Verdani Clients Lead on the 2019 GRESB Assessment
Updated: Mar 25
#1 in U.S. Office Non-listed, #2 U.S. Residential Multi-family Non-listed, #3 Northern America Diversified Office/Retail Non-listed, #3 U.S. Industrial Distribution Non-listed, #1, 2 and 3 in the Resilience Module, plus four GRESB 5 Star and four GRESB 4 Star Ratings
Verdani Partners is proud to announce the exemplary performance of their clients in the 2019 GRESB Assessment -- Verdani submitted 29 GRESB assessments on behalf of their 11 national and international real estate portfolio clients. CommonWealth Partners earned Regional Sector Leader and 1st in the U.S. Office Non-listed sector, GID earned 2nd rank in U.S Residential Multi-family Non-listed, Jamestown Properties ranked 3rd in Northern America Diversified Office/Retail Non-listed and Clarion Partners earned #3 in U.S. Industrial Distribution Non-listed. In addition, five funds ranked in the top three, six funds ranked in the top five, nine funds ranked in the top ten, and eight funds increased their scores between an impressive 11 and 24 percent in one year from 2018 to 2019.
“Our clients are true innovators in the industry, heeding the urgent call to increase sustainability, resilience and environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance across their portfolios. We value our clients’ collaborative vision and determination to achieve these prestigious recognitions and we are proud to partner with such proactive firms.” said Jessica Loeper, Vice President of Verdani Partners.
GRESB assesses and benchmarks the environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance of real assets worldwide since 2009. GRESB monitors progress towards global sustainability goals, guided specifically by what the industry and investors consider to be material issues in the performance of real estate assets in alignment with international reporting frameworks such as GRI and PRI. According to the 2019 GRESB Real Estate Results report, GRESB has grown to include more than 1,005 entities and over 100,000 assets across 64 countries, covering USD 4.1 trillion in real estate gross asset value, continuing to guide investors towards a more sustainable industry.
Image: Lines depict individual GRESB submissions. A solid line indicates a fund or corporation results with Verdani support. A dotted line indicates results before Verdani support.
Exceptional accomplishments of CommonWealth Partners’ ongoing sustainability program reinforce their performance within the top 2% of all global real estate participants on GRESB. Since starting the program in 2013, CommonWealth Partners (CWP) has held over 75 stakeholder engagement events, from environmental awareness campaigns to health and well-being activities, that have supported their excellent ESG outcomes. In 2018, through the collaborative efforts of their property managers, engineers and tenants, CWP realized a 22.8% energy use reduction and 44.3% CO2 emissions intensity reduction since 2013, surpassing their 2020 energy and CO2 emissions reduction targets three years early. Also in 2018, the portfolio achieved 62% of electricity consumed from renewable energy sources through existing utility providers. CommonWealth Partners also achieved 100% LEED certification, comprised of 54% Platinum and 46% Gold certifications, and benchmarked over 94% of their portfolio on ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, with 63.5% of properties achieving the ENERGY STAR label. In 2018 and 2019, CWP was awarded ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year and in 2018, awarded Green Lease Leader Landlord Gold Certification. To further deepen their commitment to ESG, CommonWealth Partners set a Science Based Target to reduce scope 1 and 2 emissions by 50% per square feet by 2030 and aligned their strategy with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. Learn more about how Verdani helped CWP reached #1 on GRESB in Verdani’s CommonWealth Partners’ 2019 GRESB Blog
GID has also consistently climbed the ranks in the GRESB assessment since 2017, with high scores in the Social and Governance categories. In 2019, GID achieved an excellent overall score, placing 2nd in their peer group and 5th globally in their peer group (out of 74). These outstanding results have placed GID within the top 6% of all global real estate participants. GID also received its first GRESB 5 Star Rating, representing continued excellence in ESG management and implementation. Since 2016, when GID launched their sustainability program across all areas of the company, they reduced energy use intensity by 3.61%, carbon emissions intensity by 3.19% and achieved eight ENERGY STAR certifications. They retrofitted 28 communities with LED lighting systems, projected to save 4,762 MWh annually and completed two commercial solar systems in Massachusetts, totaling 824 kW of renewable energy generation capacity. As a result, they earned the ULI Greenprint Award for the most efficiency projects completed in 2018. GID also has strong social programs such as Windsor’s California Wildlife Relief fund to support victims of the California wildfires and they signed on to the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion pledge to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. GID also aligned sustainability program goals with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. Learn more about GID’s ESG accomplishment in their GRESB Press Release
2019 Resilience Module
In the GRESB 2019 Resilience Module, Verdani submitted over 12% of the total number of all participating global real estate funds, resulting in one #1 rank for Jamestown Properties in their peer group and #2 globally in their peer group, one #2 rank for Parkway in peer group, and two #3 ranks for CommonWealth Partners and GID in their peer groups. Verdani's extensive resilience and climate change programs support our client’s leading performance, addressing key areas such as risk assessment, developing a resilience plan, implementing emergency preparedness measures and reporting climate-related financial disclosures.
