Carbon review and qualitative comparison of selected carbon counting tools

Damilola Ekundayo, Srinath Perera, Chika Udeaja, Lei Zhou

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Climate change is one of the greatest environmental threats facing our civilization today. In the UK, carbon related to buildings amount to around half of the total greenhouse gas emissions. It is essential that we are able to accurately count carbon which is now increasingly being used as a metric of building environmental performance and energy efficiency. Following the rule that only measurable is manageable, quantifying carbon will serve as a basis for building environmental management and improvement. The aim of this paper is thus to review the concept of whole-life carbon in buildings and the different carbon estimating tools available. The research revealed that the total (whole-life) carbon emissions associated with a building from cradle-to-grave can be categorised into embodied and operational carbon. Whilst there are now formalised methods for measuring operational carbon due to its significance in whole-life carbon, there is still less emphasis on embodied carbon counting despite the rising need and importance. Qualitative comparison of some selected open source UK tools for embodied carbon estimation shows disparities in boundary definitions, unit of measurements and methodological calculations amongst others. These suggest that an industry agreed data structure and common methodology is needed for embodied carbon estimation.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2012
EventRICS COBRA Research Conference - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Duration: 1 Sept 2012 → …


ConferenceRICS COBRA Research Conference
Period1/09/12 → …


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