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Life Cycle Thinking

Life Cycle Thinking

Course Description

In the past few years the concept of embodied carbon has gone from relative obscurity to critically important as its growing impact is better understood. Building codes and construction policies around the world are being revised to tackle embodied carbon – a process measured and managed through a life cycle assessment (LCA).

In this course, students are introduced to the future of green construction from an embodied carbon and other LCA-based metrics. Students review voluntary green building systems like LEED and Zero Carbon Building Standard and articulate ‘next generation’ sustainability considerations, why their importance is increasing, and how to calculate and minimize the life cycle impacts of their architecture projects.

Learning Objectives

  1. Identify concepts of life cycle assessment (LCA) and embodied carbon related to architectural design

  2. Gain background and history into why these topics are becoming increasingly important

  3. Assess current approaches in building requirements and voluntary systems like LEED

  4. Become familiar with demos of tools and databases that can be used to perform a first pass LCA-based analysis