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Challenges and Opportunities

Life Cycle Cost (LCC) Analysis Building and renovating sustainably involves planning and taking into consideration the full life-cycle perspective on buildings. This means assessing both the environmental impact and economic value of a building over its entire lifetime – from extraction of resources to demolition and recycling. LCC is a tool for determining the economic costs and benefits of specific systems, for example, heating over the lifetime of the building. It is a valuable tool when attempting to improve an operational feature of a building that is related to how that building was designed.

It is important to note that construction costs are often not the largest part of the total cost of owning and running a building. The costs associated with maintenance and operations are often higher than construction, so investing in energy efficiency as well as waste and water management can bring significant savings. Other notable benefits, such as significantly improved indoor air quality, can lead to increased productivity and higher work attendance, which can justify an investment in sustainable construction or retrofitting.

To learn more about the difference between Life Cycle Cost (LCC) Analysis and Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), see Case 7 on page 45.

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IARU - Green Guide for Universities – pathways towards sustainability