The four C’s of post-pandemic construction: Complex Challenges, Culture and Climate

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Australia accounts for just 0.33% of the world’s population yet it is one of the highest emitters of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per capita in the world. The construction sector is a substantial area for mitigation efforts in Australia because of its economic importance and its involvement with indirect GHG emissions, i.e. those embodied in construction supply chains, including construction materials and electricity use. While the majority of policies and regulations focus on reducing direct emissions from buildings, more attention needs to be paid to the embodied emissions of the whole sector as these can take up anywhere between 10% and 97% of the whole life-cycle carbon emissions.

This study aims at unravelling the total carbon footprint of the construction sector in Australia from 2009 to 2013, identifying the key contributing supply chains, industries and products. An economy wide input-output (IO) analysis is performed using a collaborative, cloud-based data platform – the Industrial Ecology Virtual Laboratory (IELab). This allows for a detailed disaggregation of sectors and permits more refined analysis as well as benchmarking against other sectors in the economy.

Editorial by Peter Salveson, CEO of Hansen Yuncken