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Applicability of the Sustainable Structural Design (SSD) method at urban/regional/national level

The alarming data on world climatic change, resources impoverishment and increasing human diseases caused by environmental pollution has encouraged the modern society to feel committed in reducing the environmental issues and to adopt a sustainable approach to every human activity. Sustainability is an ambitious challenge for Europe development and European policy is addressed in investing massive resources for achieving sustainable goals. Construction is one of the most impactful industrial sector because of the high consequences it generates on the society, the environment and the economy. Indeed, building constructions involve social aspects, as safety and comfort, economic aspects, as construction investments and maintenance, and environmental aspects, as energy consumption and emissions. The present study derives from the development of a building design method, called Sustainable Structural Design (SSD) Methodology. This methodology is based on a multi-performance and life cycle-oriented approach, which includes the environmental aspects, related to energy consumption and CO2 emissions, in structural design, performed with a simplified Performance Based Assessment (sPBA) methodology, in order to obtain a global assessment parameter in monetary terms. Moreover, the study derives from the awareness about the structural condition of the European building stock, which is old and, in some cases, far from the structural safety required by the European codes. Thus, a simply applicable methodology, allowing the identification of the territorial areas which need a more urgent intervention is necessary. The application of the SSD methodology at territorial level could allow the inclusion of the main aspects of sustainability, identifying the areas which an intervention could reduce the energy consumptions, the CO2 emissions and the structural losses of the included buildings. Thus, this report aims at studying the applicability of the SSD methodology at territorial level, considering three different area dimensions, as countries, regions and cities, and identifying the right approach for each of them. Consequently, an SSD methodology at territorial level is developed and illustrated.