Skip to main content
2024-03-19 | Mervyn Jones, Douglas Fraser, Javier Letamendi, Stewart Muir, and Claire Thiebault
SAICM Secretariat

This guidance is primarily aimed at public procurers involved in a range of contracting agreements related to building materials and products. This includes the purchase of building materials for construction works, but may also extend to material extraction, manufacturing, building, retrofit, refurbishment, design, interior fit out, and end-of-life demolition or deconstruction processes. 

There are a variety of roles within the procurement cycle that the guidance can support, from commissioning, category management, tender preparation and evaluation, to contract management.

2024-03-07 | BPIE, UCL

The Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction (Buildings-GSR), a report published by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GlobalABC), provides an annual snapshot of the progress of the buildings and construction sector on a global scale. The Buildings-GSR reviews the status of policies, finance, technologies, and solutions to monitor whether the sector is aligned with the Paris Agreement goals. It also provides stakeholders with evidence to persuade policymakers and the overall buildings and construction community to take action.

As outlined in the latest edition, the buildings and construction sector contributes significantly to global climate change, accounting for about 21 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions. In 2022, buildings were responsible for 34 per cent global energy demand and 37 per cent of energy and process-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

The 2022 update of the Global Buildings Climate Tracker (GBCT) paints a concerning picture: the gap between the current state and the desired decarbonisation path is significant. To align with the 2030 milestone, an annual increase of ten decarbonisation points is now required, a substantial jump from the six points anticipated per year starting in 2015.

This year, the deep dive chapters are the following: Adaptation and resilient construction methods; Innovations in business cases as well as Nature-based solutions and biophilic design.

Learn more and download the 2023 Buildings-GSR

2023-05-23 | United Nations Economic Commission for Europe(UNECE)
United Nations Economic Commission for Europe(UNECE)

When it comes to sustainability and circularity, wood as a natural raw material has several advantages over other building materials. As a bio-based resource, it has considerable benefits concerning greenhouse gas emissions, carbon-storing, thermal insulation as well as human health and well-being compared to other construction materials. New types of wood products, being the result of extensive research, enable the extensive use of wood in tall buildings. At the same time, innovative wood products provide less manufacturing waste, low carbon-emission alternatives and store massive quantities of carbon while new technologies speed construction processes, promote energy efficiency and minimize waste.

This study examines the benefits of wood as a construction material and discusses practices applied in the wood construction sector from the perspective of circularity, sustainability and climate change mitigation. It analyses how circularity concepts can be applied in the construction industry using different construction methods and at different stages of value chains. The study describes how different construction techniques and practices contribute to the renewal and sustainability of construction value chains. The analysis is supported by examples of good practice in UNECE member States.

Please read the full report here.

| Bauhaus Earth; Toni Piëch Foundation
Bauhaus Earth


Bauhaus Earth is collaborating with the Toni Piëch Foundation to develop the multi-series knowledge collection 'Building for the Future'. Developed as a modular system, the collection will provide visually appealing and easily digestible information to introduce people to the idea of a regenerative built environment. It will provide an overview of key developments, concepts, and options for action. The first series, 'Setting the Frame', highlights critical facts and figures about the built environment as a major contributor to the climate crisis. It also highlights the vision of a regenerative built environment and presents practical ideas and approaches. The second series will focus specifically on the scale of regenerative buildings, highlighting the use of bio-based materials and how to extend the life cycle of building materials and components, as well as the importance of sufficiency strategies.

The first Series "Setting the Frame" highlights critical facts and figures about the built environment as a major contributor to the climate crisis. It also highlights the vision of a regenerative built environment and presents practical ideas and approaches. The second series “Regenerative Buildings” will focus specifically on the scale of regenerative buildings, emphasizing the use of bio-based materials and how to extend the life cycle of building materials and components.

2023-07-14 | Centre for Science and Environment
Centre for Science and Environment

The Cooling Web is a guidance document and a compilation of case studies that bring out a range of cooling solutions that are diverse and comprehensive and do not rely on conventional energy-guzzling practices. This involves measures to enhance microclimate, thoughtful designs for building envelopes, judicious selection of material, and context-specific cooling approaches.

India is witnessing rising frequency and intensity of heat waves. This is making our cities sear and pushing the built environment community to rethink how to plan and design buildings and cities. This momentum is strongly linked with the India Cooling Action Plan 2019 and its very important goal of thermal comfort for all. The Union government and a few state governments are taking strides to achieve this goal by developing thermal comfort standards and action plans, adopting energy conservation building codes, and other initiatives like cool roof programmes. However, the degree of success lies in the scaled-up implementation of cooling strategies.

