Building Transparency, an organization that provides open access data and tools to help reduce embodied carbon emissions and foster a better building future, presents two official groups that bring together global leaders to address the impact of embodied carbon within the built environment sector in the fight against climate change. The sister programs, ownersCAN and materialsCAN (Carbon Action Network), are committed to acting on the smart, sustainable prioritization of embodied carbon in building materials and driving a better understanding of the carbon footprint of projects across the industry.
“At Building Transparency, we strive to raise awareness of embodied carbon’s role in addressing climate change and encourage leaders to set embodied carbon performance targets for their buildings and make carbon-smart procurement decisions,” said Stacy Smedley, Chair and Executive Director of Building Transparency. “ownersCAN and materialsCAN are crucial to educating the building industry and supporting them through the use of our free, open-access tools to benchmark, assess and reduce embodied carbon in supply chain emissions of construction materials.”
ownersCAN is comprised of owners, developers, users and managers of buildings who are dedicated to measuring and reducing the embodied carbon of their projects. The group aims to:
- Improve embodied carbon awareness among peers, industry, and external partnerships through best practice sharing.
- Promote use of the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) and other tools that support accounting for and reducing embodied carbon emissions.
- Highlight case studies on successfully implementing embodied carbon policy and processes within building projects and realizing carbon savings.
- Keep abreast of emerging policy and legislation regarding embodied carbon.
- Use their collective influence to advocate for industry action on embodied carbon, such as better availability of EPDs and more transparency in embodied carbon data.
To enable action, members of ownersCAN created an Embodied Carbon Action Plan (ECAP), which outlines the key steps and actions necessary to reduce embodied carbon in the built environment. Reducing embodied carbon spans all phases of a building, from pre-design to its end of life. It also requires engagement from all stakeholders – including the owner, designer, general contractor, and additional trade partners. ECAP defines each stakeholder’s role in reducing embodied carbon emissions for their projects.
ownersCAN members include:
Hudson Pacific Properties
NTT Global Sourcing
San Francisco International Airport
Skanska Commercial Development
Established in 2018, materialsCAN is a group of sustainability leaders in the built space that are committed to bringing awareness to the importance of embodied carbon. The group works to provide those who own, lease, design, or construct spaces with education and tools to better understand the carbon footprint of their projects, specifically through measuring the embodied carbon of specified materials. materialsCAN aims to:
- Improve embodied carbon awareness via client, industry, and external partnerships.
- Enable analysis and prioritization of embodied carbon goals in specifications.
- Highlight case studies on low carbon, carbon neutral, and carbon sequestering interiors.
- Promote the EC3 Tool for comparing the embodied carbon building materials.
materialsCAN members include:
Skanska USA Building
Funding for ownersCAN and materialsCAN comes from Building Transparency’s industry partners, as well as Breakthrough Energy, Building Transparency’s leading philanthropic partner.
About Building Transparency
Building Transparency is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides open access data and tools that support broad and swift action across the building industry in addressing embodied carbon’s role in climate change. Formed in 2020, Building Transparency hosts, manages and maintains the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) tool, which provides thousands of digitized EPDs in a free, open-source database. Building Transparency strives to provide the resources and education necessary to promote adoption of the EC3 tool, including through the official materialsCAN program, and works with global policymakers to shape a better building future.