GRESB 2018: A Call to Arms!
Following the release of individual respondent-level GRESB results on Friday 7th September, overall results were presented by GRESB in London on Tuesday 11th September. Results presentations will continue to be delivered by GRESB around the world throughout September.
Headline figures presented demonstrated both the increased level of interest in GRESB and the positive impact the survey is having on real estate sustainability performance. In summary:
- Participation has increased. In 2018 there were;
- 903 survey responses (207 of which were from publicly listed entities)
- From 64 countries
- Covering 79,000 assets and $3.5 trillion in gross asset value.
- A continual improvement in ESG performance was reported – where average GRESB scores increased to 68, up from 63 in 2017. GRESB state that this continued improvement reflects the industry’s commitment to further integrate ESG best practices.
- Australia maintains its regional leadership position but the performance gap between geographies is narrowing.
- Of the 79,000 buildings covered by GRESB, 50,000 submitted data at ‘asset level’ (74% of all participants).
- 83% of reported energy data was subject to a third party review.
- Like-for-like energy, GHG and water data all demonstrated a year-on-year reduction (a good thing).
- 11% of reported floor area benefits from some form of green building certificate.
I am heartened by progress to-date and continue to believe that GRESB remains a powerful mechanism that can help drive change in the real estate industry. However, I also believe that as an industry we must change-up a few gears.
However, as an industry we must rapidly progress further towards automated collection and transfer of ESG performance data to speed-up the process and also reduce potential for human error.
We have been talking about data – coverage and quality – for years, and yet it is still a problem. This must be addressed ‘globally’ and soon. EVORA developed our proprietary software tool SIERA to support the process of data acquisition and validation. The decision to do so was and continues to be transformational for us and our clients. It has helped simplify and speed-up data collection and analysis at meter, asset and fund level. However, as an industry we must rapidly progress further towards automated collection and transfer of ESG performance data to speed-up the process and also reduce potential for human error. The technology exists to automate data acquisition but adoption remains low, in simple terms, data collection is still a bottle neck and the source of many errors, even in 2018!
Furthermore, wholescale adoption of new technologies and investment in retrofit of domestic and non-domestic buildings is needed, especially if, as an industry, we are going to contribute to our fullest ability to the internationally agreed commitments to mitigate climate change.
Rapid progression is needed!
We are perfectly positioned to provide GRESB support. View our official Premier Partner profile.
We can work with you to complete the submission and understand your scoring, as well as develop a sustainability plan that will improve your future GRESB performance and align with your organisation’s key environmental objectives.