Australia and New Zealand real estate sector achieves 8 successive years of sustainable leadership

  • Australia and New Zealand real estate sector once again leading the world in environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance.
  • More entities in Australia and New Zealand have set internal targets for net zero carbon emissions than other regions.
  • 7 Sector Leaders recognized for their sustainability leadership.

Amsterdam, September 12– In 2018, GRESB scored and benchmarked the environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance of 73 real estate funds, companies and developers in Australia and New Zealand on behalf of 75 institutional investors, an increase of more than 10% on the previous year.
For a remarkable eight years in succession, the Australia and New Zealand real estate sector has outperformed other regions. In 2018, the region achieved an average GRESB Score of 76 (2017: 73) compared with a global average of 68.
The region is also responding decisively to new sustainability challenges facing the sector. Notably, more real estate companies and funds in Australia and New Zealand have set internal targets for net zero carbon emissions than in other regions.
According to the 2018 results for the region, average like-for-like greenhouse gas emissions for the sector have decreased by 4.0%, and year-on-year energy consumption was down almost 2.9%. There is more work to be done to tackle water consumption, which increased year-on-year by just over 1.2% for the region.

“The new data paints a picture of a region not only further raising the bar on sustainability performance, but also paving a clear path for others to follow,” says Ruben Langbroek, Head of Asia Pacific at GRESB. “Industry stakeholder collaboration and ambitious target setting are driving the region’s leadership. To illustrate, the sector has explicitly acknowledged the importance of the Carbon Positive Roadmap for buildings that was released by the Green Building Council of Australia earlier this year, which aims to ensure Australia’s competitiveness and attractiveness for investments while fulfilling international commitments to reducing carbon emissions.”
“In addition, regional leaders have expressed their commitment to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals, implement the TCFD recommendations, and are increasingly focusing their attention on social sustainability. The latter has resulted in more awareness on material social topics such as modern slavery, health and well-being, and community impact.”

All of the Australian and New Zealand property companies and funds reporting to GRESB indicated they have a policy in place that addresses social issues, such as diversity and equal opportunity, forced labor, safety, and worker rights. 85% of participants measure and monitor the impact of their operations on communities, with the aim to reduce negative and maximize positive social and environmental outcomes. The GRESB results also show that 60% of Australian and New Zealand property companies and funds promote tenant health and well-being via their buildings and services, while this is just 24% globally.

“The 2018 GRESB results are proving that expectations have fundamentally changed in the real asset sector and investors are increasingly asking for greater transparency about the ESG performance of real asset portfolios,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, chairman, GRESB Board of Directors, and president & CEO, Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI). “We are pleased by the continued increase in participation this year as it is clear that ESG is gaining prominence and becoming common practice. We congratulate all participants in the 2018 Assessments for the critical role they are playing in creating a world with more sustainable buildings and infrastructure.”

2018 GRESB Sector Leaders from Australia and NZ

Every year, GRESB recognizes Sector Leaders, being the real estate companies and funds that are taking the lead in terms of ESG performance.

Global

  • Industrial, Listed – Frasers Logistics & Industrial Trust
  • Diversified, Office/Retail, Listed – Stockland
  • Developer, Non-listed – Lendlease One International Towers Sydney Trust, Lendlease

Global and Regional Sector Leaders

  • Retail, Non-listed – Australian Prime Property Fund Retail, Lendlease
  • Office, Non-listed – Australian Prime Property Fund Commercial, Lendlease

Regional Sector Leaders

  • Industrial, Non-listed – Goodman Australia Industrial Partnership (GAIP), Goodman Group
  • Diversified, Office/Retail, Non-listed – Dexus Wholesale Property Fund, Dexus

View More Real Estate Results
View 2018 GRESB Real Estate results snapshot PDF.
View 2018 GRESB Real Estate results page.

About GRESB

GRESB is the global environmental, social and governance (ESG) benchmark for real assets. Working in collaboration with the industry, GRESB defines the standard for sustainability performance in real assets, providing standardized and validated ESG data to more than 75 institutional investors, representing over USD 18 trillion in institutional capital. In 2018, a record 903 property companies, funds and developers participated in the GRESB Real Estate Assessment. The Infrastructure Assessment covered 75 funds and 280 assets, and 25 portfolios completed the Debt Assessment.
For more information, please contact:
Claudia Gonella, Marketing & Communications Director at GRESB
c.gonella@gresb.com
Tel. +31 (0)207740220