living Building Challenge v4.0

BlueScope Products Green Star Credit Applicable requirements

COLORBOND® steel1, XLERPLATE® steel and Welded beams and columns

Core Imperative 07 – Energy + Carbon Reduction

New and Existing projects must demonstrate a 20% reduction in the embodied carbon of primary materials compared to an equivalent baseline. Product data for the embodied carbon assessment should be as accurate as possible, prioritising product-specific and geographically relevant data:

Various steel products.

Imperative 13 – Red List

Compliant products must not contain products listed in the ‘Red List’ chemical classes:

  • All of BlueScope’s uncoated steel products are considered compliant with this requirement (e.g. XLERPLATE® steel, REDCOR® weathering steel, Welded beams and columns, etc.).
  • Selected metal coated and painted products are also compliant. Product-specific information may be available upon request.
  1. An EPD is available for COLORBOND® steel for exterior roofing and walling (XRW) at Base Metal Thickness (BMT) 0.42mm and 0.48mm. The EPD is not applicable to COLORBOND® Ultra steel, COLORBOND® Metallic steel, COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel, COLORBOND® Intramax® steel, COLORBOND® steel products with galvanised (zinc-coated) steel substrate, and double-sided COLORBOND® steel (e.g. for fencing, patios and pergolas).

To find out more about how BlueScope steel products may enable accreditation in any of these schemes or others, contact your BlueScope Steel representative or call Steel Direct on 1800 800 789.

Acknowledgements

Source: BlueScope - last updated 19 September 2022
Trademark Acknowledgements: COLORBOND®, DECKFORM®, XLERPLATE®, Thermatech®, TRU-SPEC®, REDCOR®, Intramax® and BlueScope® are registered trademarks of BlueScope Steel Limited, ABN 16 000 011 058.