Material Definitions

Carbon Footprint: The total amount of greenhouse gases produced to directly and indirectly support human activities, usually expressed in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide (CO2).

Carbon Neutral: Achieving net-zero carbon dioxide emissions by balancing the amount of carbon released with an equivalent amount sequestered or offset.

Carbon Offset: A way to compensate for emissions by funding an equivalent carbon dioxide saving elsewhere.

Carbon Sequestration: The process of capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide. It is one method of reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere with the goal of mitigating global climate change.

Cradle to Cradle: This design philosophy argues for the transformation of industry through ecologically intelligent design. Products should be conceived from the outset in such a way that, at the end of their life, they can be broken down and their components reused or safely returned to the environment.

Cradle to Gate: This partial lifecycle assessment considers impacts from material production up to the factory gate before it is transported to the customer. This often includes upfront carbon emissions.

Cradle to Grave: This lifecycle assessment includes all stages from the extraction of raw materials (the "cradle") through to disposal (the "grave"). This methodology captures both upfront and operational carbon emissions.

Decarbonization: The process of reducing the economy's carbon intensity, including both operational and embodied or upfront carbon emissions.

Embodied Carbon: Also known as "embedded carbon", it refers to the carbon emissions associated with the non-operational phase of a product or service, such as manufacturing, transportation, and disposal. Embodied carbon is a part of upfront carbon.

Embodied Carbon: Carbon emissions associated with materials and construction processes throughout the whole lifecycle of a building. This includes Upfront Carbon, Use Stage Embodied Carbon, and End of Life Carbon, but not Operational Carbon.

End of Life Carbon: The carbon emissions associated with deconstruction/demolition, transport from the site, waste processing, and disposal phases of a building's lifecycle which occur after its use (Modules C1 to C4).

Green Star Project Scope: All areas and activities in a project that have been registered for Green Star. This includes all buildings and ancillary areas such as parking, landscaping, and shared facilities.

Life Cycle Analysis (LCA): This is a methodology for assessing environmental impacts associated with all the life cycle stages of a commercial product, process, or service.

Net-Zero Carbon Building: A building that is highly energy efficient and fully powered from on-site and/or off-site renewable energy sources, minimizing both operational and embodied carbon over the life of the building.

Operational Carbon: This refers to the carbon emissions that occur during a product or service's use or operation phase. This is in contrast to embodied or upfront carbon.

Operational Carbon: The emissions associated with energy used to operate the building (Module B6). Operational water (Module B7) is often included as part of Operational Carbon.

Proposed Project – Upfront Carbon: The building works to be rated by the Green Star Buildings rating tool, as designed and modelled by the project team as defined by the Green Star project scope.

Reference Project – Upfront Carbon: A hypothetical project of the same size, shape, location, floor area, and glazing areas as the Proposed Project.

Upfront Carbon Emissions: This term specifically refers to the emissions released during the extraction, manufacture, and delivery of a product or building materials before they are used or installed. It also refers to the carbon emissions caused before the building begins to be used, i.e., during the manufacture of building products, transport of building products to the site, and construction of the building (EN 15978 Modules A1 to A5).

Use Stage Embodied Carbon: Emissions associated with materials and processes needed to maintain the building during use such as for maintenance, repair, or refurbishments (EN 15978 Modules B1 to B5).

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