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Universal method to report carbon in buildings and infrastructure launched

30 November 2021

An international coalition of construction experts has published the world’s first universal standard for reporting carbon dioxide emissions used in the building and lifecycle of structures – also known as ‘embodied and operational carbon’ within the industry.

The International Cost Management Standard – or ICMS3 – sets out a methodology for construction professionals and developers to account the amount of embodied carbon their projects will create, whether that’s through the delivery of new roads, schools, offices, housing, or railways.

An estimated 40% of global carbon emissions are emitted every year through the construction of new buildings and infrastructure, and the industry has accepted it must adapt in order to meet the pressing need to avert climate catastrophe.

The launch of ICMS3 represents the starting pistol being fired for the construction sector to embrace net-zero as a global, interconnected industry, and follows the COP-26 climate conference in Glasgow (UK) where world leaders set bold targets to avert a global disaster.

Mark Chappé FAIQS, CQS Immediate Past President of AIQS and ICMS Trustee said:

“The relevance of ICMS3 at this moment in the evolution of the creation of the built environment cannot be understated.

We are all jointly responsible for the preservation of our precious world and the members ICMS Coalition have come to the party by developing this reporting tool that will speak across international borders in a common and easily understood language.

This will create awareness in the industry and awareness will then lead to positive actions.”

Justin Sullivan, Chair of the ICMS Coalition and Construction Industry Council, added:

“The ICMS journey has been a beacon of how collaboration works. We have 49 international public benefit bodies that have together created world class standards in the construction and infrastructure sectors.

“When it comes to international standards for costs, life cycle and carbon in construction we are the only show in town, true pioneers.

“The timing of the launch of ICMS3, THE standard for carbon in construction could not be better with the world stage digesting and implementing the outcomes of COP26. Onwards and upwards.

About AIQS

The Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) is the peak professional body for built environment cost professionals. As an individual member-based professional body, the role of AIQS is to raise the profile of the profession through the development and delivery of educational, professional, and technical standards, the delivery of new information, and continuing professional development. Through leadership, standards, education, communications, and its code of conduct, AIQS ensures that members are dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of professional excellence.