Abstract - Carl Maywald

Sustainability - The Art of Modern Architecture

During the last couple of years the building industry has been faced with an increasing demand for sustainable solutions. According to Peter Bakker, president and CEO of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development WBCSD, buildings are the largest energy consumers in the world economy, accounting for over one-third of final energy use and approximately 30% of global carbon emissions [1]. These figures do not take into account the energy and carbon emissions due to production of building materials as well as for logistics and construction of the building. The demand for both energy and resources is soaring as construction booms, especially in countries such as China and India. This means buildings can significantly contribute to tackling climate change and energy use. The use of ETFE foils as new transparent building materials substituting glass opens the potential for not only vast savings on the material side but simultaneously providing new space for living and working. The environmental benefits are presented as results of a comparative study between glass and ETFE solutions on two projects in Germany, Dom Aquareé in Berlin and Kapuzinergraben in Aachen, based on a life cycle analysis. The social benefits will be presented using the example of Kingsdale School in London and Kuwait Avenues, Kuwait. It will be shown that the introduction of ETFE foil systems in modern architecture will significantly contribute not only to environmental sustainability, but also create economic and social advantages compared to classic building materials. 

[1] WBCSD, EEB Manifesto magazine Energy Efficiency in Buildings – An insight from companies, WBCSD publications library, p.2, April 2014

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