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Climate Change and the Construction Industry: Small Changes with Big Impact

Parul Dubey on October 12, 2022 - in Buildings

Our long-term reliance on fossil fuels makes buildings one of the most significant sources of carbon dioxide emissions (CO2), contributing to climate change, smog, and air pollution. Two powerful solutions are emerging: building electrification and FreMarq Innovations’ energy-efficient and cost-effective window technology. Can the construction industry step up in time?

MERRILL, WIS. —Building operations represent nearly 55% of global electricity consumption.1 According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, without changes in policy and technology, population and economic growth will cause energy-related CO2 emissions to increase through 2050. However, the carbon intensity of U.S. electricity generation will decrease by at least 26% during this period as more electrical generation comes from renewable energy sources like solar and wind.2

Commercial buildings consume 35% of electricity and generate 16% of carbon dioxide emissions in the U.S.3 Because windows represent the weakest point in the thermal wall and are where most heating or cooling escapes, high-performance commercial windows can reduce energy costs by 10-40%.4 While a more energy-efficient curtain wall used to be cost-prohibitive, FreMarq Innovation’s new framing technology affordability delivers U-values that traditional systems can only obtain with the most expensive IGUs.

Building electrification is an attractive alternative today toward the 2050 goal of net-zero carbon emissions because fossil-powered appliances and equipment already have viable electric substitutes. Building electrification is also known as building decarbonization because heating and cooking can be powered by electricity rather than fossil fuels like oil, gas, and coal. All-electric buildings powered by solar, wind, and other renewable sources are a significant part of a successful net-zero plan. In fact, recent updates to the 2024 International Energy Conservation Code are designed to improve comfort while promoting energy savings, grid reliability, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.5

Building decarbonization is a positive step toward reducing carbon emissions. However, an electrically powered building with inefficient windows will still leak heat and cooling, using more energy and raising monthly utility bills. Window systems in commercial buildings are essential to creating a pleasant indoor environment. FreMarq Innovations’ revolutionary technology can reduce energy consumption, giving residents, builders, and owners significant cost savings. For example, FreMarq’s Zero•Net™ retrofit system can be used to re-skin a curtain wall system for 50% better performance at potentially half the replacement cost without having to tear out the existing system.

“For too long, a general misconception in the industry was that efficient curtain walls were impossible.” — Todd Frederick, President, FreMarq Innovations

As we approach the 2050 carbon emissions net-zero goal, it’s time to stop the biggest energy leak around the globe. FreMarq Innovations has delivered the technology for the construction industry to create more effective thermal walls with high-performance commercial windows, whether installed new or retrofit.

About FreMarq Innovations:

FreMarq Innovations, based in Merrill, Wisconsin, is an innovative architectural framing company founded in 2016 to develop energy-efficient curtain walls and windows with performance that was previously deemed “impossible.” Not only did they engineer and patent their technology, but they also made it available to all architects and building owners at an affordable price—and they did it in less than six years. They exist to bring about the change in the design and construction of high-performance buildings with zero negative consequences—reducing carbon emissions through the use of FreMarq’s Zero•Net™ fenestration solutions. Find out how this technology, combined with architectural engineering and ingenuity, can create buildings that can last, perform, and serve: visit https://fremarqinnovations.com/



  1. Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction; “2020 GLOBAL STATUS REPORT FOR BUILDINGS AND CONSTRUCTION.” 2020. wedocs.unep.org/bitstream/handle/20.500.11822/34572/GSR_ES.pdf.
  2. U.S. Energy Information Administration. “Energy and the environment explained. Outlook for future emissions.” Last updated: April 12, 2022, eia.gov/energyexplained/energy-and-the-environment/outlook-for-future-emissions.php.
  3. Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy; “About the Commercial Buildings Integration Program Buildings .” Accessed September 19, 2022 energy.gov/eere/buildings/about-commercial-buildings-integration-program.
  4. Shrivastava, Rohini; “Here’s How to Scale Energy-Saving Commercial Building Retrofits.” May 4, 2022 aceee.org/blog-post/2022/05/heres-how-scale-energy-saving-commercial-building-retrofits.
  5. Burk, Diana; “ADVANCE CLIMATE ACTION BY GETTING INVOLVED NOW IN THE COMMERCIAL 2024 IECC UPDATE.” September 7, 2022 newbuildings.org/advance-climate-action-get-involved-now-in-the-commercial-2024-iecc-update/.
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