The objective of this request was to encourage proposals that will result in projects that provide lifecycle assessment methodologies, standards, and metrics, that accurately assess GHG emissions, embodied carbon content, and material costs; and also describe pathways that enable military construction processes to improve GHG management. The end state sought was the identification, test, and evaluation of accurate and authoritative calculation of the total life cycle GHG emissions for the construction, maintenance, and demolition of buildings and infrastructure.
The proposed work addressed the Department of Defense’s (DoD) critical need to reduce GHG emissions. The knowledge derived from this test and evaluation activity will be transferred and integrated into the ESTCP and other ongoing efforts within the DoD and other Federal, State, and public institutions to develop methods to improve the options for reducing the GHG footprint for new and existing built infrastructure.
The DoD relies on a large number of installations with extensive supporting infrastructure to prepare for and execute missions to defend U.S. national security interests. Many installations and their supporting buildings and infrastructure systems (e.g., energy, transportation, water resources, medical services) have not been examined in terms of embodied emissions due to incompleteness and inconsistency with regard to the complete lifecycle process, data availability, and data quality. To meet the need for reduced GHG emissions, future designs must incorporate emissions embodied in the construction process. Research should propose analysis techniques that enable accurate comparisons and a pathway toward the incorporation of embodied emissions and improved GHG management into the design process.
DoD installation buildings and infrastructure are diverse and include a wide range of the following: construction materials (concrete, steel, wood, mass timber, glass, etc.); construction techniques and requirements; maintenance and repair requirements; and demolition, reuse, recycling, or ultimate disposal techniques. With the exception of a system specifically associated with maintaining a structure intact during its design life, (e.g. thermopiles to keep a structure from subsiding in arctic environments), the requested analysis is not intended to include the GHG emissions from the expected operational use of the building over its lifetime; however, if the materials result in lower or higher energy needs for the conditioning of the space, or change the energy needed for use of the infrastructure, that should be described. If the existing approaches are not sufficient to meet the goals of existing Federal guidance (e.g., Executive Order 14057), technology development research pathways should be identified. Proposals focused on proprietary products and information are of less interest since insight into their development and manufacture is often opaque and unavailable for peer review. The ultimate intent is that the resulting analysis, if successful, would result in the improvement of installation planning decision making and ultimately reduce GHG release from DoD’s infrastructure.
Pre-proposals followed the general instructions provided on the ESTCP website and considered the following information:
- In the Technology Description section, proposers should provide information that describes their approach to evaluate lifecycle assessment methodologies and metrics that accurately access GHG emissions, embodied carbon, material costs, and that describe pathways to enable military construction processes to move toward improved GHG management through the use of objective metrics and standards.
- In the Technical Approach section, proposers should provide sufficient detail that the technical approach can be clearly understood by the reader.
- In the Expected Benefits section, a qualitative and semi-quantitative description of the expected benefit of the resultant analysis should be included.
- The Technology Transfer section should discuss activities to engage with key stakeholders to facilitate information exchange and broad scale adoption of project results across DoD.
The cost and time to meet the requirements of this call for proposals are at the discretion of the proposer. The proposals must describe a complete effort. It is anticipated that the scope of this call for proposals is such that a multi-disciplinary team will be required to execute a successful effort. Single investigator efforts will not be of sufficient scope to compete successfully. The proposer should incorporate the appropriate time, schedule, and cost requirements to accomplish the scope of work proposed.