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RICS announces vision for sustainability

A Vision for Sustainability comprehensively details RICS' approach to corporate responsibility and sustainable development. Initiatives range from green business strategy to responsible engagement with employees, and from promoting fair access to the profession to action on the ground in international development.

The report forms part of RICS' commitment as a signatory of the UN Global Compact and coincides with the UN Climate Change conference in Durban, South Africa, and RICS' international Governing Council meeting.
Initiatives over the past year include: benchmarking RICS' carbon footprint, including displaying CO2 emissions in real time, growing the pro bono property advice service for UK charities disaster risk reduction and international development projects in Africa, an EU funded project to produce training materials for energy efficiency measures in homes across Europe  and research in the USA underpinning the business case for sustainability in commercial buildings.
‘As a global professional body governed by a royal charter, we act in the public interest in all that we do. RICS is, by definition, wholly devoted to corporate responsibility. This is clearly visible in our core functions of setting and enforcing the highest standards of competence and ethical behaviour in the profession,’ said RICS chief executive, Sean Tompkins.

‘We also provide impartial and informed advice to policymakers and in our standards, research and advocacy work address some of the biggest issues for economies, businesses, societies and individuals, such as sustainability and international development.

‘It would be easy to leave it there. But we have committed to going further in three areas, to demonstrate our status as a responsible business: by procuring and using resources responsibly and fairly; giving something back to communities; and being a best practice employer,’ he explained.

‘Our strategic business plan puts responsible action at the heart of everything we do. I am excited about being part of a journey which is going to make a real contribution to integrating responsible business practices across property, land and construction markets,’ he added.

The plan includes further cutting RICS' carbon emissions and resource use, investing in employee volunteering, and producing further sustainability guidance and training for RICS members.