GRESB to join forces with GRI to enhance disclosure on sustainability in real estate sector
Amsterdam, April 4, 2012 – Thirty of the world’s largest pension asset managers, the major real estate industry associations and a large group of stakeholders have put their weight behind the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB), which this week released its third annual sustainability survey. GRESB also announced a partnership with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), to enhance disclosure on Sustainability Reporting.
GRESB has become an important tool in creating more transparency in the environmental and social performance of real estate investment managers. In 2011, more than 350 real estate fund managers and property companies responded to the GRESB Survey. The annual benchmark produced by the consortium is now actively used by more than 30 institutional investors to engage with their investments. Nils Kok, co-founder of GRESB: “It is our belief that benchmarking can help generate and strengthen market forces needed for more efficient use of energy and other resources by the real estate sector, lowering operational costs.” Sander Paul van Tongeren, APG Asset Management, a founding member of GRESB: “For investors, benchmarking sustainability performance provides the opportunity to take into account directly the risks of higher (and more volatile) energy prices, stricter legislation targeted directly at the real estate sector and changing preferences of (corporate) tenants.”
The overall goal of the collaboration between the GRESB and GRI is to advance the uptake of responsible business practices and making reporting on economic, environmental, and social performance in the global real estate sector standard practice. The aim of the partnership is to make the real estate sector among the top-three industries with the highest disclosure on sustainability performance, within a time period of three years. This will be enabled by the Construction and Real Estate Sector Supplement, GRI’s industry-specific reporting guidelines.
Real estate funds and companies can participate in the 2012 GRESB Survey free of charge, allowing them to benchmark their portfolio against peers in the industry. Participants will receive an individual scorecard, offering a unique insight into their relative sustainability performance against peers and leaders in their region. More information about GRESB and the Benchmark can be found at www.gresb.com.