JLL pushes for green certifications in real estate industry

Real estate services firm wants more certified green building projects from developers.

April 29, 2018

When developing new projects and spaces, always go for green. 

This is the new mantra that JLL, a leading professional services firm that specializes in real estate and investment management, would like developers to adapt for current and upcoming projects. JLL Philippines Country Head Christophe Vicic says, "All over the world, the commitment to sustainability is already at the forefront of most industries. Real estate is not an exception, and we believe it is important for each industry player to do their part." 

And true to this statement, JLL is giving its full support to having more certified green buildings in central business districts and developments in various parts of the country. Vicic is a member of The Philippine Green Building Council (PHILGBC) Board of Trustees, and actively pushes for programs to further green building certifications such as BERDE and LEED. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, devised by the United States Green Building Council. BERDE (Building for Ecologically Responsive Design Excellence) is the Philippines' national voluntary green building rating system developed by the PHILGBC and is recognized by the government through the Department of Energy's Philippine Energy Efficiency program. 

BERDE verifies and monitors the performance of buildings above and beyond existing mandatory building and environmental regulations and standards. It has three major rating schemes: new construction, retrofits and renovations, and operations. Its core framework includes Energy / Water Efficiency and Conservation, Waste Management, Indoor Environment Quality, and Emissions among others. 

Vicic explains, "While LEED is a good standard in making our buildings more ecologically friendly, BERDE will further our cause even more as it is tailored to fit the systems in place here in the Philippines." BERDE requires the submission of environmental clearances and building permits prescribed by the national and local governments. This serves as a cross-check of the building's compliance with existing legislation and national policies regarding environmental practices in the country. It has also started influencing local government units in developing their own green building ordinances.

He is quick to highlight though, that what ultimately matters is a building is certified under a green building rating tool. "We want the industry to be in a place wherein it's no longer a question of whether you're going green or not, but how green your building will be. The mission is that new buildings are expected to be certified." He adds, "On the part of JLL, we will do what we can to imbibe within our services initiatives to encourage our clients to push for green buildings, and see the value of choosing to develop or be in sustainable spaces."