Press Release: Real Estate Companies Continue To Drive Energy Reductions


12 March, 2020

Today the Better Buildings Partnership (BBP) publishes the latest results from its Real Estate Environmental Benchmark, which captures trends in operational performance from some of the largest commercial property owners in the UK.

The results are published in two publicly available reports on the BBP’s website:

  1. The 2019 Real Estate Environmental Benchmarks: which provides updated performance benchmarks for energy and water, giving the industry an indication of what is considered “best practice”; and
  2. The 2019 Energy Snapshot: which highlights key energy performance trends of BBP members’ portfolios.

Main Findings:

  • The dataset continues to grow, with an 8% increase in floor area in the past year and a 160% increase since 2010/11.
  • The energy intensity of properties submitted into REEB continues to improve year-on-year, achieving a 25% improvement over the past 9 years.
  • Members also improved the like-for-like energy consumption of 729 properties by 3.3% in the last year.

Based on the annual utility consumption data of the commercial property portfolios of BBP members, the Benchmark report provides energy and water performance benchmarks for offices, shopping centres, shopping villages, retail parks, leisure parks, industrial parks and car parks, which can be used by others to compare the performance of their buildings. The Energy Snapshot report gives a more detailed look at how energy efficiency has changed over time.

The initiative, now in its ninth year, has continued to grow with 2019 being the biggest data collection exercise to date, which saw 31 companies submit data on over 1,000 commercial properties. With the permission of BBP members, the data is made available on an anonymous basis to help inform sector-wide initiatives and support a wide range of research projects in this important field.

The Real Estate Environmental Benchmark (REEB) is one of the only benchmarks based on the performance of buildings ‘in-use’ and is increasingly becoming the industry standard used by investors, fund managers and property owners to compare the performance of commercial properties across the UK.
Sarah Ratcliffe, CEO of the Better Buildings Partnership:
“Gathering data on the actual in-use energy performance of commercial assets is the only way for the industry to get to grips with the size of the prize as far as climate change is concerned. REEB provides a critical insight into the energy efficiency of our members’ assets and, importantly, establishes benchmarks that can be used by the wider industry to compare performance and drive change.”
Quinten Babcock, Environmental Manager at Transport for London:
“For me operational energy data is the only way we can start to improve the performance of our current building stock in order for it to be “Paris proof”. This should be mandated (with locked in targets to improve over time), but until then, the only option is REEB for offices and shopping centres.”
Louise Ellison, Head of Sustainability at Hammerson:
“Our understanding of the operational energy performance of our assets reveals the results of good management and unlocks opportunities for investment in efficiencies.  Without this data, we would simply be working in the dark (but with the lights left on!)”