Crusade for Greening

The 3-day Green Building Congress 2019 saw over 100 companies showcasing their green building products and technologies

The 17th edition of the CII-IGBC Green Building Congress 2019 was inaugurated by Her Excellency Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan, Governor of Telangana. She underlined the need and importance of conserving the environment and cultivating a mindset of responsible and sustainable development: "Make green a way of life and appreciate the bounty of nature. Due to population explosion and uncontrolled development, natural resources are exploited unsustainably. It is in the nature and traditions of our country that we save and worship our trees, and we need to hold firm to these principles of conservation of nature."

Launch of GH

"Raj Bhavan has implemented several green building measures such as net metering, energy efficient lighting, rainwater harvesting, solar power, and a policy of no single-use plastics. More than out of any compulsion from governments, we should all contribute to greening our environment and buildings simply out of our own love for nature. To make that possible, we need to cultivate a love and appreciation for healthy and green environment, especially among the younger generations of the country," she added.

The Green Building Congress 2019 was held from 26-28 September at HICC, Hyderabad, with Government of Telangana as the Partner State. The three-day event featured an international conference and an exhibition where over 100 companies showcased their green building products and technologies. Conferences were held on GreenPro, Green Rail, green hotels and resorts, besides training programs on green buildings, on IGBC project awards, and on advancing Net Zero.

Jamshyd N Godrej, Chairman, CII Godrej GBC, underlined the importance of conservation of water, in his address. "We need to make water conservation and water recycling a top priority in all kinds of development, whether it is manufacturing or construction of buildings. We also need to work on reaching net zero carbon emissions in all industries, as our oceans have already crossed the limit of carbon absorption, and have hence started heating up," he said.

V Suresh, Chairman, IGBC, spoke about how a small movement for green buildings started by IGBC a few years ago has now grown into a fast-growing national movement, with more than 5,400 green building projects, amounting to over 7 billion sqft. of space, adopting IGBC green building rating systems, and that IGBC is looking forward to work more closely with the Government of Telangana in further accelerating the green building movement in the State.

The IGBC National Architectural Design Competition award was given to students of Anna University, Chennai, and students of VIT’s PVP College of Architecture, Pune. A publication titled ‘The Path of Green’, authored by Late Dr Prem C Jain, Past Chairman, IGBC, was released. A delegation of more than 20 representatives of the Taiwan Green Building Council participated in the event.

Vemula Prashanth Reddy, Hon’ble Minister for Roads & Buildings, Legislative Affairs and Housing, Government of Telangana, underlined that the Government of Telangana is making a determined effort in transforming Telangana into a holistically sustainable State, and invited IGBC to partner with the Government in its green and sustainable initiatives.

Somesh Kumar, IAS, Special Chief Secretary, Revenue, Registration, Stamps & Excise, and Chairperson, TSRERA, Government of Telangana, called for creating more awareness on green building concepts. He also said that the Haritha Haram initiative, launched under the visionary leadership of the Hon’ble Chief Minister, has now been institutionalized, and the Government has mandated Municipalities and Gram Panchayats to allocate 10% of their Budget for promoting the Haritha Haram campaign.

The day was marked by the launch of IGBC’s green homes rating version 3.0 which is designed to facilitate projects to incorporate green design concepts right at the design stage.

Three schools – Chikatya Primary School, Dang district, Gujarat; Chettinad Hari Shree Vidyalayam, and Mukteswarapuram Zilla Parishad were recognised for their greening initiatives and were awarded a cash prize of Rs. 4 lakh each for implementing green building ideas. The ‘Green Your School’ programme is supported by Carrier and implemented by IGBC.

A MoU was signed by Navin Mittal, IAS, Commissioner, Department of Technical Education, Government of Telangana and V Suresh, Chairman, IGBC, with a focus on exploring courses on green building concepts & technologies in architectural, planning and engineering education and facilitate launching of IGBC Student Chapters across Telangana and prepare the next generation for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 2030.

CII also signed an MoU with Thailand Environment Institute to mutually recognise the Ecolabels of India (GreenPro) with minimal additional inspection. This MoU is part of CII’s ongoing efforts to increase market and industry cooperation between India and its neighbouring countries. CII, with the support of stakeholders, offers GreenPro certification system that guides manufacturers to position their products as green and eco-friendly. As on date, CII has awarded GreenPro certification to over 800 products, covering the green building sector.

GBC 2019

Dr R Sobha, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) and Head of Forest Force (HoFF), Government of Telangana, congratulated all manufacturers who have been awarded the GreenPro ecolabel and for reducing their carbon footprint.

ParasuRaman R, Chairman, Green Products & Services Council, and Founding Chairman, IGBC, underlined that GreenPro goes beyond regulations and enables companies to develop their products that are ready to meet future government regulations. "Soon, GreenPro eco-labelling will cover upto 95% of the materials that go into the construction of buildings," he said.

C Shekhar Reddy, Chairman, IGBC Hyderabad, said that the GreenPro ecolabel is set to become a must for customers. "Buyers will insist on GreenPro certification and green building ratings in the near future. Already, we can see that public awareness about these parameters of sustainable and responsible development is on the rise," he said.

During the session, 16 companies were awarded the GreenPro ecolabel and a new website for GreenPro was launched. The website features an online directory of products, materials and technologies that reduce building construction impact on the environment.

Global ecolabeling organisations from Taiwan, Australia and Thailand shared their experiences and success stories on the topic ‘Unlocking market potential in Asia Pacific and Middle East through Eco-labelling’.

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