eTool Quality System ISO 9001 Certified

eTool has always taken quality seriously, from our earliest beginnings we actively sought feedback on our product and services and have embedded continuous improvement into our DNA.  Earlier this year we decided to formalise our Quality Management by employing Compass Assurance Services to certify our systems against ISO 9001:2015. eTool founder and Co-CEO reflects on the process:

“Solving problems is what eTool do. We apply that philosophy everyday, be it helping to solve a problem as big as climate change, or shaving microseconds off eToolLCD response times.  Being able to have our quality management system formally recognised is rewarding.  Compass Assurance Services were really thorough, they went pretty deep.  Although we had things pretty dialled there was certainly some really valuable learnings from the process, we’re an even better business for it.” 

Richard Haynes

The 9001 certification adds to the extensive efforts and achievements of eTool in technical assurance with third party input.  Read more about our assurance milestones here.

eTool’s certificate can be downloaded here and the certification is registered with JAS-ANZ.

City of Vincent Paves the Way for Sustainable Building Policy

Local council City of Vincent, sets a new standard for sustainable buildings through their progressive planning policy.

From plastic bag bans in City of Fremantle to Moreland City Council’s Bicycle Strategy to support more sustainable travel, local councils around Australia are making pledges towards more sustainable outcomes. In the realm of sustainable building however, the City of Vincent in Perth, Australia has quickly become the quiet achiever through a progressive planning policy.

The results of their policy are impressive, with the developments within their precinct reaching far beyond BAU (business as usual) and achieving significant performance outcomes. eTool alone has worked with developers to reduce over 215,000 tonnes of CO2e over the life of the buildings, which represents:

  • 29,054 Australian households’ annual energy use1
  • 59,722 Australian cars off the road for a year2
  • 1,290,000 trees planted3

A total solar PV system of all of the projects eTool has worked on under the City of Vincent requirements equals over 700 kW, which is helping the Australian grid to become less carbon intensive and also minimising the load on the network during the peak hours.

“The City of Vincent has always placed sustainability at the top of our priorities and our planning policy has provided us with the opportunity to encourage sustainable developments that have a positive outcome for the environment and the community. We’re very pleased with the outcomes of this policy and we look forward to continuing to push the bar even higher for building performance,” said John Carey, City of Vincent Mayor.

The City of Vincent’s planning policy requires assessment methodologies to clearly quantify sustainability performance against comparable benchmark buildings (compliant with the National Construction Codes of Australia), to comply with applicable Australian/international standards and be subject to oversight by a certifying body. This allows developers to choose a method for compliance, giving developers the opportunity to incorporate new design elements into their developments moving forward.

“We need assessment regimes that are performance based, rather than compliance based. This way we will unleash the creativity of designers, consultants, architects and engineers to devise new ways to make our buildings more sustainable. We need tools that will help make sophisticated whole of life cycle performance evaluation,” said Alannah MacTiernan, City of Vincent Mayor from 2011 to 2013.

The City currently accepts Life Cycle Design (LCD) methodology as one of the paths for achieving sustainable performance improvements. Progressive developers such as Psaros have embraced LCD and incorporated life cycle assessment into their BAU practices and marketing strategies across their multi-residential developments in Perth’s inner suburbs.

“We conduct a full life cycle assessment for each of our developments and we find that it adds value not only to the design process but also to our market value. Buyers are always interested to learn about the quality of the properties and we are seeing more and more that people want to invest in property with a sustainable ethos,” said Danny Psaros, CEO of Psaros Property Group.

Other developers such as Finbar, Builton, Handle Property Group and ABN Group have also taken advantage of using LCD to produce intelligent and quality designs that will provide a positive legacy for the city residents.

Damien Giudici, Development Manager at ABN Group said, “The process of using LCD was very informative and highlighted the best options in terms of dollars spent versus carbon savings, which guided us through our decisions to improve building environmental performance in the most cost effective manner.”

The City of Vincent’s planning policy is not only testament to the council’s forward thinking, but is also a prime example of how a policy can provide opportunities for the community, developers and consultants to work together with the Council and implement solutions that create direct and tangible benefits to the environment, the community and local residents.

“The uptake of LCD into a council such as the City of Vincent, demonstrates how LCD can be used to successfully define sustainable buildings in a precinct in a meaningful way. We’re excited to continue to see more developers, business and councils adopt Life Cycle Design as the most sustainable and logical thing to do,” said Henrique Mendonça, eTool Regional Business Development Manager.

