Industry Initiatives

Numerous reporting and benchmarking tools and initiatives now exist to allow property companies to report the environmental performance of their buildings and operations. The following provides a number of the most common used by our members. When deciding which to use for your own organisation it is important focus on the issues that are material to your business, how you plan to use the information and how such initiatives will help you report performance to key stakeholders.

Building Level

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC): a tool advising owners, potential buyers and occupiers of the potential energy efficiency of a building and are required by law to be displayed in marketing literature when a building is built, sold or let. EPC is the tool used to set the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard for non-domestic properties which will come into force in April 2018.

Display Energy Certificate (DEC): a tool advising owners and occupiers of the actual energy performance of a building over a 12 month period i.e. how much energy it used in a year. A legal requirement for all public authorities and institutions providing public services in a building with a total floor area over 500m2.

Real Estate Environmental Benchmark (REEB): a publicly available operational benchmark of environmental performance for commercial property in the UK.

BREEAM: the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method is an international green building certification system that measures a building’s design against a set of performance categories. Developed in the UK and administered by the Building Research Institute (BRE).

LEED: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is an international green building certification system that measures a building’s design against a set of performance categories. Developed in the US and administered by the US Green Building Council.

SKA: A UK labelling system, led by the RICS, which is designed to rate and compare the environmental performance of fit-outs in office and retail buildings.

Portfolio/ Fund/ Company Level

Global Reporting Initiative (GRI): a Sustainability Reporting Framework that is widely by organisations internationally. GRI provides sector guidance and for real estate it has published the GRI Construction and Real Estate Supplement (GRI CRESS).

European Public Real Estate Association (EPRA): produces best practice guidance on reporting and accounting for European listed property companies and REITs. It has produced the EPRA Best Practices Recommendations on Sustainability Reporting which builds upon relevant mandatory reporting requirements and voluntary initiatives, in particular the GRI CRESS.

European Association for Investors in Non-Listed Real Estate Vehicles (INREV): develops and shares best practise on the non-listed real estate industry. INREV has created Sustainability Reporting Recommendations designed to set out the relevant sustainability information they believe should be included in non-listed funds’ annual reports to investors.

ISO 14001: a voluntary international standard for organisations operating an Environmental Management System (EMS).

IPD EcoPAS: launched in 2012 EcoPAS (Eco-Portfolio Analysis Service) is a benchmarking service that identifies and highlights the potential environmental risks in a real estate investment portfolio. EcoPAS focuses on environmental variables thought likely to impact asset and portfolio values, as well as performance, and demonstrates the extent to which investors are facing greater or lesser risks than their competitors.

GRESB: The Global Real Estate Environmental Benchmark (GRESB) is an industry-driven benchmarking platform which assess the sustainability performance of real estate portfolios (public, private and direct) around the globe. The benchmark is used by institutional investors to understand the sustainability performance of their investment portfolio, and the global property sector at large.

CDP: a voluntary reporting initiative whereby thousands of companies around the globe report greenhouse gas emissions, energy use and the risks and opportunities relating to climate change.

PRI: the PRI requires its asset owner and investment manager signatories to report on how they govern and implement responsible investment. A reporting framework provides a set of standardised indicators relevant for all investors, with separate pathways for direct and indirect investors and specific asset class modules. There is one specific module for Direct Property Investments.


CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme: a requirement for large public and private sector organisations in the UK that meet the qualification criteria to report carbon emissions and buy and surrender allowances equal to the  emissions they generated. The Environment Agency is the UK scheme administrator.

GHG Reporting Regulations: a requirement from the Climate Change Act 2008 for all UK quoted companies to report on their greenhouse gas emissions as part of their annual Directors’ Report.

Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme Regulations (ESOS): a mandatory energy assessment scheme requiring organisations in the UK that meet the qualification criteria to carry out an ESOS assessment every four years. The Environment Agency is the UK scheme administrator.