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Housing PS Charles Hinga yesterday revealed that Kenya will adopt International Finance Corporation’s EDGE green housing standards in its affordable housing program.

The PS made the pronouncement during a virtual meeting held on Tuesday, that Kenya is keen to embrace low carbon housing developments in order to combat climate change.

“The minimum standard for the design of affordable, climate-friendly homes shall be IFC’s excellence in design for greater efficiencies (EDGE) green building certification program. The standard entails a 20 percent less energy, less water and less embodied energy in materials compared to a base case building as estimated within the EDGE software,” Hinga said.

He also revealed that the government signed an agreement with seven private investors to construct 130,000 affordable houses just last week, adding that the investors had committed to making the houses environmentally friendly.

Early this week a report by IFC highlighted that the green buildings provide a USD 509.6 billion opportunity for residential developers in sub-Saharan Africa (USD 413 billion for single-family units and USD 96.6 billion for multi-family units.

Local developers have been reluctant to provide affordable housing due to the high cost of land in the country alongside complex land tenure systems. As a result, private developers have traditionally focused on constructing houses for the middle and high-income segments of the population.

The affordable housing programme is an intention to build 500,000 low-income housing units by the end of 2022.

Read; Green buildings present USD 768 billion opportunity in sub-Saharan Africa