Verdani's ongoing corporate sustainability and ESG programs support clients such as CommonWealth Partners, GID, Clarion Partners, Parkway, Jamestown Properties, American Realty Advisors, Colony Capital and The Howard Hughes Corporation. Together, we continue to accelerate significant progress towards our clients’ targets and goals and to scale sustainability in the built environment. Learn more our clients and read their annual sustainability reports
We are thrilled with our clients’ achievements and recognitions!
1st rank for CommonWealth Partners U.S. Office Non-listed, scoring 25% above its peers, and performing within the top 2% of all GRESB real estate participants
2nd rank for GID, U.S. Residential Multi-family Non-listed, scoring 30% above its peers, and performing within the top 6% of all GRESB real estate participants
3rd rank for Jamestown Properties, U.S. Diversified Office/Retail Non-listed, and performing within the top 7% of all GRESB real estate participants
5 funds rank in top 3 in their peer group
6 funds rank in top 5 in their peer group
9 funds rank in top 10 in their peer group
3 funds scored over 90 points
9 funds scored over 80 points
8 funds or corporations increased their scores between 11% and 24% in one year from 2018 to 2019, including The Howard Hughes Corporation, whose score increased by 23% and Colony Capital, whose score increased by 24%
6 funds increased their scores between 30% and 80% since starting to work with Verdani
Green Stars :
4 funds earned GRESB 5 Star Ratings
4 funds earned GRESB 4 Star Ratings
CommonWealth Partners earned Green Stars 6 years in a row, and the GRESB 5 Star Rating for the 3rd year in a row
Jamestown Properties maintained their GRESB 5 Star Rating
GID earned its first GRESB 5 Star Rating
Parkway earned its first GRESB 5 Star Rating
1st rank for Jamestown Properties in their peer group and 2nd globally in their peer group
2nd rank for Parkway in their peer group
3rd rank for CommonWealth Partners and GID in their peer groups
Verdani Partners submitted over 12% of the total number of the participating global real estate funds
Ongoing Sustainability and ESG Management Programs
Verdani Partners supports clients with comprehensive ESG strategies to align their corporate goals with sustainability metrics and targets. We develop corporate sustainability and ESG programs that include short and long-term goals, policies, reporting, and data management infrastructure which help to track progress towards ESG targets and goals. By improving operational performance and strengthening relationships among stakeholders, we improve overall ESG performance for real estate portfolios.
Beyond optimizing performance, we empower our clients to validate their performance through participating in industry assessments like GRESB and other globally respected benchmarks. High GRESB scores are associated with high quality management and strong operational and financial performance of real assets. Participating in peer comparisons and industry benchmarks gives our clients a sense of their progress and keeps them competitive in the marketplace. The strong performance of our clients in the 2019 GRESB Assessment and Resilience Module reflects the accomplishments from our collaborative partnership to work together on an ongoing basis to strengthen our clients’ ESG programs.
“We are proud of the contributions we have made to sustainability and resilience in the real estate sector.” said Daniele Horton, Verdani’s Founder and President. She stated that, “Industry benchmarks like GRESB are a big part of driving solutions to the urgent global challenges we face today such as climate change, which is one of today’s most pressing challenges for real estate managers and investors, as sea level rise, heat stress and severe weather events create vulnerabilities not only for individual buildings, but also on a larger scale for communities and cities. Verdani is proud to be part of the solution as we strive to make an impact across client portfolios to improve sustainability performance and drive further innovation in the industry.”
