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Mainstreaming building energy efficiency codes in developing countries: global experiences and lessons from early adopters


This report summarizes the findings of an extensive literature survey of the experiences of implementing building energy efficiency codes in developed countries.

It also includes case studies of four developing countries—China, Egypt, India, and Mexico—and the state of California in the United States of America. It aims to inform both the World Bank Group and its client countries about global best practices and emerging lessons from developing countries in the design and implementation of building energy efficiency codes (BEECs). The report also serves as a primer on the basic features of BEECs and the commonly adopted compliance and enforcement approaches.

The key challenges to improving compliance enforcement in developing countries include the level of government commitment to energy efficiency, the effectiveness of government oversight of the construction sector, the compliance capacity of domestic / local building supply chain, and the financing constraints. These challenges are surmountable in countries where economic growth is sustained and energy efficiency is pursued as a key element of national energy strategy.

Urbanization and growing wealth in developing countries portend a large increase in demand for modern energy services in residential, commercial, and public service buildings in the next two decades. Pursuing energy efficiency in buildings is vital to energy security in developing countries and is identified by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) as having the greatest potential for cost effective reduction of CO2 emissions by 2030 among all energy consuming sectors.

BEECs, together with energy efficiency standards for major appliances and equipment, are broadly recognized as necessary government interventions to overcome persistent market barriers to capturing the economic potential of energy efficiency gains in the residential, commercial, and public service sectors. Implementation of BEECs helps prevent costly energy wastes over the life cycles of buildings and energy systems in space heating,air conditioning, lighting, and other energy service requirements.

Read Mainstreaming building energy efficiency codes in developing countries: global experiences and lessons from early adopters.