white smoke coming out from building

Current buildings generate nearly 40% of annual global CO2 emissions, this number is broken down into 28% for building operations, and an additional 11% is added for construction. It is understood that if we do not begin to decarbonize older buildings/ even newer buildings across the globe there will be no chance for us to meet the Paris Agreement’s of 1.5C target. With our current expansiveness, we are looking at creating a new floor area that is equivalent to a new New York City every month of 40 years. The reality of that number is terrifying for the environment with our continued use of carbon-heavy materials and building operations. There is a major difference between operational carbon emissions and embodied carbon emission and the most damaging because it is embodied into the building, the ways to avoid that are to reuse materials, reduce emissions by sequestering sites.

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Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

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