by Andrew Himes
What can a team of 6th-graders from Redmond, Washington tell us about climate change, embodied carbon emissions from building construction, and the potential for hard work and innovative thinking to transform an industry?
The Auto Bots team, left to right: Vrinda Sankarakumar, Ridhi Rao Gundapuneni, Karthik Abhinav Javvadi, Sanvi Agarwal, Aidan Francis, Naythan Saldanha A lot, it turns out! A group of friends — three girls and three boys — presented their design for a Carbon Smart Community at the First Lego League regional competition on December 15, 2019 at the Chinook Middle School in Bellevue, Washington.
The six young people heard about a new software tool —EC3, or the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator — used to dramatically reduce the embodied carbon emissions associated with materials and construction in 17 new Microsoft buildings under construction near their homes. The EC3 tool is an initiative of the Carbon Leadership Forum, and the Charles Pankow Foundation has convened nearly fifty organizations to support the development of this non-proprietary resource.
From an affordable multifamily building to an iconic museum, these projects are designed and built to advance equity, diversity, and...