Press Releases

SOM Joins UK Green Building Council to Define Net Zero Carbon Buildings

In partnership with the UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), SOM is working to propose a framework definition for net zero carbon buildings in the UK, and is soliciting feedback from industry professionals in the process. The initiative stems from the UKGBC's Advancing Net Zero program. 

To develop a framework definition of net zero carbon buildings in line with the Paris Climate Agreement, the UKGBC established a Net Zero Carbon Buildings Task Group. The Task Group brings together expert representatives from 37 businesses across the built environment value chain, and is supported by 13 industry trade associations, professional institutions, and nonprofit organizations. Its aim is to build consensus within the construction and real estate sectors about the outcomes needed to achieve net zero carbon buildings; to provide a consistent approach for building design and management; and to inform the future development of voluntary initiatives and local and national policy.

On February 4th, the Task Group published its initial framework proposal in a paper titled "Consultation on a Definition for Net Zero Carbon Buildings in the UK." The proposal is open for feedback through March 1st, after which the group will create a final framework definition.

Associate Mina Hasman, SOM's representative on the Task Group, notes the urgency of the initiative. “Global challenges exacerbated by climate change are growing at exponential rates. Responsible for one third of the global carbon emissions, the building industry is in urgent need of proactive measures and breakthrough solutions to address these unprecedented and complex problems. Bringing together a broad range of industry expertise, the UKGBC’s Net Zero Carbon Buildings Task Group aims to move the debate beyond energy, and, with practical guidance, address the wider life-cycle environmental impacts of buildings.”

Professionals in the construction and real estate industries are urged to submit feedback. The consultation paper is available on the UKGBC website and responses can be submitted online here. The deadline for comments is Friday, March 1st, 2019.

About Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) LLP Europe

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (Europe) LLP (SOM) is one of the leading architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firms in the world. Since its founding more than 80 years ago, SOM has earned a reputation for design excellence with a portfolio that includes some of the most important architectural accomplishments of the 20th and 21st centuries, and has been a leader in the research and development of specialized technologies, new processes and innovative ideas, many of which have had a palpable and lasting impact on the design profession and the physical environment. The firm’s longstanding leadership in design and building technology has been honored with nearly 2,000 awards for quality, innovation, and management. The American Institute of Architects has recognized SOM twice with its highest honor, the Architecture Firm Award—in 1962 and again in 1996. The firm maintains offices in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Dubai, and Mumbai.

About the Net Zero Carbon Buildings Task Group

Facilitated by UKGBC as part of its Advancing Net Zero programme, the Task Group aims to drive the transition to a net zero carbon built environment. UKGBC’s Advancing Net Zero programme forms part of a global campaign led by the World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) which is calling for all buildings to be net zero carbon by 2050, and all new buildings to achieve this by 2030.


UKGBC is an industry-led network with a mission to radically improve the sustainability of the built environment.

A charity with over 400-member organisations spanning the entire value chain, it represents the voice of the industry’s current and future leaders who are striving for transformational change.

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