Embodied Carbon - Practical Guidance

The built environment is responsible for a large proportion of UK greenhouse gas emissions. Typically, efforts to reduce this impact have focussed on its operational energy use, despite the fact that as much as 50%, sometimes more, of a building’s carbon footprint can be attributed to the construction phase. This is known as "embodied carbon".

In recent years, the UK-GBC has delivered a series of events and publications designed to raise awareness of embodied carbon, and to explore ways in which the industry can address the issue.

This year, we aim to take this further by working with members to develop practical guidance aimed specifically at the client community. In doing so, we hope to establish a comprehensive approach for clients to enable embodied carbon measurement and reduction and make it easier for clients to address embodied carbon in their projects. Once developed, iwill be made publicly and freely available for private developers and the public sector to use in their own development briefs.

The Practical Guidance

The objective is to develop practical guidance for clients to enable them to commission embodied carbon measurement and achieve carbon reductions. Firstly, the guidance aims to pose to clients the relevant questions that they should be able to answer internally before embarking on a measurement and reduction programme. Secondly, the guidance will provide clients with the questions that clients should ask their supply chains before embarking on measuring and reducing embodied carbon. Additonally, there will also be complementary guidance to signpost towards other existing industry resources. 

The Process

The first step has been to set up a Core Research Group with UK-GBC members to steer the project. The Core Research Group will create a draft guidance document. The draft guidance will then be tested and refined through a series of workshops. UK-GBC members are invited to participate in the workshops. Additionally, there will be a consultation process with members. Finally, we will be holding an event to launch the final output. This will be complemented by other dissemination events.  

Embodied Carbon Guidance project process image

Opportunities to participate

To book your place on the first client workshop, please go to our event page here.

If you would like to find out more about future workshops or the consultation process, please register your interest by emailing Natalia Ford

Click here to explore UK-GBC's other work on embodied carbon

With thanks to the sponsors