Focus on material topics
The focus of the Office Fund's sustainability strategy is on reducing the environmental impact of the office assets in its portfolio. It does so by exerting a direct influence on the larger (public) areas of the buildings or complexes, and by investing in improvements that benefit existing and potential tenants. The Fund actively cooperates with existing tenants and potential tenants on initiatives to optimise comfort and energy efficiency. Teamwork is also executed with external property managers to provide comfortable, safe and convenient office and public spaces in assets.
Monitoring environmental performance data (energy and water consumption, greenhouse gas emissions and waste) is an important part of managing sustainability issues. The Fund tracks and aims to improve the environmental performance of its managed real estate assets: those properties where the Fund is responsible for purchasing and managing consumption. The Fund reports on energy consumption (electricity, heating and gas: the energy components) for multi-tenant assets which translates to greenhouse gas emissions.
The Fund has set clear targets for the period 2016-2018:
Energy: average annual reduction 2%
GHG emissions: average annual reduction 2%
Water: average annual reduction 2%
Waste: increase recycling percentage
Renewable energy: increase percentage renewable energy
In 2016, the Fund managed to cut energy consumption by 4.8% (2015: 6.1%) contributing to a total cut in energy consumption of 12.0% in the period 2012-2016 on a like for like basis.
The Fund has been actively tracking water consumption in multi-tenant assets since 2012. Data is provided by the property manager and is based on invoices and manual visual readings. The Fund tracked waste management for its entire managed real estate portfolio in 2016. The focus is on those assets which the Fund is responsible for and can influence the waste handled on site and mostly involves multi-tenant office assets. No waste is sent directly to landfill.
The Fund’s ambition to increase the coverage and therefore the transparency of its environmental impact according to INREV sustainability guidelines is reflected in the summary of key CSR data. For more detailed information please see the CSR performance indicators at the end of this annual report.
Energy consumption in offices
Although we take a broad view of sustainability, the environmental focus of our sustainability strategy has been on enhancing the energy efficiency of the properties in the portfolio and cutting service costs.
The Fund has performed energy assessments for all the assets in its portfolio and these have all been assigned energy labels. The distribution of energy labels will improve the coming years as a result of ongoing renovations and refitting of the 2014 acquisitions. The energy efficiency measures introduced during the upgrade of the former Citroën Buildings (The Olympic 1931 and The Olympic 1962), such as heat and cold storage (WKO), the installation of LED lighting systems combined with presence detectors and solar panels, will improve the energy label significantly. Improvement of energy efficiency wil continue for all assets, especially for currently underperforming assets. With an average energy index of 1.12 and label B, the Fund is ahead of future legislation requiring office buildings to have a minimum energy label C.
In 2016, the Office Fund conducted a successful pilot with the Energy Navigator, a web-based tool that provides rapid insight into the energy performance of an office building and potential cost-saving measures. The tool divides the energy label into an asset and a unique operational label; a building with an efficiently A label can have an operational use that is more in line with a less efficient G label. The Energy Navigator provides an easy way to find and resolve energy wastage. It also enables early detection of deviations, which can help put an office building back on track to meet energy performance targets.
For WTC The Hague the Energy Navigator detected potential energy savings of € 2.72/m2, totalling more than € 200.000,- of average energy savings a year (25-30% of the energy invoicel) and 2.168 million kg CO2 savings. A project will start in 2017 to realise these potential savings.
One unique feature of the Energy Navigator is that it is operated remotely, eliminating the need for visual inspections and extensive on-site studies. The Energy Navigator measures the amount of electricity, gas and heat/cold which moves through the main meters. The values are set off against meteorological data and the building’s characteristics. Data on energy use at the main meter level helps identify opportunities for savings without any need to enter the building itself. Smart adaptations in the building, installations and user behaviour can then be combined to realise savings on energy consumption that can run as high as 20-40% of total consumption. The increase in comfort for users of the building is an added bonus. The Fund is investigating the possibility of more widespread application of the Energy Navigator in 2017.
BREEAM-NL: getting buildings ready for the future
Sustainability is no longer a feature in the current market. It is a given. Because BREEAM-NL only measures the criteria that go beyond legislative requirements, it provides certainty that a project exceeds average market standards. The BREEAM rating implicitly also reflects the exposure to regulatory and environmental risks: the better the BREEAM rating, the lower the risk.
The BREEAM-NL In-Use EXCELLENT certificate for the WTC The Hague was an acceptional achievement in 2016. With a BREEAM-NL In-Use Excellent score (****) at both Asset and Building Management level, WTC The Hague is the most sustainable multi-tenant office building in the Netherlands. It is a tribute to our efforts over the past years to make our buildings more sustainable. It shows we are on the right track with our sustainability ambitions.
In 2016, all office spaces in the portfolio, except for the listed part of WTC Rotterdam, were given a BREEAM in-Use Quick Scan (75% of the Fund). We subsequently launched certification processes for six assets with the long-term objective of a minimum BREEAM-NL In-Use score of Good at Asset level. BREEAM-NL In-Use assesses the sustainability performance of existing buildings on three levels: Asset, Building Management and Occupier Management
At the moment, 80% of the target is BREEAM certified. But BREEAM certification is just the starting point for improving the quality of our portfolio. The performance of each property can now be tracked and it ensures that we do what is needed to future-proof them. The following step is to continue to improve the actual performance, for instance by reducing our energy use and carbon emissions, as well as improving the health and safety in our assets.
BREEAM-NL In-Use Asset Score
BREEAM-NL In-Use Building Management Score
Nieuwe Vaart (Arthur van Schendelstraat 500)
Nieuwe Vaart (Arthur van Schendelstraat 550)
Nieuwe Vaart (Arthur van Schendelstraat 600)
WTC Den Haag