Real estate sustainability

The Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB), which will launch its third annual sustainability survey today, has announced a partnership with the Global Reporting Initiative to enhance sustainability reporting.

The survey allows participating fund managers to benchmark their portfolio on environmental and social performance against their peers.

The GRESB Foundation is backed by 30 institutional investors with more than $1.7 trillion in combined capital and the survey acts as a tool for those investors to start a dialogue on social and environmental issues with their real estate managers.

Combined, they have an average stake of more than 4 per cent in each of the listed property companies that responded to the survey last year.

In 2011 the survey covered 340 real estate managers, 21,000 properties with a total value of $928 billion.

These properties emit about 34 million tonnes of carbon dioxide, demonstrating that institutional engagement with the property sector can have a substantial impact on the environment, according to the 2011 report.

Evidence of such an impact is that the 2011 combined emissions represent a 1.8-per-cent reduction from the previous year.

The survey, which was designed in 2009, captures more than 50 data points of environmental and social performance integrated into the business practices of each real-estate company or fund.

Last year listed-property funds’ average score was 41 out of 100.

Colonial First State Global Asset Management was the highest ranking manager.


To participate in the survey click here