The Victorian Building Authority (VBA) is committed to developing and implementing sustainability initiatives targeting building design, construction and use. The VBA is working closely with the building industry to develop a common approach to progressively improving the sustainability of our built environment.
Sustainability in the built environment involves promoting energy and water efficient buildings and minimizing waste generated during building construction, operation and demolition. Sustainability encompasses the indoor environmental quality of our homes, schools, offices, hospitals and shopping centres.
Buildings have significant environmental impacts over their life cycle: during construction, operation and demolition. Most important of these impacts are energy consumption [and related greenhouse emissions], water use and waste generation.
For example, it has been estimated that the operation of Australia's residential and commercial buildings contributes 20 – 30% of national greenhouse gas emissions. So improving the design and operation of buildings must be a key step in reducing these emissions and tackling the issue of climate change.
As a consequence sustainability is a fundamental goal of the National Construction Code.