Accessability Links
Cookies on our website
By continuing to use this website we will assume you are happy to receive cookies as outlined in our cookie policy
Accept Policy

5 of the Most Sustainable Buildings across the World

Posted by: Alistair Reyland 13 Apr 16  | Energy |  Sustainability

As a new report suggests that sustainable technologies could help US business reduce overhead wastes by 3-30% each year, we look at what the most sustainable buildings are across the world. Architecture doesn’t just have to be ascetically pleasing, it needs to be resource-efficient and ‘green’ in both structure and process. Luckily, sustainable architecture has been at the industry’s forefront for a while now, and as more green buildings pop up we identify the best ones for people and nature.

The Crystal, LondoN 

This £30 million urban sustainability building is a shiny force in energy saving. Half office for 150 Siemen’s staff, half visitor attraction, The Crystal uses natural light and smart lighting technology to create an energy-efficient hub. LEDs switch on & off based on the level of natural daylight and photovoltaic panels mean light usage is minimal, but that’s not all. The Crystal is also home to rainwater harvesting and black water recycling; while the roof collects rainwater, sewage is treated and the water is recycled, purified and converted into drinking water. Siemens might make whitegoods, but they have created something of both beauty and practicality for the world.

Lance Armstrong Foundation, Texas

Don’t be fooled by the outside of the Lance Armstrong Foundation’s HQ. It might not be jaw dropping, but the building has earned a gold certification from Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, and for good reason. With 88% of material from the original building recycled and used in the new build and no use of toxic chemicals, this office had one of the greenest builds. If that wasn’t enough the building also has north-facing windows that harvest natural light and minimise energy consumption.


One Angel Square, Manchester

Our second UK building on the list, One Angel Square is the HQ for the Co-operative Group. The building is home to 3,000 employees and a pure plant oil fed heat & power system where the plant oil is grown on The Co-operative’s own farm. With artificial light at 300 lux, 91% sourcing responsibility, and roof top planters to enhance biodiversity, are just one of the reasons the building was awarded an “Outstanding" Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology rating.


Sun Moon Mansion, China

 A great name for one of the world’s largest solar-powered building. With offices, a hotel and a conference centre, the Sun Moon Mansion covers an area of 750,000m². Its huge solar roof enables the utilisation of energy and thermal technologies. The building has more than 30 technologies such as northern grilling sun-shades, photo-electricity sun-shades, and photovoltaic grid-connected power generation that makes it have an energy saving efficiency of 88%.

OS House, Wisconsin

A building doesn’t need a massive budget to be sustainable, just look at the OS House. Created in 2010, this dynamic house takes advantage of Lake Michigan’s breeze with solar exposure to improve cross-ventilation. OS House also has a rainscreen (a system of thin concrete panels suspended between steel channels) and low-flow fixtures to reduce water consumption.  


Back to Top