Part of Historic Environment Scotland

Calculate the carbon footprint of your stone project

This calculator tells you the approximate upfront embodied carbon footprint per tonne of sandstone or granite you’d like to use in your building project. You can use it to compare granite and sandstone from different sources.

Download the Calculator [Excel, 546KB]

How to use the calculator

The Stone Carbon Calculator has been designed to be simple and easy-to-use. It's intended for local authorities, designers, specifiers, procurement professionals, the construction industry, the heritage sector and anyone else with an interest.

To use the calculator, you’ll need to know:

  • where the stone is quarried
  • where it’s processed
  • where the building site is

The calculator tool contains separate calculators for sandstone and granite dimension stone (they have different energy costs for processing). There is a simple calculator and a detailed calculator for each stone type.

  • Simple version: this provides an approximate appraisal. You’ll only need approximate locations, like continent or country.
  • Detailed version: this provides a more thorough appraisal if you know the exact location of the quarry and processing plant. You will need to input kilometres traveled for each stage of the process. There are links to useful web resources within the calculator that can help you calculate distances by land and sea.

This Quick Guide [PDF 484KB] talks you through how to use the calculator.

If you have any questions, check our FAQ's [PDF, 116KB].

If you can’t find what you’re looking for there you can email us at

How it works

Results are calculated using emissions factors from published scientific literature. These calculations are based on life cycle stages A1, A2, A3 and A4 which include stone extraction, transport to the processing site, processing the stone and transporting the finished product to the site where it will be used.

If you’d like to know more about how the calculator was created, you can explore the methodology behind the development of the calculator [PDF, 538KB]. Alternatively, this addendum report [PDF, 263KB] explains how functionality was added to the calculator for granite. 

For more information on embodied carbon and life cycle stages see RICS 2017 publication Whole Life Carbon Assessment for the Built Environment.

This calculator was funded by Zero Waste Scotland and developed in partnership with Historic Environment Scotland.

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