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Article summary:

1. The UK government is considering implementing mandatory embodied carbon product standards for concrete, cement, and steel to stimulate the market for low-carbon versions of these products and help real estate businesses meet their net-zero emissions targets.

2. The government has issued a consultation paper on addressing carbon leakage, which outlines two main policy options: a UK Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) and potential mandatory product standards (MPS) on embodied carbon.

3. The MPS proposals would set an upper limit on the embodied emissions of products within its scope, with a preference for midstream stage manufacturing processes. The government also suggests non-mandatory measures such as voluntary labelling and public procurement requirements to grow the market for low-carbon products.

Article analysis:

The article discusses the UK government's consultation on potential mandatory product standards (MPS) for embodied carbon in concrete, cement, and steel. The author argues that such regulations would stimulate the market for low-carbon versions of these products and help real estate businesses meet their net-zero emissions targets. However, the article lacks a critical analysis of the potential drawbacks and limitations of MPS.

The article presents a one-sided view of MPS as a solution to reduce embodied carbon in construction materials without exploring counterarguments or potential risks. For example, it does not address concerns about the impact of MPS on international trade or competitiveness. The article briefly mentions the risk of offshoring midstream processes but does not provide any evidence or analysis to support this claim.

Moreover, the article promotes the idea that regulation is necessary to incentivize eco-design and repairability, which would promote circular economy principles. However, it does not explore alternative approaches to achieve these goals, such as voluntary labeling or public procurement requirements.

The article also lacks evidence to support its claim that real estate businesses are already looking overseas for low-carbon building materials due to pressures from planning systems and possible regulation of whole life carbon in the UK. It is unclear whether this trend is widespread or limited to specific cases.

Overall, while the article provides useful information about the UK government's consultation on MPS for embodied carbon in construction materials, it lacks critical analysis and presents a biased view of MPS as a solution without exploring potential drawbacks or alternative approaches.