From its humble beginnings, LCD is now the best practice tool to accelerate the environmental performance of buildings and has been adopted by developers, designers, consultants and green building certification schemes around the world. As councils around Australia reassess and update their policies, it is expected that more councils will follow in the footsteps of the City of Vincent, which will give rise to more genuinely sustainable and high performing buildings.

Notes

1 Residential benchmark – 7.4t/household/year.

2 Petrol, 10L/100km, 15000km annually

6 trees per tonne of CO2 saved, ref Carbon Neutral

 

< ENDS >

Media contact:

Portia Odell
eTool Marketing Communications Manager
+61 08 9467 1664
portia@etoolglobal.com
www.etoolglobal.com

About eTool

eTool is a world leading life cycle assessment and design consultancy that optimises building design for lower environmental impact and high performance. Utilising our unique software eToolLCD®, we work with architects, engineers and developers to measure and improve the life cycle impacts of buildings, surpassing industry standards. eToolLCD® makes sustainable development easy to achieve and cost-effective for all size projects, from residential and commercial building to land development and infrastructure.

 

LCAs For Buildings Now a No-Brainer

Leading LCA Software eToolLCD further brings LCA into the mainstream by offering innovative software subscriptions for easy access

eToolLCD, a global leader in life cycle design and assessment of the built form, is further bringing Life Cycle Assessment into the mainstream by offering a new range of subscription packages designed to further increase accessibility of eToolLCD, making it the most powerful, cost-effective and easy-to-use built form LCA software in the world.

Over the last two decades Life Cycle Design (LCD) and Assessment has evolved significantly and demand for LCD continues to grow exponentially. Life Cycle Design is now the premier decision-making tool for improving environmental performance and has been incorporated into green building rating schemes all over the world[1].

The LCA industry has met this demand with the introduction and alignment of international standards (ISO 14040, ISO 14044, EN 15978), improved background data sources and better software. Once strictly the domain of expert researchers and consultants, front line professionals now have the ability to harness the power of LCA to dramatically inform and improve their projects with modern streamlined tools. In particular, the building profession can now harness the renowned strengths of LCA through an intuitive and easy to access platform – eToolLCD.

Originating in Perth, Western Australia, eTool has now opened up offices in Canberra, Australia and Brighton, United Kingdom as the demand for life cycle assessment and design of the built form continues to soar. eTool has conducted the most built form LCAs in Australia and is quickly establishing themselves as built form LCA leaders around the world.

“We have seen LCD become a standard part of good design all around the world and we felt that making eToolLCD even more accessible was the next move. Everything we do with eToolLCD is designed to make it easy for anyone, located anyone in the world, to login to eToolLCD and be guided through a life cycle design approach to higher performing buildings and infrastructure. eToolLCD is the first built form LCA software in the world to adopt this open-use model, and this will always be a crucial element of our business because our goal and passion is to reduce global carbon emissions from buildings. We believe that educating people about LCD/LCA and putting an LCA software into the hands of as many people as possible will help us achieve that goal,” said Henrique Mendonça, eTool Regional Business Development Manager.

The new subscriptions can now be tailored to meet users unique requirements and they experience a range of additional functionalities associated with each of the subscriptions. Some of the benefits associated include reduced certification costs and accessibility to comprehensive built form LCA training.

“As LCD continues to take the sustainable building industry by storm, the availability of accessible and affordable tools such as eToolLCD is a crucial element to ensuring the highest performance outcome of projects around the world. We’re ecstatic to be at the forefront of the next evolution of sustainable design,” said Alex Bruce, eTool Co-Founder and Business Development Director.

< ENDS >

[1] Countries who have adopted LCA into green building standards: Australia, Germany, UK, France, USA, Netherlands, Switzerland & Japan.

 

Media contact:

Portia Odell
eTool Marketing Communications Manager
+61 08 9467 1664
portia@etoolglobal.com
www.etoolglobal.com

About eTool

eTool is a world leading life cycle assessment and design consultancy that optimises building design for lower environmental impact and high performance. Utilising our unique software eToolLCD®, we work with architects, engineers and developers to measure and improve the life cycle impacts of buildings, surpassing industry standards. eToolLCD® makes sustainable development easy to achieve and cost-effective for all size projects, from residential and commercial building to land development and infrastructure.

