Centre for Science and Environment


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Date: December 23, 2013

While construction necessitates enormous amount of construction material that accounts for about half of all materials used, it is also responsible for generating about half of the solid waste that degrades the land and environment. Given the fact that 70 per cent of the buildings that will stand in India in 2030 are yet to be built, this environmental cost will only compound with the anticipated construction boom unless immediate steps are taken to recycle and reuse construction waste and turn it  into a resource.

The Sustainable Buildings programme of CSE organized a 3 day training programme titled  ‘Sustainable Buildings for Sustainable Cities: Policies and Practices’ for the engineers and architects of CPWD – Ghaziabad. It was attended by 25 participants belonging to varied professionals fields such as civil engineering, architecture and electrical engineering. The course was conducted from 6th -8th August at the Anil Aggarwal Green College.

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Panchkula, March 14 2013

The sustainable buildings team of Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) co-organised a half day workshop on March 14, 2013 with the Department of Renewable Energy, Haryana (DRE) and HAREDA (Haryana Renewable Energy Development Agency).The venue of the workshop was the new HAREDA office : Akshay Urja Bhawan, which has received a tentative five star GRIHA rating.

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Kolkata, January 4, 2013

The sustainable buildings team of Centre for Science and Environment (CSE), New Delhi organised a half a day workshop on January 4, 2013 in association with New Town Kolkata Development Authority (NKDA), Kolkata and Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation Limited, West Bengal (HIDCO).

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20 December 2012, Lucknow

CSE warns against environmental debacle in Indian cities if resource guzzling and wastes in the building construction sector is not minimised

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Green Rating of Buildings Taking Roots

The idea of green rating of buildings has taken roots in India.

Our homes, offices, shops are the end users of energy, water and materials that influence the resource footprint of cities. Buildings cannot be treated as a low impact sector any more. While individually they aggravate local pollution and resource impacts,cumulatively they are a heavy draw on key resources in the country. Buildings must be managed well to cut their gregarious resource use and wastes.

Information shared by MoEF under RTI is minimal and partial. Further it took MoEF far more than a month to respond to the two RTIs filed by CSE. It makes mockery of the appraisal process as evident in the wide gap between information sought by us and the amount of information shared by the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF- GoI). This opaqueness must go if cities have to demonstrate their progress towards sustainability.

Keep watching this space for more such revelations!

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All buildings use resources such as land, water, energy, materials and time to fulfill the functional needs of a space over an extended period of time and leave impacts on the environment. As such, there can be no buildings without environmental impact. However, buildings can be designed to keep the impact of buildings within the carrying capacity of the local environment.

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The Sustainable Building Unit of the Centre for Science and Environment conducted a 3 Day training programme on 'Sustainable Buildings - Policies and Practices' from 2-4th November at their Anil Agarwal Green College, New Delhi.

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Date: August 24-26, 2011

Centre for Science and Environment’s Green Building Unit is conducting a three-day orientation programme, 'Regulatory Realm for Green Buildings and EIA’, for regulators and policy makers from different cities of India from August 24-26, 2011. 

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February  21-23, 2012

CSE orgainised a training programme exclusively for the CPWD officers from different technical backgrounds. The three day programme aimed to deepen the understanding of existing policies, their potential and constraints in promoting efficient use of resources and minimizing waste in public buildings. The programme explored the scope of harmonising the policy-driven and market-driven approaches to accelerate the adoption of resource-efficient practices in buildings.

The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF), draft notification S.O. 195 (E) dated 19th January 2009, proposes to make certain changes in the Environment Impact Assessment Notification, 2006.

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There is a clear lack of ambition in the strategies proposed. In case of renewable energy, for instance, the goal proposed even for the 'aggressive effort scenario' is far lower than what has been proposed in the National Action Plan for Climate Change.


At CSE, the function of buildings is primarily designed for in-house scientific and environmental research and publications on issues pertaining to the environment and development of national and international significance.

CPWD, the Central Public Works Department is responsible for building and maintaining public infrastructure including office and residential buildings. As the construction industry evolves, CPWD keeps revising its standards and practices for building construction.

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