Sustainability


Sustainability at Degenkolb

EnviCASE: Environmental Carbon Accounting for Structural Engineers

The AEC community must take the lead on climate change.  Buildings are currently one of the largest overall contributors of carbon emissions to the atmosphere. Structural engineers, equipped with EnviCASE, yield consequential power to fight climate change.

To reduce the amount of embodied carbon in the buildings we design, we must first better understand how much we contribute. EnviCASE is an Excel tool designed to assist users in quantifying upfront embodied carbon at every design stage. EnviCASE is a flexible program, developed with typical structural engineering workflow in mind, that permits the user to pull quantities from various structural engineering programs. EnviCASE also allows structural engineers to run comparison studies between different design alternates. The flexibility of the tool supports embodied carbon reduction decisions at all stages of the design process.

The goal of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 is not one that a single engineering firm can solve alone.

Download the EnviCASE tool to start making an impact today.

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Degenkolb Engineers signed on to the SE 2050 Commitment Program in 2020.

The program’s vision: All structural engineers shall understand, reduce, and ultimately eliminate embodied carbon in their projects by 2050.

Global warming is one of the most significant engineering challenges and societal challenges facing us today.

According to the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the global average temperature between 1880 and 2012 has risen more than 0.85 C. This has led to calls from the scientific community for immediate action to avoid the most damaging, irreversible effects of the phenomena, “including increases in droughts, floods, and some other types of extreme weather; sea level rise; and biodiversity loss […] causing unprecedented risks to vulnerable persons and populations.” Estimates show we will need to limit the global average temperature change to 1.5 C by the end of the 21st century to avoid these effects.  

Achieving this lofty goal requires drastic reduction in emissions by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2050; however, this would still only grant a 50% chance of meeting the 1.5C goal.

Embodied carbon is important for architects, structural engineers, and contractors to address. Building construction and operation contribute significantly to global carbon emissions, constituting an estimated 38% each year. Ten percent of global carbon emissions (embodied carbon) are estimated to be a result of the building construction industry. This presents engineers, architects, and contractors alike with a heavy burden to reduce their carbon footprints, but also an opportunity to lead the charge on combating global warming. 

Read below for the latest news, ideas, and resources related to the intersection of structural engineering and sustainability and, for more information, check out SE2050.org

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EnviCASE: Environmental Carbon Accounting for Structural Engineers
02.13.2024
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2023 Embodied Carbon Action Plan
08.24.2023
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Sustainability Chats 🌱 with Ray Pugliesi
01.17.2023
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Sustainability Chats 🌱 with Ariane Rosario
11.30.2022
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Sustainability Chats 🌱 with Vincent Wenzel
10.25.2022
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2022 Embodied Carbon Action Plan
08.03.2022

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