Release of climate bond emissions trajectories set to boost green building investment

Brookfield Tower Place, the first green bond certified under the climate bonds standard for low carbon buildings.

Investors can put money in green buildings and be assured they’re helping to meet global climate change targets, following the release of emissions performance trajectories for Australian commercial buildings by the Climate Bonds Initiative.

The trajectories, available for commercial buildings in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Canberra, were set by examining the emissions performance of the top 15 per cent of buildings in their respective markets, then determining a trajectory required to get to net zero emissions by 2050.

According to CBI chief executive Sean Kidney, the release of the trajectories will be a big boost to green building development.

“Release of these emissions performance trajectories should spur green property development in the commercial heart of Australia’s major cities, contributing to local and national emissions reduction targets,” Mr Kidney said.

Ché Wall, director of Flux Consultants and Climate Bonds Initiative low-carbon building technical working group lead specialist, said both property bond issuers and investors would benefit.

“The release of these emissions performance trajectories means property bond issuers have a straightforward means to assess the performance of buildings and portfolios against current and future expectations,” he said.

“Institutional investors and asset managers now have a robust, evidence-based screening tool and green assurance mechanism to help guide property investment decisions.”

Emissions performance targets required to qualify for CBI certification will vary based not only on location, but the time at which the bond is issued and the term of the bond.

Green Building Council of Australia executive director of market transformation Jorge Chapa said the trajectories were an important step for the industry, because “building owners and investors need confidence that their investment decisions are in line with a pathway towards zero carbon”.

“Climate Bonds Initiative provides a simple methodology for building owners to demonstrate to investors and occupants that they are taking action on climate change,” he said.

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