At Skanska, we believe in developing a more sustainable society, and green building is a strategic step in that journey. As such, we harness technologies that make buildings more resource-efficient, comfortable and healthy. We believe this is one of the greatest services we can provide to the environment, our clients and the public. For this reason, Skanska is partnering with the World Green Building Council on a major global research effort to establish common ways of measuring health and productivity benefits arising from green buildings, and to provide best practice guidance on the types of green building features – such as increased daylighting and ventilation – that enhance them. This information can then be used to better inform investment decisions.
At our planned Capital Tower project in Houston, we’re advancing green building technology to support worker health and productivity.
“The situation today – where buildings’ impact on human health, well being and performance is usually not taken into consideration – is not good enough,” said Staffan Haglind, Skanska AB’s green business officer and a member of this project’s steering committee. “I’m totally convinced that optimizing premises from a human perspective will help people as well as organizations to thrive and outperform. To support the development of the tools and metrics needed to make this happen is perfectly aligned with Skanska’s company values.”
With salaries and benefits comprising 85 percent of the expenses of some companies, according to the WorldGBC, even modest improvements to staff health and productivity can have a dramatic impact on organizational profitability.
“While there is a growing body of research that firmly supports the connections between sustainable buildings and improved health, productivity and learning outcomes of those who occupy them, this evidence is yet to inform investment decisions in the same way as traditional financial metrics,” said Jane Henley, WorldGBC CEO. “This project aims to identify the metrics that will support investment in greener buildings.”
This new project builds on earlier WGBC research for which Skanska was also a partner. This undertaking, a report entitled “The Business Case for Green Building,” highlights the compelling benefits of green buildings throughout their life cycle; this list also includes lower operating costs and higher asset values.
The Green Building Councils of Hong Kong, United Kingdom, United States and Colombia are also partnering on this project. The final report is expected this fall.