Canada helps build a greener future in Guatemala

Members of the Guatemala Green Building Council.

Guatemala Green Building Council members at the IIDEX-, Canada's National Design + Architecture Exposition & Conference in Toronto, Ontario.

GGBC members share a laugh at the conference.

With a population that grew from 12 to 14 million in the last decade – 49% of which live in urban areas – the use of sustainable construction is critical for protecting the environment and improving the quality of living in Guatemala.

The Canadian Embassy in Guatemala recently teamed up with architects, engineers and Canadian business to help build the future of green living in Guatemala.

Reducing the impact of new construction on human health and the environment, and improving the energy efficiency of buildings is becoming a priority for builders in Guatemala. 

A green alliance

The Canadian Embassy in Guatemala has been working with a group of young architects and engineers since 2010 to establish the Guatemala Green Building Council (GGBC).  This alliance has produced enormous results, including four trade missions to the largest Conferences and Exhibits on Green Build Events in the region.

The Embassy and the GGBC organized the first Green Building and Sustainable Technologies Fair and Conference in Guatemala City. During the event it became clear that Guatemalan companies recognize Canada for its expertise and know-how on matters related to sustainable technologies. The Fair helped initiate the first steps in creating strong alliances and partnerships between Canadian and Guatemalan companies.

Sustainable networks across Central America

After the initial success of the GGBC, the green building concept started attracting interest from other regions. The GGBC also began networking with counterparts in Central America.  GGBC’s momentum in the green movement inspired the establishment of the Salvadoran Green Business Council and the creation of the Regional Alliance Agreement between all Central American Councils (ACCADES).

As the regional vision for sustainability continues to grow, possibilities to promote collaboration between the both the Central American and Canadian Green Business Council have also started flourishing.  This relationship has grown so much that the GGBC now supports Canadian companies interested in Central American markets by hosting the Green Building annual trade show.

To celebrate the success of this strategic alliance, the Guatemala Green Building Council presented an award to the Government of Canada, as a sign of appreciation for the longstanding support and partnership. After accepting the award on behalf of the Government, Canada’s Ambassador to Guatemala, Stewart Savage, expressed his happiness that Canadian capabilities, products, and services were contributing to improved living conditions in Guatemala. 

Through effective business partnerships and a shared interest for a greener and more sustainable future, Canada and Guatemala are building strong and lasting relationships in business and beyond.