Contractors want local ‘green’ license

Contractors want local ‘green’ license

ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Contractors want local ‘green’ license

Foreign green building certificates are too expensive, Turkish contractors say. AA photo

Turkish contractors have asked the Turkish standardization institution to provide “green building” certificates, in order to eliminate their dependency on international bodies.

Construction sector investors, who pay thousands of dollars to institutions that assess buildings according to a series of criteria, said that if the Turkish Standards Institute (TSE) had criteria to assess the environmental compatibility of buildings and provide certificates to mark this, then the tendency to construct such buildings would soar. 

“Adopting green building criteria adds only 10 percent in cost. Therefore, we suggest transforming 6.5 million houses to be renovated within the urban transformation program as green buildings, and the TSE could give the certificates,” said Barış Aydın, the deputy chairman of the Contractors Confederation (İMKON).

Aydın added that around 40 percent of carbon emissions causing global warming were generated in houses, while 12 percent of water and 71 percent of electricity consumption came from houses. He said research proved that these expenses could be reduced by around 50 percent by constructing environmentally friendly houses. 

Currently, contractors need to get certificates like “Leed” given by the U.S. Environment Friendly Buildings Council or “Breeam” in the United Kingdom, which evaluate the environmental performance of buildings.

The costs of certificates like Leed and Breeam start from $5,000, reaching up to $100,000 in commercial projects. “If TSE undertook this duty, the money saved could be used to finance urban transformation projects,” Aydın said, adding that it should be easy for TSE to form its own series of prerequisites as the green building criteria are clear.