Embodied Carbon Research Project in Rwanda

Hi all,
I work for a non-profit design firm and we’re partnering with the University of Rwanda on an embodied carbon research project. There are 3 main activities:

  1. benchmarking study to identify building embodied carbon baseline and identify carbon hotpots
  2. identify appropriate material coefficients that can be used locally
  3. create guidelines for built environment professionals to measure and reduce embodied carbon

We’re starting to write the methodology for the benchmarking study. Is anyone aware of any embodied carbon benchmarking studies that have been performed, like the CLF one, that would be good to consider before starting the project?

If anyone is interested in learning more about the project and feels like they could offer insights before we start then I’d be interested in connecting.


You may already know her but you might visit with Gayatri Datar at EarthEnable (gayatri@earthenable.org) there in Rwanda. We have discussed the surprisingly large carbon implications of EarthEnable earthen flooring a few times. We are working on the development of an ASTM standard to render earthen floors a more palatable and reliable low-carbon alternative.


C. Michael Donoghue, PE
Maritech Engineering, Inc.
Austin, Texas, USA

Thanks Michael. Yes I know Gaya well and working with Earth Enable on a number of fronts but it’s a good reminder to suggest earth floors as a carbon reduction method.

p.29 - 33 of this: Whole Life-Cycle Carbon Assessments Guidance | London Plan Guidance

All these are Europe though, but perhaps useful to give a broad idea?

Thanks I hadn’t seen the London one. The One Click study is interesting because they can crowd source hundreds of LCAs through their software. Unfortunately that’s not an option here but once we’ve helped built environment professionals to do them in the future, or made it mandatory, then we could continue to collect data and update the benchmarks.