The 10 case studies in the volume 1 carefully selected from across the country—with five deep dives—highlight how thermal comfort can be achieved by a combination of passive and active cooling measures. This approach reduces cooling energy demand tremendously and addresses cooling equity. These solutions blend traditional wisdom on passive design with modern techniques and provide optimized solutions so that energy consumption is minimized. These solutions are also a guide toward achieving a rational and climate-appropriate cooling ecosystem that not only ensures resource efficiency but also maintains thermal comfort for building occupants.

Please read the report here.

2021-01-05 | Global Cement and Concrete Association
Global Cement and Concrete Association

The Cement CO2 Protocol stands as a pivotal guidance document for calculating carbon emissions in cement manufacturing and enjoys widespread adoption worldwide. Cement manufacturers globally rely on this standard for consistent measurement and management of carbon emissions.

Additionally, the Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA) maintains an extensive database aligned with this protocol, making it one of the most comprehensive resources for CO2 emissions data in the cement industry. This combined effort underscores the protocol's significance and its substantial impact on carbon reduction initiatives across the sector.

Explore further at

2022-02-10 | Global Cement and Concrete Association
Global Cement and Concrete Association

The GCCA Sustainability Charter and Sustainability Guidelines underpin the sustainability activity of its member companies, setting out what they need to abide by, what they measure and how they report their sustainability performance, especially for Cement and Concrete Manufacturers, providing global guidance on aligning their sustainability and ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) principles. These guidelines offer industry-leading Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and parameters tailored to the sector, empowering Sustainability Managers, ESG Managers, and Plant Managers to effectively manage their sustainability performance.

This guideline outlines five key pillars that encompass the full spectrum of sustainability within the cement and concrete sector. It establishes specific requirements for full members to meet in each of these pillars.

The GCCA sustainability guidelines feature a set of straightforward, reliable, and representative KPIs that members must use to monitor and report their performance. To achieve the highest level of compliance, full members are expected to have their data independently verified and made publicly available.

The Global Cement and Concrete Association is an international industry association that was established in 2018. as of 2018, it represented about 35% of the global industry for Cement and Concrete.

Here more about the guidelines here

2021-03-17 | Mass Timber Institute
Mass Timber Institute

Although numerous jurisdictions have established design guides for tall mass timber buildings, architects and engineers often do not have access to the specialized building science knowledge required to deliver well-performing mass timber buildings. Mass Timber Institute(MTI) worked collaboratively with industry, design professionals, academia, researchers and code experts to develop the scope and content of this mass timber building science primer.

This report introduced mass timber building systems, which are made of wood products that are engineered to be strong, durable and fire-resistant. The report explains how mass timber buildings can be designed, constructed and evaluated in Canada, and what are the benefits and challenges of using this building system. It also compares mass timber buildings with other building systems in terms of environmental impacts and life cycle assessment. 

Read the full report here.

| EIT Climate-KIC; Lendlease; Built by Nature
EIT Climate-KIC

Although various timber buildings have been built globally but the industry is still in its infancy. There are still many challenges to overcome in order to improve the uptake of mass timber in the construction industry. This initiative aims to improve the perception of mass timber in the Milanese, Italian and EU context through collective learning and a strategic communication strategy involving key stakeholder groups, the so-called ‘Big Six’: developers, investors, cities, designers, insurers, and assets owners.

As a joint effort of Perception of Timber at MIND project led by Climate-KIC and Lendlease, supported by Built by Nature, the report illustrates the Timber Perception Lab, an initiative that aims to promote the use of mass timber construction in Italy, and it outlines the next steps and goals for the second year of the initiative, such as expanding the network, scaling up the prototype, and influencing policies and regulations.

Read the full Report Here.

2023-09-14 | International Energy Agency (IEA); International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA); United Nations Climate Change High-Level Champions
International Energy Agency (IEA); International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA); United Nations Climate Change High-Level Champions

The Breakthrough Agenda Report 2023 is an annual collaboration between the International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the United Nations Climate Change High-Level Champions, focused on supporting stronger international collaboration to drive faster reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions. This year’s report shows that current efforts on clean energy and sustainable solutions, while improving, are not yet delivering the levels of investment and deployment required to meet international climate goals. In response, it calls on governments to strengthen collaboration in key areas – such as standards and regulation, financial and technical assistance and market creation – to turbocharge the transition.

The 2023 edition, following the development of the Buildings Breakthrough, includes a Buildings chapter, developed in collaboration with GlobalABC and where five areas are identified as priorities for international collaboration to deliver near-zero emissions and resilient buildings: Standards and certification; Demand creation; Finance and investment; Research and deployment; and Knowledge and capacity-building

Read the report now