Emissions from Construction Rebound to All-Time High

Emissions from Construction Rebound to All-Time High.!

The construction sector’s emissions have reached a record high, according to a new analysis issued during COP27, putting the industry off course to meet decarbonization targets by 2050. The industry’s energy demand and carbon emissions have both risen to record highs, notwithstanding a respite during the COVID-19 pandemic and a surge in energy-efficient buildings.

The gap between the sector’s current performance and its decarbonization goals is growing, according to the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) 2022 Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction, which examines the buildings and construction sector globally and how the industry is achieving the Paris Agreement targets.

In 2021, the buildings and construction sector’s energy consumption and process-related carbon emissions both exceeded 34%. Operational energy-related carbon emissions reached 10 gigatonnes (equal to 10 billion metric tonnes), which was 5% more than the operational energy-related carbon emissions levels of 2020 and 2% higher than the previous record in 2019.

The operational energy demand for lighting, heating, cooling, and equipment in the industry increased as well; it increased by 3% from 2019 levels and by 4% from 2020 levels.

Climate change repercussions have materialized despite years of warnings, according to a statement from UNEP executive director Inger Andersen. We shall be far more difficult if we do not drastically reduce emissions in accordance with the Paris Agreement.

40% of Europe’s energy demand comes from the building sector, 80% of which comes from fossil fuels. Because of this, the sector should be the focus of immediate investments, policy, and action to advance both short- and long-term energy security.

Emissions from Construction Rebound to All-Time High

Read More: IRENA Report: The World Is Falling Short of Its Energy Transition Goals.!

Investments in energy-efficient buildings rose by 16% between 2020 and 2021, reaching $237 billion, according to UNEP. However, despite significant increases in worldwide gross floor area between 2015 and 2021, sector expansion continues to outpace initiatives to improve energy efficiency and reduce energy intensity.

The sector needs to increase investments in energy-efficient projects, increase policy commitments and actions, improve energy performance in buildings, reduce the carbon footprint of construction materials, and continue to increase energy-efficient investments in order to better align with decarbonization targets.

Governmental support for low- and zero-carbon building investment activities through monetary and non-monetary incentives may be the answer, according to Andersen.

According to UNEP, the consumption of raw resources is predicted to treble by 2060, and materials account for around 9% of the sector’s overall carbon emissions connected to energy. To reduce emissions, the sector will need to discover sustainable substitutes for steel, concrete, and cement. For new construction, nations must use sustainable energy sources.


Emissions from Construction Rebound to All-Time High

Read More: Manchin and Biden Argue Over Coal.!

To achieve the net-zero carbon emissions target by 2050, the sector must cut its emissions in half, which will need a reduction in emissions of 8% annually, according to the report.

In order to achieve the goals of a sustainable and resilient buildings and construction sector that will continue to grow and meet citizens’ needs for safe, healthy, and affordable housing and workplaces, policymakers and decision-makers urgently need to put in place concrete near-term actions. These actions can start to deliver the needed emissions reductions.

Adam Bertocci

Adam has spent over 15 years working in the tech industry, first as an IT technician and then as a writer. He lived with computers all his life and he works to help teach others how to get the most from their devices, systems, and apps. Ryan has been working with Enviro 360 now. He likes to swim and play video games as his hobby.

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