The project is a collaboration between the University of Rwanda, MASS Design Group, and Ove Arup (UK), and is funded by the Royal Academy of Engineering. The project is focused on measuring and reducing embodied carbon and will complement work being performed in Rwanda, mainly the Green Building Minimum Compliance System, which focuses on reducing operational resources. A key output was to provide built environment professionals with the tools and knowledge to help them make climate-smart decisions. Significantly, it evaluates the environmental impact of construction projects in Rwanda through a series of case study projects which will be published soon.
With building construction and use accounting for approximately 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions, we are faced with a challenge for sub-Saharan Africa, in the coming decades the majority of new construction is likely to occur, to accommodate a rapidly growing population. Continuing with a business-as-usual approach would make the region the largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the future.
The Guidance and Toolkit package has been developed to enable built environment professionals to measure and subsequently reduce embodied carbon as part of the design process. In addition, training based on a co-developed curriculum will be provided to ensure the Guidance and Toolkit can be successfully diffused into everyday practice.