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Mixed signals: Commercial project volume vs. overall economy

Sources: Associated Builders and Contractors, Washington, D.C.; CP staff

The Associated Builders and Contractors monthly Construction Backlog Indicator (CBI) of nonresidential building activity expanded to 9.5 months in March 2019, up 0.7 months or 8.8 percent from the prior month, when it stood at 8.8 months and hovered its highest level in series history. 

Read more: Mixed signals: Commercial project volume vs. overall economy

OSHA considers revisiting Lockout/Tagout Standard

Source: Occupational Safety and Health Administration 

OSHA is soliciting input on the use of control circuit-type devices and evolving technology for robotics in manufacturing or production operations with an eye to potential updates for the Control of Hazardous Energy (Lockout/Tagout) standard.

Read more: OSHA considers revisiting Lockout/Tagout Standard

Solidia patents carbon-centric hollow core, pervious, aerated product methods

Sources: Solidia Technologies, Piscataway, N.J.; CP staff

Three recently issued U.S. Patent and Trademark Office patents cover processes and products based on Solidia Technologies’ cement and carbon-curing materials and methods. The U.S. Patents are designated 9,878,951, “Hollow-Core Articles and composite materials, methods of production and uses thereof;” 9,938,189, “Pervious composite materials, methods of production and uses thereof;” and, 9,963,392, “Aerated composite materials, methods of production and uses thereof.”

Read more: Solidia patents carbon-centric hollow core, pervious, aerated product methods

Life cycle-attuned Institute updates Impact Estimator for Buildings

Sources: Athena Sustainable Materials Institute, Ottawa; CP staff

The Athena Institute includes updates for concrete masonry and ready mixed concrete in the just-released version 5.4 whole-building life cycle assessment (LCA) software tool, Impact Estimator for Buildings. The software models any building type at any point in the design stage and eases side by side comparison of material specifications and methods. It also helps users reduce projects’ environmental impact, earn the LCA credit in LEED green building rating system, or report embodied carbon.

Read more: Life cycle-attuned Institute updates Impact Estimator for Buildings

HeidelbergCement first to meet global initiative’s carbon criteria

Sources: HeidelbergCement AG, Germany; CP staff

HeidelbergCement is the premier cement, aggregate and concrete operator to validate its carbon dioxide emissions reduction commitment over the next decade against Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) criteria. As part of its 2030 Sustainability Goals for global operations, the producer aims to reduce net CO2 and other greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 30 percent against 1990 baseline levels. 

Read more: HeidelbergCement first to meet global initiative’s carbon criteria