By 2050 an additional 2.5billion people will be living in towns and cities, and nearly 50% of those new urban dwellers are projected to be in the Commonwealth, leading to rapid urbanization in many member states. The cement and construction value chain alone accounts for approximately 25% of global CO2 emissions. Reaching net zero by 2050 will require the buildings and construction industry to decarbonize three times faster over the next 30 years versus the previous 30.
Rwanda’s efforts to decarbonize the built environment encompass the implementation of Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) and the Green Building Minimum Compliance System (GBMCS) to the integrated design of neighbourhoods and buildings in the Green City Kigali project (GCK).
Furthermore, at the recent CHOGM in Kigali, Rwanda, the Call to Action for Sustainable Urbanization across the Commonwealth, which was developed jointly by ACU (Association of Commonwealth Universities), CAA (Commonwealth Association of Architects), CAP (Commonwealth Association of Planners) and CLGF (Commonwealth Local Government Forum) in collaboration with the Rwandan Ministry of Infrastructure (MININFRA), the Rwandan Ministry of Local Government (MINALOC) and The Prince’s Foundation , led to the ‘Declaration on Sustainable Urbanization’, adopted by Heads of Government.
Hosted by the Rwandan Ministry of Environment, the aim of the session was to raise awareness of the ‘Call to Action for Sustainable Urbanization across the Commonwealth’ and consider practical actions to support sustainable cities and human settlements as exemplified by the GCK project. Exploring the combined potential of applying energy efficiency standards, alongside green building standards and an integrated approach to urban planning and building design that embraces the benefits of Nature-Based Solutions (NBS), tackles the reduction and sequestration of both embodied and operational carbons, while enabling future proofed climate-resilient urban development.
Published: 11 November 2023