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In Europe, the PIR and PUR insulation products industry comprises more than 11,500 companies employing over a third of a million people and is worth about 6 billion Euros in trade.

The PIR and PUR insulation industry offers products that can provide low energy buildings helping the drive to eliminate fuel poverty and playing a crucial role in cutting CO2 emissions by providing products that greatly improve energy efficiency; an essential element in the struggle against climate change.

There is a number of factors that must be considered when assessing and determining the most sustainable, suitable and resilient insulation material for any given building project.  Our publication “Insulation for sustainability” shows in depth the role the built environment has to play in reducing energy emissions quickly and effectively, principally through the use of energy efficient building elements, known as a ‘fabric-first’ approach

The current target lifespan for all new building developments is approximately 60 years, however, many buildings are still operational for much longer. Therefore, reducing the energy demand of a building is of paramount importance, and using a fabric first approach is the most widely recognised way of achieving this.

Whilst new build projects should be built to the highest possible standards at the outset, there also needs to be focus on ensuring the existing building stock is retrofitted to improve fabric efficiency and reduce energy demand.

If low carbon strategies are not implemented at the outset for new constructions, expensive retrofitting will be required in the future to compensate for their higher energy demands.

IMA continues to work with major stakeholders to try and identify future solutions for PIR and PUR waste containing ozone depletors.