It’s one thing to be in a room – in person or virtual – and get excited by insights and provocations. It’s quite another to sit down and devote some heavy concentration to the material that’s been recorded and painstakingly edited.

You end up picking up so much more depth, colour and light.

Real people with their thoughts distilled, clarified and made accessible.

Thanks to our small army of helpers we got there. Again. On yet another deep dive project to bring together in one inspirational place, what we need for the energy transition we have to have, The Festival of Electric Ideas – Masterclass Series Special Report (available free for four weeks, video recordings free for members)

Because buildings mostly cause the problems we’ve got and they are the things that, mostly, can fix them. Emissions, contamination, connections between each cluster; the works. Buildings and the city shapes that make can also be blamed for a lot of social issues through physical segregation and lack of access to resources.

But today we alight on the most urgent and terrifying issue, emissions.

But is it 23 per cent of emissions that some quarters cite, 30 per cent that’s more generally accepted, or what the rest of the world has landed on: 40 per cent? Who calculated (or decided) Australia was so tame on its numbers for buildings? Are we so easily captured by the people who would rather go with the smaller number? In everything? (Send through the data, it’s time we clarified this).

Regardless this reversal of our emissions damage is a huge task.  A few years ago it was but a thought bubble in someone’s crazy head that said we should make our building stock net zero. But it worked – it’s the crazy people who change the world, right?

Today even the nation is heading to net zero. Well, sort of.

And we just love these people.

At this our latest deep dive project The Festival of Electric Ideas masterclasses we unearthed, yet again, some of the most dedicated, informed, experienced and potentially powerful change makers in the country.

And they are generous.

They are creative.

And they are inspiring!

Check out the photos in the report during grand finale session at the CBRE offices in Sydney for #5 Portfolio Transitions to see what we mean.

But it was in reading through the minutiae that the most interesting learnings popped out.

Here’s just a few:

  1. Property people just love talking to each other, listening and learning. They have a massive appetite to do well, toss ideas back and forth to arrive at a new and better position. (Maybe it’s that famous “co-opetition” that’s gaining global recognition, starting with energy efficiency and electrification. See Masterclasses #1, #2, #3, #4 and #5).
  2. Co-ownership of big buildings has some unexpected benefits – people call each other up and feel free to seek and give advice and insights. They even get to understand better how renewable energy contracts work and might join up to negotiate a better outcome. (Tenants can do the same. Ask the landlord to gather a little buyers’ group!) #5 Portfolio Transitions
  3. On the things that motivate action? It’s still good ole moolah. You might get a slightly better price for green assets but it’s the threat of the brown discount that will ring the loudest bells in your belfry #3 The Finance and the Winners
  4. We need to deliver what we promised. They used to erect statues to city founders in the olden days. But these old timers stuck to their words and delivered what it said on the label. #4 Precincts
  5. An idea that a local teal candidate flagged with Philip Graham CleanPeak Energy (that didn’t make it past the briefing and into the final show but it’s irresistible: why can’t the whole of North Sydney be renewable energy fuelled? Start by getting that tenants buyers group going, and hey, what an amazing business opportunity. #4 Precincts and #5 Portfolio Transitions
  6. It takes chat and human contact to create trust and that’s how you get big change #5 Portfolio Transitions
  7. Electric cars are a massive three times heavier than ICE (internal combustion engine) cars. Can the floor loadings in existing buildings cope? Especially if they were birthed during a crappy building period #1 The Good Bones
  8. How to get a good finance deal? Make sure your proposal shows your good green creds because the bank will soon have to report on its scope 3 emissions to government and its investors and they all want to know much oil and gas you’re chewing up and how resilient you’ll be when the hot wind blows and the wild waters rage # 3 The Finance and the Winners
  9. We’re falling way short of our 82 per cent renewable energy target at just 60 per cent likely. Why? The privatisation of infrastructure means there’s no longer just one authority that can carve a path through the landscape for transmission lines for solar energy and each private company must make a long arduous development case by itself. #4 Precincts
  10. Australia is way behind in the energy transition policy wise; places like Germany are investing in major energy efficiency retrofits (to save a motza the need for more energy). Imagine if all the office buildings were retrofitted to Passive House standard – we’d easily meet our renewable energy targets #The Good Bones and briefings/research #1 The Good Bones

Get in touch if you want to be part of our next series – ESG for the New World or call 0413 834 574

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  1. Quote: “Electric cars are a massive three times heavier than ICE (internal combustion engine) cars. ”
    Toyota Camry 1665kg
    Audi A4. 1555
    Tesla Model 3 1840kg
    Come on! Do your research.

    1. thank you. This was quoted several times during our sessions. We will check. Please can you send your source – and others welcome to add. I know there are moves to increase the size of car parks for giant SUVs and utes etc some of which are already electric… it could be the larger cars that can’t be guaranteed with safety.

      1. Camry 1500-2030 kg

        Audi A4. 1720kg

        Tesla model 3. 1617kg

        Introduce RUC (road user charge) which takes account of damage to the environment and to roads. Light EVs a small charges – say 2cents per km – and large heavy vehicles like ICE B doubles a large fee say 50 cents per km. This would require Federal intervention. People Dont need large SUVs.