Energy efficiency policies in commercial buildings ‘could be more effective’

Government policy designed to promote energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions in commercial buildings needs to be better understood, more efficiently monitored and easier to enforce, according to a new report.

The report, Carbon Penalties and Incentives, produced by Deloitte for the Green Construction Board, the Property Industry Alliance and Government, argues that the inefficient distribution of policies, their perceived complexity and poor enforcement are the main barriers to cutting emissions in the commercial property sector.

The report makes a number of recommendations, including:

­– developing a better understanding of environmental matters amongst real estate professionals;

– improving environmental performance data to inform owners and occupiers in their choice of business premises;

– having policies which require defined actions over policies which require industry to set in place processes or gather information without any compulsion to act on the findings;

– reducing the perceived complexity of the current policy framework;

– introducing a more systematic and collaborative approach to appraising the effectiveness and impact of green policies and regulations.

Paul King, Chief Executive of the UK Green Building Council, said: “The findings clearly demonstrate that sustainability is now a mainstream issue within the commercial property sector but that a lack of consistency, clarity and enforcement of environmental policy is preventing the industry from realising the full benefits it has to offer.”

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