The Elusive Business Case for Green Building

Wednesday 04th February 2015

The tenant-landlord exchange was once simple: a certain rent entitled you to a certain quality of space. Sustainability has changed the dialogue with tenants in a dramatic way. There’s more talk than ever about how a more sustainable building can benefit its occupants, and even help businesses retain employees. Despite these changes, we have a long way to go before businesses can generate metrics showing that healthier workspaces make for more productive employees.

The World Green Building Council’s (WorldGBC’s) latest reportHealth, Wellbeing and Productivity in Offices highlights a number of metrics that would demonstrate the effects of green buildings on employee health, wellbeing and productivity. More importantly, it suggests a framework building owners and tenants can use to collect and analyze the data needed to generate these metrics.

This framework could produce the much sought-after metrics to prove that green building boost bottom lines—if tenants and owners are up to the task.

To begin to answer that question, B+H co-hosted an exclusive roundtable session with the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC). As the official Canadian launch of the WorldGBC’s new report, we invited developers, tenants, designers and real estate professionals to discuss the report’s recommendations.“The report lays out multiple metrics—is that going to confuse tenants?” asks National Research Council's Guy Newsham. “Can they engage with all that information?”

The result is this video - click here to watch.

The tenant-landlord exchange was once simple: a certain rent entitled you to a certain quality of space. Sustainability has changed the dialogue with tenants in a dramatic way. There’s more talk than ever about how a more sustainable building can benefit its occupants, and even help businesses retain employees. Despite these changes, we have a long way to go before businesses can generate metrics showing that healthier workspaces make for more productive employees.

The World Green Building Council’s (WorldGBC’s) latest reportHealth, Wellbeing and Productivity in Offices highlights a number of metrics that would demonstrate the effects of green buildings on employee health, wellbeing and productivity. More importantly, it suggests a framework building owners and tenants can use to collect and analyze the data needed to generate these metrics.

This framework could produce the much sought-after metrics to prove that green building boost bottom lines—if tenants and owners are up to the task.

To begin to answer that question, B+H co-hosted an exclusive roundtable session with the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC). As the official Canadian launch of the WorldGBC’s new report, we invited developers, tenants, designers and real estate professionals to discuss the report’s recommendations.“The report lays out multiple metrics—is that going to confuse tenants?” asks National Research Council's Guy Newsham. “Can they engage with all that information?”

The result is this video - click here to watch.