Paper Conference

Proceedings of eSim 2014: 8th Conference of IBPSA-Canada


Should building energy simulation tools integrate life cycle assessment A discussion of the potential benefits and challenges

Eduard Cubi

Abstract: Buildings use energy in all phases of their life cycle and there is interaction between the energy used throughout different phases. In conventional buildings energy use in the use phase is largely dominant, however as we move towards low energy buildings, the share of embodied energy related to life cycle energy use increases. Building energy simulation tools assess energy use in the use phase only, while life cycle assessment (LCA) tools cannot compute energy calculations in the use phase. Ideally, a single tool capable of providing accurate LCA results of buildings would very much facilitate design choices based on environmental performance. This paper reviews the standard practice in building LCA, and identifies its limitations. It suggests a method to communicate energy simulation and LCA tools to facilitate an integrated environmental assessment, and suggests a method to include variability of the power supply system into the analysis.
Pages: 759 - 770