Australian property companies the most sustainable in the world

Australian property companies have taken out top position for the 12th consecutive year, in the GRESB Real Estate Assessment ranking for sustainability.

GRESB is the global benchmark for environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance of real assets, defining and measuring standards for sustainability performance.

The 2022 benchmark saw GRESB’s largest-ever growth in total numbers, with a 20 per cent increase in real estate participation.

Oceania maintains the highest regional average score of 82 in the Standing Benchmark and 88 in the Development Benchmark.

Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) CEO Davina Rooney said Australian companies continue to perform well in sustainability and it’s pleasing to see this reflected in the global results.

“Eliminating emissions from the built environment will require a lot of heavy lifting from our entire industry. In Australia we’re seeing a lot of big and small players in our industry take great strides toward the goal of a healthier, net zero future,” Ms Rooney said.

“We applaud all of the companies who have been recognised in the GRESB leaderboards, as well as the many other companies that are showing impressive leadership in this area.”

Property Council of Australia Chief Executive Ken Morrison said there is growing demand from the investment community for robust disclosure of sustainability credentials from property sector organisations.

“GRESB continues to deliver these key insights and encourages investment flows to more sustainable projects and organisations,” Mr Morrison said.

“Australian companies are once again leading overall scores and providing a blueprint for other jurisdictions to follow in the transition to a resilient and de-carbonised economy. Australia cannot achieve its net zero goals without the built environment.

“Australian leadership is a testament to the innovation, collaboration and sustainability ambition of our industry and merits the global recognition on display in this year’s results.”

Head of Asia Pacific at GRESB, Ruben Langbroek said decarbonising the built environment is one of the greatest challenges the global real assets industry faces today. 

“We are proud to see the real estate sector in Oceania remain steadfast in its commitment to ESG transparency and performance and continue to lead the way in creating a more sustainable future for all with every passing year,” Mr Langbroek said.

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Rowan Crosby

Rowan Crosby is a freelance journalist specialising in finance and real estate.