By Rebecca Pearce
EMEA Head of Sustainability at CBRE
In just 50 days, delegates from more than 190 governments around the world will meet in Paris to engage in vital negotiations, known as COP21, on how to tackle climate change.
On an optimistic note, many governments seem to have turned the corner – the US and China are actively progressing policy to reduce carbon emissions, and the EU has long had ambitious reduction targets. Green bonds continue to be oversubscribed, investment managers the world over are divesting their fossil fuel related stocks and business leaders are urging bold action.
While the results will essentially be a matter of policy, the impacts on property may be greater than anticipated. If COP21 ends with consensus, governments will be required to make policy changes, creating both risks and opportunities for business.
This provides the property industry with a perfect opportunity to develop new offerings, as clients become more concerned about the impacts of legislation and climate change on their investment decisions. Services such as an integrated energy offering spanning engineering, valuation, planning and facilities management is likely to gain increased traction. Likewise, interest in risk management is expected to heighten significantly as clients wish to understand, and mitigate, the risks around diverse aspects of property ownership, from minimum energy performance standards to flood risk.
Our third global Green Week initiative is designed to increase global awareness about how companies can improve their workplaces, save money, add value to their assets and ultimately help the environment too. After all, we all spend significant time in the office so promoting the health and wellbeing of the occupants via sustainable infrastructure is of business critical importance.