Policy activity in the buildings sector accelerated in the 1990s in Europe, after 2000 in the U.S., and more recently in China. Despite efficiency improvements in heating, cooling, and lighting, growth in building floor space and increasing appliance and electronics use have mostly offset efficiency gains.

regionUnited States

These graphs show the changes in emissions, emissions drivers, and policy in the Buildings sector in the US


Emissions Building sector emissions

Emissions grew slowly, but steadily, until 2005, when emissions peaked and slowly declined.


    Emissions Drivers Contribution of key drivers to increase or decrease of annual buildings emissions

    Growth in population and floor space per person were the largest drivers of buildings emissions. In the late 2000's, energy efficiency gains caught up with slowing floor space growth.


      Policy Building energy efficiency spending by government

      Efficiency spending by federal and local governments increased over the last decade, with a spike due to the 2009 stimulus.