Recent global shocks have taught us the importance of community and the consequences of human impact on the world we live in.
Four billion people are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and the World Meteorological Organisation reports we have a 50% chance of breaching 1.5°C of warming over the next five years. According to the World Health Organization, air pollution kills over seven million people a year. The energy and cost of living crisis is already disproportionately affecting our societies’ most vulnerable people.
The built environment is part of the challenge and part of the solution
The global built environment is responsible for almost 40% of global energy-related carbon emissions and 50% of extracted materials. By 2050, 1.6 billion urban dwellers will be regularly exposed to extreme high temperatures, which causes droughts and wildfire, and over 800 million people living in more than 570 cities will be vulnerable to sea level rise and coastal flooding.
The built environment accounts for 10% of employment and 50% of all wealth. But climate change increases the risk of built assets becoming stranded ones. Climate change risks US $16 trillion of value for residential real estate assets and US $5 trillion for global commercial assets.
At a time when many of us are reflecting on how we can have a more positive influence on nature and within our communities, these challenges remind us of what is possible when we come together to achieve a shared goal.
That’s why our global network of over 70 Green Building Councils and their +36,000 members is dedicated to leading the industry towards net zero carbon, healthy, equitable and resilient built environments for everyone, everywhere.
It’s time to put people back at the heart of the built environment
That’s why we’re inviting our global community to take urgent action to scale up solutions for low carbon and highly resilient sustainable built environments. It’s time to accelerate climate action and contribute to thriving communities and economies.
This World Green Building Week, we’re showing how our network’s holistic approach to #BuildingforEveryone can accelerate the Sustainable Development Goals and sustainable built environments for everyone, everywhere.
#BuildingforEveryone’s three themes highlight how the built environment can support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals
Building for the planet
The climate crisis is also a global health crisis. Unless we take urgent action to reduce climate breakdown now, the health of millions of people will be negatively affected by increased temperatures, infectious diseases will spread faster, and it will be harder to grow the food we need to live healthily.
Building for communities
1.6 billion people will lack access to safe, adequate housing by 2025. To combat the global cost of living crisis, we need to take urgent action now to address inadequate, unaffordable housing and enhance equity, economic productivity and environmental sustainability.
Building for economies
Sustainable built environments bolster our economies’ most important asset — nature. Accelerating a more circular and regenerative economy will create new jobs and savings on energy bills. We need to take urgent action now to advance economies that are more productive and resilient for our communities and our planet.
Join us at World Green Building Week from 12-16 September 2022 and join the social media campaign on @WorldGBC, #BuildingforEveryone and #WGBW22.