Building for Environmental and Economic Sustainability (BEES)

Now available as a free web-based application, BEES (Building for Environmental and Economic Sustainability) Online software is a science-based tool for selecting cost-effective, environmentally-preferable building products. Developed by the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) Engineering Laboratory, the tool is aimed at designers, builders and product manufacturers and includes actual environmental and economic performance data for 230 building products.

BEES measures the environmental performance of building products by using the life-cycle assessment approach specified in the ISO 14040 series of standards. All stages in the life of a product are analyzed: raw material acquisition, manufacture, transportation, installation, use and recycling/waste management. Economic performance is measured using the ASTM standard life-cycle cost method, which covers the costs of initial investment, replacement, operation, maintenance and repair and disposal. Environmental and economic performance is combined into an overall performance measure using the ASTM standard for Multi-Attribute Decision Analysis. Several Tandus Centiva products are in BEES Online and have embodied energy and environmental impacts that are lower than the industry average.