Assessment of the environmental impacts of buildings in China

This thesis focuses on the development of the life-cycle assessment of buildings in the Chinese context. It also made it possible to supplement the existing dynamic energy simulation tool by integrating a seasonal storage model in the ground, then testing its application on a case study.

Context and challenges

Massive urban expansion is making the Chinese construction sector highly active. This is putting considerable pressure on resources, as well as leading to significant future environmental impacts linked to the consumption of energy and water at the stage of use of the buildings, and to the production of waste at the end of life. The greatest potential for reducing these impacts corresponds to the decisions made during the design phase. Assessing environmental impacts can help designers move towards sustainable construction by comparing alternatives and optimising architectural and urban projects.


The thesis aims to develop a model based on life-cycle assessment and dynamic energy simulation. An existing tool is supplemented by the addition of features, for example, in order to take better account of microclimates and to be able to study heating and air conditioning systems, in particular, integrating exchanges with the ground. It is also necessary to take into account the indirect impacts of the building complexes on the background system: this may concern a variation in demand for certain products or services (positive or negative) or the modification of certain processes. The development over time of the territory and of the background system is also taken into account. The validation of the tool constitutes another objective which makes it possible to more accurately define the uncertainties of the model and its area of validity.


Long Pei
PhD Student
MINES ParisTech
Bruno Peuportier
Research Director
MINES ParisTech
Patrick Schalbart
Research Associate
MINES ParisTech
This software program for life cycle assessment of neighbourhood projects is used to measure the environmental impacts from the manufacture of materials to the end of their life.
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This dynamic thermal simulation model of buildings anticipates energy consumption and the risk of discomfort in all seasons. Thanks to the Amapola module, this software program makes it possible to identify the least
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Ecodistrict in Paris
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Life-cycle assessment is a method to assess the environmental impacts of buildings and infrastructures throughout their life cycle, from the extraction of raw materials through to their end-of-lifetime handling.
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Office building with solar panels
Buildings can be designed and operated to radically improve their energy efficiency and reduce their environmental impact.
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