Mika Kovanen
Director, Smart & Sustainable Buildings (Ramboll Finland)
Ramboll Group, Helsinki

Over the last decades, there has been an increasing awareness of the impacts of the real estate and construction sector on the environment. Today, buildings are responsible for more than 40 percent of global energy usage, and as much as one third of greenhouse gas emissions. Green building is an important step towards sustainable development, however not all green building is necessary sustainable. In many cases the building industry has focused on the physical aspects of sustainability, reducing the environmental impact of buildings and cities, without sufficient consideration for the human perspective and the end users.

Extreme sustainability is about a wider conversation where green is the starting point with a wider goal of adaptability, longevity and competitiveness of our buildings. Truly smart and sustainable buildings enhance the building performance to meet the goals of carbon neutrality, and address the needs of individual future user with integrated digital functionalities that enhance productivity, wellbeing and security. This can be reached by leveraging possibilities of technology evolution. For example, Smart Energy solutions predictively optimize building’s energy use by utilizing advanced analytics to enhance both performance and wellbeing. High-rise buildings have especially great potential for energy optimization and circulation. Today, generative design tools allow use to make holistic optimizations to determine the most optimal technical solutions for a development. Extreme sustainability is the focus the world needs and SMART technology is an enabler.