Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Sustainable Buildings Research Centre


Sustainability in the building industry means ensuring that a building is ecologically friendly and economically feasible, as well as providing a healthy internal atmosphere for the occupants. Recent developments in low CO2-e emissions design have highlighted the need to comprehend the characteristics and constraints of design alternatives at a global scale before making an appropriate choice. Despite the improvements in low CO2-e emissions design, the guidance currently available to structural engineers on how to incorporate whole of life CO2-e emissions impact in building design is still limited. This research seeks to identify the structural systems needed to sustain the long-term performance of a commercial building. To accomplish this goal, a typical 15 story office building in Australia was analysed to evaluate the potential impact of various forms of construction and structural concrete over the building’s lifetime. This particular building is one of four benchmark buildings proposed by the National Standard Development Organization. The effect of different types of concrete and structural flooring systems on its overall life cycle costs and carbon emissions (CO2-e emissions) are quantified. This research adopted different life cycle assessment tools and databases to measure the energy consumed by this building from its construction to the day it no longer exists.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.