Importance of operational efficiency to achieve energy efficiency and exhaust emission reduction of construction operations

Changbum R. Ahn, Sanghyun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

36 Scopus citations


Construction operations generate significant air pollutant emissions, including carbon emissions and diesel exhaust emissions. Controlling operational efficiency is the most important strategy for reducing air pollutants emitted from construction operations. However, current practices to assess air pollutant emissions from construction operations tend to ignore the variability of the operational efficiency that results from different resource allotting and scheduling. In this context, this paper presents a methodology for incorporating the analysis of operational efficiency into quantifying the amount of exhaust emission from construction operations. Case studies are presented to examine how and to what extent planning decisions affect the amount of air pollutants emitted from construction operations and to identify the impact that possible alternatives have on the schedule and cost of projects. The findings of case studies indicate that considering environmental aspects in the planning stage could contribute to a project's increased integrated value, which includes schedule, cost, and environmental impact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)404-413
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2013



  • Air pollutant emissions
  • Equipment idling
  • Operational efficiency
  • Sustainable construction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management

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