Ecolabels for Homestar and Green Star credits

03 March 2021

By NZGBC member The New Zealand Ecolabelling Trust

Perhaps the most straightforward way to gain Homestar and Green Star materials credits is to choose a product, such as paint or insulation, that has already achieved a high environmental standard or certification. NZGBC does not itself certify building materials, but it does recognise certain third-party accreditations, including ecolabels, one of which is the Environmental Choice New Zealand (ECNZ) ecolabel.

ECNZ is New Zealand’s only Type I Ecolabel, meaning it is among the world’s most rigorous environmental labels for products and services. ECNZ sets the most stringent, up–to-date specifications for environmental compliance in business, based on science-based standards.

For Green Star and Homestar, the types of products and brands that carry ECNZ ecolabel include the following:

Product

Brands

Building insulants

CSR Bradford Insulation, InZone Industries Limited, Tasman Insulation, Premier Insulation Ltd

Construction and Demolition Waste

Taggart

Portland cement and cement blend

Golden Bay Cement

Furniture, Fittings and Floorings

Aspect Furniture Systems, Bestwood, Daiken, Dezignatek, Furnware, Kopine, Laminex New Zealand, Nelson Pine Industries, PrimePanels, Vidak

Paints

Dulux, PaintPlus Colour Systems, Resene

Recycled rubber

Matta Products

Steel products (flat and long; pre-painted and resin coated)

NZ Steel, Pacific Steel, Steltech


For Green Star, up to 3 points can be gained from using ECNZ products, if 9% of products within the building qualify. Both tools recognise the ECNZ label: it qualifies products for maximum materials credits. The ECNZ programme is also recognised as a Level A certification scheme with the Green Building Council of Australia.

For Homestar, 2 points can be gained for each material category in the Sustainable Materials credits, where at least 50% of products used in the project belonging to that material category has a type 1 eco-label certification such as ECNZ. Furthermore, ECNZ certification demonstrates compliance for materials under the Healthy Materials credit. This adds up to 14 possible points in Homestar v4 (MAT-1, and MAT-2 credits) and 10 in upcoming Homestar v5 (EN3 and HC7 credits).

One of the key benefits of choosing an ECNZ ecolabel product is NZGBC assessors and auditors can easily verify the product’s eligibility using ECNZ’s website, which has an up-to-date directory of qualified products and services.

Using an ECNZ product also means avoiding hassle in finding if the chosen product is legitimate or not. Can you be sure the “green” insulation you chose from the company’s website is truly environmentally friendly? Greenwashing is still rife within the design and build industry, and NZGBC will not accept any products that are not 100% legitimate in their claims.

If you have a product used in building that you believe should be recognised for its environmental credentials, contact ECNZ to find out about the process to gain an ecolabel. If you have any questions about the products we certify, please visit our website or contact us directly.

Plugged In video discussing eco-labels and their role in green buildings