University of Cambridge > > Engineering Department Geotechnical Research Seminars > Embodied energy as an environmental impact indicators for geotechnical infrastructures.

Embodied energy as an environmental impact indicators for geotechnical infrastructures.

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Zelda Stuck.

The aim of the research is to identify a practical methodology for quantification of environmental impacts due to geotechnical infrastructures. The idea is to compare the quantifiable environmental impacts of construction solutions designed according to the same specification for a range of geotechnical structures; through which a short list of representative environmental impact indicators is then identified. The properties of these indicators should be easy to understand and use.

An indicator the research is paying particular attention to is embodied energy, this is the total energy that is attributed to bringing an object to its existing state. Embodied energy and Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) case studies were carried out – on retaining walls, foundation designs and the on a comparison between the slabtracks and conventional ballasted embankment design. At this stage, we find that there are strong correlations between embodied energy and the values of more established indicators such as CO2 emission and Eco-Indicators etc for geotechnical infrastructures. It is thus evident that embodied energy is one of the meaningful impact indicators.

This talk is part of the Engineering Department Geotechnical Research Seminars series.

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