Estimating the material intensity of wooden residential houses in Finland

Bahareh Nasiri*, Tapio Kaasalainen, Mark Hughes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Improving resource efficiency in the building sector is a significant challenge, largely due to a lack of knowledge about material usage in buildings. Material intensity (MI) quantifies materials used in buildings, normalized by floor area or volume. MIs serve as indices for material stock and flow models and as an inventory approach for assessing the environmental impact of the built environment. Therefore, this study aimed to determine MIs of Finnish wooden residential houses built between 1940 and 2010 due to the dominance of them in residential building stock and their demolition rates. Factors influencing MI and cross-country comparisons were also explored because they had not been explored enough in the literature. Results showed construction method, time cohort, floor area, design choices and footprint shape impacted MI. Accounting for variability of MI was recommended, particularly when using it for material stock and flow analysis. Data and method disparities restrict cross-country comparison of MI.
Original languageEnglish
Article number107142
Number of pages11
JournalResources, Conservation and Recycling
Early online date5 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Material intensity
  • Inventory data
  • Residential building
  • building material
  • Finland


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