The buildings and construction sector accounts for nearly 40 percent of total energy-related CO2 emissions and 36 percent of final energy use worldwide. A growing population, as well as rapid growth in purchasing power in emerging economies and developing countries means that energy demand in buildings could increase by 50% by 2060. At the same time, global building floor area is expected to double by 2050, driving energy demand and related GHG emissions for construction.

On the other hand, the building sector offers the largest cost-effective GHG mitigation potential, with net cost savings and economic gains possible through implementation of existing technologies, policies and building designs.

In order to meet this challenge and to bridge this gap, the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GABC) was launched at the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) Buildings Day in Paris on the 3rd of December 2016. It was initiated by France and the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) to bring together the building and construction industry, countries and stakeholders to raise awareness and facilitate the global transition towards for low-emission, energy-efficient buildings. With its creation, GABC members acknowledged that the buildings and construction sector can contribute significantly to achieving climate goals and the common objective of limiting global warming to well-below 2 Celsius (2°C).

facilitating the worldwide transition towards

low energy & ghg and resilient real estate


Buildings direct and indirect related emissions under the responsibility of the building sector (energy consumption for heating and cooling, hot water and lighting; leakage of F-gas; energy and GHG embedded in Building materials) represent today nearly 20% of the worldwide GHG emissions. Meanwhile the building floor area should double by 2050. The success of the implementation of the Paris agreement needs a real transition towards low energy, low GHG and resilient Buildings. The GABC's challenge is to facilitate this worldwide transition by reinforcing clear actions and initiatives of all stakeholders of the building sector value chain.

This transition integrates in a new energy paradigm. Indeed, energy policy has been structured by supply issues. Now the falling prices of renewable technologies open the possibility of phasing out fossil energies in almost all sectors, including the building and construction one. Yet, guaranteeing access to energy for all to have a good life quality and comfort cannot be accomplished by a simple substitution of energy sources. This requires to guide energy policies towards the notion of energy services and energy demand, as an in-depth transformation of the energy demand is needed. This is difficult to achieve as energy demand is complex to plan. Developed countries should decrease their energy consumption per inhabitant, whereas the other countries should guarantee an access to energy that would allow a satisfying life quality and comfort per inhabitant, by at the same time reducing the environmental impact. Within this context, the GABC offers the possibility to foster cooperation among countries and connect them in a collective and unified effort to plan energy demand.

support & commitments
Lars Tveen, President, Danfoss Heating, Danfoss A/S

"Bettering the climate and the well-being of the world's population through urban efficiency"

Gino van Begin, Secretary General, ICLEI World Secretariat

"Climate actions starts at home"

Andrew McAllister, California Energy Commissioner, State of California Government

"California is focused on decarbonization of new and existing buildings"

Marcene Broadwater, Global Head, Climate Strategy and Business Development, IFC/World Bank Group

Achieving a zero-net carbon future is within our reach

Emma Stewart, Ph.D. Director of Urban Efficiency & Climate World Resources Institute

Green Buildings are Low-Hanging Fruit

Roland Hunziker, co-chair, GlobalABC; Director, Sustainable Buildings & Cities, World Business Council for Sustainable Development

Business and Partnership is Vital to Align Efforts for a Building Sector Transformation

Benoit Lebot, Executive Director, International Partnership for Energy Efficiency Cooperation (IPEEC)

GlobalABC sends a "strong signal to the global community"

Ingrid Reumert, Vice President Global Stakeholder Communications & Sustainability, The VELUX Group

Modernizing the Buildings Stock Can Create up to 700,000 jobs

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