Institute Advocacy Leads to National Agreement on Measuring Carbon Emissions in Commercial Construction

The Institute and Australia had a fabulous advocacy win in June with the ACT Government’s Minister for Sustainable Building and Construction, Rebecca Vassarotti, announcing that she had secured an agreement of Australian building ministers to establish a nationally consistent approach to measuring carbon emissions in the commercial construction sector.

Minister Vassarotti thanked the Australian Institute of Architects for bringing this issue to her attention and championing Australia’s pathway to net zero carbon in our buildings.

The 2025 National Construction Code will now feature a nationally consistent way of measuring carbon in construction using the National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS).

“Across Australia, new buildings represent 10 per cent of overall carbon emissions. Most of these emissions come from the materials, transport and construction associated with new buildings. Currently, there is no national standard for measuring what we call ‘embodied carbon’, that is, the emissions that come from building materials, transport, construction, repairs, and renovations.”

A consistent approach to measurement provides the vehicle for creating tools to optimise our effectiveness and should allow us to be comparative and demonstrate effective, efficient and affordable progressively lower carbon outcomes. Importantly this work will inform a growing evidence base to communicate the value of Architecture and Architects.

Thank you to all of those who have contributed to this critical piece of advocacy across the Institute. Special thank you to the Australian Institute of Architects’ National Climate Action and Sustainability Committee (NCASC) for your thought leadership and collaboration with industry partners.

Sandy Point House | Kennedy Nolan | Photographer: Derek Swalwell

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