UK REITS are European green champions

MIPIM 2012: Hammerson, Land Securities and British Land are leading the European listed property sector in terms of sustainability.

Leading investor Sander Paul Van Tongeren, head of sustainability GRE at APG Asset Management, said the green credentials of the UK REITS was growing in importance as sustainability increasingly became a focus for global investors.

He told the British Property Federation conference at MIPIM that it was vital that Europe now had a single set of sustainability indicators penned by EPRA and INREV that APG now used to evaluate all investment decisions.

BPF chief executive Liz Peace said the industry had always been “keen on green” and that it remained a vital area of concern despite the recession.

But Chris Grigg, chief executive of British Land, said that although tenants and investors had interest it was not yet at the “top of their lists”.

However, he said that suppliers were increasingly engaged, and with BL’s refit of 199 Bishopsgate, 97% of waste was diverted from landfill for both “cost and ethical reasons”

Philip Parnell, a director at DJD, said valuers were increasingly recognising that less sustainable buildings faced becoming obsolescent more quickly.

He said: “Sustainability is not a luxury of a buoyant market. It is just as relevant now, if not more so. Pricing levels are moving now.”