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Delivering high quality, low carbon offices that are inspiring, comfortable, excellent value for money and leading edge in their energy usage.
Low Carbon Workplace is a partnership between the Carbon Trust, fund manager Columbia Threadneedle Investments and property developer Stanhope. Through the Low Carbon Workplace Fund, the partnership acquires commercial office buildings and refurbishes them into modern, energy efficient workplaces. Occupiers benefit from ongoing support from the Carbon Trust, helping them to minimise their energy costs and carbon emissions. Energy and carbon performance is monitored and assessed against the Carbon Trust’s Low Carbon Workplace Standard, and occupiers that successfully meet the criteria are awarded with certification to the Standard.
The Low Carbon Workplace concept was developed by the Carbon Trust in 2010 to break the ‘circle of inertia’ that has prevented many cost effective carbon reduction opportunities in non-domestic buildings from being realised. Low Carbon Workplace delivers refurbished low carbon buildings to occupiers who are both motivated and empowered to ensure potential energy and carbon savings are achieved. Occupiers reap the benefits of an efficient, comfortable and environmentally sensitive workplace, and investors and landlords profit from having attractive, ‘future-proofed’ buildings in their portfolios.
We acquire commercial office buildings and refurbish them into modern, energy efficient workplaces. We then provide ongoing support to occupiers, helping them to minimise their energy costs and carbon emissions.
We acquire buildings with the potential to become modern, energy efficient workplaces. Specifically, this means they need to have the potential to:
We minimise energy consumption and carbon emissions from Low Carbon Workplace buildings in three ways:
All occupiers of Low Carbon Workplace buildings must sign the Low Carbon Workplace Charter. This signals their commitment to work collaboratively with the Carbon Trust to minimise their carbon emissions. Occupiers receive ongoing support from the Carbon Trust, including:
Energy and carbon performance is monitored and assessed against the Carbon Trust’s Low Carbon Workplace Standard. Occupiers that successfully meet the criteria are awarded with certification to the Standard.
Low Carbon Workplace transformed Premier House into a modern, desirable, energy efficient office that we’re proud to call home. The Carbon Trust’s ongoing support has been invaluable in helping us to maintain low energy consumption and CO2 emissions and achieve our sustainability objectives.
Jonathan Ling, Head of HR, Thames Valley Housing
The Carbon Trust also works with local authorities and social landlords to upgrade their housing stock and tackle fuel poverty. We can support property developers, contractors and suppliers in their delivery of resource efficient housing and communities. Read more about our Housing services for public and private sector clients.
The Low Carbon Workplace Fund delivers strong environmental and financial returns, benefitting investors and occupiers alike. Our buildings are highly energy efficient and environmentally sustainable. We know this for a fact because as well as achieving leading EPC and BREEAM ratings, they also comfortably outperform industry benchmarks for operational efficiency:
See further details on our energy efficiency performance (PDF).
The Fund targets a profit on cost from developments of 15%; and to outperform the IPD Quarterly Index Total Return for the Office Sector by 1%. To date it has comfortably outperformed both targets, making it an attractive option for institutional investors. Further details for potential investors can be found on the Columbia Threadneedle website.
To date the Low Carbon Workplace Fund has raised over £175m and the portfolio currently comprises eight buildings.
Low Carbon Workplace building occupiers’ energy and carbon performance is monitored and assessed against the Carbon Trust’s Low Carbon Workplace Standard. Occupiers that successfully meet the criteria are awarded with certification to the Standard.
The Low Carbon Workplace Standard assesses three things:
Certifying to the Low Carbon Workplace Standard has been a great experience. It helps us to communicate our commitment to lowering our carbon emissions and to demonstrate that our efforts have had a real impact.
Raj Patel, Chief Operating Officer