What is Embodied Carbon?

All building materials go through a life cycle, from raw material extraction to end-of-life disposal. Throughout each phase along this journey, greenhouse gases are emitted, which are then measured via a life cycle assessment (LCA) and combined to express the total carbon footprint of that material – embodied carbon. These phases link together various industries and personnel, from supply chain and manufacturing; construction and installation; maintenance and repair; deconstruction and demolition, and waste processing and disposal.

This is a good visual from the Carbon Leadership Forum – an opportunity to show where Kingspan products reduce embodied carbon along each phase.


Each touchpoint along a building’s useful life, from design, construction, and ownership harnesses the ability to instill procedures and make decisions which ultimately reduce the embodied carbon of the project. Equipping architects, specifiers, general contractors, and owners with the knowledge on why and how to assess and reduce embodied carbon today is the only path to reach our global climate targets in the future.

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Term of the Day

Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (CO2e) is a method to compare various greenhouse gases based on their global warming potential. One metric ton of a greenhouse gas is converted to the equivalent number of metric tons of CO2 emissions with the same global warming potential.

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