Categories: Sustainability Strategies, Case Studies
Hailed as a clarion call to Government on the significant potential of additional energy efficiency measures in the building sector, The Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council (ASBEC) Climate Change Task Group has released The Second Plank Update Report 2010.
The report updates the findings from ASBEC’s The Second Plank Report: Building a Low Carbon Economy with Energy Efficient Buildings, which was released in September 2008.
Download the Second Plank Update Report
The update report provides an economic analysis of the potential role the building sector can play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) through additional energy efficiency measures.
It takes into account the Australian Government’s Renewable Energy Target (RET), policy measures and programs, and forecasts energy efficiency savings under both a Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) and a non-CPRS scenario.
Importantly, the report shows that under both scenarios there are significant additional GHG savings that can be made.
The key findings in the report include:
Under a CPRS, additional energy efficiency measures would achieve a further reduction of 33.2 megatonnes of emissions.
In the absence of a CPRS, additional energy efficiency measures would realise a reduction of 46.7 megatonnes of emissions. (This is a larger figure because the CPRS would achieve some of the energy efficiency potential abatement). This figure represents a reduction of approximately 5.5% of Australia’s total GHG.
The report highlights the impediments and market failures that prevent the building sector from reaching its full GHG abatement potential, including the funding gap problem – that is, the long period between initial investment in energy efficiency measures and the realisation of benefits in terms of energy savings and other gains.
The report’s findings further support the Task Group’s call for Accelerated Green Depreciation as a key initiative to overcome barriers to the building sector achieving its full abatement potential.
The report is being released today at the Built Environment Meets Parliament (BEMP) summit in Canberra, an annual conversation between built environment representatives and Parliamentarians.
We acknowledge the energy efficiency measures the Australian government has initiated to date, however our updated second plank report clearly demonstrates Australia can reap further benefits from the contribution the building sector can make to emissions abatement”, said David Parken, Chair of the ASBEC Climate Change Task Group (and CEO of the Australian Institute of Architects).
“The delay of the CPRS should now bring energy efficiency measures to the top of the climate change agenda in what clearly is a real issue for all Australians”
“Driving energy efficiency in the buildings sector will reduce the future costs of meeting emissions abatement targets when an emissions trading scheme or carbon price is eventually introduced, because it will bring forward reductions in emissions and these reduce the scale of the task in future years” said ASBEC President Tom Roper.
The task group maintains its call for high priority policy approaches to achieve the building sector’s GHG abatement potential, including:
Accelerated green depreciation
A national white certificate scheme
Public funding for building retrofit
The building sector is comprised of residential and commercial buildings, and through its operational energy, accounts for around 19 per cent of total energy consumption in Australia, and around 24 per cent of Australia’s total GHG emissions.
The Second Plank Update Report was funded by the Australian Institute of Architects, the Green Building Council of Australia, the Property Council of Australia, Consult Australia, the Facility Management Association of Australia and Szencorp.