Buildings generate nearly 40% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These emissions arise through the embodied carbon of building materials as well as building operations. Embodied carbon will be responsible for nearly 50% of the emissions from new construction between now and 2050, and early evaluations propose that 50% or more of the total embodied carbon in new buildings is in the structural systems and components. This presents a huge opportunity for structural engineers, and the industry as a whole, to reduce our impact on climate and the natural environment.
To better understand this opportunity, engineers and architects need to engage the entire lifecycle of products – from extraction to end-of-life. This course will build a foundation for that understanding beginning with a description of climate change, why it is critical for us to act now, and how the industry is already responding with tools and resources. It will follow with definitions of embodied carbon and how it is distributed across building systems, how material lifecycle assessments can inform our design decisions, and material choices we can all make as first steps. The importance of integrative design and collaboration with industry partners will be discussed throughout.
Missed Part 1? Watch the replay here.
- Review the importance of embodied carbon and its relevance to AIA 2030
- Learn about several case studies where embodied carbon was considered and how it was addressed
- Learn details of tools used to measure embodied carbon – EC3, Tally, and others
- Understand specific steps designers can take on their projects to reduce embodied carbon
Kelly RobertsP.E., S.E., LEED AP BD+C
Principal, Walter P Moore