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Environmental impacts of buildings, especially their embodied carbon, have been extensively documented and it is imperative that we take measures to quantify, mitigate, and even reverse them if we want to restrict global warming to below 1.5°C increase above the preindustrial levels. This chapter posits that embodied carbon is but one piece of the broader paradigm shift underway in all sectors, including the construction industry, which is moving towards net-zero emission status. This work then delves into the urgency of addressing embodied carbon, given the vast scale of the construction industry and its environmental footprint, both in North America and around the world. It also provides a review of the current regulations and policies in North America at the city, state, and national levels that aim to tackle this issue. The chapter then reports on the life cycle assessment of a case study, designed to meet a specific embodied carbon intensity target. Finally, this chapter concludes with an exploration of the barriers that must be overcome to achieve embodied decarbonization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of Embodied Carbon in the Built Environment
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781003820031
ISBN (Print)9781032234861
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering
  • General Arts and Humanities
  • General Environmental Science
  • General Social Sciences

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