Green Building Initiative Shares Climate Change Calculator

Staff | September 28, 2010

Following its recent development of a life-cycle assessment (LCA) tool for evaluating building assemblies in green building rating systems, the Green Building Initiative (GBI) now intends to permit its consulting team to offer a generic version, free, to the entire sustainable construction community.

Developed for use with GBI's Green Globes™ environmental assessment and rating system for commercial buildings, the new software tool measures the global warming potential and other environmental impacts of more than 400 common building assemblies. It was created by Morrison Hershfield Consulting Engineers, in association with the University of Minnesota's Center for Sustainable Building Research and the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute. It features LCA results generated by the ATHENA® Environmental Impact Estimator software.

The tool is being reviewed by the GBI ANSI technical committee prior to its integration into Green Globes. However, GBI will authorize the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute to release a free generic version for use by other green building organizations, government entities, trade associations, and universities.

GBI plans to release the generic version shortly, possibly before the end of April. When it is available, organizations interested in a free copy will be able to find it on the Athena Sustainable Materials Institute website at