UK Green Building Council launches campaign to persuade government to reduce emissions ahead of Copenhagen climate change talks

To mark World Green Building Day industry leaders and UK Green Building Council have launched a campaign to highlight the importance of carbon savings from buildings.

Call to Action is one of a series of events around the world aimed at putting buildings high on the agenda at the Copenhagen climate change negotiations in three months.

Industry representatives and UK-GBC will launch the campaign at a House of Commons reception hosted by Emily Thornberry MP. Speakers include David Kidney MP, under secretary of state for energy and climate change and Stephen Hale, director of Green Alliance.

Paul King, chief executive of the UK-GBC and chair of the World Green Building Council Policy Task Force, said:

“Today, Green Building Councils and their members around the world are speaking with one voice and calling for buildings to get the profile they deserve in the climate change talks. There is no bigger, more cost-effective option for achieving the global cuts in carbon emissions than our buildings over the next few years.

“The Kyoto Treaty rightly acknowledges the role that deforestation, transport and energy generation play in contributing to climate change. However, buildings have been poor relations up to now. Inclusion of buildings within the Copenhagen Agreement would encourage the setting of ambitious targets for carbon reductions for the building sector and create the framework within which industry is incentivised to make those dramatic cuts.”

The campaign states that Copenhagen’s climate change framework can facilitate greenhouse gas emissions reduction in the building industry by:

  • Recognising the building industry as a top priority for achieving GHG emissions reductions.
  • Enabling market based measures that can support investment in building projects that are energy efficient and reduce GHG emissions.
  • Building capacity and transfer technology to enable improvements in energy efficiency of buildings.
  • Supporting reform of flexible mechanisms to encourage investment in projects that improve energy efficiency and reduce GHG emissions from new and existing buildings.
  • Encouraging UNFCCC to establish working groups to develop specific measures for the building industry prior to the next commitment period.
  • Encouraging governments to inventory and set performance goals for GHG emissions from national building stocks.

Other events taking place today around the world include The US Green Building Council holding a“Congressional Advocacy Day” at the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC and in Germany certified green buildings will open their doors to the public.

More information on the Call to Action is available at The UK-GBC website