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23 February 2019
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COP21: Business pledges huge building carbon cuts

4 December 2015 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal

Carillion, Cofely and Camden Council – among many other construction and FM companies – have signed up to a series of pledges to cut carbon emissions from their buildings. 


The agreement is a part of an initiative by the UK Green Building Council and Green Building Councils from around the world to publish a series of commitments from the private sector that would result in massive carbon savings from buildings and construction.


Formally published today at Buildings Day – the official COP21 meeting led by Ségolène Royal, the French Minister of Ecology in Paris – the commitments include corporate pledges from more than 50 businesses operating in the UK, and at least 100 globally, committing to play their part in delivering the necessary carbon reductions. 


The Crown Estate, Marks & Spencer, British Land, Derwent London, JLL, Morgan Sindall Group, Bilfinger, BRE, Wilmott Dixon, Lend Lease, Land Securities, Derwent, Argent, and Kingfisher also signed the pledge to cut carbon.


All 74 national Green Building Councils, under the umbrella of the World Green Building Council, commit to driving ‘Net Zero Carbon’ new building and large-scale, energy-efficient refurbishment of the existing building stock in order to play their role in limiting global temperature rise to 2°C. 


The sector must reduce emissions by 84 GtCO2 by 2050, the equivalent of taking 22,000 coal-fired power stations out of existence.


Julie Hirigoyen, CEO of UK-GBC, said: “The eyes of the world are on Paris, but it is not just down to the politicians to make it a success. There is a clear business case for the construction and real estate sector to cut carbon emissions from buildings. The climate pledge commitments from our members demonstrate the widespread industry support for urgent action, and point to a market that is transforming itself.”


Terri Wills, CEO of the World Green Building Council, said: “Politicians and business leaders now jointly recognise that the way we build can lead to economic growth and prosperity without risking life on the planet, and that the private sector is a driving force in achieving this goal. While the building sector is a major contributor to climate change, it is an essential part of the solution – and one that brings immediate benefits to economy and society.”