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Life cycle assessment of building materials in hotel refurbishment projects: a case study in ankara

Çakmaklı, Ayşem Berrin
Buildings generate millions of tons of greenhouse gases, toxic air emissions, water pollutants and solid wastes that contribute to negative environmental impacts. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a methodology for assessing the environmental performance of products over their life time. However, many building products are discarded much before the end of their service life, especially as a result of refurbishment and renovation projects. The need for such projects is increasing because most buildings are not designed to accommodate changes in their functions and needs of their occupants. This is particular to commercial buildings, especially hospitality facilities, which are unique with regard to operational schemes and the type of services offered that are highly resource-intensive. In this investigation, statistical data related to refurbishment and renovation projects in Turkey were analysed to determine the percentage of refurbishment projects for hotels. Bills of quantities for refurbishment projects of three five-star hotels in Ankara were obtained and evaluated with regard to the volume and type of material discarded as a result of the renovation works. ATHENA, an LCA software, was used to evaluate these projects according to the six environmental impact indicators: primary energy consumption, solid waste, air pollution index, water pollution index, global warming potential and weighted resource use. A system was formulated for evaluating materials according to each indicator by calculating their “eco-scores”; the total score is considered to be the yard-stick for comparing environmental appropriateness of these materials. Finally, recommendations on the choice of materials were made, with an aim to reducing material waste and harmful emissions.