Architectural Record:

Taking a Holistic Approach to Embodied Carbon

By Fred A. Bernstein

A new article in Architectural Record by Fred A. Bernstein, dives into embodied carbon and its relationship to Passive House design with a great shout out for The Passive House Network and specifically the use of the PHribbon.   Read the article (and get continuing education credits) then check out PHribbon and start calculating the entire carbon footprint! 

An excerpt from the article:

“Most of a building’s embodied carbon is attributable to its materials. “We have to be careful not to pursue energy efficiency without considering the climate impact of materials,” says Chris Magwood, director of research at the Canadian organization Builders for Climate Action. “Since the climate feels the impacts from a building’s materials and its operation in the same way,” he says, “we won’t start making the best decisions until we start looking at both of these impacts together.”

To help architects do that, the Passive House Network recently introduced PHribbon, an app designed to help architects compute the embodied carbon of their buildings. It works with the Passive House Planning Package, a program used to calculate the operational-energy requirements of PHI projects. PHribbon displays the carbon contribution of each building material, giving designers a chance to pick lower-emission alternatives, perhaps exchanging metal siding for wood, and helping them determine how much insulation will achieve the lowest overall energy use.”