Japan and nations in Europe and North America can help cut greenhouse gas emissions in the building industry by 40 percent to 70 percent, a chemicals industry lobby group said.
Governments should broaden incentives for technologies such as wall insulation materials and reflective roof coatings to decrease emissions instead of waiting for climate negotiations that are progressing “very very slowly,” said Russell Mills, vice chairman of the energy and climate leadership group at the International Council of Chemical Associations.
“Between now and 2050 you could save about 600 million tons of CO2 equivalent a year,” Mills, who is also a global director of energy and climate change policy at Dow Chemical Co. (DOW:US), told reporters today in a telephone briefing. “The savings potential in the buildings sector is huge and something governments can control.”
While the industry is aware that “we also have to tackle our own footprint,” and eventually reduce emissions faster than the business-as-usual scenario, it has already cut back consumption, Mills said.
Providing energy and building efficiency technologies to poorer nations “is a challenge we should take up in ICCA,” which for the first time will be an official observer to the climate negotiations that start in Qatar this month, Mills said.
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