CCBF Welcomes Mandatory Building Energy Codes

Climate Change Business Forum and WWF welcome Hong Kong's First Move to Set Up Mandatory Energy Efficiency Standards for Buildings Climate Change Business Forum and WWF welcome Hong Kong's First Move to Set Up Mandatory Energy Efficiency Standards for Buildings

(13 March 2008, Hong Kong) Climate Change Business Forum (CCBF) and WWF hail the Government's proposal to implement Mandatory Building Energy Codes (MBEC) to enhance the city's energy efficiency and help ease climate change, following the global trend.

"The introduction of mandatory codes is an important step forward in shifting away from Hong Kong's traditional, outdated, voluntary approach to environmental protection", said Liam Salter, Head of WWF's Climate Programme. "Mandatory minimum standards will cut greenhouse gas emissions and reduce energy bills to tenants. This is a win-win solution", Salter continued.

The proposed MBEC will replace an existing voluntary scheme requiring all new buildings to achieve minimum levels of energy efficiency in areas such as lighting, air conditioning and electric motors. It will bring Hong Kong's regulations in line with other countries such as Singapore, Australia, US, Europe and mainland China where such codes have already been put in place.

"The Climate Change Business Forum welcomes the mandatory implementation of these building energy codes, particularly if they are in line with Hong Kong's commitment as a signature to APEC energy intensity reduction of 25% by 2030. It is hoped that the problem of implementation and enforcement of these codes in existing builds will be overcome” said Ciara Shannon, Project Director of CCBF.

Deadline of the public consultation on the Government's proposal on MBEC is at the end of this month. Climate Change Business Forum (CCBF) and WWF today endorsed the Government's proposal to set MBEC at the seminar jointly organized by the two groups. Other representatives joined the seminar including the government, property sector and professional community, who introduced the proposed codes and evaluating their potential benefits.

Electricity accounts for about half of the total energy consumption at end-use level in Hong Kong, and 89% of which is consumed by buildings. Significant energy saving can be achieved by promoting energy efficiency in buildings.

The MBECs aim to improve energy efficiency and building energy performance for new buildings, as well as some existing buildings, and will bring the energy performance of buildings to the forefront of building market operators. The first 10 years of implementation is expected to save approximately 2.8 billion kilowatt-hour of energy and reduce 1.96 million tons of carbon dioxide emission.