New Global Partnership to Advance City-Led Green Building Efforts

November 19, 2012
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The World Green Building Council (WorldGBC), U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40), a global network of the world’s mega-cities dedicated to action on climate change, announced an expanded partnership, focused on creating a suite of innovative green building solutions that can be readily implemented in C40 Cities around the world. The announcement broadens the scope of the organizations’ longstanding collaboration–and brings it to a global scale.

“Cities around the world are leading the way in combating climate change, and one area where we’ve seen significant progress–and where there remains enormous potential–is in making buildings more energy efficient,” said C40 Chair and New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. “This new global partnership marks an important next phase of C40’s longstanding commitment to the global green building community. By connecting C40’s innovative, action-oriented cities with the world’s foremost experts on green building, we will make even greater progress in this critical area–and continue building a greener, healthier future.”

Buildings consume approximately 40 percent of the world’s energy and account for more than one-third of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. In cities, buildings represent the majority of global greenhouse gas emissions and can account for as much as 80 percent of these harmful heat-trapping gases. For many of the world’s cities, greater efficiency in the building sector is not only the largest opportunity to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but also the most cost effective.

The partnership will make accessible to C40 Cities the full range of USGBC and WorldGBC’s green building expertise in project best practices, policy development and implementation, education and training, and powerful data-driven tools and resources. By linking city experts with the largest network of green building professionals in the world, cities will be able to quickly develop comprehensive and customized plans for ramping up green building.

“Greening the buildings of our world’s megacities presents the most significant opportunity to reduce human impacts on the environment and the atmosphere,” said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair of USGBC and current chair of the WorldGBC. “Under President Clinton and Mayor Bloomberg’s leadership, the C40 Cities have long been out in front. We are going to do everything we can to support their innovative work by providing access to extensive green building educational and training materials, technical tools and resources, and a database of policy best practices.”

In addition, the partnership will expand existing collaborative efforts between the organizations, such as WorldGBC’s Sustainable Cities Initiative, a task force which enables direct assistance from GBCs to relevant C40 cities, and will strengthen and grow participation in a number of C40’s networks including Sustainable Urban Development, Cool Cities and Climate Positive Development, which USGBC helped to launch in 2009 in partnership with the Clinton Climate Initiative.

Jane Henley, CEO of the WorldGBC, added, “The World Green Building Council is thrilled to be partnering with the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group on this initiative. Through this partnership, our 90 Green Building Councils and associated groups around the globe will be able to pool tools and resources to assist and drive local emissions reductions efforts within the buildings sector in these mega cities.”

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