Putting “S” in the spotlight – a concept whose time has arrived
Social disruption from climate change, inequality, and public health are some of the defining issues of our times and the real estate industry plays a crucial role in addressing these challenges by harnessing strategies that protect and enhance property, people, and the planet.Read more
ESG Data is Growing Up
We are entering a new era of ESG data. Historic market failures regarding our negative environmental and social impacts, and the resulting climate change, nature loss, and social inequality, are starting to be corrected with structural changes to the market.Read more
Transaction Management and the Transition to ‘Net-Zero’
Ahead of COP26, due to take place in Glasgow this November, IPCC has released its most recent report on climate change. The report reaffirms it is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean and land, and that limiting human-induced global warming requires limiting cumulative carbon emissions, and reaching at least net zero carbon.Read more
EU Regulatory Environment Changes (SFDR, EU Taxonomy)
The European Green Deal has launched an ambitious plan to transform the EU economy to a sustainable, climate neutral economy by 2050. To support the plan a range of working groups, action plans and new regulations have been established. All parts of the Green Deal are relevant to real estate, but in particular the outcomes of the EU Action Plan on Sustainable Finance are worth paying close attention to in the coming months.Read more
Is the sustainability report the right place for storytelling?
Storytelling is how people naturally communicate. Within your sustainability report, it is a means of communication, using narrative techniques surrounding employees, the organisation, the past and visions for the future, social bonding and work itself, to build in the reader a new point-of-view or reinforce an opinion or behaviour. StorytellingRead more
The Climate Financial Revolution
A quiet, financial revolution is going on around us that will have far-reaching effects on the real estate industry and beyond. It is already causing large changes in investment and management methods, as well as a wholesale review of corporate philosophy and policy throughout entire organisations. When we look back, we will see that it has forced a substantial reconsideration of real estate investment valuations, modelling, and benchmarking.Read more
A 2050 target but no time to spare!
We are now in a critical period requiring rapid and urgent action to retrofit our buildings in a bid to address climate change. The Paris Agreement set a global imperative to restrict global warming to 2⁰C or below. To achieve this ambition, global greenhouse gas emissions need to reduce rapidly today with developed economies ultimately becoming Net Zero by 2050. We cannot afford to bide our time and cut emissions later.Read more
Getting ready for GRESB season – Reporting tips and tricks
GRESB is imminently approaching! Which for a lot of us in the ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) industry, it means getting ready to report all the relevant activities that have been undertaken by funds over the course of the past year. In order to smoothen your reporting process and evidence collection, I have looked to outline some tips and tricks which will hopefully help you successfully deliver this year’s submission.Read more
SDGs: Answering the Big Questions for the Real Estate Industry – What, Where, Why and How?
How can real estate connect with and relate to global challenges? What is the motivation behind the bigger picture?Read more
Why we should care about climate resilience
As the effects of climate change on economic activity become more significant, there is increasing demand from investors, trustees and other fiduciaries for consistent, comparable, actionable information in company reports. Investors increasingly expect Boards and Executives to actively assess and respond to climate risks.Read more
The business case for ESG. Shouldn’t it just be business as usual?
Environmental Social Governance (ESG) refers to “the three central factors in measuring the sustainability and ethical impact of an investment in a company or business”. These factors are becoming increasingly important investment considerations. Since 1970, there have been more than 2000 academic studies seeking to identify if there is a link between ESG and financial performance  – this […]Read more
Trends and expectations for sustainable real assets in 2019: Taking Climate Resilience Mainstream
Climate resilience has emerged as a key field of practice; however, a concern is that thinking and knowledge of this topic, and most importantly actions are not progressing quickly or purposefully enough for real estate managers to adequately prepare their assets for the potentially perilous shocks and stresses caused by climate change. Resilience is becoming […]Read more
Real Estate Sustainability Performance (& Skydiving)
Skydiving can make you anxious. You may be reluctant to try it, you may not even entertain the thought of doing it. You’d certainly want to know that safety has been thoroughly planned, that you’re dealing with an experienced crew and a plane that actually works. Once you do it though, you’ll probably love it, […]Read more
Health and Wellbeing – Emerging or Mainstream?
For many professionals working in the built environment, Health and Wellbeing still feel like relatively new buzzwords. In some ways this is surprising given that the subject area has been around for many years; for example, the term “sick building syndrome” was coined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 1986. In reality, though, the […]Read more
Net Zero and Science Based Targets- Connecting the Dots
I was recently asked how Science Based Targets are connected to Zero Carbon Buildings – hmmm, I thought, interesting question. Let’s start with the definitions.Read more
Can the ‘Net Zero’ Concept Be Applied to Health and Wellbeing?
‘Net zero’ buildings are highly energy-efficient buildings that use on or off-site renewable energy to achieve net zero carbon emissions. Can the concept of ‘net zero’ by adapted for the health and wellbeing agenda? Well, I think so and here’s why…Read more
Sustainable cities: innovative “hubs” and battlefields against negative change
Only ten years ago, knowing about sustainability meant that you might have accidentally read a piece of avant-garde research, speculating about harmful changes in our climate. In the blink of an eye, sustainability has gained wider momentum, and today has established itself as a global goal for our future and that of our planet. However, […]Read more
GRESB Resilience Module: will you survive and thrive in the face of systems disruption?
When you hear the word resilience you might think of an activist like Martin Luther King, an explorer such as Ranulph Fiennes, or an athlete akin to Mo Farah. In all walks of life it is an admirable and desirable quality, but the meaning it carries in the field of commercial property is perhaps not […]Read more
PropTech: A Real Estate (R)Evolution
Back the 1980’s I was co-founder of a software company, which specialised in creating systems for the (then) new generation of PC’s. Myself and my colleagues had learned our programming skills whilst studying for PhDs using massive mainframe computer systems with clunky user interfaces and torturously slow software development cycles. We seized upon the new […]Read more
GRESB Real Estate Assessment: What, Why, When and How – 2018 update
With the GRESB 2018 Real Estate Assessment soon to get started in earnest (pre-release out on Thursday 15th February), I have written this blog to quickly remind ourselves of the what, why, when and how of GRESB. For those who are new to GRESB, my hope is that this blog serves as a useful introduction. […]Read more