Building carbon calculator

Engineered timber products such as Cross Laminated Timber (CLT), Laminated Veneer Lumber (LVL) and Glue Laminated Timber (Glulam) are some of the most exciting building materials we’ve seen in over a century of commercial construction.

Compare carbon emissions

Engineered timber is beautiful and sustainable. It also performs brilliantly and naturally lends itself to efficient off-site manufacture and modular construction methods, which reduce waste and save time.

We’ve developed a simple calculator that estimates carbon emissions (as global warming potential over 100 years, or GWP100) associated with structural building elements, i.e. beams, columns and structural wall and floor components.

You can use the calculator to compare the carbon emissions for different alternatives for a structure by entering the amount of each building material. The sample data in the calculator shows a six-storey, 10,000 square metre building, assuming a level site with a similar roof structure, and shows a 90% reduction in upfront carbon emissions compared to steel and concrete alternatives.


Clients want to be more sustainable and they want our help to achieve that. They also need the facts and figures that provide the rationale for their decisions.

We developed our Building Carbon Calculator in response to that demand, to help people change the way their buildings are designed and built.

– Scott Watson, Business Development Director

The fine print

We’ve used the best available data and have followed international best practice to determine these results. Results are given in ‘upfront’ emissions (production and international transport of materials). ‘End of life’ and ‘operational’ carbon assessments are not included in this calculator. Both of these may have a significant impact on whole-of-life carbon assessments.

The spreadsheet has been developed as a tool to assist in the comparison of carbon footprint impacts of use of structural building materials in the New Zealand construction market. The spreadsheet is provided “as-is” and is to be used at your own risk.

Try our Building Carbon Calculator.

Our engineered timber projects: