In 2014, Bouwinvest took a number of significant steps to further integrate corporate social responsibility into its day-to-day business and refined the pillars of its CSR strategy. This is now based on three pillars: our aim to be a reliable business partner, to increase the sustainability of our real estate investments in cooperation with our stakeholders and our goal to be an ethical and fair employer. This shift to a more refined set of CSR pillars signals a step forward in our journey of linking financial and sustainability ambitions and strategy to create long-term stakeholder value.
Not content to rest on its laurels, Bouwinvest is currently working on a so-called materiality matrix to help the company identify the main sustainability issues and devise a strategy to deal with them on an ongoing basis. This is important because sustainability is about a lot more than the environment and reducing emissions. Real sustainability also embraces ethical, legal, social, compliance, risk and human resources issues.
In today’s ever more demanding environment, a serious CSR strategy has to address all these issues to create sustainable value for an organisation’s stakeholders. The materiality matrix will help us to further boost awareness of how important it is for us to embed ESG criteria in our day-to-day business, and help us to refine our priorities and targets. It is a starting point to further engage with several relevant stakeholder groups in 2015.
CO2 footprint Bouwinvest organisation
In 2012, Bouwinvest started to improve the transparency of the management organisation's CO2 emissions. Last year, we expressed our ambition to make our operations to be carbon neutral by 2020. We have already made significant progress in recent years in reducing our emissions and we took further steps to reduce emissions in 2014. Progress made this year include:
- CO2 emissions from energy consumption fell by 17%, following the introduction of Flex Work 2.0 and the resultant shutdown of two floors at the Bouwinvest office building.
- Renovations related to the introduction of Flex Work 2.0 resulted in a once-only increase of 28% in CO2
emissions on our waste disposal. On a like-for-like basis, our waste emissions remained stable.
- The use of more fuel-efficient lease cars (including hybrid and electric lease cars) resulted in a reduction in CO2 emissions of more than 11%, while the number of kilometres driven increased by 9%.
- A side-effect of an increase in our international real estate allocation was a 36% increase in CO2 emissions from air travel.
These and other measures led to a total reduction in our total CO2 emissions of 4.0% compared to the previous year. Carbon emissions intensity, calculated as tonnes of CO2
/fte dropped by 8.1%. In addition, Bouwinvest purchases renewable energy (electricity) for its entire real estate portfolio. This is part of Bouwinvest’s policy to reduce any negative impact on the environment and stimulate the use of sustainable sources.