Dynamic lifecycle assessment in building construction projects: Focusing on embodied emissions

Goune Kang, Hunhee Cho, Dongyoun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Understanding the structure and behavior of emissions in building systems is the first step toward improving the reliability of the environmental impact assessment of buildings. The shortcomings of current building lifecycle assessment (LCA) research is the lack of understanding of embodied emissions and static analysis. This study presents a methodology for the dynamic LCA of buildings, combined with the system dynamics technique. Dynamic factors related to recurrent embodied emissions are explored through a literature review. Applying the dynamic factors based on the review, a causal map and stock-flow diagram are invented. Collecting the field data and establishing the assumptions based on the literature, a case study is performed for the proposed model. As a result, through dynamic analysis, it was found that recurrent embodied emissions have a considerably different behavior from static ones during their whole life. Additionally, it was found that the environmental impacts changed by more than 10%, according to the variation of the users' required performance level in sensitivity analysis. This result thoroughly addressed the necessity and appropriateness of dynamic LCA. The dynamic LCA model developed in this study can contribute to the long-term behavioral understanding of the embodied environmental impacts of building LCA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3724
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jul 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 by the authors.


  • Buildings
  • Lifecycle assessment
  • Recurrent embodied carbon
  • System dynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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