Panattoni joins the PLGBC – Poland’s pre-eminent green building association

Panattoni, the leading developer on the European industrial real estate market, has become a member of the Polish Green Building Council (PLGBC), an organisation dedicated to promoting environmentally friendly building practices. According to the latest PLBGC report, warehouse and industrial space comes just behind offices and ahead of shopping centres in terms of the most frequently green certified projects in Poland. In the industrial segment, the largest number of certified projects is developed by Panattoni.

Looking after the planet. The Polish Green Building Council (PLGBC) is a non-governmental organisation whose goal is to transform the entire construction sector by making buildings and the construction process more environmentally friendly. Its members include construction material producers, developers and architectural studios that have embraced the ideals of green and sustainable development. The association is a member of the World Green Building Council, whose global mission is to combat climate change through pro-environmental development. Its activities include ambitious initiatives aimed at implementing the Paris Agreement, such as the elimination of the CO2 emissions generated by buildings and the construction sector by 2050.

The decision to become a member of this association of environmentally responsible companies was a natural one for Panattoni, since it has been actively implementing its own sustainability policy for many years and has thus spearheaded a green transformation of the warehousing market. According to Emilia Dębowska, the Sustainability Manager of Panattoni, minimising the environmental impact of logistics development is now simply a necessity: “Not only do we have to reduce any harmful impact on the natural environment but also any negative consequences for local residents. In doing so, we can also contribute to an improvement in the working conditions of those employed in such buildings and – from a business point of view – to a reduction in tenants’ operating costs,” she explains. More than 30 of Panattoni’s projects (a total area of over 1.7 million sqm) have been built to comply with BREEAM and LEED standards. Another 1.8 million sqm is in the process of being certified. This year the developer has also made a commitment to ensure that all its new facilities are BREEAM certified at the ‘Very Good’ level.

The green policy Panattoni has adopted is already reflected in the latest PLGBC report on the certification of buildings in Poland. This reveals that the number of certified facilities in Poland had grown to 845 by the end of the first quarter of 2020 (BREEAM, DGNB, HQE, LEED and Well certifications). As many as 62% of these were office properties, but logistics and industrial facilities were the second highest asset class, having seen an increase in certified space of almost 4 percentage points over the year, amounting to around 17% of the total. Between March 2019 and March 2020, the number of these increased by as much as 64%, following a 48% increase over the previous twelve months – in no small part due to Panattoni’s activities.

“We are very pleased that sustainable development ideals have been embraced and are being adopted by the industrial and warehouse development sector. This shows that investors are becoming more and more aware of the benefits of environmentally friendly and certified buildings. The number of certified retail projects has been growing each year, but the next major direction for certification is industrial and logistics buildings,” comments Alicja Kuczera, the Managing Director of the PLGBC, who adds: “Incorporating sustainable development principles into the design, construction and use of warehousing and distribution centres is beneficial for everyone. It minimises any harmful environmental impact, encourages safety and comfort at work, and it’s appreciated by both clients and the local community.”

A sustained approach. Panattoni is not just limiting itself to complying with certification standards. The developer has gone a step further by devising and implementing its own sustainable development concept: ‘Go Earthwise with Panattoni’. This strategy involves enhancing the wall and roof insulation of buildings (to reduce carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions), the use of automated electricity management systems and reducing water consumption. Another pillar of this strategy is to ensure the well-being of employees – with whom in mind Panattoni has introduced glazed façades to its buildings to provide increased sunlight access, while expanding the amount of green and relaxation space.