We acknowledge that we hold this world in trust and recognize the immediate threat climate change and its impacts pose to current and future generations. We cannot address the climate crisis without eliminating carbon emissions from the built environment, which today accounts for more than 40 percent of greenhouse gases. Moreover, building space is expected to double by 2050 - the equivalent of adding another New York City every 35 days, which will sharply increase embodied carbon emissions from new construction. We, therefore, must act urgently and collectively to transform the built environment from a leading driver of climate change to a significant and profitable solution.
To confront this crisis, we must dramatically remake the built environment by:
- Making use of all available technologies and processes to ensure that new construction projects begin and end with net-zero carbon emissions in mind.
- Taking an active, data-driven approach to eliminate energy waste in new and existing buildings.
- Minimizing embodied carbon in buildings by embracing low-carbon and carbon sequestering building materials and processes.
- Accelerating the growth of distributed energy resources (such as targeted solar, wind, and storage) that enable buildings to play their role in the decarbonization of our energy systems.
To this end, we will intensify our efforts to improve building sustainability in design, development, ownership, management, measurement, tools, investment and material supply chains — to maximize environmental, economic and equity outcomes, using market-based principles to scale solutions for all and have global impact.
We are inspired by the Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment. We challenge companies, cities, states and regions to reach net zero emissions in all new buildings by 2030, and to retrofit existing buildings to meet net zero carbon targets by 2050. We support carbon smart building as a global movement to create maximum collective impact.
Together, we can help draw down excess atmospheric carbon and create a built environment that supports a healthy, equitable, and sustainable human community.
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