A high profile delegation led by Brazilian Minister for Cities Aguinaldo Ribeiro visited BRE today to explore a range of innovative and sustainable opportunities for Brazil’s burgeoning built environment. The delegation which included ministry directors responsible for housing, waste management and urban mobility in Brazil met with BRE specialists on a number of key areas relating to the essential development of the country’s infrastructure
With the world's fifth largest population, Brazil has over 5,500 municipalities facing many challenges including a social housing deficit of around seven million homes. The Government is set to invest an estimated £320 billion in infrastructure and urban development ahead of the 2014 World Cup and the Olympics in 2016, however, a step change in the construction sector is urgently required to ensure the industry is equipped to rise to the challenge.
Minister Ribeiro spoke of a ‘convergence of visions’ between Brazil and the UK, expressing his desire to learn from the extensive preparations for the 2012 Games so as to create a ‘legacy for [Brazil] that lasts far beyond the events to deliver a positive social outcome.’ He spoke at length with BRE Chief Executive Dr Peter Bonfield OBE who shared his experience with the delegation of working with the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), where he helped where he helped create the sustainable development strategy for London 2012*.
The Brazilian and UK governments signed a commitment at the recent Rio+20 environmental summit to strengthen science and research ties between the two countries. A key output will be the development of a BRE Innovation Park in Brasilia (Parque de Inovaçao e Sustentabilidade para Ambientes Construidos (PISAC)) that will demonstrate affordable, green methods of construction and technologies, helping to revolutionise the nation’s construction industry.
Head of International Affairs at BRE, Orivaldo Barros said' This has been a most constructive visit with Minister Ribeiro. He has reinforced the Brazilian Government’s commitment to delivering sustainability and innovation in the built environment through the creation of an Innovation Park in Brasilia. This will be delivered in partnership with BRE with many opportunities for the UK construction sector to get involved'.
The delegation’s visit to BRE concluded with a tour of the BRE Innovation Park, where the Minister and his officials saw a range of different approaches to sustainable building.
NOTES TO EDITOR
*Dr Peter Bonfield OBE was on part-time secondment to the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) from 2006 until 2012, where he helped create the sustainable development strategy for the Olympics and support its delivery. From November 2006 he led for ODA on construction products, playing a key role in ensuring that the significant quantities of materials required to construct the games were sustainably procured and delivered and performed as required.
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