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Journal of Engineering
Volume 2016, Article ID 8513293, 9 pages
Research Article

Case Study: LCA Methodology Applied to Materials Management in a Brazilian Residential Construction Site

1Departamento de Construção Civil, Escola Politécnica, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Athos da Silveira Ramos 149, Centro de Tecnologia, Bloco D, 207 Cidade Universitária, 21.941-909 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
2Programa de Pós-Graduação em Engenharia Civil, Universidade Federal Fluminense, Rua Passos da Pátria 156, Bloco D, São Domingos, 24210-020 Niterói, RJ, Brazil

Received 30 November 2015; Revised 20 February 2016; Accepted 15 March 2016

Academic Editor: Claudio Mazzotti

Copyright © 2016 João de Lassio et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The construction industry is increasingly concerned with improving the social, economic, and environmental indicators of sustainability. More than ever, the growing demand for construction materials reflects increased consumption of raw materials and energy, particularly during the phases of extraction, processing, and transportation of materials. This work aims to help decision-makers and to promote life cycle thinking in the construction industry. For this purpose, the life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology was chosen to analyze the environmental impacts of building materials used in the construction of a residence project in São Gonçalo, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The LCA methodology, based on ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 guidelines, is applied with available databases and the SimaPro program. As a result, this work shows that there is a substantial waste of nonrenewable energy, increasing global warming and harm to human health in this type of construction. This study also points out that, for this type of Brazilian construction, ceramic materials account for a high percentage of the mass of a total building and are thus responsible for the majority of environmental impacts.