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Pivot Point Report
Race to Zero

This report is a product of radical collaboration, with 40+ organisations working on accelerating non-state actor climate action in support of the Paris Agreement, coming together to share findings, insights and perspectives. It presents an overview of the current landscape across the voluntary climate leadership initiatives, and emerging standards and regulations, and offers insights on how to dramatically accelerate from voluntary action to the adequate standards, policies and regulations needed to deliver climate action at scale and achieve the mitigation goal of the Paris Agreement - recognising the different circumstances, capacities and needs of different countries. It explores some appropriate enabling environments and outlines the wide array of tools available, and highlights key questions to address hereon, providing a thought-piece for dialogue and consideration. Most importantly, it actively calls - indeed urges - non-state actors to (a) join the Race to Zero; (b) dramatically ratchet their policy engagement in line with this report; and (c) urges them to help inform, shape and drive the needed standards, legislation and regulation to get the world back on track to a 1.5C-aligned pathway to achieve a resilient, just net zero world.

2022-09-20 | Federico Bellone (CCT), Jose Bermudez Menendez (IEA), Herib Blanco (IRENA), Sophie Boehm (CCT), Emily Cassidy (CCT), Kelly Carlin (CCT), Nicolas Coent (IRENA), Edward Davey (CCT), Gerardo Escamilla (IRENA), Rachel Fakhry (CCT), Angie Farrag-Thibault (CCT)
Breakthrough Agenda Report 2022
International Energy Agency (IEA), International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and UN Climate Change High-Level Champions

The Breakthrough Agenda Report 2022 is a new report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the UN Climate Change High-Level Champions, focused on supporting stronger international collaboration to drive faster reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions. Without international cooperation, the crucial global transition to net zero emissions could be delayed by decades. The faster the transition advances, the faster it will deliver clean technologies at lower cost, making them available for all. This is all the more urgent in the context of recent sharp spikes in energy and food prices around the world. This inaugural report assesses progress on reducing emissions in five key sectors – power, hydrogen, road transport, steel and agriculture. The authors make recommendations to strengthen collaboration between governments, business and civil society in areas such as common standards, technology R&D, reaching a level playing field for trade, and improving technical and financial assistance. 

"Buildings are the largest emitting sector not currently addressed by the Breakthrough Agenda. While the emissions that occur directly from activity in buildings such as heating, cooling, and cooking account for around 9% of global energy-related CO2 emissions, those that occur indirectly – from the steel, cement, and other materials used in buildings’ construction, and from the generation of the electricity they use – account for an additional 28% of global energy-related CO2 emissions (IEA, 2021d). More than half of the buildings expected to exist by 2050 have not yet been built, meaning that choices made now will have substantial and long-lasting effects on material use and emissions.

There are likely to be significant opportunities for international collaboration in this sector, despite the widely varied needs and opportunities for resilient zero-emission buildings in different regions of the world. These may include collaboration on research and development of zero-emission heating and cooling technologies; sharing learning in the design and construction of high-energy performance buildings with low embodied emissions; and coordination on building codes, standards, and the measurement of life- cycle emissions.

Important collaborative initiatives in the sector include the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction, which shares knowledge and policy best practice among its 36-member countries, and the World Green Building Council, which brings business and civil society actors together in a large number of countries. Relevant research and development initiatives include work on affordable heating and cooling of buildings within Mission Innovation, the IEA’s Technology Collaboration Programme (TCP), and innovation competitions such as the Global Cooling Prize and the Million Cool Roofs Challenge."

2022-09-19 | Kim Cheslak, Sean Denniston, Mark Lyles, Diana Burk, and Ben Rabe
Existing Building Decarbonization Code
New Buildings Institute

The Existing Building Decarbonization Code is a new way for jurisdictions to reduce carbon emissions and meet Climate Action Plan and public health and equity goals. The need to address existing building stock is great, with 5.9 million existing commercial buildings in the U.S. comprising 97 billion square feet. New construction represents less than 2% of building activity in any given year, leaving a vast amount of outdated technologies in current building stock. NBI’s release of the Building Decarbonization Code provided the first off-the-shelf solution--as an overlay to the 2021 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC)--for jurisdictions to transform energy codes into decarbonization codes for new buildings. Expanding where that document left off, the Existing Building Decarbonization Code complements the original adding provisions specifically for existing buildings. The new model language covers both residential and commercial buildings including all-electric and mix-fuel energy use pathways.

2022-09-12 | Judit Kockat, Sheikh Zuhaib
EU Buildings Climate Tracker: methodology and introduction of building decarbonisation indicators and their results

The EU Buildings Climate Tracker finds that the European Union is facing a growing gap in advancing towards climate neutrality in the sector. This paper is complementary as it gives more details about the methodology and outlines results for all sub-indicators of the Tracker.

A first policy briefing highlighting its overall results as well as concrete policy recommendations for the EPBD revision was published in June 2022. This complimentary paper gives more details about the methodology and outlines results for all sub-indicators of the EU Buildings Climate Tracker: 

  1. CO₂ emissions from energy use in buildings by households and services 
  2. Final energy consumption in households and the service 
  3. Improvement in EPC ratings 
  4. Renewable energy share 
  5. Cumulated investment in renovation in real terms
  6. Annual domestic expenditure per household in real terms 
An Energy Sector Roadmap to Net Zero Emissions in Indonesia

The IEA – at the request of the Government of Indonesia and to coincide with Indonesia’s Presidency of the G20 – has developed a comprehensive roadmap to net zero by 2060 for the country, which charts a path for the country’s energy transition over the coming decades. The analysis in the Energy Sector Roadmap to Net Zero Emissions in Indonesia spans key areas such as people‑centred transitions, the phasing down of coal use, investment and financing needs, and critical minerals. It also sets out a high-ambition pathway in which Indonesia reaches net zero by 2050. The project has been conducted in close collaboration with the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources of the Republic of Indonesia.

Technology and innovation pathways for zero-carbon-ready buildings by 2030. A strategic vision from the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes

The new IEA report “Technology and innovation pathways for zero-carbon-ready buildings by 2030. A strategic vision from the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes” gives recommendations for the technology solutions, innovation strategies and policy instruments for the current decade to achieve Zero-Carbon Buildings by 2050. This report combines input from the IEA Technology Collaboration Programmes.