24 June 2010 – The mandatory disclosure bill was on Tuesday night passed by the House of Representatives, after the Federal Government made some concessions to the property industry and winning the full backing of the Property Council, among other industry leaders.

The Green Building Council of Australia yesterday issued a statement welcoming the move.

GBCA chief executive Romilly Madew said the Building Energy Efficiency Disclosure Bill 2010, which still has to pass the Senate but has bi-partisan support, will mean property owners will need to disclose a Building Energy Efficiency Certificate when they sell, lease or sub-lease office space of more than 2000 square metres.

“We applaud the Australian Government’s strong leadership in proposing the Commercial Building Energy Efficiency Disclosure Scheme, which will provide a clear direction for buildingowners and tenants,” Ms Madew said.

“Disclosing this rating will ensure companies have access to consistent and meaningful information about a building’s performance, making it easier for them to purchaseor rent more energy efficientoffice space.

“What’s more, these measures will provide strong market-based incentives for owners to improve their properties with cost-effective energy efficient upgrades, which will in turn increasetheir return on investment.”

“The GBCA believes that measuring and reporting energy efficiency is a solid first step, and wewill continue to work with the Australian Government to ensure other building types and metrics are introduced into the scheme over time,” Ms Madew added.

The bill’s passing was made after the Property Council of Australia earlier this week made a public statement of strong support for the proposed legislation, after revoicing concerns about elements of the bill and indicating that concessions made by the Government were insufficient. See our story.