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New York
Sustainability is getting stale. Buildings that are Energy Star and LEED certified are becoming ubiquitous, says CBRE national sustainability director Dave Pogue, who's speaking at Bisnow's 3rd Annual NY Sustainability Summit Aug. 21, and owners need something new to make them stand out to corporate tenants and institutional investors. (Unfortunately, waiting 20 years for "obsolete" to become retro-chic just won't work.)
Dave Pogue, 2011
Dave tells us many Energy Star scores are north of 80 now (not the best way to get a decent curve), and there are now more than 1,700 LEED for Existing Buildings in the country. Owners of institutional-quality, big-city properties have benchmarked and commissioned their assets and done all the low-capital improvements. There simply are more buildings that are better, he says. The challenge for owners now is how to continue to demonstrate a superior commitment to sustainability in a continuingly capital-constrained market.
GRESB sample
One way to stay at the forefront is participating in the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark. Dave says the survey elicited 125 voluntary responses two years ago and will include more than 400 this year (it'll be released early next month). Cohen & Steers, Grosvenor Fund Management, UBS Global Real Estate, and RREEF are among the most recent to sign up, and NAREIT has just adopted the platform for its Leader in the Light awards (winners will be announced at REITWeek in San Diego in November).
Chris Cayten, 2011
CodeGreen Solutions' Chris Cayten, who's also speaking at our event next week, tells us the point of GRESB is to track all the sustainable goodies (energy use, water use, recycling, carbon, etc.—plus policies, actions, achievements) holistically and across investors' entire portfolios. It's something that fund investors are requesting of their asset managers, and Chris' consulting biz has plenty of work helping clients comply. The 40-question survey (it's free!) can take a week to six months to complete depending on "how much you want to try."
Sign up to hear more from these two (including a recommendation from Chris on early compliance with Local Law 87, part of Mayor Mike's Greener, Greater Buildings legislation), plus Related Cos'Charlotte Matthews, SL Green's Jay Black, Vidaris' John Hannum, RREEF's Patty Connolly, Alfa Development's Michael Namer, and Summit Energy's Steve McDonough.