Carbon Leadership Forum

Kate Simonen joins radio debate on climate change solutions

When University of Washington faculty members Dan Schwartz and Kate Simonen face off in a KUOW debate this week, they will assume opposing sides on an issue both feel passionately — and similarly — about: reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The difference between them lies in the deadline: What should Washington aim for, right now? On March…

Autodesk: Ready to Reduce Your Construction Emissions? Use the Embodied Carbon Calculator

It’s no secret that the construction industry is one of the biggest contributors of greenhouse-gas emissions. The numbers are staggering: Embodied carbon currently makes up 11% or more of global emissions; by comparison, that’s more than five times higher than the 2% of global emissions produced by the entire aviation industry. By Jeff Link With…

Katerra: The Carbon Leadership Forum finds mass timber nearly offsets all upfront embodied carbon in the Catalyst Building

By Craig Curtis and Hans-Erik Blomgren As a vertically integrated company, Katerra controls the entire end-to-end building process. This offers us insight into the full building lifecycle and an unparalleled opportunity to address long-standing environmental inefficiencies in building product sourcing, manufacturing, construction, and operation. Katerra’s investment in cross-laminated timber (CLT) — which we believe will…

Science Friday: How The World Of Building Materials Is Responding To Climate Change

Science Friday host Ira Flatow interviews CLF’s Kate Simonen, plus Martin Pei, Chief Technology Officer of European steel company SSAB, and Jeremy Gregory, Director of the Concrete Sustainability Hub at MIT, about how the traditional building materials sector is going green. Mjøstårnet – Verdens høyeste trehusIn order to slow a warming planet, nearly every industry…

The American Prospect: Can the Concrete Jungle Sink CO2?

Proposed legislation in New York attacks a leading source of emissions that rarely gets noticed. by Reena Shah By the time today’s preschoolers hit middle age, the number of buildings on the planet is projected to double. An already unprecedented wave of urban migration will continue to grow, with two-thirds of the world’s population flocking…

Engineering News-Record: A Call to Action for Engineers on Climate Change

Figuratively and literally, engineers have taken a seat at the table to discuss climate change. At the United Nation’s climate talks in Madrid, Spain, which ended Dec. 15, engineers were represented at the public sessions and in closed-door meetings. It’s the first time they have been actively involved in the political and technical discussions surrounding…

Architect Magazine: The Carbon Issue

Meeting the urgent need for climate action, with decarbonization strategies for materials, design, practice, and policy. Architecture must quickly kick its carbon habit and minimize the threat of climate change. The profession has already made great progress toward eliminating CO2 emissions from new buildings’ operations. But energy efficiency is just the first step. The next…

ENR Top 25 Newsmakers: “Bruce King: Engineer Inspired Nation’s First Low-Carbon Concrete Code”

Much like the mouse that roared, tiny Marin County, Calif., population 60,000, is making a big statement about low-carbon concrete. On Jan. 1, the county’s Bay Area Low-Carbon Concrete Code went into effect. It is the first building code of its kind in the U.S. Bruce King, a consulting engineer,  catalyzed the code’s development to…

ENR Top 25 Newsmakers: “Kate Simonen: Climate Activist Has Rallied Industry to Reduce Embodied Carbon”

It has been a banner year for Kate Simonen and her burgeoning band of embodied carbon busters, bent on reducing the negative environmental impacts of building production. On Nov. 19, Simonen and her EC-reduction champions debuted the first free-to-use digital tool to calculate EC in materials. The same day, Marin County, Calif., approved the nation’s…

Green Building News: A Better Path to a Low-Carbon Future?

Building materials capable of reducing upfront carbon to zero are available, code-compliant, and affordable, study shows by Scott Gibson Building super-insulated houses with low energy needs and highly efficient mechanical systems is the best way for builders to lower greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change, right? Maybe not. A group of builders…

New York Times: Bricks Alive! Scientists Create Living Concrete

“A Frankenstein material” is teeming with — and ultimately made by — photosynthetic microbes. And it can reproduce. by Amos Zeeberg For centuries, builders have been making concrete roughly the same way: by mixing hard materials like sand with various binders, and hoping it stays fixed and rigid for a long time to come. Now,…

Thornton Tomasetti Launches BEACON, First-of-its-Kind Embodied Carbon Measurement Tool

Thornton Tomasetti, the international engineering firm, has launched Beacon, an innovative embodied carbon measurement tool poised to change the way structural engineers understand and manage embodied carbon optimization. The tool – first-of-its-kind – gives users the ability to measure embodied carbon, allowing for more informed decisions throughout the design process. Beacon is being introduced after…

How the New EC3 Tool Raises the Bar on Collective Action

Nearly 50 AEC industry organizations partnered to develop the groundbreaking Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator. by Donald Davies, President, Magnusson Klemencic Associates Fifty years ago, we were a divided country, but we also went to the moon by agreeing to work together on a common goal. That challenge required stepping out of our competitive silo’s…

Building a Carbon Smart Community with Legos

by Andrew Himes What can a team of 6th-graders from Redmond, Washington tell us about climate change, embodied carbon emissions from building construction, and the potential for hard work and innovative thinking to transform an industry? A lot, it turns out! A group of friends — three girls and three boys — presented their design…

Stephanie Carlisle: “I’ve been polluting the planet for years. I’m not an oil exec. I’m an architect.”

