A City of Sydney-led initiative has helped participating members reduce carbon emissions in their buildings by a staggering 52 percent.

Set up in 2011, the Better Buildings Partnership is a collaboration of major property owners with a $105 billion property portfolio.

According to GRESB head of Asia-Pacific, Ruben Langbroek, the partnership is driving Australia’s world-leading sustainable building results with the latest annual report showing that its members are on track to exceed the 70 percent emission reduction target (based on a 2006 baseline) well ahead of the 2030 deadline.

Langbroek said the results are consistent with GRESB data that reveals the Australian property sector has emerged as a global leader in energy efficiency, emission reductions and diverting waste from landfill.

While Better Buildings Partnership members are based in Sydney, they manage properties across the country and are driving great positive change in how buildings are constructed and operated in Australia, says Langbroek.

He added that institutional investors were demanding greater transparency when it came to the environmental performance of their real estate investment portfolio, resulting in Australia’s prime building portfolio being increasingly valued globally.

The Better Buildings Partnership initiative began with the Lord Mayor Clover Moore bringing together Sydney’s major commercial landlords in 2011 to present the scale of the climate challenge and the City’s ambitious target of a 70 percent reduction in emissions by 2030.

This meeting led to some of Sydney’s biggest building owners and building managers, who accounted for 54 percent of all commercial office space in the city centre and 35 percent across the local government area, signing up to the City’s targets.

These outcomes were achieved in just seven years and reflect the success of the long term collaboration between government and the private sector.

More organisations have come on board with the property portfolio growing 14 percent since its inception. Some of the impressive achievements of the Better Buildings Partnership include 52 precent reduction in emissions; 36 percent reduction in potable water use; $33 million savings in electricity bills; 43 precent energy reduction; and 8000 tonnes of rehomed furniture.

The BBP chair and Dexus head of Group Sustainability, Paul Wall, said the results reflected the ability of Sydney’s building owners to drive business growth while reducing carbon pollution.

Wall added that Sydney’s major property owners continue to lead the world in sustainability, delivering super-efficient, liveable and resilient buildings and enhancing the city’s reputation as a global investment destination.

Future goals of the partnership include net zero emissions across all buildings, better waste data recording, 80 per cent strip out waste recovery, better data insights and systematic green leasing.

The Better Buildings Partnership is directed by a leadership panel comprising of senior representatives from each member organisation. The leadership panel meets quarterly to set the overall vision and strategic direction of the partnership including targets and develop the annual work program.

Partners include AMP Capital, Brookfield, Charter Hall, City of Sydney, DEXUS, Frasers Property, The GPT Group, Investa, ISPT, LendLease, Mirvac, Stockland, University of Sydney, Sydney TAFE, and University of Technology Sydney.