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Buildings and Construction: a key sector for climate action

A key sector for climate action, buildings and construction is not on track. Driving down emissions will entail: aggressively reducing energy demand in the built environment, while decarbonizing the power sector and implementing materials strategies that reduce lifecycle carbon emissions. In this brochure, you will find key data, key messages and further readings about the buildings and construction sector.

2019-11-01 | GlobalABC Secretariat
COP26 pavilion

A brochure on the buildings and real estate pavilion

Buildings Performance Institute Europe

The building sector, as it stands today, is a major contributor to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the European Union. It remains highly dependent on fossil fuels, has yet to embrace circularity, and is not seeing the renovation activity necessary to meet climate goals and improve people’s wellbeing. The Renovation Wave strategy published by the Commission on October 14, 2020 calls for faster and deeper renovation and is comprehensive and far-reaching. Its premise is that to contribute to a higher 2030 climate target and decarbonise the building sector, a wide range of policies, measures and tools must be put in place at all levels to overcome existing barriers and mobilise all actors, including citizens, local authorities, investors and the construction value chain.

This assessment sets out BPIE’s views on the key elements of the strategy and provides suggestions how they can be put into action. For example, BPIE argues that a much stronger focus on deep renovations is needed to achieve full decarbonisation of buildings by 2050 and this should be reflected in the upcoming legislative processes and respective supporting instruments.

The Renovation Wave will catalyse a series of actions in the coming years to unleash a wave of building renovations. New and stronger follow-up measures are welcome and needed. At the same time, such an initiative can only be successful if the current legislation is well implemented across EU Member States providing the necessary solid basis for delivering the Renovation Wave.

2020-05-01 | German Sustainable Building Council - DGNB
German Sustainable Building Council - DGNB

This brochure produced by the German Sustainable Building Council details the path from climate neutral buildings to climate positive. It includes case studies of climate positive buildings from Singapore and Germany. Finally, it outlines the elements of a climate action strategy. 

Architecture 2030

The ZERO Code is a national and international building energy standard for new building construction that integrates cost-effective energy efficiency standards with on-site and/or off-site renewable energy resulting in zero-net-carbon buildings.

The ZERO Code includes prescriptive and performance paths for building energy efficiency compliance based on current standards that are widely used by municipalities and building professionals worldwide.

World Green Building Council

How to get involved in World Green Building Week 2018


Sustainable Development Goal 13 (SDG 13) – to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impact is one of gravest existential threats facing our collective, sustainable future survival on this planet.

SDG 13 has many aspects that relate to action on buildings and the work of the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction.

The brief contains 1. an overview of SDG 13 progress to date, in particular regarding the integration of the environmental dimension; 2. Gaps identified, key challenges and policies to address them, highlighting the interlinkages with other SDGs; 3. Examples of working policies; 4. Key messages.

Read the issue brief to learn more.

13.1: Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate impacts
13.2: Integrate climate change measures into national policies, strategies, and planning
13.3: Improve climate education, awareness, human and institutional capacity
13.A: Mobilize $100 billion annually by 2020 to address needs of developing countries in meaningful adaptation and transparency of implementation
13.B: Raise capacity for effective climate change related planning and management in least developed countries


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