Twinkle twinkle 5 Green Star

08 December 2021

Just a little over two years ago, we unveiled a plan to slash carbon pollution from buildings and construction. This plan, the zero carbon roadmap for Aotearoa’s buildings, has since become the defining document outlining the milestones of progress that, together, we are making.

The milestones identified in the pollution-bashing plan ‘include an improved Building Code, significantly increased transparency around the energy efficiency of buildings, and a call for key government ministries and departments to lead a revolutionary shift in green buildings.’

Since the launch of the zero carbon roadmap, we’ve seen the announcement of the Building for Climate Change programme, a government commitment to make their own buildings more energy efficient, and recently announced insulation improvements to the Building Code.

Never before have we seen such a fundamental shift in our buildings. The government could go further, and we have been telling them that, but the overwhelming direction is one to be applauded.

And, on top of all this, government have now promised to build their own buildings to at least 5 Green Star, and ‘ensure Government buildings achieve a level of excellence in climate-friendly design and construction’.

This is a great announcement for New Zealanders, for the building industry, and for efforts to slash climate change pollution.

Buildings make up around one-fifth of New Zealand’s carbon emissions, and the government and public sector are the largest owner and occupier of buildings in the country – making this a hugely significant shift that could be a tipping point transforming the entire industry.

Achievements like this happen when we work together, collaboratively, for better buildings. Thank you especially to the dozens of organisations that joined together to call on our elected politicians to keep their promises of building to Green Star by signing this letter. Thank you also to the Green Star Advisory Committee for all their input on Green Star over the year.

Have a great Christmas, and the team and I are looking forward to working with you and celebrating even greater progress for green, healthy homes and buildings in 2022.

Meri Kirihimete


PS We're working on upgrading Green Star right now, so it reduces carbon from buildings and construction even more than it already does, with a particular focus on embodied carbon. We'd really welcome your feedback, so do please take part in our consultation