People first: green design for health, wellness and productivity

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JLL’s Lower Manhattan office at 28 Liberty Street achieved WELL Certification at the Silver level, a measure of the company’s commitment to employee health, well-being and productivity. The new space was designed to showcase the firm’s dedication to sustainability, energy efficiency, return on investment, and health and wellness, and also meets the U.S. Green Building Council standards for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Certification.

“JLL’s new office in Lower Manhattan demonstrates the firm’s strong commitment to supporting human health, well-being and comfort in commercial buildings,” said Dana Schneider, Managing Director and Head of JLL’s Energy Sustainability Services group in the Northeast. “There is no better way to understand the impact of incorporating human health advocacy into everyday real estate decisions than to do it ourselves for our own staff.”

The WELL Building Standard, a performance-based certification system, evaluates seven categories of building performance: air, water, light, nourishment, fitness, comfort and mind. WELL is grounded in a body of evidence-based research that explores the connection between the buildings where we spend approximately 90 percent of our time and the health and wellness impacts on us as occupants of these buildings. To be awarded WELL Certification, JLL’s office underwent rigorous testing and a final third-party evaluation to ensure it met all WELL Certified Silver performance requirements.… Read More

Safety and sustainability: Protecting our most valuable resources

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At JLL, we are dedicated to environmental sustainability, knowing that the efforts we make to conserve resources and adopt sustainable principles add long-term value for our clients. But we also know that we cannot be a truly sustainable organization without ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our most valuable resource — our employees.

June is National Safety Month, and at JLL safety and sustainability are not two parallel concepts; they are core principles and values, highly compatible and tightly interwoven into the fabric of our culture — and they go hand-in-hand to create a foundation for how we do business.

Our safety ambitions are also a vital part of Building a Better Tomorrow, our sustainability leadership framework. By embedding safety into our broader sustainability practices we can ensure a positive impact for our people and our clients in our workplaces and our communities.

“When we think of traditional sustainability, we think about working to protect our earth and our environment,” said Bob Best, JLL’s Head of Energy Sustainability Services. “But we know that when you implement sustainable practices and programs — things like energy efficiency, maximizing natural daylight and improving indoor air quality — people become more productive.”

According to Best, sustainable workplaces can achieve much more than just green environments and improved productivity. Companies that care about the environment care about the health and safety of their employees, too.… Read More

The bottom line of green building practices

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Understanding the true value of green building practices – from employee satisfaction to environmental performance – has long been a real estate holy grail. Two new studies bring us closer than ever to seeing its value across the real estate spectrum.

A U.S. Department of Energy study, Utilizing Commercial Real Estate Owner and Investor Data to Analyze the Financial Performance of Energy Efficient, High- Performance Office Buildings, tries to get an understanding of how sustainable design impacts value by correlating energy efficiency and financial performance. The dataset includes 131 properties throughout the U.S. with an aggregate area of 25 million square feet. The regression analysis shows that green properties experience a 28.8 percent increase in Net Operating Income per square foot, and a 17.6 percent reduction in operating expenses per square foot when compared to non-green properties.

The recent Continental Automated Buildings Association study, Improving Organizational Productivity with Building Automation Systems, takes a different approach. … Read More

With renewable energy pledge, U.S. cities think big

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19880707 - green and office buildingsOn May 1, Atlanta’s City Council pledged to power the city of nearly one-half million completely through renewable energy by 2035. While this may seem like a lofty goal, Atlanta is actually the 27th city in the U.S. to make such a pledge, according to the Sierra Club. San Francisco has pledged to do so by 2030, San Diego by 2035 and Salt Lake City by 2032. Six cities, including Aspen, Colo., Burlington, Vt. and Columbia, Md., have already achieved it. In addition to these population centers, 29 U.S. states have been active in adopting Renewable Portfolio Standards and targets as well.

About 70 percent of the world’s population is estimated to live in cities by 2050, the year the Sierra Club sets as the target for cities to achieve energy independence. Reducing cities’ reliance on fossil fuels by 2050 would drastically curb our impact on global warming. But the impact is on more than just the environment. Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall, who introduced the city’s renewable energy pledge, touts it as an important tool for job creation and a cost-savings measure for residents’ utility bills, in addition to having cleaner air and water.

Kyle Goehring, Vice President and National Director of JLL’s Clean Energy, which is a specialty in the firm’s Energy Sustainability Services, points out that the cities—and states—who have these goals will often turn to corporate America to follow suit.… Read More

Islands: on the front line of climate change

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Covering more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, oceans have an intrinsic relationship with weather and climate. Oceans absorb heat from the atmosphere producing winds, currents and storms that bring fresh water to land. Our oceans’ immense capacity to absorb excess heat has helped to mitigate rising global temperatures. But scientific studies show that our oceans are at a tipping point. We are seeing the impacts of global warming on oceans, from rising temperatures and acidity to increasing intensity of storms and flooding. And populations whose survival is dependent on the ocean, such as islands and coastal regions, are experiencing the worst effects of climate change.

Palauan islands are experiencing erosion attributed to mollosks eating away the limestone and the continual push from the tectonic plates beneath. The local community is amazed at the height of the tides and very strongly believe this is a result of climate change.

Palauan islands are experiencing erosion and increased soil salinity attributed to rising sea levels. The local community is amazed at the height of the tides and very strongly believe this is a result of climate change.

Lisa Hinde, Sustainability Manager in JLL’s Energy and Sustainability Services, recently visited the remote island nation of Palau located in the Western Pacific Ocean where climate change has become a daily threat to the country’s survival. As a participant of the Island Innovation Program, Hinde witnessed first-hand the magnitude of the challenge and how governments and businesses are working together to help.

“I see islands like Palau as the ‘canary in the mine’ of global climate change. The effects they feel, being low-lying and prone to tropical storms, show stressors sooner than other places in the world,” Hinde said.… Read More