And no amount of data or complex modeling will rectify the building industry’s staggering impact on the environment. Design culture itself needs to change. For the past eight years, I’ve spent every day of my professional life enabling an industry that is responsible for nearly 40% of global climate emissions. I don’t work for an…

Thornton Tomasetti: Net Zero and the Construction Industry

Achieving net zero goals in construction and design requires further regulation that must focus on both operational energy efficiency and embodied carbon, argues Thornton Tomasetti’s Sustainability Lead Duncan Cox. Published in Global Construction, December 6, 2019 This year we have seen a huge rise in political, public and industry attention toward climate change, with the…

New White Paper from Builders for Climate Action: Low-rise Buildings as a Climate Change Solution

Builders for Climate Action is a project of Endeavor, the Sustainable Building School, and Greenup, central and eastern Ontario’s leading organization focused on issues of environmental education, sustainability, and stewardship. The Study at a Glance WHY Buildings are a leading contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, and no climate action plan can succeed without adequately addressing…

Coughlin Porter Lundeen: Introducing the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) Tool

In the Pacific Northwest, environmentalism is strong and sustainability is a priority. We’re privileged to live and work here and are encouraged by conscientious clients who think outside the box and regularly ask for product comparisons and creative solutions. Increasingly we’re responding to requests for embodied carbon studies on projects, and this week, we’re excited…

Carbon Friendly Forestry Conference 2019, hosted by the Washington Environmental Council

The third-annual Carbon Friendly Forestry Conference brought together diverse thinkers – policy makers, academics, conservationists, tribes, forest owners, business leaders, and others – to learn about and discuss innovative strategies and opportunities for sustainable forest management that can create a stronger economy and healthier communities in the face of the climate crisis. Slides are now…

Press Release: Sustainable Minds and the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator Tool Partner to Simplify Finding and Specifying Lower Embodied Carbon Construction Materials

Collaboration will help building professionals make smarter procurement decisions that drive climate action, while making it easier and less expensive for manufacturers to create environmental product declarations (EPDs) that provide more specific data. ATLANTA, Nov. 20, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — With the public beta release of the much-anticipated Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) tool, the…

AutoDesk: New Carbon Calculator Offers Hope for Reducing Carbon in the Building Industry

As a leader in design and construction software solutions for many high–emissions industries, Autodesk recognizes the vital importance of reducing carbon. This reality has AEC industries focused on the importance of making smarter choices around building materials, an option not readily available until today. Over the last year, we’ve worked with the Carbon Leadership Forum,…

Webcor Successfully Pilots Trailblazing New Tool for Evaluating Carbon Emissions From Construction Materials

California Builder Also Establishes its “Carbon Commitment” to Employ the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) Tool on All New Projects SAN FRANCISCO, November 19, 2019 — Until now, a building’s carbon footprint has been measured solely by the greenhouse gases (GHG) it emits once construction is complete and it is being used as intended….

Data to Drive Reductions: Microsoft Partners to Deliver a Free Tool to Reduce Embodied Carbon in Construction

Climate change is an urgent issue that demands global action. For the building sector, this action is especially needed, as buildings emit 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. This is partially because building operations and materials incur higher emissions than those of other sectors, but it’s also because builders haven’t had the right tools…

US Green Building Council-L.A. Announces Program to Help Construction Industry and Tradespeople Put California’s “Buy Clean” Policy into Action

LOS ANGELES (November 19, 2019) Specifying materials consistent with building sustainably can be a challenge at many levels of the building process, but has become increasingly important and complex due to local, state and federal regulations.  On January 1, 2020, California’s AB 262, the “Buy Clean California Act” will require Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for…

Thornton Tomasetti Shares Results of Comprehensive Embodied Carbon Measurement Study

Thornton Tomasetti, the international engineering firm, has released results from its multi-year, project-based embodied carbon measurement study, identifying the type of structures, materials and components with the highest carbon emissions. The findings provide insight into how structural engineers can drive innovation in design while reducing embodied carbon and creating structures that are more efficient. The…

BASF supports EC3 tool as Pilot Partner

HOUSTON, November 14, 2019 – BASF is pleased to announce the company’s role as a pilot partner for the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) tool — a free, open-source online tool designed to easily calculate the carbon emissions of building materials. “BASF is committed to contributing to a world that provides a sustainable future…

Press Release: Breakthrough tool launched at Greenbuild empowers users to learn how buildings and infrastructure can radically reduce embodied carbon

The Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (“EC3”) tool delivers the first digitized EPDs for construction materials in a free platform designed to accelerate early adoption across the entire construction industry. Georgia World Congress Center, ATLANTA – November 19, 2019 – The Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) tool launched in public beta version at Greenbuild today,…

