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Greenman Energy has launched “plug & charge” technology for its EV chargers sited on assets of the Greenman OPEN fund.

The fund is one of the largest food retail real estate investment funds in Germany and is also Europe’s largest article 9 fund.

The new technology allows electric vehicles to be automatically recognised by the charging station, making the entire charging process automated. Drivers do not need to scan membership cards or use specific apps.

Greenman Energy, a jv company of Greenman OPEN, began rolling out EV hypercharger stations at the fund's German supermarkets in June. 

Maximilian Bley, CEO & Founder of Greenman Energy, said: “The success of our charging hubs underlines the strategic importance of retail real estate in the revolution of e-mobility. Our analysis has shown that in 97% of cases, charging takes place during supermarket opening hours, and more than 40% of users return regularly. 

“These results illustrate that combining shopping with electric vehicle charging brings a win-win situation for both retailers and customers".

Link Asset Management has signed a memorandum of understanding with CLP Power Hong Kong and its renewable energy subsidiary CLPe to collaborate on energy efficient solutions in Link’s development projects in the China’s Greater Bay Area (GBA).

The Hong Kong real estate investment trust manager currently works with CLP in its home city and will now expand that relationship into the cities of the GBA in Southern China.

The two companies will explore collaboration opportunities such as energy management solutions, the acquisition of sustainability-linked loans, EV charging facilities and replacing diesel generators on construction sites.

In Hong Kong, CLP has installed energy efficient cooling systems in 21 Link REIT shopping arcades and installed solar PV panels at 14 assets. 

Link chairman Nicholas Allen said: “This MOU strengthens our shared commitment to a low-carbon, sustainable future. The two companies will collaborate on a variety of energy-saving and electrification initiatives across Link’s diverse portfolio, laying the groundwork for impactful emission reduction and deepening our cooperation.’”

MAPP has launched a new sustainable energy procurement services arm. 

The UK consultant and property manager announced the launch of Energy by MAPP, which will help clients secure renewable energy for their assets. The business line will be led by MAPP executive director of sustainability Rowan Packer.

Clients of the new business include Pioneer Group, a developer and operator of life science and technology campuses across the UK. MAPP brokered a rolling two-year virtual corporate power purchase agreement (CPPA) with Ray Valley Solar, an Oxfordshire-based solar farm. Under the agreement, four locations from the Pioneer Group portfolio will source green electricity from a single, dedicated solar PV farm.

CPPAs are fixed-priced, long-term electricity contracts which help enable renewable power providers to invest in new renewable power generators. 

Nigel Mapp, founder and chairman, MAPP said: “We are continuously looking for ways that we can help our clients deliver their net zero carbon pathways and ESG strategies; providing an optimal sustainable energy choice is a key part of that.”

ESR Group has formed a renewable energy partnership with Australian company Solar Bay.

The partnership will enable the Asian real estate investment manager to meet demand from its customers for renewable energy solutions, deploying up to A$500 million ($320 million) over the next ten years to deliver up to 50MW of solar panels, 300MW of battery storage capacity and EV charging infrastructure.

The partnership will facilitate the installation of renewable energy infrastructure across ESR's 4.1 million sq m industrial and logistics portfolio and 2.3 million sq m development pipeline. 

ESR Australia CEO, Phil Pearce, said: "It is imperative for ESR to future-proof its assets with consideration of environmental sustainability, and this significant investment into renewable energy infrastructure across our growing portfolio will ensure the continued viability of our operations and those of our customers.

"Our customers' energy requirements have grown significantly due to the uptake of electric- powered automation and are set to grow with the further adoption of technology and the take up of electric vehicles. ESR Australia will work closely with our customers to provide bespoke energy solutions with a view to offering savings of up to 50% on their energy bills with retail providers.”

Keppel Corporation and DBS Bank have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to develop sustainable urbanisation and digitalisation solutions in Asia, with a focus on India.

The collaboration aims to accelerate energy optimisation across energy-intensive segments in the region, including real estate, healthcare and hospitality, the companies said.

