Sustainability

Our sustainability initiatives are a critical component of our commitment to corporate responsibility. Our focus is on facts reported clearly, and our innovation in sustainability gives us a competitive edge as we compete to lease space to quality tenants, and thus improve stockholder value.

Environmental Sustainability

Overview

We have a commitment to integrated portfolio-wide strategies for environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) initiatives. ESG principles play an important role in our capital allocation, innovation process and the way in which we interact with our stakeholders. Disclosure about our ESG practices allows our stockholders to see our company holistically and understand its trajectory beyond fundamentals and financial metrics

Environmental Sustainability

Our sustainability initiatives are a critical component of our commitment to corporate responsibility. Our focus is on facts reported clearly, and our innovation in sustainability gives us a competitive edge as we compete to lease space to quality tenants, and thus improve stockholder value.

We integrate strategies for energy efficiency and sustainability across our entire portfolio. We have requirements in our buildings for practices to enhance the health and wellness of our building occupants during design, construction, operations and maintenance. Our sustainability program is structured around quantifiable improvement in key areas, including: energy efficiency, water efficiency, recycling and waste diversion and healthy work environments for our tenants and employees (indoor environmental quality, or “IEQ”). Key performance indicators allow us to measure the success of our sustainability efforts.

Leadership, Awards, and Recognition

We are proud to be leaders in the industry and leverage our embedded sustainability expertise and engagement in the industry to define sustainability in real estate. We have also achieved recognition for our leadership in energy performance, green leasing, purchasing of renewable energy.

  • #1 most energy efficient REIT in NYC per Morgan Stanley Investor Report based on kgCO2e per square foot
  • Member of Mayors NYC Carbon Challenge since inception
  • Sole owner member of NYC Climate Mobilization Local Law 97 Advisory Board
  • Technical Working Group for NYC 80X50
  • Real Estate Roundtable SPAC Leadership
    • Energy Star 2019 Update Working Group
    • eGrid Working Group
    • REC Working Group
    • Energy Star for Tenant Spaces

ESRT developed the technology and practices which became the Urban Land Institute’s Tenant Energy Optimization Program and Energy Star for Tenant Spaces.

We have received the Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star Green Power and Green Lease Leaders Awards.



Energy Star and Energy Star for Tenant Spaces

2014 Inaugural Green Lease Leaders Award from the Institute for Market Transformation

Green Power Purchasing

ULI Tenant Energy Optimization Program

Sustainability Policy Advisory

Sustainability Committee

Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder engagement is critically important to achieving our sustainability goals. We continue to grow our sustainability initiatives based upon innovation and continuous feedback from our tenants and other constituents.

  • Sustainability Committee: ESRT’s Sustainability Committee is led by our Director of Energy and Sustainability, and supported by the property management teams across our portfolio. The Sustainability Committee meets quarterly, and its standing members include our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, other named executive officers, our Director of Leasing, a number of our senior executives including our Director of ESG, and property construction and operations executives. The Sustainability Committee’s agenda has evolved over time to reflect the company’s proactive leadership and commitment to results.
  • Property Management Teams & Employees: We host monthly training sessions with building engineers and property managers, brokers, project managers and other employees to ensure a comprehensive approach to performance, technology adoption and advanced best practices.
  • Tenants: We have a comprehensive approach to tenant engagement to drive energy efficiency measures. Because our tenants’ energy usage impacts our overall building performance, we partner with our tenants to drive ROI-based energy efficiency. Our energy efficiency practices not only help save tenants money through reduced direct utility costs, but they also create healthy workplace environments. To the extent the energy sources we use produce carbon, there are lower carbon emissions from our comprehensive work. We provide education and engagement with our tenants at annual town hall meetings, one-on-one customized meetings, Green Committee meetings, education materials in emails and on our elevator screens, and building events.
    • High performance design and construction guidelines are integrated into all of our leases. These guidelines include performance-based criteria for energy, water, healthy IEQ, responsible materials specifications and waste diversion. Our lease requirements allow for collaboration between tenant and landlord to achieve efficiency improvements. We share energy, water, waste and IEQ data with our tenants and provide them with expertise and on-going advice to ensure continued efficient performance.
    • Monitoring and verification of energy efficiency measures in tenant spaces
  • Environmental Plans & Policies: We have developed environmental plans and standard operating policies such as our High Performance Design and Construction Guidelines that establish stringent industry-leading guidelines for all operations for energy, greenhouse gas emissions, water, waste, and indoor environmental quality


Key Performance Indicators

ESRT is committed to monitor, measure, and report performance for energy, greenhouse gas emissions, water, and waste. We comprehensively goal-set, track and report for our sustainability program, via our portfolio sustainability matrix that is built around investment and return-oriented measures of success and verified benefits to our employees and tenants. We believe our approach advances our sustainability and our tenants’ goals with quantifiable results.

