Update from Andrew: Key moments from an amazing week!

25 November 2016

What an amazing week! Four key events took place:

International insights: Tai Lee Siang, Chair of the World Green Building Council, visited us. Lee Siang is well known internationally as a leader in green building and for his publications. We held a series of useful meetings with Lee Siang, including introducing him to executives from the Auckland property sector, and visiting local projects. Read an interview with Lee Siang.

10-year celebrations: we celebrated our wonderful history, thanked our tremendous members for making it happen and looked to the future at a great event on November 23. NZGBC has continued to grow and champion quality buildings, despite the Global Financial Crisis and many earthquakes. It was very special to see so many people celebrating these achievements and eager to do more.

Significant media: supported by our hard-working communications team, the press are increasingly informed and reporting about quality in buildings, as evidenced here and in the NZ Herald.

Groups are championing change: you may be aware of the Superhome Movement, a nationwide campaign for better building. We are also seeing more builders and home developers focusing on healthy, energy-efficient homes, such as Green Homes NZ Ltd.

New groups continue to emerge, such as the recently formed Sustainable Homes Otago (SHO). SHO-Central Otago aims to support Homestar to evaluate new and existing homes in the region, with the intention of raising expectations of how a residence can perform while using fewer resources. The group is concerned that minimum building code does not suit the climatic demands – from frosts to harsh sun – of this alpine region.

SHO-Central Otago will use the varied expertise of professionals in the building industry in Queenstown, Wanaka and the surrounding area, who have a specialty or interest in energy-efficient, sustainable practice. Members include representatives from Evolution (a division of Rilean Construction), eZed, Mark Gray Architect, QUBE, and a recently elected Otago Regional Council representative, Maggie Lawton.

SHO-Central Otago spokesperson Annabelle Numaguchi says, “We hope to see better building practices become standard here and this rating system strongly encourages this by offering a way of comparing homes based on performance, not just aesthetics.”

Queenstown Lakes District Council has proposed initiatives to promote Homestar by offering incentives for a residence that achieves a 6 Homestar rating. The organisation may provide a model for other regions to follow, adding momentum to Homestar's adoption across New Zealand.

Sometimes you have to reflect on how lucky you are. I'm really grateful this week to be celebrating all the above; meeting inspiring people, creating change and being supported by tremendous groups around the county. I hope this finds you well, and gives you the same sense of excitement about the future that we have. If you need any more information, want to ask a question or get in touch, please do.

All the best for a great summer,


Want to be part of the movement towards creating quality, sustainable buildings and communities? Don’t wait another 10 years – join us now!