The Charter Hall Board has adopted a Group Sustainability Policy that forms the foundation of our commitment to sustainable business practices. Covering aspects of environmental management, sustainable design, occupational health and safety, supplier relationships, and community engagement, our Group Sustainability Policy defines our commitment to operating in an ethical manner and outlines the actions we take to deliver on this commitment. Charter Hall’s managed funds adopt and are governed by this Policy and the Sustainability Strategy: For the Future.
The Charter Hall Group Sustainability Policy forms part of a suite of Charter Hall Corporate Governance Policies, which can be found on the Charter Hall website. In FY18, Charter Hall adopted our Human Rights Policy, which recognises that Charter Hall Group operates within Australia, which has democratic processes and judicial independence, high standards of governance, with legislative regimes relating to human rights including labour standards, privacy and non–discrimination. We also operate under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights Framework.
At Charter Hall, sustainability governance extends from the Board and its committees, through the Executive Leadership Group and through divisional management to our employees, contractors and suppliers. The Charter Hall Group Audit Risk and Compliance Committee has responsibility of Sustainability to receive regular updates from management on sustainability issues and initiatives; and review Group Sustainability Strategy, policies and annual sustainability reports, for recommendation to the Board for approval.
The Charter Hall Executive Leadership Group has ultimate responsibility for ensuring we deliver on commitments defined in our Group Sustainability Policy, supported by fund, asset, operations and development teams that embed the Group Sustainability Strategy into our day–to–day business.
Each of our managed funds has its own governance structure which determines decision making with regard to assets within that portfolio. All Charter Hall funds adopt the CHC Group’s Sustainability Policy and Group Sustainability Strategy.
As the property manager of all assets, Charter Hall provides regular updates to each respective Board and/or investment committee regarding performance of properties in their respective portfolios and provides recommendations for improvement initiatives and/or investments.
Risks associated with environmental, social and governance (ESG) are assessed at both Company and Asset level. At the Company level, the Board assumes ultimate responsibility for oversight of risk management. Charter Hall ESG achievements and considerations are reported to the People, Brand and Community Sub–Committee of EXCO and quarterly to the CEO and MD. Corporate policies and procedures are developed and reported through the Charter Hall Audit Risk and Compliance Committee and the Remuneration and Human Resources Committee Corporate Governance. In line with the precautionary approach, where there are activities or potential threats which may have a negative effect on the environment, people or our governance requirements, that activity is not undertaken.
Functional responsibility for the Group Sustainability Strategy and communications lies with Charter Hall’s People, Brand and Community division, with the CFO, COO and CEOs of our office, retail and industrial divisions assuming responsibility for the delivery of sustainability outcomes across our assets, developments and operations.
Our operations and technical services teams are tasked with enhancing operational efficiency across our assets; our asset and property management teams with developing and maintaining trust–based relationships with our tenants; and our development team with designing, developing and delivering assets that are operationally efficient and align with customer expectations.
In our office and industrial portfolios, we have previously outsourced facilities management to Knight Frank; however during FY18, management was transferred to CBRE. Both companies have a dedicated sustainability manager responsible for monitoring and managing sustainability performance across the assets. The Facilities Manager prepares monthly reports for our technical services and property management teams, tracking the performance of assets against key sustainability criteria. Across all these key divisions, including facilities management, there are role–specific sustainability KPIs to which employees and managers are held to account.
Charter Hall Group, as the manager of the properties held by its managed funds, sets the strategic and policy requirements of the funds under management through the Charter Hall Group Sustainability Policy and Sustainability Strategy.