Helping cities deliver better buildings, cleaner air, and a more efficient built environment
By 2030, 70 percent of the world’s population will live in cities. This means that the choices city leaders make today will shape the built environment for decades. Without action to consider building efficiency, cities risk locking in high operating costs and increasing resource demand and greenhouse gas emissions. Improving the performance of buildings can help address the health, productivity and the environment in which residents live and work.
WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities’ Building Efficiency Initiative speeds the adoption of innovative solutions for efficient, sustainable buildings. We connect city decision-makers with the information and partners they need to improve their buildings. To do this, we work in four areas:
Making buildings a part of an active energy system by demonstrating that they can consume less power, generate their own clean energy, and help “balance” the electricity grid system
Supporting building performance analysis, information, and certification
Scaling up business models and finance strategies to deliver efficiency
Serving as the lead partner of the Building Efficiency Accelerator, an effort of the United Nations’ Sustainable Energy for All initiative
Today, buildings consume nearly 40 percent of global energy and account for about one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions. However, some of the best opportunities to improve efficiency and confront these challenges remain unrealized.
The Building Efficiency Initiative engages partners, policymakers, and practitioners to accelerate building efficiency action in cities around the world. Our practical resources help cities succeed with policies, technologies, and innovative investment strategies. Together, we deliver better buildings, cleaner air, and a more efficient built environment.
For global updates on innovative policies, projects, and partnerships to improve energy and water efficiency in buildings, subscribe to the Building Efficiency Initiative newsletter here.
Building Efficiency Facts
By 2030, cities will account for 73 percent of world energy use. In most cities, buildings account for more than half of this consumption.
75 percent of the urban infrastructure that will exist in 2050 hasn’t been built yet, presenting a huge opportunity to shape more resource-efficient cities.
Simply providing information on building energy performance to the market is an important step in improving efficiency. In the United States, buildings that regularly tracked energy use achieved an average of 7 percent energy savings over three years.