Perkins&Will: Lessons Learned from Piloting an Industry Game-Changer

by Kimberly Seigel, Research Knowledge Manager Our industry has long known the impacts of embodied carbon in construction but has wrestled with how to incorporate this information into our practice.  Finally, after years of conversations and confusion, on September 23, 2019, the Carbon Leadership Forum announced a solution. In partnership with more than 30 forward-looking…

Climate Activists Maneuver To Reduce Embodied Carbon in Buildings – Engineering News-Record

There was no formal agenda on Feb. 12, 2018, when Bruce King and William Kelley met for lunch at the Lotus Cafe in San Rafael, Calif. But building regulation is a favorite topic of King’s, a structural engineer devoted to reducing carbon emissions related to buildings. So it was no surprise to Kelley, Marin County’s…

Bill Gates’ Blog: Buildings are bad for the climate. Here’s what we can do about it.

GatesNotes – October 28, 2019 Besides the traffic and the weather, we Seattleites love to talk about all the construction going on in our city. The downtown skyline is full of cranes, and it seems like the building never stops. By the end of the year, 39 new projects will have been completed in downtown…

World Resources Institute: Accelerating Building Decarbonization: Eight Attainable Policy Pathways to Net Zero Carbon Buildings For All

by Renilde Becqué, Debbie Weyl, Emma Stewart, Eric Mackres, Luting Jin and Xufei Shen Buildings that emit no greenhouse gas emissions during their operation are vital to meeting the SDGs and Paris Agreement targets. But in the past, zero carbon buildings have been assumed to be only attainable by technologically advanced or wealthy countries. New…

Interface CEO Jay Gould on optimism, talking to boards and truly carbon-negative products

Long-time consumer brands operations and marketing specialist Jay Gould readily admits he has not always been one to innovate through the lens of sustainability. A “stern lecture” from activist Paul Hawken and immersion in biomimicry with biologist Janine Benyus contributed to the self-described skeptic’s change of heart. Today, as chief executive of Interface, Gould is…

Autodesk Announces the EC3 Tool Partnership—Combatting Carbon Emissions

As the world builds the equivalent of an entire New York City every month, reducing the carbon emissions of materials is imperative. Between now and 2060 the world’s population will be doubling the amount of building floor space, equivalent to building an entire New York City every month for 40 years. Most of the carbon…

Webcor Partners with Carbon Leadership Forum to Support Development of Embodied Carbon Construction Calculator

Webcor is excited to announce its partnership with the Carbon Leadership Forum and fellow industry leaders to support the development of the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3). This open-source tool will be used by the AEC community to compare and reduce embodied carbon emissions from construction materials. When it comes to carbon, not all…

Skanska’s Elizabeth Heider: “Carbon reduction in construction: a net benefit, not just to the environment, but to the bottom line”

LinkedIn post by Elizabeth Heider, Chief Sustainability Officer at Skanska USA Inc. Today marks the start of Climate Week NYC. On this day, or any day in this age, there should be no debate on the merits of reducing the level of carbon circulating in the atmosphere. What is debatable is the best way to…

Climate Earth partners with the Carbon Leadership Forum and C Change Labs to help architects and engineers more easily evaluate embodied carbon impacts

Partnership focuses on development of digital EPDs to meet the EC3 tool requirements while also ensuring conformance with emerging global standards. Earlier this week the Carbon Leadership Forum announced the creation of the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (“EC3”) tool, a ground-breaking solution for evaluating the carbon emissions embodied within a wide array of building…

Port of Seattle: Building to Reduce Embodied Carbon Emissions with EC3 tool

The Port of Seattle, along with a growing number of government and industry leaders, recognize that the materials used in constructing our buildings generate pollution even before they arrive on our property. A significant portion of carbon emissions, the pollution that causes global warming, are from operations like lighting, heating, and cooling. At least half…

Carbon Leadership Forum endorses key new report from World Green Building Council (WGBC): “Bringing Embodied Carbon Upfront”

With the support of more than 80 organisations, the World Green Building Council’s report describes actions to revolutionise the buildings and construction sector towards a net zero future, through elimination of embodied carbon emissions. The World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) is a global network leading the transformation of the built environment, to make it healthier…

Announcing the EC3 tool partnership

Press Release The Carbon Leadership Forum, in partnership with more than 30 industry leaders, announces breakthrough tool to easily evaluate carbon emissions of building materials As the world builds the equivalent of an entire New York City every month, reducing the carbon emissions of materials is an imperative. The Carbon Leadership Forum, in partnership with…

Skanska USA Conceives Solution for Calculating Embodied Carbon in Construction Materials, Announces Transition to Open-Source Tool

Press release Ground-breaking tool calculates carbon emissions embodied within building materials—democratizing data and providing transparency in pursuit of the Paris Climate Accord’s aggressive global carbon reduction targets NEW YORK — Skanska USA, alongside the Carbon Leadership Forum and partners in industry, today announced the creation of the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (“EC3”) tool, a…

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