How Much Carbon in a Tonne of Steel? – MMC, Circular Economy, Whole Lifecycle – CE Forum

On 8 October 2020 we held a productive discussion on MMC, Circular Economy, Whole Lifecycle with input from clients, manufacturers, researchers, consultants, innovators and contractors. Here are our key take-aways:

  • End of life we have made considerable progress in design for manufacture, however we should be considering design for reuse, re-purpose and recycle. The aim should be to ensure the highest possible value for materials and components at end of life.  Components must be robust enough to be taken apart and extra life span should be pre-planned at the earlier stage of project planning and design.  Building utilisation and dismantlability of materials is critical in this context.
  • Embodied carbon is critical with 20-50% of whole life emissions comes from embodied carbon. Consideration should be given to the useful life of the component and how the component could be re-used at end of life.
  • Client advice – there is a perceived lack of high-quality advice for clients on how they can change their business models from capital cost to whole lifecycle costing. The Value Toolkit and the focus on value-based procurement should provide the conditions through which clients can demand better and the industry can innovate within.
  • Reliance on existing technologies – current data is based on available technologies and associated datasets. This creates real issues for disruptive technologies and SMEs when decisions and appointments are based on previous performance.
  • Urban Mining poses an opportunity to extract financial value from the existing materials within the built environment. This provides clients and owners with the opportunity to extract value from the asset at end of life.  The CIRCUIT project is considering this.
  • Servitisation considers how clients procure service rather than purchasing capital equipment. This is how companies such as Rolls Royce moved from selling engines to selling miles travelled.  It provides manufacturers with the opportunity to have greater understanding of how their products are used and gain the performance data that enables future innovation and product development based on actual use cases. There is a challenge for clients in finding ways to finance these approaches.  Tata Steel have trialled this approach in the Netherlands with leasing of facades.

Next Steps

The next meeting will take place on Wednesday 9 December 2020 will expand the conversation on servitisation with real case studies and possible involvement of the champions of this field like Rolls-Royce or Netflix.  We will be actively seeking involvement from the investor sector and the insurance sector as it requires different approach to modelling.

The group will also be developing knowledge summaries to deliver intelligent signposting of best practice and resources in this field. Get in touch to find out more.

Join us for the next meeting HERE