UN-HABITAT Conference Adopts Declaration on Green Building for Africa

14 May 2010:  The UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) held a conference on Promoting Green Building Rating in Africa from 4-6 May 2010, at its headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. The event brought together experts, practitioners and decision makers from 20 African countries and concluded with the adoption of a declaration to promote and foster green building practices in Africa.

In the "Nairobi Declaration on Green Building for Africa," participants underline the urgency to improve the environmental performance and energy efficiency in buildings in order to "reduce carbon dioxide emissions and help strengthen the ability of cities to adapt to climate change while improving the quality of the built environment." They express their commitment to "being the promoters of green practices" to reduce the carbon footprint of the construction sector in Africa. Participants further emphasize the importance of, inter alia: sourcing building materials and appropriate technology that are locally available; taking into account climatic conditions when designing buildings and making use of naturally available energies; using renewable energy; and developing and using a green building rating system.

In relation to the latter, participants recommend the development of models of Green Building Councils and the associated green rating systems catering for the various needs and specificities of individual countries and/or sub-regions. The Declaration also calls for the establishment of an African Network of Green Building Councils. [UN-HABITAT Press Release] [Conference Green Building] [Declaration on Green Building]