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A corridor at the University of Birmingham which is constructed in timber


CarboniCa is our in-house developed, digital carbon reduction tool that has enabled us to decarbonise local communities for our customers.

It measures whole life carbon emissions, ensuring potential carbon outputs can be managed and reduced during the design, construction and entire building lifecycle.

We completed CarboniCa in 2021, and already we've been able to save thousands of tonnes of carbon from being emitted into the atmosphere with it's intuitive output. CarboniCa pinpoints exactly where carbon savings can be made and ensures our customers can make environmentally-friendly decisions based on meaningful and robust data.

How does it work?

CarboniCa is easy to use and robust in its methodology and background data.

It can be used by all industry stakeholders and enables systematic removal of whole life carbon from assets. You can see a small sample of a CarboniCa report here.

  • It measures whole life carbon to the RICS professional standard, a feature that's critical to decarbonising the built environment
  • It is a contractor-led tool, so it has been developed to be aligned to construction projects and robust in it's ability to measure what we do as a business
  • It is an intelligent tool, and automatically suggests ways our team and customers can reduce carbon in the design of the asset and procurement of materials
  • It has a significant and agile programme of R&D with key focal areas of: Digital asset interoperability, Building services embodied carbon, Data uncertainty modelling, Circular economy and Machine learning and AI

The easy to use tool has been externally validated by Arup to the latest industry standards and is flexible to allow for the different project types being undertaken.

“It is amongst the most sophisticated and complete tools that I have seen, which nicely balances complexity and simplicity for most use cases.” Senior Consultant, Arup

How is it unique to the market?

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Developed from the ground up as a project tool and something our teams and customers can use without in depth training or specialist knowledge

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It asks simple questions related to information our project teams have access to – it is not necessary to enter materials one-by-one

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It doesn’t rely exclusively on a BIM plug-in and it has a distinct numbering convention and is cloud-based which enables digital asset interoperability

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Allows us to respond quickly to emerging UK-specific guidance around carbon assessments, circular economy, and our grassroots supply chain engagement

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Is one of the few tools entirely aligned with the RICS Whole life carbon assessments for the built environment Professional Statement.

Decarbonising communities

Reviewing the data from CarboniCa and switching frames saved 177 tonnes of carbon

We worked collaboratively with our supply chain partner Sigmat Limited on our Victoria Road, where we're creating 42 residential flats for Brighton & Hove Council, to find alternative solutions to the building's structural frame, using CarboniCa to review the carbon credentials of the given options.

By utilising a lightweight steel frame rather than a concrete one, CarboniCa measured that there would be a 177 tonne saving in embodied carbon at practical completion.

CarboniCa recognises a saving that brings the building lower than the required Passivhaus standard

North Lincolnshire SEN School is a Passivhaus standard project, which demands best practice energy efficiency measures and a very low heating demand per square metre. We worked with our supply chain to ensure that the insulation and air tightness was as rigorous as possible without wasting material.

By doing this in-conjunction with CarboniCa, the heating requirement was reduced from 15 to 14kWh/m2/year by altering the design choices of wall and roof insulation. With this, the project team have reduced the operational energy for space heating even lower than the required Passivhaus standard resulting in a further saving of 80 tonnes of carbon over the schools lifetime.

Looking at alternative processes and practices by using CarboniCa

The result of rigorous testing with CarboniCa and collaboration with our supply chain member, Roger Bullivant meant that we identified a change that could be made to the piling technique. By using a displacement technique, there was less waste soil, which then meant there was a reduction in carbon from the associated process of transporting it for disposal. This saved 9.65 tonnes of carbon. The technique in this instance, also meant that the client saved money and carbon simultaneously.