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A Framework for Assessing the Environmental Benefits of Mass Timber Construction

https://research.thinkwood.com/en/permalink/catalogue1185
Year of Publication
2017
Topic
Market and Adoption
Environmental Impact
Application
Wood Building Systems
Author
Crawford, Robert
Cadorel, Xavier
Publisher
ScienceDirect
Year of Publication
2017
Format
Journal Article
Application
Wood Building Systems
Topic
Market and Adoption
Environmental Impact
Keywords
Construction
Environmental Benefits
Renewable Materials
Research Status
Complete
Series
Procedia Engineering
Summary
The construction industry represents one of the most significant contributors to human-induced environmental damage. Many of the negative consequences on the environment result from the extraction, processing and manufacture of construction materials and components. This includes the depletion of raw material, energy and water resources; loss of habitats; contamination of water and soil; reduced air quality; and climate change. The production of some of the most common construction materials, such as concrete, steel, glass and aluminum are of most critical concern. There is a growing awareness of the need for a greater use of renewable materials that not only reduce resource depletion, but also address the range of other environmental issues. Cellulose-based materials, such as timber and straw are a commonly used renewable alternative. While timber has been used in construction for many centuries, there has been a recent resurgence in the use of timber as a replacement for traditional concrete and steel structures, particularly in response to these pressing environmental imperatives. Mass timber construction (MTC) is seen as a potentially viable alternative for dealing with these issues while at the same time meeting the demands of modern buildings, such as increasing height, speed of construction and fire resistance. Most existing research on MTC has been centered on its structural performance and fire resistance. There is a general lack of understanding of how this form of construction performs from an environmental perspective, which is critical given this is considered as one of its main strengths. This study establishes a framework for assessing the environmental benefits of MTC. The aim is to provide a streamlined approach to enable key building project stakeholders to assess the potential for MTC to provide environmental benefits over traditional construction methods in a particular building project. This can provide useful guidance for decision-making in relation to the use of MTC.
Online Access
Free
Resource Link
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Life Cycle Analysis of Cross Laminated Timber in Buildings: A Review

https://research.thinkwood.com/en/permalink/catalogue2141
Year of Publication
2019
Topic
Environmental Impact
Material
CLT (Cross-Laminated Timber)
Application
Wood Building Systems
Author
Cadorel, Xavier
Crawford, Robert
Organization
The University of Melbourne
Year of Publication
2019
Format
Conference Paper
Material
CLT (Cross-Laminated Timber)
Application
Wood Building Systems
Topic
Environmental Impact
Keywords
Greenhouse gas emissions
Life-Cycle Assessment European Standard EN15978
Multi-Family
Multi-Storey
Mixed-Use Building
Buildings
Conference
International Conference of the Architectural Science Association
Research Status
Complete
Summary
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have increased for the last three consecutive years in Australia, and this directly threatens our ability to meet our 2030 GHG emission reduction target under the Paris Agreement. Despite progress in reducing building-related GHG emissions, little focus has been placed on the indirect GHG emissions associated with building material manufacture, and construction. Cross laminated timber (CLT) is an alternative construction material that has been subject to numerous comparison studies, including many life cycle assessments (LCA). The aim of this paper is to provide a review of the recent literature on the environmental performance of CLT construction for Medium Density Residential (MDR) buildings and to identify knowledge gaps that require further research. Studies reviewed were sourced from web-based research engine, direct searches on global wood promotion websites, and the review was limited to peer reviewed publications. This review provides a useful basis for informing the exploration of important gaps in the current knowledge of how CLT buildings perform from an environmental perspective. This will ensure a comprehensive understanding of the environmental benefits of CLT construction and inform decision-making relating to structural material selection for optimising the life cycle GHG emissions performance of buildings.
Online Access
Free
Resource Link
Less detail