Download Matrix (PDF)

A summary version of our portfolio sustainability matrix is included below. It is our customized approach to depicting comprehensive efficiency and sustainability initiatives at our properties. An in-depth version of the portfolio sustainability matrix, along with other data, information and achievements regarding our sustainability program, is available on our website at www.empirestaterealtytrust.com/ about-us/sustainability.

ESRT Portfolio Sustainability Matrix

Goals and Progress


Energy

We completed a groundbreaking deep energy retrofit project at the Empire State Building, which serves as the leading global model demonstrating the business case for deep energy retrofits. All project information is publicly available and open source at www.esbsustainability.com

We developed practices for high performing tenant installations, and our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer led the program which made that information available as the Tenant Energy Optimization Program at the Urban Land Institute for which project information is publicly available and open source at https://tenantenergy.uli.org.

We implement this work throughout our entire portfolio. Our team of experts conducts on-going monitoring, verification and Tenant Energy Management (TEM) analytics. Based upon the latest methodology, which is far more stringent based on updates to Energy Star benchmarking data and methodology as of August 2019, 76% of our eligible office portfolio measured by square feet is Energy Star Certified. Energy Star-certified buildings meet strict energy performance standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency. They use less energy, are less expensive to operate, and have a reduced impact on the environment.

ESRT is committed to reducing energy consumption

Energy Star-certified buildings meet strict energy performance standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency. They use less energy, are less expensive to operate, and have a reduced impact on the environment.

The chart below shows our annual average energy use per square foot across our portfolio and the applicable year-end occupancy percentage.

ESRT Energy Star Certifications

Energy

Indoor Environmental Quality

Emissions

In an effort to improve the IEQ in our buildings, we have upgraded our systems to improve efficiencies and tenant comfort levels through demand-controlled ventilation, CO2 sensors, air purification systems and the installation of higher performance air filters. Furthermore, we and our tenants are required to use low or no Volatile Organic Compound (“VOC”) paints, wall covering, carpet, base, and adhesives in all projects. We have implemented best practices in green cleaning, using Green Seal products and practices, as well as integrated pest management (“IPM”) procedures, including the use of Green Shield Certified products and vendors to minimize the impact to the environment and the overall well-being of our tenants. We perform regular IEQ testing to ensure all VOCs, particulate matter, CO2, CO and other contaminants remain below the most stringent acceptable levels. The graphic above shows the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the energy use in our buildings and the applicable year-end occupancy percentage.

Water Use Reduction

We strive to reduce water usage and promote conservation efforts by implementing water conservation initiatives such as ultra-low flow water closets, urinals, lavatory sinks and efficient cleaning and landscaping policies. Aggregate water usage across our portfolio may vary year-over-year based upon factors such as weather, building population at different points during the year and changes in retail usage in the building. Below are several of our historical water use metrics that demonstrate the aggregate results of our water use reduction efforts across our portfolio over time, alongside the applicable year-end occupancy percentage:

Water

We implement water conservation initiatives such as ultra-low flow water closets, urinals, lavatory sinks and efficient cleaning and landscaping policies. Aggregate water usage across our portfolio may vary year-over-year based upon factors such as weather, building population at different points during the year and changes in retail usage in the building. Below are several of our historical water use metrics that demonstrate the aggregate results of our water use reduction efforts across our portfolio over time, alongside the applicable year-end occupancy percentage:

ESRT water usage

Waste Management and Recycling

We recycle tenant waste and construction debris throughout our entire portfolio. Our goal is to increase recycling diversion rates and the types of materials recycled, both in daily waste and in renovation and new construction. Our team provides tenant education programs to ensure waste is diverted from landfills at every step, from the individual employee, to the bins on tenants’ floors, to the cleaning team, to the waste hauler and customized recycling, reuse and donation programs. We continue to identify opportunities to track and report waste at each property and work closely with property management teams and our partners to ensure all waste is being collected and diverted in accordance with ESRT’s guidelines.

Additional Resources

We developed practices for high performing tenant installations, and our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer led the program which made that information available as the Tenant Energy Optimization Program at the Urban Land Institute for which project information is publicly available and open source at https://tenantenergy.uli.org.

We implement this work throughout our entire portfolio. Our team of experts conducts on-going monitoring, verification and Tenant Energy Management (TEM) analytics. Based upon the latest methodology, which is far more stringent based on updates to Energy Star benchmarking data and methodology as of August 2019, 76% of our eligible office portfolio measured by square feet is Energy Star Certified. Energy Star-certified buildings meet strict energy performance standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency. They use less energy, are less expensive to operate, and have a reduced impact on the environment