Writte by Jenny Ellwood
CBRE Energy & Sustainability
GRESB (Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark) is a voluntary sustainability benchmark aimed at assessing the sustainability performance of real estate portfolios around the globe. GRESB showcases best practice examples to encourage others to create a more energy efficient portfolio and to bring sustainability issues to the forefront of business decision-making.
Respondents (a mix of listed real estate companies and private funds) are scored and benchmarked against their peers based on region and portfolio size. The GRESB 2013 report released in September is based on sustainability data gathered from 543 respondents; providing sustainability data on 49,000 properties from around the world representing $1.6 trillion in gross asset value. The GRESB benchmark results are used by more than 50 institutional investors to assess the sustainability performance and potential risks of their real estate investments.
With an overall decrease in energy consumption of 4.8% and a reduction of water consumption of 2.5%, the report shows that the real estate sector has achieved some success in reducing its environmental impact. There are strong regional differences in these reductions with North America leading the way with a 6.6% energy reduction and Europe lagging behind with only a 0.7% decrease in energy use. The GRESB report highlights that sustainability is becoming part of day-to-day business decisions in the leading property firms. Senior management are increasingly involved in reviewing and monitoring of sustainability processes. Interestingly, green building certification schemes are also becoming more common, with 55% of participants having certified office assets and 34% having certified retail shopping malls.
Click here to read the full report