Nairobi, 14 October 2021 – The economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic caused CO2 emissions from buildings and construction to fall significantly in 2020, but a lack of real transformation in the sector means that emissions will keep rising and contribute to dangerous climate change, according to the 2021 Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction.
The report, published by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)-hosted Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GlobalABC), finds that in 2020, the sector accounted for 36 per cent of global final energy consumption and 37 per cent of energy related CO2 emissions, as compared to other end use sectors.
While the level of emissions within the sector are 10 per cent lower than in 2015, reaching lows not seen since 2007, this was largely due to lockdowns, slowing of economies, difficulties households and businesses faced in maintaining and affording energy access and a fall in construction activity. Efforts to decarbonize the sector played only a small role.
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More than 60 of the largest and most influential international architecture, landscape architecture, engineering, planning, and construction firms, collectively responsible for over $300 billion in annual construction, along with two dozen organizations representing over one million building industry professionals worldwide, issued a Communiqué to government leaders headed to the United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP 26) challenging them to step up their emissions reduction targets for the built environment. The firms and organizations are signatories of the 1.5oC COP26 Communiqué — an open letter to sovereign governments demonstrating the firms' and organizations' commitment to meet the Paris Agreement's 1.5oC carbon budget and demanding governments do the same.
Read more about this here.
Download the full report HERE!
According to the 2020 Buildings Global Status Report, the buildings and construction sector accounts for 35% of final energy use and 38% of energy and process-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions globally. The new report by the Buildings Performance Institute Europe (BPIE) shows that the retail real estate (RRE) sector will have to play a major part in achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.
The report is a status quo analysis of existing policy and market approach to climate change actions and strategies relevant to the RRE sector, and represents the starting point for developing a common vision and language on how to decarbonise the sector. It aims to identify relevant policy and market developments that can inform tailored recommendations to industry players and policy makers in order to be in line with the Paris Agreement.
The report consists of three main sections:
- A review of existing EU legislation that impacts the decarbonisation of the sector.
- An overview of market initiatives including metrics and targets, definitions of zero-carbon buildings and other tools available to the RRE community that could provide critical pointers towards the appropriate level of ambition in terms of low-carbon performance.
- A discussion of the key issues and challenges related to carbon measurement, setting targets, and developing and implementing mitigation strategies.
The Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction is a reference document of the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GlobalABC). The fifth edition of this annual snapshot of the progress of the buildings and construction sector globally towards the achievement of the goals of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, particularly on the drivers of CO2 emissions and energy demand globally and the status of policies, finance, technologies, and solutions that support a zero-emission, efficient, and resilient buildings and construction sector. This year’s Buildings-GSR features input from over 110 GlobalABC members and experts from all regions: a true collaborative effort, building a global community. This year’s Buildings-GSR shines a light on the disruptions of COVID-19 and some of the responses in 2020, and includes a snapshot on emerging key issues: materials, nature-based solutions, health, and cooling for resilience. It also introduces a new index to track progress in decarbonisation in the sector – the Buildings Climate Tracker (BCT).
GSR was released by Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, at the International conference “Energy efficiency in buildings: how to accelerate investments”, one the fringe of the One Planet Summit in Paris, on 11th dec 2017, and in presence of Mr Sergio Bergman, minister of Environment, Argentina.
Press release on the 'New Efficient World Scenario
The Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction, in partnership with UN Environment and the International Energy Agency will release The 2018 Global Status Report– Towards a Zero-Emission, Efficient and Resilient Buildings and Construction Sector – a global snapshot on the status of the building and construction sector, released annually to track the progress of this sector so critical to the success of the Paris Agreement and limiting warming to well below 2°C.
The report will be released at COP24, the annual UN Climate Conference, on December 7.