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Understanding the Green Technical Capabilities and Barriers to Green Buildings in Developing Countries: A Case Study of Thailand

Shen, Wenxin, Tang, Wenzhe, Siripanan, Atthaset, Lei, Zhen, Duffield, Colin F., Hui, Felix Kin Peng
Sustainability 2018 v.10 no.10
buildings, case studies, consultants, corporate social responsibility, design for environment, developing countries, education, energy, engineers, industry, issues and policy, leadership, markets, motivation, operating costs, questionnaires, supply balance, surveys, sustainable development, sustainable technology, technology, Thailand
Green buildings (GB) have been globally adopted for sustainable development by enhancing the resource efficiency, reducing the operation cost, and improving the building environment for users. However, little research has systematically explored the key issues of GB in developing countries. This study has revealed the green technical capabilities and barriers to GB in Thailand from the perspectives of consultants, architects, and engineers, using a questionnaire survey and a case study. The results show experience in meeting the combined requirements of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and the green building rating system that Thailand developed in 2010, Thailand’s Rating of Energy and Environmental Sustainability (TREES), and “skilled in energy systems” to be the top two most important green technical capabilities. Barriers to GB mainly arise from financial pressure, technical limitations, and inadequate promotion. “Lack of motivations from owners” and “high initial cost” are ranked as the top two barriers to green building. The results collectively reveal that market demand and technological advancement are fundamental drivers for the GB industry, and the government, economic conditions, education, and corporate social responsibility are the other stimuli for the industry. The findings can help project participants adopt appropriate strategies to boost GB in emerging markets in developing countries. Future policies should focus on increasing market demand, encouraging green technology innovation, and reducing the cost of development and construction of GB.