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Wednesday, August 30, 2023, By Jessica Hernández, Real Estate Advisor & Marketing Analyst

 

The carbon footprint of a building refers to the amount of greenhouse gases that are generated in it during its useful life. The Greenhouse Effect Gases (GHG) produced by a building can be measured throughout its life cycle, that is, from its initial construction stage to the end of its useful life. That is, from the manufacture of materials, construction, its use, and its end of life. 

There are standardized calculation methods to know the impacts that a building generates throughout its life cycle. Through these methods, carbon emissions are measured in order to reduce them and establish what is known as a carbon footprint.

It is essential that the carbon footprint of a building begins to be calculated from its design, this will help to find and compare alternatives for less polluting materials and appropriate construction systems, to reduce the impact of the building, as well as achieve Net Zero Carbon objectives.

The scope sought to be obtained with the study must be established, whether or not it is achieved will depend on the information available, and on the areas that will be included in the data collection.

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What standards exist for its measurement?

There are a wide variety of standards dedicated to certifying the Carbon Footprint, but only some of them are recognized worldwide:

GHG Protocol and ISO 14064-1 are international standards that certify the carbon footprint of companies and institutions. These standards cover all sectors of commerce.

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Why is its measurement important?

The accelerated development of buildings in the cities of the world, together with all other human activities, generate a large amount of greenhouse gases which have a great impact on climate change and global warming. The calculation of the carbon footprint will allow, in addition to obtaining the data itself, to identify areas of opportunity and take measures that help reduce this impact, and contribute to the reversal of the global environmental problem.

The validation and verification of the calculation of the Carbon Footprint by an external entity allows Organizations to differentiate themselves from their competition, publish results and goals with greater credibility, and attract new clients.

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