2014 Was Our Most Excellent Year Yet – Thank You!

We’ve come a long way over the last four years, and the last twelve months have been particularly exciting. We couldn’t have done it without our wonderful clients, partners, affiliates, supporters, friends and family – thank you!  We’d like to share with you some of our achievements over the last year and the exciting things we have planned for 2015.

Firstly and most importantly, we are ecstatic to announce that since the beginning of eTool, we have helped designers avoid over:

450,000 tonnes of CO2e!

That’s equivalent to planting 2,713,863 trees or taking 125,642 cars off the road! Our number one metric at eTool is reducing CO2 emissions, so we’re thrilled to see the number of CO2e saved increasing each and every month. 

As we continue to make eToolLCD the best of the best, we celebrate:

A few project & client achievements

    12     Green Star jobs completed and submitted with one achieving a 6-star rating and multiple achieving 5-star

     42     new clients such as Brookfield Multiplex, Mirvac, Lendlease & Broad, to name a few.

     9      HIA GreenSmart 2014 awards won by eTool clients

We’d like to especially congratulate long-standing eTool client Psaros, for their outstanding leadership in sustainability and their achievement of winning a 2014 Banksia Sustainability Award!

A few other (slightly quirky) eTool achievements by the numbers

      0     kilometers driven by cars to work by eTool employees (we opt for bicycles instead)

       1      CO2e saving plan developed to pump poo from Perth to farms (CSI talk TBC…)
       1      fantastic ‘Life Cycle Design Explained‘ video
    102    trees planted at the Bruce family farm by the team
     120    pages printed (hopefully after convincing more clients, 2015 will be 0!)

    171     attendees to eTool “saving the world” events (i.e. CSI talks & Great Debate)

     185    hours spent at the lunch table philosophising about how to save the world


2015: It’ll Be a Big One.

We’ve got some exciting things planned for the new year and we’re jumping out of our seats in anticipation. Here are just a few of our ambitions for the new year:

eToolLCD compliance with UK’s BREEAM IMPACT & DGNB (German Green Building Council) 
Watch this spacethis is huge. Delivering additional functionality that allows compliance with international green building rating systems is part of our continuing strategy of making eToolLCD the best and most globally accessible whole-building LCA software around.

Reaching the far corners of the world with LEED 
US-based LEED is used not only by the United States, but also in many other countries such as Brazil, Canada and India, just to name a few. Working on more LEED projects and showing consultants the power of eToolLCD means more carbon saved in even more parts of the world, something we always strive for.A zero-waste office
We want to make sure we walk the talk in the office in all areas, so starting 2015, the eTool office will become zero-waste. All employees will be responsible for disposing of their own waste with the intention of encouraging more mindful thought processes around product packaging and food waste. Wish us luck!


From all of us at eTool, we’d like to thank you for being a part of our journey. Stay tuned as more exciting things unfold in the coming months…Here’s to 2015!– Richard, Alex, Fei, Portia, Pat & Henrique

Psaros WINS a 2014 Banksia Sustainability Award!

Leading WA developer and long-standing client of eTool, Psaros was the recent recipient of the SMB Sustainability Leadership 2014 Banksia Sustainability Award.

A testament to their innovation and commitment to sustainability, Psaros uses eTool to conduct a life cycle assessment (LCA)  for each of their multi-residential developments, with one of their more recent developments Edge, winning an International Property Award in a 2014 Asia Pacific regional competition.

Edge by Psaros Thumb

Edge by Psaros

It’s an honour to be a part of the Psaros sustainability journey and we look forward to what lies ahead. Congratulations Psaros for Leading by Doing.

banksia_award_acceptance_chiara-750x0

Chiara Pacifici, Head of Sustainability, accepting the award on Psaros’ behalf.

 

More Psaros developments:

Psaros Announced as Finalist in Australia’s Prestigious Sustainability Awards

A long standing client of eTool has recently been announced as a finalist for the Banksia Sustainability Awards.

Psaros has been leading the way in sustainable multi-residential buildings in Australia through conducting eTool Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) for each of their developments, with one of their more recent developments Edge, winning an International Property Award in the 2014 Asia Pacific regional competition.

Edge by Psaros Thumb

Edge by Psaros

Recently, Psaros and the Conservation Council of Western Australia (CCWA) formed a partnership to help encourage sustainable apartment developments in Perth City. They have commissioned market research to help understand community attitudes towards sustainable apartment-style living the future of Perth city.

