Embodied Carbon and how to calculate it

The AECB Embodied Carbon Calculator calculates Whole Life Carbon, that is Embodied CO2 from Cradle to Grave.  It’s written by Tim Martel, Certified Passivhaus Designer, Chartered Architectural Technologist, course tutor for the AECB CarbonLite™ Retrofit Foundation course, and AECB software R&D lead and developer.

The AECB COCalc covers the whole life stages A-C (and D where information is available).

This therefore includes :

Stage A, A1-A3 Manufacture including A4 Transport to site and A5 Construction
Stage B, Use of the building including B4 Replacement
Stage C, Demolition and Disposal of the building
And quoted separately Stage D, Reuse, Recycling potential (outside the usual scope of the main calculation). It calculates the credit from reuse of an element, assembled part such as a frame, or something that is reused offsite.

The Embodied Carbon Calculator is also suitable for initial estimates for the RIBA 2030 Challenge v2 and LETI (London Energy Transformation Initiative).

The Calculator and the results it produces


Input Data

  • built-in library of 291 entries from EPDs containing the Full Life info for stages A-D and a further 140 from ICE 2019 with manufacturing data (A1-A3)
  • includes CO2 stored in timber and timber based materials, also called sequestered CO2. This is calculated where it has been omitted in the EPD.
  • standard RICS methodology including 60 year nominal life
  • filters EPDs, choose whether you want to see products manufactured within your country, a region e.g. Europe, or all the EPDs




  • coloured results, the output table is coloured by value to make it easy to see where the CO2 is coming from
  • fully transparent calculation
  • up to 4 options can be graphed/compared
  • simpler format and option to simplify further so only the names of the materials and results are shown
  • density, you can change the density of products where units are “kg” in the final output sheet
  • Scope Summary written below the calculation for you to keep a record of exactly what is included
  • RIBA results gives RIBA 2030 Challenge results
  • LETI results graphic and detailed tables, all laid out on printable pages

Want to know more and meet the author ?

Tim Martel has produced an introductory video to the Carbon Calculator which can be viewed opposite.  The calculator does not need any software other than Excel as it does not plug in to PHPP like it's sister product PHribbon.  Both products are sold in the AECB shop with yearly licenses to enable upgrades, fixes and new developments.


Visit the AECB shop to purchase

Sample Calculation

Tim Martel

AECB Expert Advisor and R&D Lead ○ Embodied CO2 Specialist and Software Developer ○ Retrofit Coordinator
 01453 759466 ◦ [email protected] ◦ 07531 288147

PHribbon © 2020 Tim Martel




Tim is an AECB Expert Advisor
You can find out more here
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