Transport for London
We supported TfL to achieve 5 stars and peer group leader status in their first time responding to GRESB
TfL achieved peer group leader status in their first ever GRESB response
scored on their overall response
Transport for London (TfL) has been awarded a GRESB 5 Star rating, recognising that it is a leader in sustainability – with an overall score of 93 out a maximum of 100. GRESB is one of the leading environmental, social and governance benchmarks for real estate and infrastructure investments across the world, examining their environmental, social and governance performance.
TfL responded to the Development questionnaire – 2020 is the first year this questionnaire has been separated out from Management & Performance. TfL received the highest score in their peer group which is hugely impressive given they’re a first time responder.
Derek Wilson, Head of Sustainability, TfL Commercial Development, said: “Working with Carbon Intelligence on our submission, we are thrilled to have received this outstanding GRESB result for our first ever assessment. Their experience enabled us to make sure that we could best showcase our approach to sustainability.
“The result is a testament to the whole team’s commitment to put sustainability at the heart of our development programme, making sure that we drive real positive changes for local communities, tenants and residents through our developments. Our development partners, including Grainger plc, have embraced our approach and we are very excited to be working with our partners to deliver the most sustainable development programme in London.”
GRESB enables organisations to communicate their commitment to sustainability to stakeholders, employees, investors and customers. The scores are a powerful tool investors use to drive decision making and the results highlight key areas for improvement that will help TfL improve year on year.
GRESB can be used to drive your sustainability roadmap and help you make data driven decisions of where to focus investment and improvements.
Getting to grips with GRESB
Having never reported to GRESB before TfL had the challenge of being unfamiliar with the process and questionnaire so worked with Carbon Intelligence for support and guidance.
Even in regular years it’s beneficial to have extra support as the GRESB process can be labour and time intensive.
Another key challenge is the fact that TfL is a very large and complex organisation where information and datasets are owned by differing services across the business. Our expertise meant we were able to help TfL navigate which evidence and data would be best used to answer the questionnaire.
After reviewing the questionnaire together and agreeing on a data collection process we were then ready to start receiving the relevant data and begin completing the GRESB response. Strong communication between teams meant that the challenge of a very short turnaround time was met head on and transparency was maintained throughout the project.
Demonstrating sustainability excellence
TfL’s exceptional score didn’t appear overnight. Years of dedicated hard work to improve their sustainability, community outreach and processes led to their success. Core to TfL’s entry was the creation of a Sustainable Development Framework, a bespoke approach to delivering best-in-class outcomes across three core sustainability objectives of supporting local prosperity, promoting vibrant and diverse communities, and creating healthy places for people and the planet. This framework, which will be formally launched next year, combines an ambitious vision with hard metrics, stretching targets, and clear guidance to deliver industry leading results. It was this focus on performance and on-the-ground delivery that earned recognition from GRESB as sector-leading and contributed significantly to TfL’s overall score.
Communicate ambition to stakeholders
Commitment to ESG
Also contributing to TfL’s strong response was its approach to its own staff, ensuring that it fosters a working environment that enables employees to stretch themselves while looking out for their wellbeing. TfL recognises the benefits of a diverse workforce that can deliver within an inclusive culture. This is why TfL has an evidence-based approach to diversity and inclusion that hard-wires thinking about this key business issue into all of its work – from hiring to retiring, leadership to behaviour, wellbeing to talent management.
TfL’s approach to stakeholder management also played a vital role in TfL’s GRESB ranking. It has an overarching strategy, which is driven by two key principles: ‘putting people at the heart of development’ and ‘acting as an exemplar steward of public assets in the long term’. This is embedded throughout each development’s tailored communications plan and engagement strategy, which is designed to recognise the unique challenges and opportunities for each site.