Energy and Labor in the Construction Sector

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Science  24 Nov 1978:
Vol. 202, Issue 4370, pp. 837-847
DOI: 10.1126/science.202.4370.837


An energy input-output model was used to investigate energy and employment in the construction industry. The model covered nearly 400 industrial sectors and was used to determine the impact of construction activities on total national energy consumption in 1967 and to study the patterns of total energy use and employment within various construction categories. For the construction of new buildings, total energy consumption could be reduced by 20 percent by selecting less energy-intensive building materials and assemblies for fixed programmatic requirements, by expending energy in construction to minimize the total lifetime energy cost of buildings, and by energy conservation in industries that supply direct and indirect inputs to the construction sector of the economy.