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Retail real estate needs Paris-proof decarbonisation strategy – new report

A new report from BPIE marks the launch of Paris-Proof Retail Real Estate, an initiative to develop a vision and strategy to support the European retail real-estate sector reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement.

26 February 2021

The UNEP 2020 Global Status Report for Buildings and Construction shows that decarbonisation efforts and energy efficiency improvements are being outpaced by the increase of extreme weather conditions, rapidly expanding floor area and growth in demand for energy-consuming services.

The retail real estate sector is interested in increasing the sustainability of its buildings and with a renovation rate of about 4.4%/year, the opportunities abound: more than 60% of the retail stock will be upgraded by 2030, a unique trigger point to introduce sustainable solutions and apply the best available clean technology and low-carbon materials.

However, many developers and owners are still unsure how to prepare for a zero-carbon journey. This report is a status quo analysis of existing policy and market approaches to climate change actions and strategies relevant to the retail real estate sector. The report consists of three main sections:

  • A review of existing EU legislation that impacts the decarbonisation of the sector.
  • An overview of market initiatives including metrics and targets, definitions of zero-carbon buildings and other tools available to the RRE community that could provide critical pointers towards the appropriate level of ambition in terms of low-carbon performance.
  • A brief discussion of the challenges and opportunities related to carbon measurement, setting targets, and developing and implementing mitigation strategies.


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