I just finished my Master’s Thesis on reducing embodied carbon for residential construction. One focus was to simplify material selection for residential builders, to do this I created charts that make it pretty easy (I hope) to identify the materials that should be selected if you’re prioritizing embodied carbon reduction. Take a look at the attached files to see the charts; read on if you’re interested in the data used and how the charts are structured. Please send me any feedback, I’d love to add more material categories and would be happy to work in any updates.
The charts are broken down into the various material subcategories from the EC3 Tool. A scale was created ranging from 0 to the CLF baseline of the subcategory, then the conservative value of the individual material type was mapped to the scale (each 10% has a different color ranging from green to red). For example, in the Board Insulation Chart, the range is from 0 to 9.29kgCO2e. XPS has the highest conservative value at 6.91kgCO2e and scores an 8 on the scale.
Since biogenic carbon hasn’t been standardized, I decided to have it as a separate column. If more than 50% of the EPDs within a certain material type listed biogenic carbon, then I put a checkmark under the “stores carbon” column.
Lastly, I converted the framing member from weight or volume to Linear Foot (I don’t know any builders who buy studs by the pound). If anyone is interested in the conversions let me know and I’ll send you the numbers.
Feel free to use these charts any way you see fit, the more knowledge out there, the better.
EC All Insulation April 2021.pdf (520.4 KB)
EC Blanket Insulation April 2021.pdf (1.1 MB)
EC Blown in Insulation April 2021.pdf (424.8 KB)
EC Board Insulation April 2021.pdf (441.6 KB)
EC Foamed in Place Insulation April 2021.pdf (405.4 KB)
EC Framing Members April 2021.pdf (1.1 MB)
EC Joists and Rafters April 2021.pdf (1.1 MB)
EC Structural Beams April 2021.pdf (1.2 MB)