Learn About Sustainability in Construction and Civil Engineering


What is Sustainability?

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Example of Green Roofing
Defining something as sustainable means that it is a process or creation that is able to be used for an extended amount of time without being used up or destroyed. Key aspects of sustainability in construction are that the concept or building is sustainable economically, socially/culturally, and environmentally. Developing sustainable lifestyles and practices is a key part of ensuring that the environment in which mankind lives remains healthy and able to sustain use for eons.

How Can Sustainability be Applied to Civil Engineering?

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This Aspect of Sustainable Construction Reduces Heat Pollution

Sustainability is important in civil engineering and construction because of the sheer impact that the built environment has on the natural environment.
According to the International Energy Agency, buildings represent around 40% of energy use in most countries. [1] Constructing, maintaining, and demolishing buildings uses energy and impacts the environment through pollution, environmental change, and resource use. Learning new ways to design and build sustainable buildings that are both environmentally friendly and market relevant is a growing focus of both civil engineers and construction companies. This website synthesizes recent research and details many sustainable construction practices with helpful information on recent inventions and sustainable methods of building.

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This site was created by Civil Engineering students at LeTourneau University in Longview, Texas. [2]

Table of Contents

Sustainable Construction Processes

  1. Sustainability in Earthmoving
  2. Climate Control Construction
  3. Construction and Demolition Waste Management
  4. Eco or Green Roofing
  5. Managed Realignment
  6. Off-Site Construction
  7. Passive Ventilation Design in Building Construction
  8. Sustainability Advances in Concrete Construction
  9. Sustainability Advances in Metal Construction
  10. Sustainability Advances in Wood Construction
  11. Sustainability and Advances in Polymers and Composites
  12. Sustainability in Rammed Earth Construction
  13. Sustainability in Transportation Infrastructure
  14. Trombe Wall Systems


  1. Embodied Energy
  2. Ground Coupling
  3. Incorporated Power Generation into Functional Structures
  4. Passive Solar Design
  5. Passive Solar Design in Landscaping

Sustainability Concepts

  1. Financial Considerations for Sustainable Construction Practices
  2. LEED Certification
  3. Sustainability Through Local Sourcing
  4. Sustainable Community Design
  5. Urban Heat Islands

Clean Environment

  1. Sustainable Redevelopment (Grayfields and Brownfields)
  2. Gray Water Sytems
  3. Living Machines
  4. Mitigation Banking
  5. Rainwater Systems
  6. Sustainability in Stormwater Management
  7. Sustainability in IEQ (Indoor Environmental Quality)
  8. Sustainability in Plant, Tree, and Turf Selection

  1. ^ (2014). "FAQs: Energy efficiency." International Energy Agency. <
    http://www.iea.org/aboutus/faqs/energyefficiency/> (12/4/14).
  2. ^ http://www.letu.edu/