Out of [Site], in the Air: Embodied Carbon & Material Selection

Embodied Carbon (EC) emissions from the building sector produce 11% of annual global GHG emissions (second to transportation). Embodied carbon, unlike operational carbon, is out of sight, off site, and usually out of mind. As industry professionals, we have a responsibility to work towards a carbon-neutral built environment, and that work starts at design with a focus on the embodied carbon of a building and the materials that comprise it. A panel of professionals including an architect, building product supplier, consultant, and builder will discuss: Setting goals to better understand and raise awareness around EC; industry tools and case studies to understand/calculate/eradicate EC in both new construction and retrofit projects; and efforts to remove (capture/store) carbon from the atmosphere using building materials. The session will conclude with an audience prompt and challenge.

Session Chair(s): 

Event Time: 

Thursday, September 24, 2020 - 1:45pm to 2:45pm

Experience Level: 

1 (no prior experience/knowledge needed)

CEU Information: 

BPI 1.0 hour
GBCI BD+C, ID+C, WELL 1.0 hour

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify the "hot spots,” the most carbon-intensive material components of a building
  • Understand how to calculate, compare, and specify materials based on their embodied carbon
  • Recognize opportunities for carbon sequestration in materials and buildings
  • Create demand for low/no-carbon building materials through design decisions

Session ID: