Dynamic Benchmarking of Building Strategies for a Circular Economy

L. Eberhardt*, H. Birgisdottir, M. Birkved

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

Increasing building demands from a growing world population puts enormous pressure on natural resources. Management of resource consumption and environmental impacts is therefore vital to secure contemporary and future well-being and progress. Circular Economy (CE) is perceived as an industrial economy model potentially minimizing resource consumption, waste production and environmental impacts by the means of increased material circularity e.g. reuse. In order to promote CE in buildings, there is a need for benchmarks to support building designers in choosing environmentally viable solutions. Although life cycle assessment (LCA) help policy makers and building practitioners to define such benchmarks, benchmark studies often rely on static LCA approaches. Hence, uncertain and unknown dynamic changes during a buildings' long service life influencing the performance of long term sustainable building design principles are not accounted for. Through a literature review the paper at hand identified dynamic technological progress such as resource and energy consumption, energy grid mix, waste management, design and innovation and production efficiency as potentially essential to include when defining realistic CE building strategy benchmarks. How these dynamic factors may affect LCA results were demonstrated through a case study of a concrete column based on a range of possible scenarios. This included estimated future projections and the uncertainty relating to prospective assessments resulting in an output in the form of a span of possible future developments and environmental impacts instead of a single output. Based on the literature review and case study, main challenges of incorporating dynamism within building LCA benchmarking were identified.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012027
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Volume323
Number of pages10
ISSN1755-1307
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019
EventSustainable Built Environment D-A-CH Conference 2019: Transition Towards a Net Zero Carbon Built Environment, SBE 2019 Graz - Graz, Austria
Duration: 11. Sep 201914. Sep 2019

Conference

ConferenceSustainable Built Environment D-A-CH Conference 2019: Transition Towards a Net Zero Carbon Built Environment, SBE 2019 Graz
CountryAustria
CityGraz
Period11/09/201914/09/2019
SponsorBAUIMASSIVI, Beckhoff, et al., Klima- und Energiefonds, Marienhutte, Wienerberger

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benchmarking
life cycle
environmental impact
literature review
resource
architectural design
waste management
natural resource
innovation
economy
energy
consumption

Cite this

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title = "Dynamic Benchmarking of Building Strategies for a Circular Economy",
abstract = "Increasing building demands from a growing world population puts enormous pressure on natural resources. Management of resource consumption and environmental impacts is therefore vital to secure contemporary and future well-being and progress. Circular Economy (CE) is perceived as an industrial economy model potentially minimizing resource consumption, waste production and environmental impacts by the means of increased material circularity e.g. reuse. In order to promote CE in buildings, there is a need for benchmarks to support building designers in choosing environmentally viable solutions. Although life cycle assessment (LCA) help policy makers and building practitioners to define such benchmarks, benchmark studies often rely on static LCA approaches. Hence, uncertain and unknown dynamic changes during a buildings' long service life influencing the performance of long term sustainable building design principles are not accounted for. Through a literature review the paper at hand identified dynamic technological progress such as resource and energy consumption, energy grid mix, waste management, design and innovation and production efficiency as potentially essential to include when defining realistic CE building strategy benchmarks. How these dynamic factors may affect LCA results were demonstrated through a case study of a concrete column based on a range of possible scenarios. This included estimated future projections and the uncertainty relating to prospective assessments resulting in an output in the form of a span of possible future developments and environmental impacts instead of a single output. Based on the literature review and case study, main challenges of incorporating dynamism within building LCA benchmarking were identified.",
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Dynamic Benchmarking of Building Strategies for a Circular Economy. / Eberhardt, L.; Birgisdottir, H.; Birkved, M.

In: IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, Vol. 323, 012027, 09.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Birgisdottir, H.

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AB - Increasing building demands from a growing world population puts enormous pressure on natural resources. Management of resource consumption and environmental impacts is therefore vital to secure contemporary and future well-being and progress. Circular Economy (CE) is perceived as an industrial economy model potentially minimizing resource consumption, waste production and environmental impacts by the means of increased material circularity e.g. reuse. In order to promote CE in buildings, there is a need for benchmarks to support building designers in choosing environmentally viable solutions. Although life cycle assessment (LCA) help policy makers and building practitioners to define such benchmarks, benchmark studies often rely on static LCA approaches. Hence, uncertain and unknown dynamic changes during a buildings' long service life influencing the performance of long term sustainable building design principles are not accounted for. Through a literature review the paper at hand identified dynamic technological progress such as resource and energy consumption, energy grid mix, waste management, design and innovation and production efficiency as potentially essential to include when defining realistic CE building strategy benchmarks. How these dynamic factors may affect LCA results were demonstrated through a case study of a concrete column based on a range of possible scenarios. This included estimated future projections and the uncertainty relating to prospective assessments resulting in an output in the form of a span of possible future developments and environmental impacts instead of a single output. Based on the literature review and case study, main challenges of incorporating dynamism within building LCA benchmarking were identified.

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