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As the federal government promotes its five-point technology-driven plan to reach net zero by 2050, the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council (ASBEC) has released a policy platform highlighting five ways the built environment can help Australia transition to a net zero future.

The paper comes in the lead-up to COP26 in Glasgow from October 31–November 12, and recommends five practical policies across residential, commercial and public buildings that should be implemented by federal government to drive emissions reduction.

“Buildings account for over 50 per cent of electricity use in Australia and almost a quarter of its emissions,” says ASBEC. “The built environment presents some of the lowest cost – and largely untapped – emissions reduction opportunities.

“ASBEC, as the peak body of key organisations committed to a sustainable, productive, resilient built environment in Australia, urges the federal government to seize the unique opportunity the built environment offers to dramatically reduce carbon emissions in highly cost-effective ways that will also stimulate the economy.”

The five policies put forward in the position paper are:

  • Give households the energy performance information they need to achieve healthy, affordable, comfortable homes
  • Demonstrate government leadership through high-performing government buildings
  • Position Australia as a global leader in high-performance building products and technologies
  • Provide economic stimulus by incentivising building upgrades
  • Deliver a net zero carbon ready building code and pathways to decarbonise building operations

“ASBEC and its members call upon the Australian government to adopt these practical recommendations,” says the paper. “We look forward to working collaboratively with all spheres of government, towards facilitating the transition of Australia’s building sector towards an economy for the future. This will be critical in improving and sustaining the future liveability, productivity and sustainability of our communities and cities and pave the way for Australia to make a meaningful and successful contribution to COP26 discussions.”

To read the report, click here.

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