Orchard Street expands ESG commitment with launch of net zero carbon targets

Orchard Street Investment Management (‘Orchard Street’), the specialist commercial property investment manager, announces an expansion of its ESG efforts through a commitment to become a net zero carbon business by 2050. Orchard Street will publish a 2030 net zero carbon transition strategy in 2021 and is beginning the net zero carbon journey immediately by targeting a 25% reduction in occupier carbon intensity by 2025. Occupier carbon emissions represent over 90% of the business’ total carbon footprint.

The commitments were announced in Orchard Street’s annual 2020 Responsible Investment Report, alongside an ambitious range of targets aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, including measuring and reporting the value generated by Responsible Investment and using climate change scenario analysis completed in 2020 to further improve risk management for clients. These commitments mark the next stage on Orchard Street’s bold responsible investment journey and follow the appointment of Lora Brill as the business’ first Head of Responsibility & ESG in November last year. Other notable ESG activities undertaken by the business in 2020 include securing planning permission for the re-development of a carbon neutral industrial site in Surrey, delivering BREEAM Excellent and EPC A+ ratings for an industrial redevelopment in West London, and repositioning Bauhaus, its Manchester office asset, to achieve WELL Gold Core + Shell certification in December 2020. Bauhaus is the only refurbished office building in the UK to have secured this certification.

The strong track record of Orchard Street on Responsible Investment has been recognised through its admission to the Better Buildings Partnership, an industry-wide collaboration of the UK’s leading commercial property owners who are working together to improve the sustainability of existing commercial building stock.

As part of Orchard Street’s commitment to transparency, the 2020 Responsible Investment Report’s environmental data and achievement of 100% of the business’ 2019/20 targets have been assured by Upstream Sustainability Services, JLL. The report also includes Orchard Street’s first climate change disclosures, published in line with TCFD (Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures) recommendations.

Lora Brill, Head of Responsibility and ESG at Orchard Street said: “Against an extremely challenging backdrop, ESG considerations remain at the heart of our approach to investment, as acknowledged through our admission to the industry-renowned Better Buildings Partnership. The business’ uncompromising commitment to enhance fund and asset performance for our clients through active ESG management enabled us to achieve 100% of our 2019/2020 responsible investment targets, and aligns well with the fast-moving responsible investment agenda of our clients and the wider sector.”

Philip Gadsden, Managing Partner at Orchard Street added: “Responsibility is an integral part of our business, and a fundamental part of delivering value to our clients. As a non-listed firm, we are not obligated to make disclosures at this level, however we fully believe it is the right thing to do to highlight our serious approach to ESG. As we deliver on our commitments in 2021 and launch both a net zero carbon 2030 transition strategy and a new corporate Responsible Investment Strategy aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, our commitment to upholding the highest standards of transparency and accountability whilst meeting the needs of our people and communities will align us with best practice and is the right long term positioning for our firm.”

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