Sara Neff, senior vice president of sustainability at Kilroy Realty Corp. (NYSE: KRC), joined Nareit for a video interview at Nareit’s 2018 ESG Forum in Seattle.
Kilroy has been recognized four times for its sustainability initiatives by Nareit’s Leader in the Light Award. Neff stressed that the key to maintaining effective sustainability programs is to undertake a “whole cultural change” at a company.
Neff also highlighted the importance of advocating on key regulatory issues. On the local level, that includes benchmarking ordinances. On the federal level, Kilroy is focused on tax issues that could impact solar and battery projects, she said.
Meanwhile, Neff discussed the Kilroy Innovation Lab. Launched in 2017, the lab formalizes the process for the implementation of sustainability pilot projects, she explained.
According to Neff, the lab has been instrumental in attracting partners. “It’s very hard for new technologies to find their foothold in real estate,” she said.
Looking ahead, Neff said the monitoring of air quality and related health issues is likely to lead the next wave of innovation that will move the needle in real estate ESG matters.