Project emission estimator

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Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering


Motivated by the need to address the challenges of global climate change, this paper develops and implements a project-based life-cycle framework that can be used to estimate the carbon footprint for typical construction work items found in reconstruction, rehabilitation, and capital preventive maintenance projects. Through applying existing life-cycle assessment methods and inventories, the proposed framework considers the life-cycle emissions of products and processes involved in the raw material acquisition and manufacturing phase and in the pavement construction phase. The framework also estimates emissions from vehicular use and maintenance operations during the service life of the pavement. The Project Emission Estimator (PE-2), a web-based tool that implements the project-based life-cycle framework, can be used to benchmark the carbon dioxide (CO2) footprint of highway construction projects. This paper suggests ways contractors and state transportation agencies can implement the PE-2 to benchmark and help reduce the CO2 footprints of highway construction projects.

Publication Title

Transportation Research Record