Europe leads environment discussion as ESG gathers pace

Europe has really been a thought leader when it comes to climate change and decarbonisation, according to Peter Ballon, Global Head of Real Estate, CPP Investments & ULI Global Chair.

“One of the interesting things I’ve observed is here in Europe, and it’s been like this for many years, is that the focus, not to the exclusion of the other factors, but the clear focus has been the E in esg.”

That cannot be said about North America, he added, explaining that there’s a much higher awareness of the importance of addressing climate change concerns and decarbonisation is definitely talked about in the US, but it is not focused on as much as in in Europe.

“Social factors have really almost superseded in importance now. They are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but I would say right now the S and the social component is actually probably the most important priority right now.”

The ULI’s 46,000 members have three priorities, he added. Decarbonisation, housing affordability and equity and inclusion

The importance of diversity, equity and inclusion is also gathering momentum around the world, he said.

“These are global topics, that cannot be best solved in one city, or one country, or one continent .

ULI’s strength is that it’s global and we need to leverage that, and share best practices, he said. “We have the tools and members that can enable it, we just have to harness that power and seize the moment.”

Click on the video to watch the full interview or listen to the podcast below.