Construction sector must ‘clean up its act’ on decarbonization says Rocky Mountain Institute

Residential and commercial buildings account for roughly 29 percent of total US greenhouse gas emissions, and increased appliances and electronics usage is expected to result in a further net increase by 2050, therefore energy use in total is expected to grow around 0.3 percent a year from 2016 to 2050.
Construction sector must ‘clean up its act’ on decarbonization says Rocky Mountain Institute
Courtesy of Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI)

Driving down residential and commercial building emissions brings greater energy efficiency, increased electrification for infrastructure, and reduced harm to the planet. The Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) has presented a framework that governments and states can follow as part of the 'Race to Zero.'

The RMI believes the first step is using holistic approaches to maximise progress in meeting shared objectives. Public utility commissions and other government bodies will need to form a vision, clarify roles, and coordinate policies and programs.

The institute also wants clear guidelines on alternative fuels. While proposals to decarbonise pipeline transported fuel have emerged worldwide, state regulators need to consider a few critical questions around availability, best use, and alternative fuel costs. Governments will also need to ensure there are larger workforces to install new equipment, perform efficiency upgrades, engineering and manufacturing new technical solutions, and expand electricity generation. Finally, governments and states must manage transition away from employment focused on diminishing fossil fuel use (eg engineering and installing gas distribution infrastructure, installing gas appliances, and delivering oil).

“Despite only covering 3 percent of the Earth's surface, cities contribute to 70 percent of global carbon emissions while consuming 78 percent of the world's primary energy, of which we waste 67.5 percent” said Cityzenith CEO Michael Jansen. Cityzenith is the developer of software platform SmartWorldOS which can create virtual replicas of buildings and urban areas to track, manage and optimise carbon emissions and minimise environmental damage. Jansen believes such tech will be essential for regulatory bodies to ensure carbon emissions are curbed and can work hand in hand with RMI's decarbonisation framework.

“Smart tech innovations such as SmartWorldOS can provide the essential interconnectivity required to reduce these percentages” said Mr Jansen. “Handling massive data streams harnessed to cutting-edge AI, we have delivered custom climate resilience applications to greenfield cities, real estate developments, and infrastructure projects. We know the issues and can help solve them for those who design, build, and manage cities.”

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Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI)


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