Real estate firm wins ‘net zero carbon’ goal

Published February 21, 2021, 6:30 AM

by Myrna M. Velasco

By procuring clean energy supply from the ‘Cleanergy’ portfolio of Aboitiz Power Corporation, leading green office developer NEO clinched its ‘net zero carbon’ goal; and its buildings bagged 5-star certifications under the “Advancing Net Zero Philippines (ANZ/PH) program”, an entity that verifies net zero carbon energy emissions.

The property developer earned certifications for three of its office buildings sited at the Fort Bonifacio Global City – these are the One/NEO, Four-NEO and Six/NEO developments. The company is also targeting to corner the same 5-star certifications for its four other buildings.

As explained, the Advancing Net Zero Philippines program is the rating scheme adopted by the Philippine Green Building Council (PhilBGC), in the assessment of a building’s energy performance, in line with the “Advancing Net Zero” global campaign of the World Green Building Council.

In tangible terms, net zero would refer to “the conservation and optimization of energy use in projects, and the use of renewable energy for the project’s remaining operational energy demand.”

For the 14.5-megawatt capacity satisfying the energy needs of the seven buildings of NEO, this was supplied from the Makiling-Banahaw (MakBan) geothermal power plant (sited in Laguna and Batangas provinces) of Aboitiz Power.

The supply procurement of NEO from the AP Renewables Inc. (APRI) for the MakBan facility, kicked off way back in 2013; and this ensures that the buildings were powered with 100-percent renewable energy.

MakBan Geothermal Power Plant

Raymond Rufino, chief executive officer of NEO, stated that their commitment to developing ‘green buildings’ “is a difficult and ambitious commitment for NEO as we are a real estate company based in an emerging market.”

Nevertheless, there is a clarion call for the attainment of ‘net zero’ goal even in property developments as “the severity of our current climate crisis requires a commensurate and commitment from real estate owners, developers and managers,” he said.

Rufino noted their company clings on to belief that “we can and must play our part in this global collective effort;” and as NEO joined the World Green Building Council’s “net zero carbon buildings commitment”, it is also enticing industry-peers “to heed the call and join us in going net zero.”

Being NEO’s energy partner, Aboitiz Power First Vice President for Commercial Operations Juan Alejandro Aboitiz intimated that the two companies’ tie up, which already spans eight (8) years, is anchored on the same line of advocacy toward utilization of green energy.

The Aboitiz group, he said, advances sustainable development that is built upon “enterprise consciousness around the conservation of resources, alongside the practice of socially responsible programs for the communities we serve.”