The GPT Group (“GPT” or “Group”) today announced a further three buildings in the GPT Wholesale Office Fund (“GWOF” or “Fund”) portfolio, 550 Bourke Street, 181 William Street and 530 Collins Street, have achieved carbon neutral certification under NABERS and Climate Active, and in alignment with the international Greenhouse Gas Protocol.
Located in the heart of Melbourne’s corporate precinct, the three buildings add to the Group’s growing list of office buildings to achieve the unified net zero carbon certification, as GPT continue to roll out its Energy Master Plan across the portfolio, as GWOF work towards its target of carbon neutrality by the end of 2020, and the Group towards its recently brought forward target of 2024.
“We are delighted to have set an ambitious target of net zero carbon emissions in 2018 for realisation in 2020 and to be an industry leader in sustainability,” said Martin Ritchie, GWOF Fund Manager. “Now 6 of our 17 office buildings have achieved certification is a great achievement, with the balance on track for completion by year end. This is also delivering benefits to our tenants through savings and assisting them achieve their own targets to reduce emissions.”
To achieve the certification, GPT’s Energy Master Plan focused on energy efficiency, utilising a combination of both on-site and off-site 100 per cent renewable electricity combined with a demand response program to manage electricity loads within the buildings. These initiatives also reduce pressure on the electricity grid, reducing the peak demand charges for a building.
“This involves a number of energy efficiency projects to continue to reduce the intensity of energy, whether that be through LED lighting projects, an update to building management systems, or the implementation of a demand response program, which helps us to manage our peak demand and in turn reduce the costs across our buildings,” said Mark Fookes, Chief Operating Office at GPT.
“Alongside an increased focus on sustainability from all of our stakeholders, reducing our energy costs is certainly a key driver and since 2005 we’ve reduced our energy intensity by 45 per cent, saving over $210 million, as well as reduced emissions by 60 per cent, which equates to 1.5 million tonnes of carbon,” said Mr Fookes.
Where emissions from waste, gas and water are not able to be reduced further, the Fund purchases offsets from Greenfleet, a not-for-profit environmental organisation committed to protecting the climate through forest restoration.
The certification follows on from three buildings in the GWOF portfolio being certified carbon neutral in the past year, with Workplace 6 (48 Pirrama Road, Pyrmont) and 8 Exhibition Street, Melbourne, becoming the first buildings in Australia to achieve the certification under the GHG protocol aligned NABERS and Climate Active pathway, and ONE ONE ONE Eagle Street becoming the first building in Brisbane to achieve the certification.
At the time, Carlos Flores, Director of NABERS, said: “GPT Wholesale Office Fund has a strong track record of industry leadership, including achieving one of the first NABERS Waste ratings and the first use of the Materials Recovery Score. NABERS are delighted to have certified against the Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard, in alignment with the international Greenhouse Gas Protocol. We congratulate GPT for being the first to incorporate data from their certified NABERS Energy, Water and Waste ratings, setting a new bar for robustness in carbon neutral claims.”