Climate change solutions think tank Beyond Zero Emissions (BZE) is launching a new research initiative to investigate pathways to a zero emissions buildings sector. Following on from their Banksia award-winning Zero Carbon Australia Stationary Energy Plan released in partnership with the University of Melbourne last year, the group has turned its attention to the built environment.

‘Australia’s building sector contributes around 23 per cent of the national carbon footprint,’ says Matthew Wright, BZE’s Executive Director. ‘It presents a fantastic opportunity to achieve sizable carbon reductions.’

The Zero Carbon Australia Buildings Plan seeks to quantify the carbon reductions that existing buildings can achieve through retrofitting, and that new buildings can achieve through cutting-edge sustainable design. It will also quantify the maximum feasible contribution from distributed onsite renewable electricity generation.

The new research task will operate with well-defined parameters: to decarbonise the sector in 10 years using only commercially available technologies and practices. Beyond Zero Emissions are growing a reputation for innovative research practices. Online wikis and group meeting are used to facilitate collaboration.

‘The great strength of our Stationary Energy Plan is the pro bono research provided by experts working in the sector,’ says Wright. ‘We want to do the same thing with the Buildings Plan. We’re inviting people from across the built environment professions to get involved and help us write the most rigorous research on transforming the Australian building sector.’

Work on this mammoth research initiative is now underway, but there is a long road ahead. If you are interested in offering your expertise on a pro bono basis visit the BZE website,


Environmental Design Guide

This article was first published on Beyond Zero Emissions

Beyond Zero Emissions Inc. is a not-for-profit, volunteer run organisation. Our core goal is to develop blueprints for the implementation of climate change solutions that will rapidly reduce emissions and give our society and global ecosystems a chance of surviving into the future. We also run broad-based education campaigns based on this research.

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