My senior thesis focuses on using a life cycle assessment to estimate and quantify the carbon emissions from the construction of the Streicker Bridge. This is done by using the economic input output life cycle assessment model (EIO-LCA) developed at Carnegie Mellon University. This model uses a table developed by the U.S. Department of Commerce that shows input and output relationships between the 500 sectors of the U.S economy to determine the life cycle output due to an increase in input from a given economic sector. This particular method is ideal for my thesis because it can give outputs in terms of tons of carbon emissions rather than a dollar amount. Then using the University’s price of $30/ton of CO2, the carbon emissions can be added to the total construction costs. Also, since the EIO-LCA model has data for Spain and Germany, I can compare the carbon emissions from hypothetical construction of the Streicker Bridge in those countries and the actual construction costs and cost of carbon emissions. This comparison will provide insight into which construction trades are the most carbon intensive and possibly identify ways carbon emissions can be reduced.
Clark L., Adriaenssens S. (2010).‘Construction cost and environmental impact of a landmark pedestrian bridge’. Proceedings 2010 ISSST International Symposium on Sustainable Systems and Technology, Washington DC, USA.