Real Property Association of Canada releases recommended best practices in
accounting for greenhouse gas emissions in the Canadian commercial real
estate sector

TORONTO, March 26 /CNW/ - The Real Property Association of Canada (REALpac) is pleased to release its latest Research Report, "Recommended Best Practices in Accounting for GHG Emissions in the Canadian Commercial Real Estate Sector", prepared by ICF International.

Greenhouse gas (GHG) accounting, like financial accounting, involves many rules that can be complex to navigate. While standardized approaches to accounting exist, the field is evolving rapidly, and conflicting or unclear guidance is common. The commercial real estate sector is particularly complex in this way, due to the number of entities involved, and the operational and physical diversity of commercial buildings.

The REALpac report takes the lead in resolving these ambiguities and provides accounting guidance to building professionals responsible for quantifying GHG emissions and completing GHG inventories in the absence of specific compliance or voluntary guidance (for instance, a Canadian federal cap and trade system or The Climate Registry). "Reasonable and consistent greenhouse gas accounting is particularly challenging for the commercial real estate sector, given the complex relationships between owners, managers and tenants. In the absence of any regulatory guidance, this document is intended to assist the rapidly rising number of stakeholders making greenhouse gas allocation and reporting decisions within the sector. REALpac has taken the initiative to provide its members with a map of the possible solutions," said Peter Clarke, Senior Manager, ICF International.

As building professionals advance through the document, they will gain an appreciation for the complexities of GHG accounting, knowledge of the critical factors involved in accounting for GHGs in the commercial building sector, and the ability to apply suggested guidance to their portfolio. While companies are free to select the GHG accounting approach that best suits their needs when voluntarily reporting their GHG emissions, REALpac provides specific recommendations for owners, managers, and tenants, in addition to scenarios that illustrate how accounting for GHG emissions may be handled in the industrial, office and retail sectors.

As a result of rising concerns regarding the impact of climate change, some forward-thinking companies such as Oxford Properties, Cadillac Fairview and Bentall LP, have already completed a "GHG inventory" or "carbon footprint" - effectively accounting for the GHG emissions that are emitted due to their daily operations. "These companies are all Members of REALpac, and we would like to congratulate them for their foresight and leadership in the area of corporate responsibility and sustainability, and specifically in regard to taking steps to manage and reduce their GHG emissions. Allocating accountability for carbon in commercial real estate is a critical pre-requisite to the assumption of responsibility. Until it's your carbon, it's someone else's problem," said Michael Brooks, REALpac's CEO. GHG inventories can be used for a variety of purposes; to assess financial risk associated with a price of emissions, to inform and drive operational improvements, and to benchmark against peer companies. "Our GHG inventory helps us benchmark and improve our emissions performance and drive cost savings across our portfolio. This new guidance document from REALpac will help ensure a credible and more consistent approach to GHG accounting in the Canadian real estate sector," said Darryl Neate, Director, Sustainability, Oxford Properties Group Inc.

The REALpac "Recommended Best Practices in Accounting for GHG Emissions in the Canadian Commercial Real Estate Sector" report is available as a free download at www.realpac.ca.

About the Real Property Association of Canada

REALpac is Canada's premier industry association for investment real property leaders. REALpac's mission is to bring together the country's real property investment leaders to collectively influence public policy, to educate government and the public, and to ensure stable and beneficial real estate capital and property markets in Canada. REALpac Members currently own in excess of CDN $150 Billion in real estate assets located in the major centres across Canada and include real estate investment trusts, publicly traded and large private companies, banks, brokerages, crown corporations, investment dealers, life companies, and pension funds. Visit REALpac at www.realpac.ca.

About ICF International

ICF International (NASDAQ: ICFI) partners with government and commercial clients to deliver consulting services and technology solutions in the energy, climate change, environment, transportation, social programs, health, defense, and emergency management markets. The firm combines passion for its work with industry expertise and innovative analytics to produce compelling results throughout the entire program life cycle, from analysis and design through implementation and improvement. Since 1969, ICF has been serving government at all levels, major corporations, and multilateral institutions. More than 3,000 employees serve these clients worldwide. Visit ICF at www.icf.com.

SOURCE Real Property Association of Canada

For further information: For further information: please contact Michael Brooks, Chief Executive Officer, REALpac, (416) 642-2700 x.225, or Duncan Rotherham, Vice President & Managing Director Canadian Operations, ICF International, DRotherham@icfi.com

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