Denmark introduces CO2 limit for new constructions

Buildings’ Life Cycle Assessments gain ground in the Nordics

Publiceret 02-01-2023

From January 1st 2023, the Danish building regulation now includes climate requirements for all new buildings in order to decrease the country’s CO2 emissions from the construction sector. This paves the way for even more knowledge sharing among the Nordic countries about low carbon emissions from construction.

For buildings above 1000 square meters there is an upper limit value of 12.0 kg CO2 equivalents per square meters per year

In recent years, the Nordic countries have been working towards carbon neutrality and harmonisation of low carbon emissions from the construction sector by exchanging knowledge and researching common challenges together. Sweden and Norway have already introduced climate declarations, and Finland is in the process of finalising their legislation. Meanwhile, Iceland is also in the process, and Denmark will also introduce climate declarations and now, as the first Nordic country, also limit values in their building regulation.

Harmonisation of regulations and Life Cycle Assessments

In Nordic Sustainable Construction we are working towards harmonising the regulation of buildings’ climate impact across the Nordics. This harmonisation of regulation for instance applies to the area of Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) where we are exchanging knowledge and working towards more aligned definitions, methods and limit values between the Nordic countries. At the same time, we are gathering a wide range of LCA relevant data, creating LCA learning materials and setting joint criteria for digital LCA.

An alignment of LCA across the Nordics, therefore, aims for similar methods for buildings’ LCA, which will aid political climate ambitions and regulations on European, national and municipal levels. At the same time, harmonisation will aid the construction sector towards sustainability and competitiveness by making it easier for design and construction companies to offer low carbon solutions across the Nordic countries and beyond.

In this manner, implementation of LCA requirements in the Nordic countries can inspire to knowledge sharing of climate ambitions, regulations and procurement which is the case with the new Danish climate requirements for constructions.

What do the Danish climate requirements imply?

The new Danish requirements entail that all new buildings must document their environmental impact over a lifespan of 50 years through LCA calculation, and that new buildings above 1000 square meters must comply with the limit value of 12 kg CO2 equivalent per square meters per year.

The goal of the requirements is to lower the construction sector’s climate impact, prepare the construction industry for building more sustainably and, at the same time, advancing climate and resource friendly solutions in construction.

To hear more about the Danish regulations, watch the video here