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Next steps to Zero Carbon: useful resources

Designing with carbon is crucial in order to reach Net Zero buildings. Here we’ve collected a list of helpful reading material on how design teams can achieve this.

The definition of net zero carbon has to encompass all carbon impacts, and be calculated over the whole life cycle of the project. Often the term ‘Net Zero’ is used to refer to carbon emissions from operational energy use but embodied carbon can account for 75% of overall emissions.

Here at Hawkins\Brown, we advocate for Whole Life Carbon analysis which takes into account all carbon emissions over the life cycle of the whole building including the end of life.

The below list is a collection of resources as well as services we offer to help design teams reach Net Zero Carbon buildings.

Often the term net zero is used to refer to carbon emissions from operational energy use but embodied carbon can account for 75% of overall emissions.

General guidance

UKGBC (UK Green Building Council) guidance on:

A framework definition of Net Zero Carbon buildings
Verifying Net Zero Carbon Buildings
Renewable Energy Procurement & Carbon Offsetting Guidance for Net Zero Carbon Buildings

RIBA 2030 Challenge

RIBA has developed the 2030 Climate Challenge to help architects meet net zero (or better) whole life carbon for new and retrofitted buildings by 2030. It sets a series of targets for practices to adopt to reduce operational energy, embodied carbon and potable water.

LETI Embodied Carbon Primer

The Embodied Carbon Primer offers supplementary guidance to the Climate Emergency Design Guide, for those interested in exploring embodied carbon in more detail.

The expertise we offer

Equipping designers to create a sustainable post-pandemic future (London Festival of Architecture)
Our Sustainability Lead, Louisa Bowles, explores the ways in which architects have the power to help us reach net-zero buildings.

Using data to optimise your estate
Our new optimisation toolkit will identify the potential of your estate, helping you to plan for its future by analysing space utilisation, lifecycle cost and environmental performance.

Carbon cutting starts early (RIBA Journal)
The race to meet emissions reductions targets by 2030 means construction must now focus on embodied carbon, according to the winner of the RIBA President’s Award for Research – climate change.

RIBA President’s Awards for Research 2020: The Hawkins\Brown emission reduction tool(The Journal of Architecture)
This research paper, authored by the Hawkins\Brown team in collaboration with Dr Yair Schwartz, outlines the process behind the development of H\B:ERT (The Hawkins\Brown Emission Reduction Tool).

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