Under the MOU, businesses can access Keppel’s suite of energy-as-a-service solutions, including high-efficiency cooling, sustainable energy and storage, and electric vehicle charging infrastructure, while DBS provides financing solutions to help them overcome potential cost barriers.

Loh Chin Hua, CEO of Keppel Corporation, said: “The MOU provides a platform for Keppel and DBS to deepen collaboration and develop solutions to help companies be more sustainable, digitalised and ultimately, more competitive in an increasingly complex operating environment.”

Renewable energy asset manager Greenbacker Capital Management has appointed David Zackowitz as head of real estate investments. 

Zackowitz, who joins from Blackstone Group where he was a managing director, will lead Greenbacker’s latest sustainability driven investment strategy, focused on acquiring commercial and residential property where the company can reduce greenhouse gas emissions and energy use intensity, as well as add additional sources of renewable power.

In the newly-created role, Zackowitz will manage Greenbacker’s investments in real estate. He will oversee deal origination and deploy capital to improve energy efficiency and support the expansion of electric vehicle fleet charging and rooftop community solar across real estate assets acquired. 

He has 22 years’ experience in real estate investment and asset management, working for C-III Capital Partners and Lehman Brothers prior to his seven year stint with Blackstone. 

“David perfectly complements Greenbacker’s existing investment expertise and expands our ability to invest across the clean energy and sustainability focused asset class,” said Charles Wheeler, CEO of Greenbacker. “His experience and track record with some of the country’s leading real estate investment platforms will bolster Greenbacker’s capabilities within sustainable real estate—a sector with significant opportunity for investment to drive a clean energy future.”

M7 Real Estate has launched the first of a planned 50 electric vehicle charging hubs.

The European real estate investment manager and its parent company Oxford Properties last year joined forces with sustainable infrastructure company SSE to develop up to 50 charging stations installed on sites managed by M7, including 20 owned by Oxford Properties.

Josh Tyler, asset manager at M7, said: “With customers placing increasing importance on sustainability, we want our retail parks to support the adoption of electric vehicles.”

The first charging hub was opened at Gapton Hall Retail Park in Great Yarmouth and features 10 bays with a mix of 150kW rapid charging bays and 22kW bays. A further five hubs will be constructed in the initial phase of the project on locations in Ipswich, Poole, Hayes, Colchester, and Chelmsford.

SSE plans to build 500 EV charging hubs powered by traceable, renewable energy in the UK and Ireland by 2030.

Pictured above (l-r) Keven Welstead, senior director, SSE, Sir Brandon Lewis, Great Yarmouth MP, Josh Tyler, asset manager, M7

Greenman Group has begun to roll out electric vehicle “hyperchargers” across its German food retail portfolio.

The investment manager’s €1.13 billion ($1.22 billion) Greenman OPEN fund, one of the largest food retail real estate investment funds in Germany, is getting its first hypercharging stations, which allow rapid charging of EVs. Subsidiary Greenman Energy has begun construction of the chargers at a retail centre in Berlin, boosted with €1.2m of bank finance.

Maximilian Bley, CEO of Greenman Energy, said: "This is a clear signal that banks have confidence in our vision and the future viability of our concept. We assume that financing the expansion of renewable e-mobility will very soon go from being an individual case to an everyday business." 

He said four charging points would be installed at the Mahlsdorfer Märkte centre in Berlin (pictured above) this month. This will be followed by one additional location per month and Greenman plans to install around 250 charging stations at 66 retail assets across Germany by 2027.

Crow Holdings has launched a renewable energy business. 

The US real estate developer this week announced the launch of Crow Holdings Renewables, a new business which will develop community- and utility-scale solar energy and battery storage projects across the country.

The new venture will initially focus building community solar projects (and related battery storage solutions) averaging 5MW and mid-sized, utility-scale projects averaging 25 MW. 

Crow said the new business would be able to leverage its portfolio of industrial properties, with potential to add solar to “millions of square feet of industrial rooftops” across the country. 

