Action Plan on SCP implementation in the housing and buildings sector in Bangladesh

Polluting air pipes of brick factories in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Sustainable consumption and production (SCP) plays an important role in the sustainable development of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh towards achieving their goal of becoming a middle-income country. The building sector is one of the most important sectors both in terms of economic contribution and potential for improvement on SCP. Housing is central to achieving Bangladesh’s social objectives, especially in reaction to the dynamic rural-to-urban migration, for example to the industrial centre of Dhaka. While energy consumption per capita in Bangladesh is generally low, the housing sector consumes a considerable amount of energy, particularly with regard to the country’s growing middle class. In addition, the building sector is an important contributor to material use and its environmental footprint, including pollution, is large. Therefore, the integration of SCP considerations by the Government of Bangladesh into policy-making processes is highly relevant, and especially the development and implementation of comprehensive and congruent policies setting the framework for decades to come. As such, Bangladesh’s 8th Development Plan for 2020-2030, which is currently under preparation, strongly integrates the direction set forth by the SDGs.

In this context, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) and the Inter-Ministerial Committee on SDG Implementation, who coordinate the monitoring and implementation progress towards the achievement of the SDGs, both play a leading role in the shift towards SCP. The objective of this SWITCH-Asia project is to provide guidance to the MoEFCC for integrating SCP implementation into the building and housing sectors by providing analysis, capacity building, and strengthening of networks on green building and housing in Bangladesh through the development and implementation of an Action Plan.

In collaboration with Prof. Md Ashikur Rahman Joarder, a Bangladeshi green building expert, adelphi is responsible for the overall guidance and strategy of the assignment’s activities relating to the development of the Action Plan. Specifically, an inception workshop will take place first, to raise awareness among the stakeholders on green buildings and policy options. Reports on a green buildings assessment and international good practices will then be published to provide an enhanced understanding among the government and stakeholders of the current status, gaps, constraints, and opportunities of green building policy adoption, including on finance, building construction and conversion, and research on green buildings with regards to SCP. In order to improve the technical knowledge of government institutions, stakeholders will be mapped and databased, and a Strategy and Action Plan on green buildings will provide recommendations for policy and financing. As the project also aims to strengthen the green building networks in Bangladesh, the formation of a technical committee of government and NGO institutions will be established and a technical inception meeting planned. The activities of the project will be carried out in close consultation with the SWITCH-Asia SCPF, MoEFCC, and other relevant government agencies and stakeholders. Finally, the Action Plan and policy recommendations enabling policy making processes on SCP in the building and housing sectors will be published and presented to all relevant stakeholders in a culminating event as the primary output of the assignment.