Certifying green buildings in the PH market
Recently, Italpinas Development Corporation (IDC) was cited in “Green Buildings: A Finance and Policy Blueprint for Emerging Markets”. Published by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), this report features best practices by investors and financiers, governments, developers, and owners to provide an investment blueprint for green buildings across emerging markets.
IDC was mentioned as an example of a Philippine developer that integrates resilience to climate effects in building and designing its projects, specifically using IFC’s web-based tool called the Climate Resilience Index to assess climate-related risks for various types of buildings.
To show in concrete terms that IDC is fully supportive of the ideals behind sustainable design and green development, the organization works with IFC’s innovation: EDGE (Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies). This is aligned with IDC’s corporate principles on environmental sustainability.
EDGE is one of the few green certification bodies in the Philippines, along with BERDE, LEED, etc., that serves as an impartial, third-party organization that evaluates and rates a building before it can be certified as green.
We at IDC chose EDGE for these reasons: (1) its rating system is very much contextualized with the location of the property being evaluated, which means that local conditions are taken into consideration during the evaluation; and (2) EDGE gives more weight to passive green strategies, which are more related to the design of the structure rather than the technology used in construction.
Aside from these, IFC is a sister organization of the World Bank and a member of the World Bank Group, which reflects the organization’s stability, credibility and authority in the field.
A green certified building means that it was designed and built based on sound ecological principles, that the developer followed industry standards on sustainability, and that it complied with environmental requirements. This certification benefits both the developer and the residents of the development, the community where it is located, the local and national governments, and, on a bigger perspective, the global environment. It is also very attractive to investors and gives the developer’s project and brand an advantage in terms of image.
In the Philippines, I believe that more developers and investors will become more interested in building green-certified projects–especially if incentives are put in place. The acceleration of this process poses great benefits to our communities, consumers, and our climate.
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