Embodied carbon of structures

Improved operational energy efficiency has increased the percentage of embodied energy in the total life cycle of building structures. Despite a growing interest in this field, practitioners lack a comprehensive survey of material quantities and embodied carbon in building structures. This thesis answers the key question: What is the embodied carbon of different structures?


Three primary techniques are used: a review of existing tools and literature; a collaboration with a worldwide network of design firms through conversations with experts and the creation of a growing interactive database containing the material efficiency and embodied carbon of thousands of buildings


The contribution of this work is the development of an interactive online tool, called deQo (database of embodied Quantity outputs), to provide reliable data about the Global Warming Potential of buildings (GWP, measured in kgCO2e/m2 and obtained by multiplying the two key variables). Given the need for a long-term initiative, a framework is offered to create an interactive, growing online database allowing architects, engineers and researchers to input and compare their projects.