Upcycling and Design for Disassembly – LCA of buildings employing circular design strategies

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Abstract

Within the ReSOLVE framework, the concept of 'Looping' materials in an efficient way is a crucial theme to ensure environmental sustainability of circular economy. This paper investigates how current calculation practice of building LCA from the EN 15804/15978 standards affects the global warming potential (GWP) of building designs where material loops have been in focus. In this study, we calculate the environmental potentials of circular building design based on two cases; 1) a building constructed from primarily upcycled materials, and 2) a building constructed with principles of design for disassembly (DfD). Results from the two cases point to the significance of the EN standards' allocation approach in which a system's use of recycling/reuse is merited, rather than meriting a system providing recyclable/reusable materials. Hence, the upcycling strategy results in lower GWP, especially from the production stage, whereas the DfD strategy does not realize an environmental advantage within the framework of the EN standards. Results further shows that even though concrete elements are notable components of the DfD building, developing DfD-solutions for these exact elements might not be the preferred focus for optimizing the environmental benefits provided by the building. Instead, DfD focus could be on shorter-lived elements of high benefit potentials.
Original languageEnglish
Article number012040
JournalIOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science
Volume225
Issue number1
Number of pages8
ISSN1755-1307
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019
EventSBE19 - Sustainable Built Environment Conference: Buildings as Material Banks - A Pathway For A Circular Future - Brussels, Belgium
Duration: 5 Feb 20197 Feb 2019
Conference number: SBE 19
http://www.sbe-series.org/sbe18-19-conferences/bamb-brussels-sbe19/

Conference

ConferenceSBE19 - Sustainable Built Environment Conference
NumberSBE 19
CountryBelgium
CityBrussels
Period05/02/201907/02/2019
Internet address

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architectural design
global warming
recycling
sustainability
material
allocation
calculation
economy

Cite this

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title = "Upcycling and Design for Disassembly – LCA of buildings employing circular design strategies",
abstract = "Within the ReSOLVE framework, the concept of 'Looping' materials in an efficient way is a crucial theme to ensure environmental sustainability of circular economy. This paper investigates how current calculation practice of building LCA from the EN 15804/15978 standards affects the global warming potential (GWP) of building designs where material loops have been in focus. In this study, we calculate the environmental potentials of circular building design based on two cases; 1) a building constructed from primarily upcycled materials, and 2) a building constructed with principles of design for disassembly (DfD). Results from the two cases point to the significance of the EN standards' allocation approach in which a system's use of recycling/reuse is merited, rather than meriting a system providing recyclable/reusable materials. Hence, the upcycling strategy results in lower GWP, especially from the production stage, whereas the DfD strategy does not realize an environmental advantage within the framework of the EN standards. Results further shows that even though concrete elements are notable components of the DfD building, developing DfD-solutions for these exact elements might not be the preferred focus for optimizing the environmental benefits provided by the building. Instead, DfD focus could be on shorter-lived elements of high benefit potentials.",
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Upcycling and Design for Disassembly – LCA of buildings employing circular design strategies. / Rasmussen, Freja Nygaard; Birkved, Morten; Birgisdottir, Harpa.

In: IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, Vol. 225, No. 1, 012040, 2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article in JournalResearchpeer-review

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