Interview with Guido den Teuling, Sustainability Manager on BREEAM IN-Use

Real estate investor Redevco has been working with BREEAM-NL since 2009. “We want to do more,” says sustainability manager Guido den Teuling. “That’s why we launched Mission 2040 last year. Mission 2040 is the ambition to bring the entire portfolio of assets we have – that is around 300 – to zero emissions in 2040. And that is quite a task. Redevco uses the portfolio approach of BREEAM NL IN-Use to get a good insight into how their assets are doing now. “And also to see how we can improve them in order to ultimately achieve a better performance of those buildings”, explains De Teuling. “You can, for example, do a pre-measurement. Then you know where you can focus on in terms of redevelopment. After you have carried out the redevelopment, you can re-certify. Then you know if you actually have achieved your objective. Recertification as such is not the goal, he emphasises. “It is part of what our investors want. We really see it as a management tool. The tool doesn’t focus on one specific thing, but on a ranch of components.

To achieve zero emissions by 2040, Redevco follows the guidelines of the Dutch Green Building Council and the Paris Proof Guidelines laid down by the DGBC. “A lot of those things are focused on 2050, but we want to be a little more ambitions. We want to achieve this by 2040. We even go a step further, because we also want to get the leased part of our portfolio to Net Zero. We are going to investigate what role BREEAM In-Use can play in this”.

1000th BREEAM-NL In-Use certificate

One of Redevco’s properties where the BREEAM-NL In-Use tool is already being used is the Decathlon store at Vredenburg in Utrecht, Netherlands. A nice fact: the building has the 1000th BREEAM-NL In-Use certificate. The credit energy performance of the building is super good: 91 out of 96 points. The remaining credits of the energy category can be improved. “The score within energy performance and EPC of course depends on a lot of things”, says Den Teuling. We often have a portfolio of existing buildings in the city centre. That means that we can improve, but that there is a limit to what we can do. The approach is always as good as possible”.

They also score well in the Transport category. It is a central location with many possibilities for public transport. “Yes, for an inner-city area it’s fantastic that you don’t have to build a parking space. If you’re performance-oriented, you look at specific credits on which you can score well. So you have to be able to make good decisions. We often hire experts to do that. However, Den Teuling believes that when it comes only to improving credits in BREEAM, your BREEAM does not do enough. “It’s all about how we can really make the building more sustainable. And with us, that’s much more than chasing specific credits”.

Read the article in Dutch in the BREEAM magazine here