3 December 2015 | Herpreet Kaur Grewal
BREEAM-assessed buildings achieve an average 22 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions compared with buildings designed to regulatory minimum performance requirements, says a new briefing paper.
The paper published by research organisation BRE, which owns the sustainability standard BREEAM, gives an overview of its contribution to global carbon reduction in buildings.
Published during global climate change conference COP21 in Paris, the paper also gives details of how BREEAM has evolved since the standard was created 25 years ago - and how it might develop in future to continue challenging the industry to go beyond standard practice.
Research includes an analysis of assessment data (from 2011 onwards) shows that BREEAM-assessed buildings achieve an average 22 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions compared with those designed to regulatory minimum performance requirements. BREEAM Excellent buildings save more than 30 per cent and Outstanding-rated buildings save in excess of 50 per cent.
To date, about 530,000 buildings and homes have applied the standard in more than 70 countries around the world.
Gavin Dunn, director of BREEAM, said: "On Monday over 150 world leaders gathered in Paris to discuss how to drive down carbon emissions and manage rising temperatures due to climate change. Given that buildings and homes together account for over 40 per cent of the UK's total carbon emissions, it's more important than ever that standards like BREEAM are used to drive down emissions and reduce running costs over the lifetime of a building."
The study says one of the main aims of the BREEAM energy strategy is to strengthen the links between schemes covering different life cycle stages, with a particular focus on the relationship between the New Construction and In-Use schemes, and opportunities for addressing the 'performance gap'.
Copies of the paper and details of BRE's BREEAM pledge are available at www.breeam.com/cop21