Acting together, we can be powerful

21 April 2020

If there’s one lesson that has been reinforced in my mind over the last couple of weeks, it’s that acting together, to protect the health of others, we can be extremely powerful. It’s both empowering and emotional to see New Zealanders joining together at this time.

The Green Building Council is an alliance, a team, made up of all of us who want our buildings and homes to be healthier, better, less polluting places in which Kiwis thrive. Our mission feels perhaps even more important now, as we begin a journey to what will be a new Aotearoa. It’s up to us to help define and shape what this looks like.

With that at the front of our minds, we’ve been cracking on with achieving our vision and working together with you for healthier, more sustainable buildings and homes. We’ve been doing this across all our work areas, including our courses and training, our advocacy and your green building certification tools.

Firstly, we’ve shifted all our training courses online and increased our ever popular webinars. You can see these right here with more training to rollout for our tools in the coming weeks and months.

Secondly, we’ve been working tirelessly on a green recovery. We’ve initiated discussions with and are receiving positive feedback from ministers, MPs, and other influencers to ensure that the Government’s economic stimulus packages, including shovel-ready projects, will provide our sector with a leap forward towards zero carbon, healthier buildings and homes, while also creating thousands of new green collar jobs in building and construction. This includes having meetings with Ministers. We know this is important to our members, so do please let me know of any specific suggestions you’d like to discuss.

Thirdly, we are working with other associations including the Construction Industry Council, Construction Sector Accord, Better Futures Forum, Sustainable Business Network, Sustainable Business Council and others to ensure a coordinated response.  

Fourthly, we’ve continued to receive registrations for green building certifications over the last few weeks during the lockdown, which is hugely encouraging. We know how important flexibility is right now with the use of tools such as Green Star and Homestar, so do please contact us with any questions specific to your projects or products. We’re making significant adaptations for you. We’re happy to talk about how we can adapt the tools for individual project requirements for Green Star, we’ve published guidance on flexibility for NABERSNZ during COVID and we’re offering a three month holiday on HomeFit certification fees to help our assessors. Plus, we’re enabling volume certification on Homestar.

Like you, we are keenly aware of the impact of the current lockdown and welcome the move to Level 3. And like you, we trust that all Kiwis will continue to value and respect the response so far so that we can all get back to what we do best and thrive!

Please do contact me or a member of the NZGBC team if you’d like more information on the above or our next steps towards a green recovery.

Kia kaha, noho ora mai,

Andrew Eagles, CEO