The green building sector is the largest employer in Vancouver’s ‘green economy’ and with $16B in construction delivered in BC annually and the trend towards low-impact building, this share will only increase.
Approximately 50% of Canada’s carbon emissions are derived from the operation and construction of buildings. Deep decarbonization strategies, in line with Canada’s 2050 net-zero target, require that carbon emissions reach net-zero, this requires both zero-waste construction and “design for disassembly” (DfD). This knowledge will address the economic loss and carbon emissions associated with the current practice of creating construction and demolition waste, where the cost of unutilized new materials and unrecovered demolition materials represents approximately $100 of unnecessary expense for every square meter of newly constructed space, with almost a tonne of CO2e emitted in the production of every tonne of building material that goes to waste.
Applied Circular Economy: Zero Waste Buildings will train professionals who can deliver the low-impact buildings needed to achieve net-zero targets. The microcredential will consist of three courses: Deconstruction (material recovery and working with salvage); Design for Disassembly (the principles of DfD and Cradle to Cradle (C2C); and Construction Material Flow Analysis (understanding the industry and the path of materials through it).
Students completing this microcredential will gain the ability to:
- Explain how materials flow through the construction process, from extraction and manufacture to installation, use, and finally disposal/recycling/reuse, and how to influence this flow to enable highest and best use.
- Compare Life Cycle Assessment reports and product disclosure statements to make informed product and material selection.
- Describe the design and construction process and where and how intervention will facilitate ‘closing the loop’ or circularity in the building industry.
- Apply ‘Design for Disassembly’ and ‘Cradle to Cradle’ principles and strategies to building projects, choosing building materials and products that follow the same principles.
- Manage the deconstruction of a building, and incorporate salvaged and recycled materials into new projects
- Explain and apply the waste hierarchy to construction, from prevention to disposal and zero waste strategies
- Evaluate the degree to which a design meets the DfD and C2C principles.
Assessment will take place through a combination of project work and individual exams.
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