5 August 2010 – Lend Lease today launched a new solar company to roll out photovoltaic installations across the residential and commercial sectors of the property industry, tapping into federal and state governments policies to fast track the rapidly emerging sector.

The move is another strong signal that one of the world’s biggest real estate companies is making sustainable property an increasingly central plank in its business strategy. Earlier this week it announced the appointments of two people who were key to the development of the global Green Building Council movement, Ché Wall and Joe Van Belleghem, to its sustainability team, headed by Maria Atkinson. (See our separate article).

Lend Lease said today that it had established supply partnerships with US-based First Solar, the largest manufacturer of thin film PV panels in the world, and Norwegian-based REC, the world’s third largest Solar PV company, which will provide silicon PV panels for the new solar thrust.

It is also organising alliances with the banking and energy sectors to streamline access to an estimated 3 million households considered a target market for the rollout, but of which only 100,000 have so far installed solar energy.

Bovis Lend Lease managing director Australia Tony Costantino said that the new renewable energy target set by the Federal Government will require investment of about $60 billion in the next 10 years to achieve. [Feed in tariffs around the states, most recently the announcement that Victoria would extend these to commercial property, will also assist.]

“We believe solar PV will be a key contributor to the RET especially with the solar credits regime and feed-in tariffs available in most states,” Mr Costantino said.

“There are over six million detached dwellings in Australia and less than 100,000 of those have solar. With energy prices predicted to increase 20 per cent year-on-year over the next three to five years, we see enormous potential  in the solar PV market.”

“Solar energy is the most flexible form of renewable energy in Australia and solar is a key platform of our sustainability strategy.”

The new entity designed to deliver the rollout will be headed up by Chris Carolan who was “instrumental in the project teams which delivered Australia’s first 5 and 6 star Green Star as-built ratings for 30 The Bond and The Gauge and also acted as Project Director for the ANZ Centre in Melbourne which is now considered one of the leading green buildings in the world,” Lend Lease said.

The Fifth Estate – We can’t wait for the future