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All built environment initiatives announced at COP27

Read the full list of initiatives that are collectively driving deep collaboration and triggering a positive systemic transformation in the built environment.

Building To COP Coalition member announcements:


  • Buildings Breakthrough: government-level action

At COP26, the Breakthrough Agenda was launched, aiming to strengthen international collaboration on the decarbonisation of high-emitting sectors (Transport, Power, Hydrogen, Steel, Agriculture). At COP27, the governments of France and the Kingdom of Morocco re-confirmed their leadership of a Buildings Breakthrough under the existing Agenda with the support of the UNEP-hosted GlobalABC. The Breakthrough, which makes the call that  ‘Near zero emissions and resilient buildings are the new normal by 2030’ welcomes the support of Armenia, Austria, Canada, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Mauritania, Mongolia, Morocco, The Netherlands, Norway, Senegal, Türkiye, and the UK. These countries, with France and the Kingdom of Morocco, collectively invited all other countries to join this rallying point.

  • WorldGBC Guide to Climate Resilience and Adaptation in the Built Environment

Launched ahead of COP27 in collaboration with the UN High Level Climate Champions and C40 Cities, the WorldGBC Guide to Climate Resilience and Adaptation in the Built Environment provides actionable principles for implementing climate resilience and adaptation strategies across the built environment value chain.

  • Roof Over Our Heads

This campaign, launched at COP27, addresses the lack of access to safe and decent houses for the most vulnerable communities, with the goal of improving the lives of 2 billion climate vulnerable people living in informal settlements by 2050. Roof Over Our Heads is a partnership between The Society for Promotion of Area Resource Centres (SPARC), Slum Dwellers International (SDI), Global Resilience Partnership, and a number of supporting organisations. The campaign is in collaboration with the UN High Level Climate Champions.

  • Cities Race to Resilience

Signatories to the Cities Race to Resilience have more than doubled since 2021, commiting to clear, evidence-based climate actions for accelerating adaptation and resilience.

  • Summary for Urban Policy Makers

Launched at COP27, The summary turns the IPCC’s AR6 report into actionable policy guides for city and urban policy makers to decarbonise and build the resilience of urban environments.  Led by Resilience Rising and the IPCC’s Co-Authors, the SUP reports [launched at COP26] are a result of collaborative knowledge co-creation over one year and through a series of regional and global convenings held across the world. Consolidated summary here.


  • 2030 Built Environment Breakthrough Outcome

The UN High Level Climate Champions built on the 2030 Breakthrough Outcome for the built environment, by launching a series of near-term way-point actions needed across all levers for systems change from supply to demand to policy implementation.

  • 2022 Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction

The report is a flagship publication of the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction (GlobalABC) and provides an annual snapshot on the progress of the buildings and construction sector globally. This year’s report found that emissions and energy demand have increased beyond the pre-pandemic peak. The sector is not on track to achieve decarbonisation by 2050 despite a substantial increase in investment and in the number of countries including buildings as part of their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). 

The report found in Africa that: 

  • An estimated 70% of the building stock expected to exist in 2040 has yet to be built.
  • Building and construction sector is worth USD 5.4 billion and is expected to grow at a rate of 6.4% by 2024.
  • Traditional sustainable construction and building practices are a cornerstone of African cultural heritage; used more widely they can make for more affordable housing that is adaptable to climate conditions. 
  • The Race to Zero continues

The percentage of construction companies, by revenue, that have joined the Race to Zero has doubled since COP26. Contractors have committed to halving their emissions by 2030 at the very latest, across all scopes. The construction sector organisations now committed to Race to Zero totals over $245 billion (USD) in revenue.  

  • Business of Climate Recovery: Accelerating Accountability, Ambition & Action

This agenda, released by WBCSD, sets out interventions for accelerating the global decarbonisation of business, supporting business leaders, in close collaboration with governments, to sharpen accountability, raise ambition, and deliver action at speed and scale. Two priority action areas for this initiative are:

  • Developing national and sub-national decarbonisation and resilience
  • roadmaps to address energy performance and whole lifecycle emissions for new and old buildings.
  • Placing whole life carbon at the centre of decarbonisation strategies and decisions.
  • C40 Cities Clean Construction

Cities are driving transformational actions to cut emissions and pollution from the construction sector, shift the market and lead by example with municipal procurement. In the lead up to COP27 C40 Cities Clean Construction announced:

  • The cities of London and Milan joined C40’s Clean Construction Accelerator – endorsed by BWI, the global construction workers union, committing specific actions to support the global built environment sector in halving embodied emissions by 2030 and generating green jobs.
  • Cities leadership and C40’s Clean Construction programme were recognised as supporting mechanisms to the new Buy Clean Initiative unveiled by the Biden/Harris administration in the White House Factsheet..
  • IKEA Retail (Ingka Group) joined C40’s Clean Construction Action Coalition, launched last year at COP26 in Glasgow, to halve embodied emissions from the global built environment by 2030. 



  • Paris Aligned Asset Owners

The Paris Aligned Asset Owners initiative (PAAO) coordinated by AIGCC, Ceres, IGCC and IIGCC, is an international group of 57 asset owners representing over $3.3 trillion assets under management (AUM) committed to supporting the goal of net zero greenhouse gas emission by 2050 or sooner, has published its first Progress Report. The report showcases innovation and best practice amongst asset owners for turning net zero commitments into action and the steps being taken to reach their net zero goals.

  • Asset Managers in the Race to Zero

Less than two years since the initiative launched, the total number of asset managers committing to net zero through the Net Zero Asset Managers (NZAM) initiative has increased to 291, representing $66 trillion (AUM). Collectively signatories have now committed on average 39% of assets to net zero by 2050, with all NZAM signatories committing to ratchet up with a view to reaching 100%.

Marking an Opportunity for Africa:

  • Africa Manifesto for Sustainable Cities and the Built Environment

The Africa Manifesto was launched ahead of COP27, articulating policies related to energy, water, materials, finance and infrastructure that African business leaders, city and government officials must support to deliver the ‘Africa We Want’: a net zero carbon, healthy, resilient, equitable, socially and economically inclusive built environment for everyone, everywhere. The Manifesto is a collaborative piece of work developed with 15 African Green Building Councils (GBCs), WorldGBC and the BuildingToCOP Coalition partners (High Level Climate Champions, We Mean Business, C40 Cities). 

  • African Alliance for Sustainable Cities and Built Environments

WorldGBC announced the launch of the c at COP27. Cities and businesses in Africa need to commit to drastically reducing their emissions before 2050, but a net zero transition cannot happen without the mobilisation of the workforce of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). The Alliance will serve as a regional platform to enable collaboration and knowledge sharing for the built environment across the continent.


Other Built Environment COP27 Announcements