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Sustainability specification added to complement NSSS

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The British Constructional Steelwork Association (BCSA) has published the 1st edition of the Sustainability Specification for structural steelwork for building construction, which is now freely available on

Due to come into force on 1st June, this document will constitute a new Annex J to the National Structural Steelwork Specification for Building Construction (NSSS) when revised in its 8th edition.

BCSA CEO David Moore said: “Given demands to promote more sustainable construction, and particularly in the context of the climate emergency, this document specifies general requirements and practices for achieving environmentally sustainable steel building construction.”

Annex J supplements the requirements of Clauses 1 to 11 of the NSSS and includes guidance on both the sustainable design of structural steelwork and the specification for sustainable fabrication of structural steelwork.

It requires all relevant Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) to be submitted for new steel products, as well as for corrosion and fire protection systems. The annex also covers several topics, including steel procurement, project specification requirements in terms of sustainability and reusing structural steel.

Prepared under the guidance of a steering committee comprised of structural steel suppliers, steelwork contractors, designers, and individual sustainability experts from the BCSA, Steel Construction Institute, and IStructE, this Sustainability Specification can be incorporated in the contract documentation separately to the NSSS by specifying the following: Fabrication in accordance with (i) National Structural Steelwork Specification for Building Construction (NSSS), 7th edition and (ii) NSSS – Annex J – Sustainability Specification.

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