Health & Safety
Light in weight, PVC facilitates transportation, handling on-site and safe construction. It performs well in lightweight construction systems where durability and strength is needed, such as for large area roofing membranes and its use in permanent formwork construction significantly improves safety and speed of wall construction. With a high resistance to impact, PVC does not splinter, rot or crack reducing the opportunities for accidental injury.
Best Practice Manufacturing
PVC products are produced in Australia under regulated and environmentally acceptable manufacturing methods and well within international guidelines for PVC manufacturing.
The Australian PVC industry has established a PVC Stewardship Program to guide companies manufacturing or distributing PVC products and raw materials for use in PVC products in Australia. Companies that are signatories to this voluntary initiative are committed to meeting stringent targets and commitments regarding the manufacturing of their products to reduce the environmental footprint of PVC products. Choose products from companies who have made the commitment.
To be confident you are specifying PVC products manufactured to the highest environmental standard, choose products with Best Environmental Practice PVC accreditation, independently audited, and recognised by the Green Building Council of Australia's Green Star tool.
Indoor Air Quality
Materials that are synthetic or have been chemically treated in any way may emit VOCs (volatile organic compounds) during installation, creating concern about the quality of air in buildings. While this can also occur with flexible vinyl products designed for building interiors, such as flooring, the VOC levels fall off significantly shortly after installation. Testing on vinyl flooring products has shown total VOC emissions to be well within European and Green Building Council standards. Low and Ultra Low VOC vinyl flooring is widely available. Rigid PVC products are very unlikely to emit VOCs.
PVC is recyclable and recycling programs for PVC occur in Australia, diverting waste from landfill. Relatively little end-of-life PVC is available from its building and construction applications in Australia as most is still in service. PVC is, however, collected from waste electric and telecommunications cabling, pipe and conduit and flooring for recycling. Recycled PVC is used in a range of products including flooring, profiles, stormwater and plumbing DWV pipe, conduit and pipe fittings.