Green building activity is expected to increase significantly in the U.S. by 2018, according to the World Green Building Trends 2016 report recently released by the U.S. Green Building Council and Dodge Data and Analytics.

The report, conducted in nearly 70 countries over the world, outlines the big picture of global green building, and highlights a handful of countries including the United States.

In 2015, approximately 24% of U.S. building firms reported that over 60% of their projects were, second only to South Africa (27%) and Australia (27%).

Builders in the U.S. have demonstrated an increasingly strong shift to green construction over the past three years. By 2018 however, 39% of respondents expect that green projects completed by their company will account for 60% or more of their total projects annually, a 15-percentage point growth compared to this year's responses.

The green building industry in the U.S. has been driven primarily by client demands (52%), followed by the industry's faith in green building (31%), environmental regulations (30%), market demands (28%), and lower operating costs (26%). Builders in the U.S. have reported more incentives than their global peers in terms of client demands, operating costs, and the belief that green building is the right thing to do.

Higher first costs is the biggest concern among U.S. green builders, with 70% of respondents citing it as one of the top three barriers to the growth of green building, which is significantly more than the global average of 50%. Other factors that are worrisome to the U.S. market include lack of market demand (39%) and difficulty to make a business case due to the split between capital and operating costs (34%).

According to the report, one notable hurdle in the U.S. is the incapability to accurately track the benefits of green building for businesses. As much as 43% of respondents in the U.S. say they don’t have metrics for building performance tracking, compared to only 25% of their global peers.

See previous coverage of the 2015 report from our sister site BUILDER here. >>