1 minute read / February 21, 2023
In the EU, 37% of all waste generated comes from construction and demolition. Worldwide, meanwhile, building construction and operation accounts for about a third of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy consumption (See https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?qid=1583933814386&uri=COM:2020:98:FIN). While the design of new European buildings has for some time placed an emphasis on energy efficiency during their use phase, quantifying the impacts of different types of materials used in their construction has gained attention in the last decade. For example, concrete and steel production are responsible for particularly high greenhouse gas emissions (among other impacts), and the refurbishment of existing buildings is thought to be more sustainable than demolishing and rebuilding them.
This excerpt was taken from “Science for Environment Policy”: European Commission DG Environment News Alert Service, edited by the Science Communication Unit, The University of the West of England, Bristol.