Read the Psaros press release here.

We’d like to say a a big ‘congratulations!’ to Psaros from all of us here at eTool. We’ll keep our fingers crossed for the Psaros Banskia Award!

We’re Going Global

Miss our September Newsletter? …We have some exciting news! 

eTool is growing some wings and heading off on a global journey…

From the very beginning, Richard and Alex created eTool and the eToolLCD software to achieve one mission – to create a global solution for a global challenge: global warming. After many years of hard work, struggle, briefly being the “LCA nerds”, and a great deal of patience, we now watch with excitement as the world embraces Life Cycle Assessment as a standard component of good building design.

To reflect our desire to improve the built form around the world, we’ve breathed new life into our website, created a succinct “Life Cycle Design Explained video“, and changed our domain name to www.etoolglobal.com. Let it be noted: the latter was not an easy decision. The word ‘global’ had a certain “evil global domination” feel, much to the disdain of the team. However after many discussions, global seemed to be best word to signify our ultimate goal – so we are taking the world global back and giving it a new and positive reputation.

To date, eTool has conducted over 200 LCAs of all sorts of building projects with over 1,500 registered eToolLCD users across 61 different countries.

So while our global journey has already begun, we really look forward to continuing to work with you all in achieving global domination… domination of genuinely sustainable buildings that is!

 

-The eTool Team
Richard, Alex, Fei, Patrick, Portia & Henrique

Green Stars for LCA in Perth

Cundall and eToolLCD blaze a green trail of LCA while achieving 5 Star Green Star ratings for buildings in Kings Square

AlexOliverKingsSquare_Web

Over the past nine months, eTool has worked closely with progressive ESD consultants Cundall, to provide Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) of four large commercial buildings in Kings Square.

Strategically located within the $5.2 billion Perth City Link precinct, the project is part of one of Australia’s most significant CBD urban renewal developments.

Leading Australian group Leighton Property, set 5 Star Green Star requirements for all four of their current projects in Kings Square. With construction now underway, builders John Holland, Broad Construction and Probuild are working to achieve these targets.

Recently, Cundall successfully guided Kings Square One (KS1) to achieve a 5 Star Green Star rating. The design was awarded a total of 70 points, five of which were awarded upon completion of the LCA as part of the “Material Impacts Credit” for the Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA) Green Star.

KS1 Project Manager Woody Forte, said achieving this first stage is a great outcome by the KS1 team and the project, and is a crucial point of difference in a competitive market for building owners and tenants alike.

“We worked collaboratively with our ESD consultant Cundall and Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) experts eTool, to identify and incorporate in the design the most cost effective ESD features to deliver the 5 Star Green Star rating, whilst also ensuring alignment with the project deliverables was maintained,” said Woody.

Cundall was quick to incorporate the newly added LCA Green Star credits and engaged eTool to conduct the LCAs for the Kings Square developments.

“LCA was a logical inclusion for all of the projects and has made it easy to get a full understanding of the environmental performance of the design. eTool is paving the way for the next era in sustainable development with their innovative eToolLCD software. Their vision and approach means they fit in seamlessly with the project team and ensure that we keep up to speed with global advancements in ESD,” Cundall’s Senior Consultant, Oliver Grimaldi said.

eTool’s Business Development Director, Alex Bruce said, “Incorporating eToolLCD in all four projects in Kings Square as well as a number of other large Perth developments has clearly demonstrated to the industry that LCA is now a standard part of good design practice.”

“No other single product or service in the Green Star space can offer more value to improving your building’s environmental performance and rating,” Mr Bruce said.

As part of the requirements for the “Material Life Cycle Impacts” credit in Green Star, the LCA needed to be compliant with EN15978 (whole of building LCA) and ISO14044. While the Kings Square projects were some of the first in Australia to meet this standard, there are many poised to follow as the global demand for LCA continues to soar.

< ENDS >

Please note: High resolution images and interviews are available on request.

 

Media contact:

Portia Odell
eTool Marketing Communications Manager
08 9467 1664
portia@etool.net.au
www.etool.net.au

 

Notes for Editors

“Materials Lifecycle Impact” Credit

In 2013, the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) released a draft “Materials Lifecycle Impact” credit, which made up to 8 points available for the conduction of a life cycle assessment of a building. Visit the eTool blog for more information.

