Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)

HQ: Bangkok, Thailand

Focal Point: Stephen Rieger

Key Figures: Greenhouse gas emissions



Key Figures: Waste



As the regional arm of the United Nations, ESCAP plays a unique role as the only intergovernmental forum for all countries and territories of the Asian and Pacific region. ESCAP’s mission is to serve as the regional hub to achieve inclusive and sustainable economic and social development in the region through programmes on Macroeconomic Policy and Development, Trade and Investment, Transport, Environment and Development, Information, Communications, Space Technology and Disaster Risk Reduction, Social Development, and Statistics.

Experience so far

There is a need for dedicated resources and adequate funding to achieve the required building modifications that would have a major impact on utility consumption within the building. Such funding could be made available by adopting an innovative approach towards utilization of resources generated by ESCAP as landlord of the UN premises.

Reduction efforts

ESCAP has implemented a series of building technical reviews and the corresponding retrofit projects with regard to replacement of building plant, machinery and equipment and the associated operating procedures of building systems, such as air-conditioning, to reduce utility consumption. Energy saving projects include renovation and automation of elevators at the UN complex, replacement of air handling units, pumps (chiller & lift) and condenser water pumps, improvement of chiller operation, installation of energy saving lighting, replacement of standby diesel generating sets, upgrading of all fire doors and seals, installation of solar panels and wind turbines, etc. These projects have enabled ESCAP to reduce their total energy consumption by 22 % and electricity costs by 11.4 % between 2003 and 2008. This improvement of energy efficiency brought about the decrease of electricity-deprived greenhouse gas emissions from 7,761 tonnes of CO2 equivalent to 6,036 tonnes CO2 equivalent during the same period.


ESCAP has not undertaken any offsetting activities yet. The issue of potential offsetting activities in certain areas is being pursued.

Next steps

ESCAP has been undertaking energy saving projects since 2002 and is now working in collaboration with UNEP SUN in order to adopt their recommendations and standards as well as improve environmental performance. Of particular importance is the recent completion of an investment grade building energy audit that identifies further energy reduction projects.

UNESCAP and sustainability
UNESCAP case studies