Climate Summit for Local Government

Sept 6-8, 2023 | Melbourne


Member event

Afternoon Tea Q&A with Ross Donaldson from the Australian Institute of Architects

12 May 2022
3:00pm - 3:30pm

Measuring Whole of Life Carbon in Buildings

Join us for afternoon tea at 3pm AEST Thursday 12th May as we hear from Ross Donaldson from the Australian Institute for Architects.

As we move the construction industry towards zero carbon for both operational and embodied energy, it is critical that we steadily  increase the working familiarity with understanding of “whole of life carbon” and its measurement through Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs). A critical first step, prior to the introduction of performance benchmark targets, is to commence measuring and reporting whole of life carbon. Beginning the introduction of measuring now, will develop the skillset for both local government officers and design professionals. In this way those skillsets will be firmly in place before the introduction of the performance targets which will eventually be embedded with in the National Construction Codes.

There are many who strongly believe, that to meet the challenge laid down by the recent IPCC reports,  we must be working to reduce the whole of life carbon in buildings by 50% by 2030 and to achieve zero carbon by 2035.

If we can commence the measurement and reporting now as part of the Development Approval process, build a substantial database for how buildings are performing now, we can introduce appropriate first step performance targets in 2-3 years and steadily raise the bar to zero over the following decade (and even more quickly if we can).

Contact [email protected] with any questions


Ross Donaldson
Ross Donaldson

Ross Donaldson

Australian Institute of Architects

Ross Donaldson was CEO and Chairman of Woods Bagot, Australia’s largest architectural firm. During his leadership from 2006-2016, the practice grew internationally to become the world’s 6th largest. He now consults on business strategy for design industry service firms, teaches at Curtin University and UWA University (where he is an Adjunct Professor) and also mentors mid career professionals. He sits on the Australian Institute of Architects’ Climate Action and Sustainability Taskforce.