Manufacturing of construction materials constitutes one of the most natural resource and energy intensive human activities. In industrialized countries, the construction sector represents around 50% of the whole flow of materials (Wiedmann et al., 2015). India is demanding a large volume of construction materials while the economy grows and the country becomes more industrialized and urbanized. Policies that promote resource and energy efficiency of construction materials could help lower the environmental impact of construction. However, it is essential to have metrics that allow for tracking the performance of policies. A bottom-up methodology with an existing industrial dataset for India was used to estimate the material and energy footprint of manufacturing three of the most important construction materials: cement, steel and aluminum. The study provides additional quantitative metrics regarding energy, materials, and labor intensity. This approach could benefit other developing countries that lack top-down input/output models. The analysis shows evidence of waste reutilization and electricity cogeneration at construction materials factories in India.
University of Minnesota M.S. thesis.May 2017. Major: Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy. Advisor: Anu Ramaswami. 1 computer file (PDF); viii, 66 pages.
Energy and material footprints of construction materials to inform resource and energy efficiency policy in India.
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