2022 fib Awards for Outstanding Concrete Structures
FIB BULLETIN NO. 104
Title: 2022 fib Awards for Outstanding Concrete Structures
Format approx. DIN A4 (210x297 mm)
The fib has two major missions now. One is to work toward the publication of the Model Code 2020, and the other is to respond to the global movement toward carbon neutrality. While the former is steadily progressing toward completion, the latter will require significant efforts for generations to come.
As we all know, cement, the primary material for concrete, is a sector that accounts for 8.5% of the world’s CO2 emissions. And the structural concrete that fib handles consume 60% of that. In other words, we need to know the reality that our structural concrete is emitting 5% of the world’s CO2.
From now on, fib members, suppliers, designers, builders, owner’s engineers, and academic researchers will be asked how to solve this difficult problem. In general, most of the CO2 emissions in the life cycle of structural concrete come from the production stage of materials and the use stage after construction, i.e. A1 to A3 and B1 to B5 processes as defined in EN15978.
Cement and steel sectors, which are the main materials for structural concrete, are expected to take various measures to achieve zero carbon in their respective sectors by 2050. Until then, we must deal with the transition with our low carbon technologies. Regarding the production stage, the fib has recently launched TG4.8 “Low carbon concrete”. And the latest low carbon technologies will be discussed there.
On the other hand, in the use stage, there is very little data on the relationship between durability and intervention and maintenance so far. The data accumulation here is the work of the fib, a group of various experts on structural concrete. Through-life management using highly durable structures and precise monitoring will enable to realize minimum maintenance in the use stage and to minimize CO2 emissions.
Furthermore, it is also possible to contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions in the further stage after the first cycle by responding to the circular economy, that is, deconstruction (C), reuse, and recycle (D). However, the technology in this field is still in its infancy, and further research and development is expected in the future.
As described above, structural concrete can be carbon neutral in all aspects of its conception, and it can make a significant contribution when it is realized. The fib will have to address these issues in the future. Of course, it will not be easy, and it will take time. However, if we do not continue our efforts as the only international academic society on structural concrete in the world to achieve carbon neutrality, the significance of our very existence may be questioned.
Long before Portland cement was invented, Roman concrete, made of volcanic ash and other materials, was the ultimate low-carbon material, and is still in use 2’000 years later because of its non-reinforced structure and lack of deterioration factors. Reinforced concrete, which made it possible to apply concrete to structures other than arches and domes, is only 150 years old. Prestressed concrete is even younger, with only 80 years of history.
Now that we think about it, we realize that Roman concrete, which is non-reinforced low carbon concrete, is one of the examples of problem solving that we are trying to achieve. We have new materials, such as coated reinforcement, FRP, and fiber reinforced concrete, which can be used in any structural form. To overcome this challenge with all our wisdom would be to live up to the feat the Romans accomplished 2’000 years ago.
Realizing highly durable and elegant structures with low-carbon concrete is the key to meet the demands of the world in the future. I hope you will enjoy reading this AOS brochure showing the Outstanding Concrete Structures Awards at the
fib 2022 Congress in Oslo. And I also hope you will find some clues for the challenges we are facing.
Dr Akio Kasuga
Download the copyright page (= list of authors) as a PDF file.
Download the table of contents as a PDF file.