Retrofitting buildings for new use

Against the backdrop of the UK’s race to reach net-zero by 2050, and tenants increasing demand for more energy-efficient buildings, landlords are trying to deliver this by giving old structures a new lease of life, The Guardian reports.

The climate crisis has forced all sectors of the economy to consider their emissions, prompting property owners and developers to look again at the impact of construction, The Guardian reports.

“Twenty years ago, if you looked at the overall carbon impact of a building, then 80% of it might have come from how you use it,” said Chris Cummings, director at Savills Earth, the estate agent’s sustainability team.

“With a brand new glass and steel building in London now, 95% to 98% of the building’s impact will be in the materials, because it’s going to be lean and be using green energy, and the grid is decarbonising.”

The prize on offer for decarbonising the entire life cycle of a building is significant. The World Green Building Council calculates that construction, together with the energy required to heat, cool and power buildings, accounts for almost 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Read more about embodied carbon and this trend in The Guardian’s article.

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