We work where the tons are

GBPN works to eliminate GHG emissions from the buildings sector by engaging in the markets that offer the largest mitigation opportunities.

Working where we have the most impact

We determine where to engage by monitoring where the achievable tons of abatement potential are greatest, and what the near-term policy reform opportunities are. Our priority is to avoid catastrophic increases in buildings sector emissions so that global warming stays well below 2oC.

In 2020 the construction and operation of the buildings sector contributed around 11.7Gt COof GHG emissions¹. Five key markets; China, USA, EU, India, and ASEAN together contributed almost 60% of this total². In advanced economies such as the EU and USA, most of the emissions abatement opportunity comes from deep energy efficiency renovation of existing buildings, 50% of which will still be standing in 2050. However, the majority of new GHG emissions will come from emerging and developing economies which will contribute 80% of all new construction projected between now and 2050. Globally we add the equivalent of the surface area of Paris in new construction every week³. Most of the new demand is for housing.

Many of these economies have few or no building energy regulations, or policies that support decarbonisation, particularly for housing. Where policies are in place, implementation and accounting for their economic and health benefits remains a challenge. So, it is imperative that we engage now to establish the policies that avoid significant emissions growth by ensuring that new construction is net-zero emissions or as close to this as possible. That’s why GBPN has since 2019 been implementing our ‘Policy Strategy for Decarbonising Buildings in Asia’ with a particular focus on policies that can avoid GHG emissions from new housing in India and Indonesia.

Top Regions and Countries for Building Sector Emissions Abatement between 2020 and 2050


  1. Global Status Report on Buildings and Construction 2021 – Global ABC/UNEP
  2. GBPN – ‘Top 20’ Economies for Buildings Sector Emissions Reductions – Internal modelling 2020
  3. Net Zero by 2050: A Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector 2021 – IEA


GBPN runs innovative building policy reform programs in key regions around the world that aim to tackle the climate emergency. Stay up to date with our bi-monthly newsletter.


A specialist library of high quality tools and resources
to support smart policy reform


A specialist library of high quality tools and resources to support smart policy reform