Volume No. 7 Issue No.: 1A Page No.: 461-474 July-September 2012

 

CARBON FOOTPRINT INDEX : A SIMPLIFIED TOOL FOR IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF CONSTRUCTION WASTE GENERATION

 

Ahmad Firman Masudi*, Che Rosmani Che Hassan, Nik Meriam Sulaiman1, Noor Zalina Mahmood, Siti Nazziera Mokhtar2 and Khairulzan Yahya3

1. Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, (Malaysia) 2. Institute of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, (Malaysia) 3. Department of Structure and Materials, Faculty of Civil Engineering, University Technology of Malaysia, Skudai, Johor, (Malaysia)

 

Received on : May 10,2012

 

ABSTRACT

 

Construction industry generates huge quantity of wastes which can lead to significant impacts on the environment. Global warming is a major and eminent environmental issue in construction and has been considered and emphasized in this study. Quantification of this environmental impact is carried out using carbon footprint analysis which is part of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) that is mostly used methodology to quantify the global warming potential. This study focused on quantitative assessment of environmental load, in this case carbon emissions. The aim of this study is to evaluate carbon footprint rate (global warming impact) from construction waste generated from various types of project in Klang Valley employing various construction method, by applying the so-called Carbon Footprint Index (CFI). Six projects in Klang Valley constructed between 2009 – 2010 had been selected for this study. This study focused on evaluation of carbon emissions for waste generated during construction phase only. Major construction materials such as concrete, timber, reinforcement bars were taken into account. Construction projects covered in data collection process were residential, commercial, office, governmental and education buildings employing conventional and IBS systems within Klang Valley area. LCA analysis and the global warming impact assessment was conducted by referring to Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) database of IDEMAT and EcoInvent. Result showed that wastage CFI values were heavily determined by method of construction. Benchmarks for wastage CFI is in the range of 21 26 kg CO2/m2 for typical conventional projects and it shall be less for full IBS projects. CFI assessment for waste generated is practically governed by wastage of big three materials i.e. concrete, timber and reinforcement steels. Based on wastage CFI result in this study, the use of prefabricated elements is considered as effective measure because it significantly reduce the use and wastage of these materials. Environmental impact due to waste generation shall be reduced since design stage of construction, rather than focusing on material control or recycling during end-of-pipeline stage of construction.

 

Keywords : Construction waste, Carbon footprint, Environmental load, LCA, Environmental Impact Assessment, Quantification, Benchmarking,

 

 

BACK