The new business is co-led by Laurence Pelosi, senior managing director at Crow Holdings, and Tim Marvich, who recently joined the company from Apex Clean Energy and who has 17 years’ experience in renewable energy. They are joined by Riean Norman, who joins as a vice president focused on California and the Northeast.

“The country’s energy transition and renewables have demonstrably expanded opportunities in recent years, through federal and state support, improving technologies, declining costs, and customer engagement,” said Crow Holdings CEO Michael Levy. 

“We are seeing material growth across the sector that we expect to continue for the foreseeable future, and we are excited to launch Crow Holdings Renewables at such a critical time. With strong footholds in some of the fastest-growing solar markets in the US, and with highly capable leaders in Laurence and Tim as part of a growing team for the business, we plan to meaningfully contribute to the development of renewable energy solutions for communities and businesses across the country.”

The company said Crow Holdings Renewables had already identified and was pursuing suitable project locations in California, New Jersey, Maryland, and Illinois, with other markets to follow.

The latest report from the UN Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), while yet again highlighting the urgent need for action, also shone a spotlight on the key role the clean energy sector and technology must play in meeting net zero. The UN looked at existing policies that have been implemented by governments globally, and found that on this existing pathway the world is looking at a temperature rise of 3.2 degrees, which will have catastrophic consequences. The report’s advocation of an accelerated switch to clean energy generation and the use of carbon capture technology can therefore be viewed as a call to motivate businesses and investors to lead on the reduction and removal of CO2 from the atmosphere to help mitigate the situation.

While not a silver bullet, we agree that harnessing the potential of the energy sector is absolutely key in the electrification and renewables agenda, followed by the role of biodiversity and regenerative ecosystems in climate change mitigation. It’s also extremely important for us to recognise that we need to push for fundamental changes in how the property sector currently approaches net zero carbon design and the use of circular principles in how we select and procure building materials. Even things that rely on behavioural changes, such as shifts to more sustainable diets and active travel, can be encouraged through the way we design cities and create places.

According to IEA Net Zero by 2050, A roadmap for the global energy sector, staying on the path to net zero requires the massive deployment of all available clean energy technologies – including renewables, electric vehicles and energy efficient building retrofits – between now and 2030. For solar power, this is the equivalent to installing the world’s current largest solar park roughly every day. To reach net zero emissions by 2050, annual clean energy investment worldwide needs to more than triple by 2030 to around $4 trillion. This will create millions of new jobs, significantly lift global economic growth, and achieve universal access to electricity and clean cooking worldwide by the end of the decade. The scale of the investment required, however, means that even though more businesses and investors are motivated to deliver projects than ever before, driven by their own assessment of the risks involved and shareholder pressure, they require the support of governments. Fortunately, we are starting to see this happen, but we shouldn’t be complacent.

In Europe, the focus of the recent RePowerEU plan is to provide funding to finance investments and emergency regulation to speed up permitting processes and reduce developer costs. The EU's emergency regulations define wind and solar as projects of overriding public interest and clarify the environmental and grid permit deadlines that approval authorities must meet within two years. The EU Net Zero Industry Act will also fast track permits, increase access to public and private funding, improve workers’ skills and training, and encourage trade deals for key raw materials. The European Commission has earmarked over €250 billion for clean-tech companies and brought forward its target for doubling solar capacity.

In the US, the Inflation Reduction Act 2022 (IRA) is trying to break the country’s dependence on Asian components, re-shore supply chains, and create clean-tech jobs, as well as cutting emissions. Climate and industrial policy are central to the IRA, which is aiming to revamp the US’s infrastructure and create advanced manufacturing jobs. It hopes to do so by strengthening tax incentives for renewable energy and other climate solutions; in total, $369 billion of green tech subsidies have been allocated. This is expected to underpin investment in wind and solar, although to be successful it will require additional permitting and regulatory reforms, as well as grid expansion and modernisation. While being a fairly radical step forward for the country towards net zero, analysts do not expect the US to become totally self-sufficient in terms of renewable energy infrastructure as most raw materials are sourced abroad.

Marylis Ramos (left, above) is director at Savills Earth Advisory and Eri Mitsostergiou is world research director at Savills.