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Northfield Block issues industry’s premier Health Product Declaration

In a nod to customers aligning project specs with forthcoming U.S. Green Building Council LEED v4 certification guidelines, Oldcastle Architectural’s business serving Chicago and upper Midwest markets has announced a Health Product Declaration (HPD) for the Trendstone Sandstone ground face concrete masonry unit.

“The construction industry is going through a transformative change,” says Northfield Block President Craig Belasco. “Architects are demanding information about the health impacts of building materials, so they can create healthy and safe buildings. Northfield is thrilled to be leading the industry in being the first to respond to these demands.”

An HPD reconciles a product’s ingredients against Priority Hazard Lists of the Health Product Declaration Collaborative. Northfield Block cites 13 Trendstone Sandstone ingredients in descending order of volume, from fine aggregate (50-60 percent) to tricalcium aluminiate and calcium oxide (both <1percent). All are marked “No warnings found on HPD Priority list,” except for crystalline silica (1-5 percent).

The HPD backs up another Trendstone Sandstone value proposition to green-building interests: It embodies waste carbon dioxide through a kiln-bound product injection process—developed by Halifax, N.S.-based CarbonCure Technologies—Northfield Block adopted earlier this year. The CO2 reacts with the dry mixes to form limestone, effectively sequestering the gas, and accelerates curing, thereby lowering kiln energy requirements.

The HPD and an Environmental Product Declaration, also backed by CarbonCure, dovetail the new version of the USGBC’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system to be launched at the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, November 20-22 in Philadelphia. LEED v4 includes a section, Materials and Resources: Building Product Disclosure and Optimization, providing construction projects points where HPD or EPD accompany at least 20 specified products.

Among architects taking note of HPD is Wight & Co., Chicago. “Our goal as a design firm is to protect the health of the people who work and live in the buildings we bring to life,” says Senior Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer Lois Vitt Sale. “We look forward to working with manufacturers to promote transparency.”

The Northfield Block HPD was developed in compliance with the Health Product Declaration open standard and is available for download at The information manufacturers provide in HPDs can also be used to complete declarations with systems other than LEED, such as Pharos or Declare, and help assess compliance against various red-lists, including Perkins & Will’s Precautionary List, and the Living Building Challenge Red List.