Best Practices and Tools For Quantifying the Carbon Footprint of Every Project

Measuring the carbon footprint of every project during design, build and operations is a pre-requisite for reducing it.  This session described the recent developments in tools and best practices for Whole Building Life Cycle Assessment and Net Zero Carbon Certification.

Session Notes by Tunde Muntz

We need to include measurement of materials carbon footprint to be included in project carbon impact evaluation. The building structure embodies 40% of CO2 in a building.  We need to invite the structural engineer at LEED charettes and demand data about material embodied carbon as we do for operational carbon emissions.


  1. A. Calculation tools: WBLCA TOOL,  TALLY TOOL.
  2. B. SKANSKA EC3 tool available in March 2019. This tool has transparent data for the material embodied carbon value determination from previous built projects with structural elements with carbon labels. SKANSKA created benchmark data for regions to be able to compare new designs for type of buildings.


  1. Need to incorporate material embodied carbon data in the Revit building model to do comparisons between design options.
  2. Each tool gives a different total number for embodied CO2.

Session Lead: Wil Srubar, University of Colorado

Wil V. Srubar III, PhD, LEED AP, is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder, where he leads the Living Materials Laboratory. Dr. Srubar received his PhD in structural engineering and materials science from Stanford University in 2013. He received his BS and MS degrees from Texas A&M and The University of Texas at Austin, respectively. His materials science research concerns the sustainability, durability and viability of low-impact and living materials for buildings and construction. His industry experience includes structural engineering design and analysis, retrofit and rehabilitation of materials and structures, facility asset management, and environmental sustainability consulting. He is an active member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Architectural Engineering Institute, and the American Concrete Institute, and he is affiliated with the United States Green Building Council.

Kelly Roberts, P.E., LEED AP BD+C is a Principal and Project Manager at Walter P Moore in Atlanta, Georgia with structural design experience ranging from educational and healthcare facilities to high-rise office towers. She leads WPM’s Sustainable Design Community of Practice for the structures group; specializing in whole building life cycle assessment and the use of sustainable and salvaged materials. She is a founding board member of a non-profit material reuse center, the Lifecycle Building Center of Greater Atlanta, as well as a member of the Structural Engineering Institute Sustainability Committee and the Carbon Leadership Forum. Kelly was recently named as one of the 100 Most Influential Women by Engineering Georgia Magazine. She is also a 2017 Design Futures Council Emerging Leader and an ENR Magazine Top Young Professional.


Stacy Smedley has a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from the University of Washington, and 15 years in the architecture and construction professions. Her resume includes the first LEED for Homes Platinum certified project in Washington State as well as the first project in the world to be certified under Living Building Version 2.0 standards, the Bertschi School Living Science Building in Seattle. At Skanska, Stacy fulfills preconstruction management and sustainability roles, focusing on creating sustainable initiatives and opportunities office wide. She is a subject matter expert in green certifications and construction materials, from associated emissions to transparency and toxicity. Stacy is currently on the Advisory Board for the University of Washington Carbon Leadership Forum, Chair of the Embodied Carbon Network Construction Taskforce and Chair of the Washington Businesses for Climate Action.

Brent Trenga has truly run the construction industry gamut serving in various roles including Architect, Construction Manager, Developer and even project owner, allowing him to fully understand the sustainability ecosystem. As Building Technology Director for Kingspan North America, Brent is committed to reducing the environmental impact of business operations, products and services through continuous improvement and environmental transparency. Since 2015 Brent has lead Kingspan North America’s material health and transparency program while collaborating with their Global Healthy Building Agenda team. Brent also leads Kingspan’s education program, supports strategic planning for the business development group and provides insight on current and future sustainability initiatives keeping Kingspan at the forefront of our industry.