Hong Kong Green Building Council Established to Drive Market Transformation towards a Sustainable Built Environment

Concerted industry effort with world-class assessment standard combines with public sector support for a low-carbon city with green buildings

(20th November 2009, Hong Kong) The Hong Kong Green Building Council (HKGBC) Inaugural Ceremony cum Conference today marked the official establishment of the industry’s overarching organisation in transforming the market to achieving a more sustainable built environment in Hong Kong.

The Honourable Mr. John Tsang Chun-wah, JP, Financial Secretary, and the Honourable Mrs. Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor, JP, Secretary for Development of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Dr Andrew Chan, Chairman, HKGBC, along with heads of the four founding members of HKGBC officiated the inauguration today, signifying the coming together of the industry in promoting green building practices in Hong Kong.

"The establishment of HKGBC marks a substantial step forward for the building-related industries towards a quality and sustainable built environment for Hong Kong," said Dr Andrew Chan. "Building-related activities account for 90 percent of electricity consumption and 64 percent of Carbon Dioxide emission in Hong Kong. It is imperative for the industry to look into green practices throughout the complete building life cycle starting from conception, design, construction, management and maintenance, to retrofitting, demolition and reuse, which is why the HKGBC is set up."

HKGBC's mission is to lead the market transformation to a sustainable built environment in Hong Kong by guiding the development of industry standards, best practices, education, and research in green buildings.

Upon inauguration, HKGBC is responsible for reaching out to the public and industry on how their actions can contribute to positive change in the built environment. HKGBC will also promote performance rating standards, such as BEAM, the Building Environment Assessment Method, to benchmark and enhance the performance of Hong Kong’s built environment. In order to promote understanding, HKGBC is tasked to facilitate ongoing educational outreach and research including training, seminars and focused area studies, in partnership with different industry stakeholders.

BEAM Plus, the latest revision of the assessment method, was also revealed in today’s Conference by the HKGBC. Complementing the existing BEAM standard, BEAM Plus features added criteria concerning air ventilation and green maintenance practices specific to the environment of Hong Kong.

"Urban density and sub-tropical climate epitomise the uniqueness of Hong Kong’s building environment, which calls for a performance rating standard that caters to local specifics," added Dr Chan. “With a tool like BEAM Plus and the concerted effort by HKGBC we are confident in making Hong Kong an exemplar of highly dense sub-tropical city with a sustainable built environment."

HKGBC is an independent and member-based entity, incorporated as a non-profit company limited responsible for promoting green building practices in Hong Kong. Between the four founding members, a wide representation of different stakeholders is included in the HKGBC, giving a wide perspective, and the combined experience from which to operate. HKGBC provides a forum to steer the green building industry, while taking reference from the market and international standards, developments, and other green building councils around the world.

About the HKGBC

The Hong Kong Green Building Council (HKGBC) is a non-profit, member led organisation established in 2009 with the vision to aspire for quality and sustainability at every stage of the building life cycle and embrace these principles as a mark of excellence. The Founding Members of HKGBC include the Construction Industry Council, Business Environment Council, the BEAM Society and the Professional Green Building Council. Its mission is to lead the market transformation to a sustainable built environment in Hong Kong by guiding the development of industry standards, best practices, education, and research in green building.