Green building takes off worldwide
by David Masters
September 26, 2008
A worldwide study of the construction industry has found that businesses in the sector expect more than 60% of their projects to be focused on green building within the next five years.
Almost a third of respondents in the McGraw Hill Construction Analytics survey said over 10% of their domestic projects are already environmentally friendly.
According to McGraw Hill, the survey is the first study of its kind to investigate green building trends on a global scale.
A 50-page report of the findings was written up in partnership with the World Green Building Council.
Highlights of the report’s findings were presented last week at the McGraw-Hill Construction 2008 Green Building and Energy Efficiency International Conference in Shanghai’s World Finance Centre.
Eighty-six percent of firms surveyed said they expect rapid or steady growth in revenues from green building projects.
Asia was found to be the fastest growing region for the green building sector, with 73% of the construction industry expecting to be dedicated entirely to green projects by 2013.
Thirty-six percent of Asian construction firms are already dedicated to green projects.
Solar power was the most popular form of renewable energy, with 52% of construction professionals already using solar power, a figure expected to increase to 76% in the next five years.
Wind power, meanwhile, has the strongest predicted growth, with expected take up of 57% in 2013 compared to 20% today.
Geothermal is expected to be another major growth area, with usage expected to double over the next five years.
Ethical concerns are strong in the construction industry, with the top reason for switching to green construction being that it is the ‘right thing to do’.
In Africa, supporting the domestic economy was a big motivator, whilst in Asia environmental regulations was the strongest driver.
Considering the environment has also become a major factor for consumers, with another McGraw Hill study finding that environmental concerns are in the top three reasons for purchasing a green home, alongside lower energy costs and health benefits for home-owners.
Harvey M. Bernstein, McGraw Hill’s vice president of industry analytics, said the studies revealed that green building is now a global movement.
He added that green building is becoming more visible an expanding widely.
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