On Thursday the 17th of September, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands hosted an online event to support the energy transition in real estate in the UK. The Dutch Embassy, CFP Green Buildings, UK Green Building Council and ING Bank spoke about the challenges and opportunities in greening real estate. Read the summary or watch the recording of the webinar below.
Join forces to make a difference
Dimitri Vogelaar, Head of the Economic Section of the Dutch Embassy, was the first on stage and emphasised the importance of working together. “If we want to green buildings, we need to look beyond country boundaries. It is important to join forces, and we need all stakeholders on board to make a real change.”
Scaling up is key
The importance of scaling up was expressed by Bram Adema, CEO of CFP Green Buildings. “There are simply not enough energy consultants to reach our Climate Change targets. Therefore, we have developed several online tools to empower everyone to make the right discissions for their buildings. People don’t need us to use our tools; they can work with their own contractors, investors and staff to make their real estate more sustainable. Our tools merely give them financial and environmental insights to make investment discissions.”
Every minute, we need to retrofit two homes to reach our Climate Change target.
– Julie Hirigoyen, UK Green Buildings Council
The value of green real estate
According to Julie Hirigoyen, Chief Executive of the UK Green Buildings Council, the value of green buildings is no longer up for discussion. The investors’ sentiment is changing rapidly to sustainability, there is a rental premium for green buildings, and tenants are demanding more green credentials. Currently, the challenge lies within policy and legislation. Sustainability is a long-term investment play, but there is no policy yet for over 20 to 30 years.
Financial institutions enabling the energy transition
Greg Arkus, Head UK Financial Institutions at ING, started his speech by citing James Gorman: “If we don’t have a planet, we’re not going to have a very good financial system”. This quote underlines the key role of investors in changing the system. By providing sustainable products such as green loans and sustainable structured finance deals, ING contributes to greener real estate.
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