Decarbonizing the building sector by 2050 is a Paris Summit climate goal. Effectively reducing embodied carbon within buildings at scale, though, requires a fundamental starting point: If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.
EC3’s goal is to enable a performance-based approach to embodied carbon reductions in design, procurement, and construction. It moves us towards a more responsible building sector for our climate conscious future.
Quantity Control = Risk Control
By focusing the design team on material quantities early and having them “manage to a carbon budget,” EC3 drives best practice project management and material “quantity control.” Risk is reduced and design outcomes become more predictable; sustainability and cost control are complimentary.
Informed decision making
A robust, open source, publicly available material embodied carbon database, easily sorted and statistically compared, starts to remove the mystery behind embodied carbon data. It allows for setting credible embodied carbon project budgets, defining a better design reference building, and a more consistent tracking of embodied carbon targets during construction.
Comparing embodied carbon footprints at the time of purchase allows for more informed decisions. The decision-maker retains control over when and where to be embodied-carbon aggressive to meet project goals , avoiding unintentional budget impacts from choices that may not always be best value.
EC3 is initially targeted to be a market driver for selecting the low carbon supplier within each material category. There are significant embodied carbon variances within the harvesting and manufacturing processes of many commodity building materials. By asking for and comparing EC variances at the point of sale, the low carbon suppliers become known and more likely rewarded.
Industry Wide Initiative
EC3 will only be successful if it is embraced by the building community at scale. Hosting EC3 at the Carbon Leadership Forum places it in a neutral non-profit that has a national respected presence and extensive outreach through its Embodied Carbon Network. This allows industry wide participation among the trade associations, owners, builders, and designers backing EC3.
“If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”