Real estate in balance with BREEAM

Written by
Anke van Leeuwen
Published on
11 December 2017

A BREEAM certificate gives you insight into the balance between people and building, economy and ecology, savings and comfort.

How can you be and stay happy? I think that depends on a good balance. Between relaxation and effort. Between everyday and unusual experiences. Between ambition and achievement. The same applies at global level. However, the balance in how we use our planet is far from optimal. Consumption, energy consumption, pollution - it's more than the Earth can offer and restore. Do you also feel the responsibility to take steps in this?

I do, anyway. For example, I try to eat less meat, spend less time in the shower and I don't mindlessly throw away food that's past the best-by date. (Tip: smell and taste it first to see whether it has really deteriorated.) I've also chosen to step outside my comfort zone and drive an electric car. Sometimes you just have to do it.

The whole picture

And that applies to organisations as well. They, too, can take small and big steps to establish a balance between their real estate, the surroundings and the users. As a BREEAM expert, I help them in this. BREEAM is the certificate that proves the sustainability of real estate and real estate projects. For the building itself, the technology, and for its management and use.
BREEAM: 'what you should think of... ‘BREEAM: Think of energy, water, health, transport, waste and ecology. It's about the birds and butterflies in the garden, fleet emissions, wheelchair accessibility, right up to the smile on the face of the user - in short, the whole picture.’

Facts to the surface

This certification process also generates a lot of knowledge. In very many areas, a thermometer is inserted into the building and the policy. Internally as an organisation, all the facts come to the surface. The result: crystal-clear insight into your situation. You might think that you're doing a good job, but then you discover that all kinds of improvements are possible. KPIs for energy consumption? Fine! But how is this policy managed and monitored? What happens with all that measurement data? What if there are any deviations? When are these reported? And how fast does the organisation respond? Often it appears that the policy can be much tighter.

Low-threshold step: the pre-assessment

Certification is obviously a serious and nerve-racking step. That's why many of our clients have a pre-assessment done. This is a low-threshold way to find out how a building scores in BREEAM. And also very useful if you have a particular ambition, for example to immediately score three or four stars. Then you can see exactly in advance what improvements are needed to achieve that goal. It also means fewer unpleasant surprises during the certification process itself.

But even more important than the number of stars is the fact that as an organisation you are taking the step, taking responsibility and really showing commitment. Sometimes you just have to do it.

Concrete measures towards sustainability with BREEAM-NL

BREEAM-NL is a tool for integrally measuring and assessing the sustainability of new buildings, existing buildings, areas and demolition projects. Read more about 61 BREEAM-stars awarded for our projects

A BREEAM certificate gives insight into the balance between people and building, economy and ecology, savings and comfort.

Find out more about BREEAM

Lower costs, more productivity and health, more value. Interested in how a BREEAM certification or pre-assessment can benefit your organisation and real estate?

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