February 14, 2021

Life Cycle Assessments

According to World Green Building Council 39% of all global carbon emissions are related to buildings. 11% is related to embodied carbon and 28% is related to the operational stage, making building assets a significant contributor to climate change.

Ramboll’s holistic approach to sustainability is based on the life cycle that leads from raw material to manufactured product, including extraction of the materials, energy consumption, manufacturing, transportation, construction, usage, recycling, final disposal and any future potential beyond the building’s service life.
The Life Cycle Approach
Instead of the traditional focus on energy efficiency in construction or product and manufacturing processes, the life cycle approach also includes the environmental, social, and economic perspectives throughout the entire life cycle of a building asset.
Life Cycle Assessments
LCA is a standardised, science-based method of assessing the absolute environmental impacts related to the entire life cycle of a product, process, or an entire construction project. The assessments document the environ-mental footprint of materials, products and buildings and other environmental impacts such as use of water and energy across the whole life cycle.
The results of an LCA contribute to the understanding of the environmental performance of a building and identify critical ‘hotspots’ or potential problems with design, construction, operation and end of life processes.
Ramboll Services
Within Life Cycle Assessments, we offer
  • ‘Screening’ LCA studies: A high-level analysis to help our clients understand the most significant contributors to their projects’ environmental impacts, which can be used to narrow the focus for further studies or as a basis for optioneering.
  • Building Life Cycle Assessments: In agreement with client, the LCA can be carried out for all or selected stages of the life cycle of the building. We undertake both simple LCAs during early design stages and detailed LCAs for late project stages, as well as estimate carbon budgets to be used in ten-der requirements.
  • Comparative LCAs: We conduct studies of different structural systems and material options during early design stages to support decision-making processes and reduction of environmental impacts.
  • LCA for Building Certifications: Our experts and assessors provide guidance on how to achieve compliance with the materials section of a broad selection of different accreditation schemes.
  • EPDs: Our experts provide Environmental Product Declarations for a variety of national and international EPD-systems and the full spectrum of product categories.
  • Third party assurance: Our LCA-specialist perform third party verification of both Building LCAs and EPDs.
Ramboll experts have a variety of different software and tools available when conducting LCAs for clients. We use the latest commercial software and databases, and we have internally developed a Sustainability Toolbox that includes an early stage LCA-tool and a Benchmarking Database. The Benchmarking Database enables
Ramboll to compare our practices with other databases and advise our clients on realistic targets for reducing carbon emissions from their assets, while also measuring our progress on designing for a zero-carbon future.