Our climate is changing. Human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean, and land, according to the 2021 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) report. 39% of global GHG emissions are attributed to the building industry, 11% of which are embodied carbon emissions. Mass timber sequesters carbon and is an increasingly important product in any strategy to reduce carbon emissions from the built environment.
KL&A Engineers and Builders and Adolfson & Peterson recently authored a comparative structural life cycle assessment with realistic cost estimates on a constructed project to understand the economic impact of sustainable material choices. They studied Platte Fifteen, a mass timber building in Denver, CO, and determined that for one representative office building under realistic conditions, the design choice of mass timber can bring consequential savings in embodied carbon for little to no building cost premium.