Public awareness is driving sustainability agenda, Provada panel hears

The environmental sustainability agenda is ultimately being driven by the general public's increasing awareness of the seriousness of climate change, a panel discussion at the Provada trade fair in Amsterdam concluded on Tuesday.

The discussion, which was hosted by PropertyEU, included contributions from Iris Kampers from Savills Netherlands, Christoph Schmitz-Wenzel from BayernLB and Marco Villares from Drees & Sommer.

'It all comes from politics, which is a societal thing,' said one panelist. 'Politics has put the framework in place, which forces different mechanisms in the market. The pressure comes from the top but ultimately this is something that is of concern to all of us.'

Another added: 'Climate change and climate action are becoming ever more pressing. At the same time, we are seeing that end-users are more and more aware of the environment. Office users now want energy-efficient buildings, for example.'

The result of such pressures is that governments are eventually starting to bring in ever tougher regulations. 'I would say that is really defining the market,' concluded another panelist.

'The way I see it, regulation is a huge driver and that is obviously a manifestation of all these other phenomena. However, it has to be said that it's still early days.' 

A full report of the discussion will be available in the next few weeks.


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