Greater energy efficiency, better indoor air quality (IAQ), and meeting environmental, social and governance (ESG) guidelines are three objectives currently prioritized by multinational organizations as they face increasing pressure to incorporate their building operations into their sustainability plans, according to a new report from Honeywell and Reuters.
Nearly nine in 10 respondents (87%) say that achieving carbon neutrality in their building portfolio is either extremely (58%) or somewhat (29%) important in relation to their overall ESG goals, with only 4% of respondents calling it unimportant. The sense of urgency is understandable: Commercial building operations currently account for 37% of global energy-related CO2 emissions.¹
“If we fast-forward to 2025, I believe carbon neutrality will be one of the top priorities for organizations, driven partly by new carbon taxation plans and decarbonizing incentives,” said Manish Sharma, vice president and general manager of Sustainable Buildings, Honeywell.
While the surveyed organizations are feeling pressure to act, respondents seem generally optimistic in forecasting progress toward their goals. More than 90% of those surveyed expect to achieve carbon neutrality across their portfolios by 2050, while 62% expect to reach that goal by 2035. Notably, only 8% of respondents say they don’t foresee carbon neutrality ever becoming a reality for their portfolios.
Respondents also noted the business benefits of ramping up sustainability efforts across building portfolios. When asked which three of these benefits they valued most, they indicated:
- Complying with external regulations and investor demands: 90%; with more than 50% of those surveyed ranking it number one
- Increasing productivity and realizing cost reductions: 84%
- Improving brand image: 60%