Investa’s ESG strategy targets ‘net zero’ for scope 1 and 2 emissions (by FY25), and an improvement to their scope 3 emissions through the reduction of embodied carbon in capital works projects. In 2020 Investa worked with The Footprint CompanyTM (TFC) to develop an approach to achieving this, which included using the Footprint Calculator to reduce capital works projects’ carbon emissions.
The goal of this collaboration was a 45% reduction in embodied carbon on selected projects. Happily, since 2021, Investa has achieved this on all projects to which the calculator was applied.
How we’re working together to reduce embodied carbon across Investa’s property portfolio
Embedding reductions at design stage for greater impact
To start Investa’s reduction journey, TFC completed a scope 3 evaluation of their capital works program to establish the required reduction targets for materials and design. Targets were set based on detailed embodied carbon assessment as well as benchmarking prevailing standard works specifications.
Given Investa’s high-end design standards, a large part of the initial work was demonstrating the quality finishes that could be achieved while still making big cuts to embodied carbon. TFC prepared a visual palette to help the capital works team understand the level of finish available at different reduction levels.
New ‘High-Performance Design Guidelines’ were developed. These integrated the embodied carbon performance targets for various standard designs to help embed carbon reductions from inception, and influence the supply chain.
Helping the supply chain adapt and innovate
This initial work has allowed Investa to essentially set carbon ‘budgets’ to guide designers and contractors. Embedding reduction targets from the start of each project allows for the greatest possible reduction at the lowest cost. Importantly, it helps creates an environment that encourages designers and the materials supply chain to start to innovate to meet these carbon budgets, while still delivering a high-quality project.
To help Investa’s supply chain embrace the innovation opportunities their ESG strategy presented, TFC trained 20 consultants and contractors. The training included:
- Embodied carbon and its relationship to design and materials.
- The process of setting the targets and how to validate designs.
- Training builders to use the calculator for tendering and validating final as-built works.
Design development meetings
TFC participates in design development and co-ordination meetings for all projects to provide design and material advice during project development. These meetings can include not only the architect, but also interior designers, structural consultants, services consultants, lighting consultants and project managers.
We contribute to many aspects of the project to facilitate carbon reductions: from the point of demolition to material selections, services changes and final project completion. Having everyone on the journey from the start has been critical to achieving meaningful carbon reduction on Investa’s projects.
Tools and software
On capital works projects, TFC’s carbon management software platform – The Footprint CalculatorTM – enables:
- Carbon performance targets for business case development.
- Measurement of concept stage design and validation of target achievements.
- Integration of targets into the procurement process.
- Continuous validation of as-built by contractors.
- Annual outcomes reporting to Investa, in a quantitative format.
More than 30 carbon-reduced projects delivered
Over the past 3 years, we’ve worked on 30+ projects together. These projects have been refurbishments, refits and fit-outs on properties around Sydney. Projects include lift lobbies, spec suites, amenities, lift car works, end-of-trip facilities and more. For projects with a carbon ‘budget’, our work covered the early design stage through to delivery. This enabled Investa to measure and reduce carbon across these capital works projects.
19,800t of CO2-e avoided so far
We’ve helped Investa avoid approximately 19,800t CO2-e. That’s equivalent to running the entire 201 Kent Street building for 6 years. We’re so proud to be part of that story!
We’ve worked on:
- 201 Kent Street – HVAC replacement / upgrade and speculative fit-outs.
- 420 George Street – entry lobby and speculative fit-outs.
- 1 Market Street – ground floor lobby and on floor amenities
- 347 Kent Street – base building upgrade and new lobby / façade and speculative fit outs.
- 135 King Street – new entry lobby and façade.