 

IMPACT

IMPACT is a method and materials database for the implementation of building LCA and life cycle costing into building information modelling tools (BIM). For more information seewww.IMPACTwba.com.


LCA

Life Cycle Assessment is the study of environmental impacts that occur due to a products life including raw material extraction, transport, manufacturing, installation, maintenance and repair, demolition and waste processing, reuse and recycling.

The Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) embraces LCA

UDIA EnviroDevelopment Standards Embrace Life Cycle Assessment 

The Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) is the latest industry body to embrace life cycle assessment (LCA) in a move that aligns it with a growing global trend in the property industry.

LCA was introduced into the EnviroDevelopment National Technical Standards v2 released by the UDIA in March as an “alternative compliance” mechanism for quantifying the environmental performance of materials selected for a project.

Projects have the option of conducting an LCA in lieu of any of the Materials criteria specified under the six elements that comprise the Standards including ecosystems, waste, energy, materials, water and community.

The UDIA sought the expert advice of eTool Co-founder and Director Alex Bruce in the formulation of the LCA component of the EnviroDevelopment Standards which, importantly, complies with the international standards for LCA: EN15978 and ISO14044.

“eTool prides itself on innovation so we’ve been working hard to ensure our software is compliant with the international standards for LCA. It’s not an easy task which is probably why eTool is among only a handful of software solutions that enable reporting to these standards,” said Richard Haynes, eTool Co-founder and Software Development Director.

“It’s exciting to see another progressive industry body incorporating LCA into their standards for assessing the sustainability of buildings and infrastructure,” said Mr Bruce.

“It demonstrates a growing understanding of LCA’s power and effectiveness in understanding the environmental and economic impacts of the built form and indicates a shift towards performance-based sustainability outcomes.”

Used to best effect in the early phase of a project, LCA is a powerful design tool that provides reliable, quantifiable information to developers, builders and consultants looking for a cost-effective way to reduce a project’s environmental impact and create better, longer- lasting outcomes.

Brent Thomas, Chair of the National EnviroDevelopment Board of Management said: “Support from experts like Alex, who is a strong advocate for LCA and the delivery of sustainable communities and spaces, is essential in the progression of EnviroDevelopment and we are thankful for Alex’s contribution to and support of the program.’

“The new standards, and the alternative compliance mechanism, maintains EnviroDevelopment’s philosophy of setting performance based benchmarks, allowing individual project teams to determine the most appropriate sustainability initiative for the project, cognisant of site characteristics, climate and vision,” said Mr Thomas.

The interest in LCA has skyrocketed and it now has a presence in many of the world’s leading built form sustainability rating tools including LEED (US), BREEAM (UK) and Australia’s Green Building Council of Australia’s (GBCA) Green Star system.

eTool recently finished LCAs on three buildings in the high profile Kings Square project in Perth for developer Leighton Properties. They are expected to achieve their targeted 5-star Green Star ratings with the help of credits obtained through the LCA-based Innovation Challenge. The builders for Kings Square 2 and 4, Broad Construction Services, will use eTool LCA software to help achieve their Green Star rating target and also to meet the conditions for LEED certification required for Kings Square 2.

While eTool has been working extensively with builders and developers in the Green Star commercial and multi-residential space in recent times, eTool LCA software is as relevant and applicable to a broad range of other industry sectors including infrastructure, industrial and land development. Projects in these areas would similarly benefit from the detailed life cycle costing data and design information eTool LCA can produce, which enables informed and intelligent decisions to be made regarding the environmental and economic impacts of a project.

 

Media contact

Jo Thierfelder
eTool Marketing Communications Manager 0421 589 548
jo@etool.net.au
www.etool.net.au

Please note: Interviews are available on request.

About eTool

eTool is a world leading life cycle software consultancy that optimises building design for lower environmental impact and high performance. Utilising our unique software eTool LCA®, we work with architects, engineers and developers to measure and improve the life cycle impacts of buildings, surpassing industry standards. eTool LCA® makes sustainable development easy to achieve and cost-effective for all size projects, from residential and commercial building to land development and infrastructure.

For more information, please visit www.etool.net.au. You can also follow us on Twitter, join us on Facebook and LinkedIn for the latest eTool news, or read our blog.

eTool features in Psaros video

eTool was recently featured in a video by Psaros detailing their sustainability initiatives and partners. Check out the video and some of their projects here.