eTool has developed a warehouse benchmark study in collaboration with CTE, a Brazilian Engineering and Consultancy firm, following the growing demand for Life Cycle Design services in LEED certified projects.
The objective of this study is to share benchmarking results, deep dive on project hot spot areas, identify the best improvement strategies and assist design teams to set impact reduction targets at concept stage.
LEED is helping drive the use of Life Cycle Assessment in construction and this study encompasses the final design of seven warehouses in Brazil that were assessed according to the Building Life Cycle Impact Reduction credit (MRc1 – Option 4 – Whole Building LCA).
The size of these projects vary between 62,818 m2 and 6,128 m2. Functional equivalence comparison also considered an average height of 13.6m.
The LCA credit is focused on project´s core, structure and enclosure materials impacts and the reduced scope includes the following life cycle modules:
- A1-A3 – Product Stage
- A4 – Transport
- B1-B5 – Use, Maintenance, Replacement
- C1-C4 – End of Life
eToolLCD software was used to conduct the study using Life Cycle Strategies North American v17 Life Cycle Inventory, compliant with EN15804 and ISO14044. The impact assessment method is CML – IA baseline V4.5. Service life is 60 years.
The construction scope covers the complete building envelope and structural elements, including footings and foundations, structural floors, columns, beams, structural wall assembly (from cladding to interior finishes), external doors, glazing, and roof assemblies. Estimated demolition impacts are also included.
LEED certified warehouse (Brazil) – Carbon benchmark
Typical warehouse construction in Brazil uses reinforced concrete footing and piling, concrete slab, prefabricated concrete columns and beams, rendered concrete block walls, concrete panels or steel cladding, steel roof structure and insulated steel roof covering.
The majority of the materials´impacts are associated with concrete and steel. The use of clinker replacement in cement is becoming more common and partial use of blast furnace slag was assumed in concrete mix for foundation and structural floors. Above average percentage of high recycled content in steel reinforcement was also considered as part of the benchmark model. These assumptions will help drive change in the segment as they become more common and are now considered typical practice for LEED certified projects.
LEED warehouse (27859 m2) – material inventory summary
LEED warehouse benchmark – EN15978 table (reduced scope)
Good structural design can significantly reduce embodied carbon, especially when different scenarios are tested at concept stage. Not only evaluating the impacts of materials but also the effect of different construction methods and technologies. eToolLCD users can quickly assess warehouse environmental impacts at concept design stage using whole warehouse template (component level) available in the software. Note this custom template is developed following LEED credit requirements and covers a limited scope. eTool encourages a whole of project analysis including all life cycle stages and full construction scope. This allows early stage analysis to help inform design teams test different scenarios and potential improvement strategies before progressing to detailed design stage.
For more information please contact us.