This project aims to quantify the energy productivity opportunities and identify the barriers to implementation of energy efficiency initiatives in Australia’s mid-tier commercial building sector.
Whilst premium and A-grade commercial office buildings across Australia have been quick to undertake energy efficiency upgrades and improve their NABERS Energy ratings (+ 4 stars). The rest of the commercial office building sector - the B, C, D grade assets (generally referred to as ‘mid-tier’) have lagged significantly in implementing energy retrofits and represent a large energy productivity improvement opportunity.
The Australian Government Department of Industry, Innovation and Science commissioned the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) to coordinate a project aimed to quantify the energy productivity opportunities and identify the barriers to implementation of energy efficiency initiatives in Australia’s mid-tier commercial building sector.
This research project involved the following:
The research found that the uptake of energy efficiency improvements in the mid-tier sector has been slow due to difficulty accessing capital, a diverse ownership profile which is hard to reach (including foreign investors, families and not-for-profits), lower rental returns from smaller/older buildings and reactive maintenance of plant equipment and lighting.
However, a number of opportunities exist to influence this sector and encourage better outcomes including building a business case for energy efficiency upgrades, conducting further research to better understand the sector and its stakeholders, and establishing a sector network to increase collaboration, innovation and exchange.
It is intended the report and pathway document will be used by industry and government to guide and inform the development of future policies and programs, including through the National Energy Productivity Plan.