Built Environment leaders urge EU for ambitious climate action
A coalition of 35 organizations is calling on European politicians to eliminate carbon emissions from Europe's building stock. The EU's buildings currently account for 40% of energy consumption and 36% of CO2 emissions. The coalition, which represents over 5,000 organizations from the building industry, is asking for an ambitious revision of the Energy Performance of Building Directive. The revision would include minimum energy performance standards, harmonization of energy performance certificates, and the reporting and targeting of both operational and embodied emissions. This would result in a more sustainable future for all EU citizens with climate benefits, the tackling of energy poverty, and the creation of up to 3.3 million green jobs annually.
There is increasing political and industry support for Whole Life Carbon policy for the building sector. WorldGBC launched the EU Whole Life Carbon Roadmap in 2022 with the support of 35 industry organizations. Additionally, ten Green Building Councils across Europe have developed national Whole Life Carbon roadmaps with input from over 600 experts. This is part of the #BuildingLife project, where over 150 leaders, including nine European Parliament members, have publicly declared their commitment to Whole Life Carbon policy for buildings.
Cristina Gamboa, CEO of WorldGBC, says that there is a clear consensus among Europe's building sector for an ambitious revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive. Buildings are seen as a key agent of change for Europe's transition to a decarbonized society and politicians should seize the opportunity to support the transition and provide energy security for households, as well as create green jobs and boost local economies. The #BuildingLife project has shown that the industry and policymakers are ready for collaboration to eliminate carbon emissions from Europe's building stock. The sector is ready for bolder action, and Members of European Parliament should be too.
Tina Paillet, RICS President Elect, supports the revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) as a crucial step in combating climate change. She believes that the EU should make new buildings and refurbishments energy and carbon efficient throughout their life cycle and contribute to the circular economy in the construction sector. RICS provides a standard approach for Whole Life Carbon assessment.