Sustainability Assessment: A Rating System Framework for Best Practices

Cesar A. Poveda
University of Alberta, Canada

Product Details
23 Oct 2017
Emerald Publishing Limited
504 pages - 152 x 229mm
Concerns about environmental, social, economic, health, and other impacts in the building industry have led to the development of a number of environmental and sustainability assessment approaches, strategies, models, appraisals, and methodologies. Green technology and practices have been implemented to improve sustainable development performance and yield economic, social, and environmental benefits and a series of environmental and sustainability rating systems (ESRSs) have been developed around the world and used extensively with unquestionable benefits to stakeholders in the building industry. Such systems beg to be adapted and implemented in other industry contexts still seeking suitable tools with which to effectively communicate their commitment to a sustainable future and gain the “social license” to operate. 

Sustainability Assessment: A Rating System Framework for Best Practices shows how this can be done. It makes the case for the development and implementation of ESRSs in new industry contexts ranging from , manufacturing and transportation to mining and energy putting forward a new project sustainability rating system framework to assess the sustainability of a wide variety of organizations and projects. This assessment framework includes but is not limited to regulatory requirements, and includes approaches for measuring sustainability on social, economic, environmental, and health grounds. 

This book will be of interest to researchers and practitioners across a wide range of disciplines and industries. Scientists will find technical insights here that can further research while practitioners will find that they can implement the framework in any type of organization or project in order to address stakeholders’ needs and expectations while achieving their short, mid, and long term sustainability vision and goals.
Part I: Sustainability assessment 
1. Assessment approaches, frameworks, and other tools 
2. Environmental and sustainability rating systems 
3. Potential benefits of developing and implementing environmental and sustainability rating systems  

Part II: A new sustainability rating system 
4. Origins and fundamentals 
5. The Wa-Pa-Su project sustainability rating system  

Part III: The Canadian oil sands 
6. Background and processes 
7. Impacts of development and operations 
8. Resources management and performance: a report 

Part IV: An application step by step: the surface mining process 
9. Areas of excellence and sub-divisions 
10. Identifying sustainable development indicators (SDIs) 
11. Designing and implementing SDIs: more of a positive thing than not 
12. Weighting SDIS using the AHP method 
13. Design of performance improvement factors (PIFs) 
14. Simulated case study of implementation and sustainability assessment 


Appendix A Abbreviations & acronyms 
Appendix B Timeline of the energy industry in Alberta 
Appendix C Descriptions – preselected sustainable development indicators (SDIs) for the surface mining process
Cesar A. Poveda is a scientist in sustainability with technical knowledge in nine distinctive areas: policy; resilience; sustainable engineering; sustainability assessment; sustainable construction; sustainability management; sustainability theory and fundamentals; renewable resources and energy systems; and business and corporate sustainability. His technical background is supported by a BSc in Civil Engineering, an MEng. in Sustainable Energy Engineering, an MSc. in Construction Engineering & Management, and a PhD in Engineering Management, as well as the Project Management Professional (PMP) and Professional Engineer (P.Eng.) certifications. In addition to his first book, Surface Mining Operations in Oil Sands: Establishing Sustainable Development Indicators (SDIs), Cesar has published several peer-reviewed journal and conference manuscripts. While serving as editor and reviewer for over six hundred scientifically authored manuscripts, he has obtained, among other recogniztions, several Outstanding Reviewer Awards granted by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).
“The sustainability tool that [Dr. Cesar Poveda] describe[s] is both interesting and valuable. The oil sands industry—and the industry in general—would benefit from this approach.”  - Joe Oliver, Formerly Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources

“After reading [Dr. Cesar Poveda’s] journal paper, I believe that this rating system [Wa-Pa-Su Project Sustainability Rating system] has merit.”  - Laurie Hawn, Former Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre

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