Stockholm (NordSIP) – DWS’s European real estate business announced its intention to cut carbon emissions by 50% by 2030 for its entire portfolio of European office properties. According to the asset manager, this commitment will lead to an estimated reduction of 61,000 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide emitted annually, equivalent to taking approximately 24,000 diesel cars off the road or saving around 23 million litres of diesel fuel consumption.
DWS Group counts €719 billion in AUM, as of 30 June 2019. A part of the Alternatives platform, the real estate business manages assets worth €60 billion as of June 30, 2019. The firm plans target carbon emissions intensity, defined as carbon emissions per square metres, which is the measure that the asset manager is looking to decrease by 50%. To achieve this goal DWS real estate will invest in energy efficiency solutions to optimise the performance of its properties and increase its engagement with tenants on energy-saving strategies. It will also expand the utilisation of renewable energy through onsite installations, such as solar panels, and the procurement of renewable energy contracts.
“As stewards of our local communities, we are committed to combatting climate change through real estate, a sector which, along with construction, contributes to nearly 40% of global emissions.” said Clemens Schäfer, Head of Real Estate, Europe, at DWS, “By setting a goal to reduce carbon in our portfolio, we can measure, manage and track progress on this commitment. Not only will this process help us to enhance the efficiency of office properties, but we expect these targets to impact positively on the return for our investors, by reducing operating costs, and providing more attractive, quality buildings to tenants and investors alike.”
In 2009 DWS became a founding member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Greenprint Center of Building Performance, an organisation of real estate industry leaders committed to reducing emissions through high-performance buildings. It recently became a signatory to the Better Building Partnership’s landmark commitment to tackle the growing risks of climate change through the delivery of net-zero carbon real estate portfolios by 2050. Currently, a total of €31 billion of DWS’s real estate AUM have achieved “Green Star” recognition in 2019 through the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB).
“At the core of our ESG program is a focus on implementation,” says Jessica Elengical, Head of ESG Strategy for DWS’s Alternatives business. “We believe that, as active asset managers it is important to invest in the sustainability of our properties to protect and enhance long-term value.”