Environmental Rating Systems for Non-Residential Buildings—How Does Australia Compare with International Best Practice?

  • Priyadarsini RajagopalanEmail author
Part of the Green Energy and Technology book series (GREEN)


Growing concerns over negative impacts associated with buildings have compelled governments across the world to introduce minimum requirements for energy efficiency. Energy and environmental performance rating tools and minimum energy performance standards have become widespread in the last two decades. This chapter reviews the status of environmental rating systems in the non-residential building sector in Australia and compares with other leading international rating systems with a focus on those relating to new building design and construction. The major non-residential rating system in Australia, Green Star, was introduced in 2003 by the Green Building Council of Australia and is broadly comparable to international tools such as LEED and BREEAM. While Green Star has been an important driver of improving energy efficiency in non-residential buildings in Australia, it has suffered from inconsistent commitment to climate action from both major Australian political parties. Even though Green Star has similar criteria and performance standards in comparison to LEED and BREEAM, the market penetration of this rating system falls behind other systems in terms of adoption rate. Proper government support and improvement of supply chains would certainly help the rating systems to penetrate the wider market.



The author would like to thank Gareth Gilhooley, a former student, Deakin University, for his contribution in collecting some information for this chapter. The author would also like to thank Gillian Armstrong from the University of Adelaide for providing some information about BREEAM certification cost.


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sustainable Building Innovation Laboratory, School of Property Construction and Project ManagementRMIT UniversityMelbourneAustralia

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