2019 GRESB Global Real Estate Analysis
The 2019 global results from the GRESB Real Estate Assessment show an average increased score of 72, up from 68 in 2018, indicating that the real estate sector is cumulatively improving sustainability performance. A regional analysis of results show Oceania region real estate companies and funds lead the world in sustainability performance for a solid 9 years in a row with an average score of 81 in 2019 compared to the global average of 72. Both European and American real estate sectors nearly tied with Europe scoring 71 and America scoring 72. The North American GRESB participants represent the largest in dollar terms globally, whereas Europe leads in transparency. Source
Highlights of 2019 Real Estate Results:
Over 90% of GRESB participants have fully integrated multiple ESG objectives into their business strategy, with 97% of organizations employing a dedicated associate for sustainability
The majority of GRESB participants used external consultants (79%) in 2019, compared to less than 30% in 2012. Organizations typically engage a third-party for specialized services, such as external data management (74% used external systems).
Sustainability task forces are becoming common practice, with 98% of 2019 participants having one in place. Importantly, 62% of the task forces include a Board of Directors representative.
Community engagement and impact monitoring is improving, with 79% of GRESB participants monitoring community impact (8% increase over 2018) and 93% of participants have a community engagement program that includes sustainability-specific issues
Diversity monitoring of governance bodies and employees is increasing, with 91% reporting on diversity in the 2019 Assessment. 77% of participants report on gender ratio, which serves as the most commonly tracked diversity metric across all regions.
Learn more about all results in the full 2019 Real Estate GRESB Results Report
GRESB Results Event in San Francisco September 26th
Verdani Founder and President, Daniele Horton, spoke about Resilience Module Results at the 2019 GRESB Real Estate Results Event for North America on Thursday, September 26 in San Francisco. This event was hosted by GRESB Global Partner Measurabl and GRESB Member Boston Properties, supported by GRESB Premier Partner Verdani Partners. Learn more about the event.
Greenbuild Expo 2019
We also welcome you to join us at the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo in Atlanta, Georgia from November 19 – 22, 2019. Former U.S. President Barack Obama will be the conference’s keynote speaker and Verdani Partners will be presenting the following panels:
Turning Risk into Opportunity for Commercial Real Estate
Daniele Horton and Shubha Maheshwari
Session B07, November 20th at 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM
The Intersection of Resilience and Sustainability, Jessica Loeper
Session E05, Thursday, November 21, 2019 at 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM
Learn more about the Greenbuild Expo
About Verdani Partners
Verdani Partners is an industry-leading, full-service sustainability consulting firm with over 20 years of experience in sustainable real estate and actively manages over 800 million square feet across 4,300 properties with USD $650 billion AUM. Serving as an owners’ representative for environmental, social, governance (ESG) management, Verdani provides clients with a team of sustainability experts that work within their organizations to develop and manage customized programs on an ongoing basis. Verdani’s clients leverage the team of professionals, state-of-the-art tools and resources, and industry connections to advance their portfolios, minimize risk and create long-term value.
Verdani is a GRESB Premier Partner and member of the GRESB Benchmarking Committee. They manage GRESB reporting and create annual sustainability reports for some of the top real estate firms in the world. The certification team at Verdani manages a wide range of certification systems such as Fitwel, LEED, ENERGY STAR, USGBC’s ARC Platform, WELL, Green Globes, BREEAM, IREM, and more. Verdani’s corporate sustainability, green building certifications, technical services and communications departments and educational programs bring an impressive breadth of expertise to each client, portfolio and project. For more information, visit www.verdani.com
Mission-driven and investor-led, GRESB is the environmental, social and governance (ESG) benchmark for real assets. GRESB works in collaboration with the industry to provide standardized and validated ESG data to the capital markets. The 2019 real estate benchmark covers more than 1,000 property companies, real estate investment trusts (REITs), funds, and developers. Their coverage for infrastructure includes 500 infrastructure funds and assets. Combined, GRESB represents over USD 4 trillion in real asset value. More than 100 institutional investors, with over USD 22 trillion AUM, use GRESB data to monitor their investments, engage with their managers, and make decisions that lead to a more sustainable real asset industry. Learn more at GRESB.com