India has been ranked third after Canada and China in green buildings, according to a new report that highlights countries outside the US that are making significant strides in sustainable building design.
In its second annual report US Green Building Council said Canada ranks number one on the list as the largest user of LEED, the world’s most widely used and recognised green building rating system outside of the US with 26.63 million gross square meters (GSM) of LEED space.
China (21.97 million GSM), India (13.24 million GSM) and Brazil (5.22 million GSM), three of the four BRIC economies, finished second through fourth on this year’s list, respectively.
These three countries currently represent more than 33 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, with China and India representing the largest source of projected growth in global emissions in the coming decades, USGBC said in a statement.
South Korea (4.81 million GSM) and Taiwan (3.84 million GSM) join China in providing a strong East Asian contingent to the 2015 rankings.
“Having two of the original tiger economies join China, India and Brazil on this year’s list demonstrates that LEED is taking hold in some of the world’s fastest growing economies, and that green buildings have enormous strategic value in terms of controlling emissions in countries that many climate watchers have noted hold the key to staving off the worst impacts of climate change,” it said.
Germany (4.01 million GSM) and Sweden (2.54 million GSM) represent Europe on this list, with Germany finishing sixth and Sweden making the list for the first time in 10th place.
Both nations are routinely cited for their innovation and leadership in international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Middle Eastern countries, United Arab Emirates (3.13 million GSM) and Turkey (2.95 million GSM) have both had strong green building years.
The UAE increased its total amount of LEED-certified space by 72 per cent over last year, and climbed from ninth place overall in 2014 to eighth overall in 2015.
Turkey made the Top 10 list for the first time in the nation’s history, finishing ninth overall, the report said.
“International demand has grown steadily for tools supporting sustainable economic growth, and it has become increasingly clear that we are reaching a tipping point around environmental sustainability. It is now impossible to view social and economic development as separate issues from a robust sustainability agenda,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC.
“The global success of LEED in these countries is a sign that international business leaders and policy makers recognize that a commitment to transforming the built environment is crucial to addressing major environmental challenges. The countries on this list are pushing this commitment forward,” he said.