Policy

12 February 2019

Next U.N. Climate Summit should focus on buildings and construction sector

September’s crucial United Nations Climate Summit needs to recognise the importance of buildings and construction in the climate debate. They contribute close to 40 % of global emissions while exacerbating the air pollution that causes some seven million deaths annually. This is view of Joyce Msuya, acting executive director of the U.N. Environment Program; Cristina […]

5 February 2019

REBUS project shows climate benefits of nature-based solutions in cities

Urban areas occupy only 3 percent of the planet’s surface, but they are responsible for 75 percent of gas emissions. According to projections, by 2050, 6 billion people – or at least 70% of the global population – will be living in metropolitan centres, which might become a living hell, considering the impact climate change has […]

30 January 2019

The City of Boston steps up action to be leading carbon neutral city in United States

To be in full compliance with the Paris Agreement the authorities of the city of Boston are developing roadmaps to reduce carbon pollution in buildings and transportation, and updating its Climate Action Plan. The roadmaps will identify critical action pathways for Boston’s public and private building and transportation sectors, strengthening the strategies needed to achieve the […]

23 January 2019

Reusing buildings should – and must – be the next Big Thing

Sustainability awards and standards touted by professional architecture organisations often stop at opening day, failing to take into account the day-to-day energy use of a building. With the current format unlikely to change, how can we rethink the way what sustainability means in architecture today? The first step might be to stop rewarding purpose-built architecture, and look […]

22 January 2019

Built environment needs to accelerate towards a closed-loop model, says Circle Economy report

A new report released at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos has outlined the urgent need for nations to “wake up to the potential” of the circular economy in order to push the world towards the Paris Agreement’s more ambitious pathway. The Circularity Gap Report 2019 has been produced by non-profit Circle Economy, which […]

18 January 2019

“Cities are on the front lines of climate change,” says report

Cities are where climate change is both fuelled and felt: urban areas generate 70 percent of the globe’s CO2, while at the same time 80% of city dwellers are regularly exposed to unsafe air quality. Indeed, cities are essential to fighting climate change, according to new research. It is both a major contributor to the […]

4 January 2019

Australian city promotes plans for more green rooftop gardens and communal spaces

Brisbane, Australia’s most biodiverse capital city, is to change its City Plan and encourage developers to include green rooftop gardens and communal spaces on new residential buildings. The amended plan, which was announced by Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk, cements council support for more green spaces and communal areas, particularly in apartment projects. “Council will […]

19 December 2018

EU takes buildings to the next Level(s)

The EU’s long-term climate strategy, published in November, says the EU should reach net-zero emissions by 2050 at the latest. For this to be possible, 3% of buildings in the EU need to be renovated every year, up from just 1% today. With such a large amount of construction and renovation taking place, there is […]

14 December 2018

Norway to host world’s first zero-emission cement plant

The cement industry is the world’s second largest industrial emitter of CO2 after steel, accounting from more than 6% of global emissions. If the European cement sector were a country, it would emit as much CO2 as Belgium. The Norcem Brevik Norway is well on the way to becoming the world’s first carbon-free cement plant, a […]

11 December 2018

COP24: Tackle climate or face financial crash, say world’s biggest investors

Major global investors have urged the United Nation’s COP24 summit in Poland to end all coal burning and introduce substantial taxes on emissions. The group of investors which manage more than $32tn in assets have called for urgent cuts in carbon emissions without which, it warns, the world faces a financial crash several times worse […]

7 December 2018

COP24: Construction sector highlights untapped potential for emissions cuts

Dramatic action will be needed by governments, cities and business if the global buildings and construction sector is to cut its carbon footprint in line with international agreements, according to a report released at COP24. The 2018 Global Status Report — “Towards a Zero-Emission, Efficient and Resilient Buildings and Construction Sector, from by the Global […]

5 December 2018

COP24: EU takes the lead with ‘Climate Neutral’ drive

The EU has set an objective of being a climate neutral economy by 2050. The strategy which it has taken to the COP24 climate talks in Poland shows how Europe can lead the way to climate neutrality by investing into realistic technological solutions, empowering citizens, and aligning action in key areas such as industrial policy, […]

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