Historical GHG Emissions: Buildings Across All Regions

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Emissions resulting from the building sector of are often described in two ways: direct emissions, and emissions from all end-uses. Direct emissions estimates do not include emissions from electricity use. In 2004, direct emissions from the building sector were approximately 5 GtCO2-eq. This estimate included CO2, CH4, N2O and halocarbons (including CFCs and HCFCs). The direct emissions from buildings make up about 10% of total anthropogenic GHG emissions. Estimates of emissions from all end-uses in buildings were approximately 8.6 GtCO2-eq in 2004, or roughly 18% of total anthropogenic GHG emissions.  Halocarbons, CFCs, and HCFCs contribute more than 15% of total emissions from buildings.

Growth in CO2 emissions from commercial office buildings grew at a rate of 2.5% per year from 1971 to 2004. Emissions from residential buildings grew at 1.7% per year during the same period. Total CO2 emissions, including those from buildings, grew at a rate of 2% per year during this time. Regionally, the largest increases in building emissions occurred in Asia (30%), North America (29%) and OECD Pacific (18%).