Climate Leaders: Perspectives from Nigeria, South Africa and Shanghai [videos]
The 2015 WorldGBC Congress held in Hong Kong was a great opportunity for leaders in the green building movement to connect, strategize and share knowledge on some of the most compelling ways to improve the sustainability of the world’s built environment. As part of my ongoing Climate Leaders series, I got to sit down with fellow heads of Green Building Councils from around the globe and get their take on how their regions are uniquely positioned to transform the buildings market and address climate change on a worldwide scale.
Watch my conversations with leaders from the Nigerian Green Building Council, Singapore Green Building Council and Green Building Council of South Africa:
Chinwe Ohajuruka, Board of Directors, Green Building Council Nigeria; CEO, Comprehensive Design Services
Chinwe Ohajuruka is a LEED-, BREEAM- and Green Star-accredited architect with over 25 years of experience. She is also a board member of the Green Building Council Nigeria. With the largest economy and population among African nations, Nigeria is poised to lead the region in sustainability. Here, Ohajuruka discusses how the Nigerian Green Building Council has increased the relevancy of green building by addressing the social and economic priorities of Nigerians, as well as environmental concerns. She also speaks on the “Small but Mighty” housing initiative, which demonstrates how modular green housing can help address the nation’s affordable housing, power, water and sanitation challenges.
Tai Lee Siang, Honorary Advisor, Singapore Green Building Council; Board of Directors, WorldGBC
Tai Lee Siang, an award-winning architect and urban planner, is the immediate past president of the Singapore Green Building Council and a member of the Board of Directors of the WorldGBC. Founded in 2009, the Singapore Green Building Council was backed by both government and industry supporters, and quickly acquired established status in about two years. In this video, Siang talks about some of the measurable changes the Singapore Green Building Council has observed since its establishment, and how Singapore—a highly dense country with 5.5 million people—is on track to achieving its goal of greening 80 percent of its built area by 2030, including existing buildings. Tai also shares the opportunities he sees for Singapore to set an example for other highly populated, highly dense cities in the region.
Brian Wilkinson, CEO, Green Building Council South Africa
Brian Wilkinson is the CEO of Green Building Council South Africa, which was founded about eight years ago and is currently the only established green building council in Africa, meaning that it is fully operational and nationally positioned. Here, Wilkinson reflects on the support Green Building Council South Africa received from the global network of green building councils during its yearly years, and discusses his organization’s role in helping foster the development of other regional councils. Wilkinson underscores South Africa’s efforts to make sustainability more relevant "beyond the building" and homing in on the social and economic context that the building lives in. He also gives an overview of the organization’s efforts to grow awareness and support for green building in the country, focusing on priorities like education, advocacy and implementation of a rating tool that addresses the unique aspects of the South African built environment.