(HOUSTON) — Hines, the international real estate firm, today announced the establishment of the position Vice President-Carbon Strategy to lead the firm in assessing its global carbon emissions and develop the strategy to set and achieve the firm’s science-based targets. Michael Izzo, formerly Vice President-Construction in the firm’s U.S. East Region, has been appointed to this role, signaling Hines’ continued commitment to ESG and decarbonization of the built environment.
According to UNEP, the built environment is responsible for 38% of total global energy related CO2 emissions. Therefore, building on the legacy of Gerald D. Hines, the firm’s mission is to drastically reduce the environmental impact of its properties, including operational and embodied carbon. Hines is the only global developer to establish an executive position for carbon strategist.
“Based on his deep technical expertise and successful implementation of decarbonization strategies with some of our new projects, we are thrilled that Mike has agreed to lead the carbon strategy for our firm as we embark on creating carbon standards for the built environment,” stated Peter Epping, Global Head of ESG.
As Vice President-Carbon Strategy, Izzo will engage with the firm’s global teams to provide strategic leadership, ensure continuity and successful progression on the firm’s strategy and commitments to help lead the industry’s carbon emissions response.
“I’m honored to have the opportunity to join the ESG team and play a pivotal role in defining our climate science-based strategies,” said Izzo. “I look forward to working closely with Peter and the entire ESG team in the years ahead as we combat one of the largest crises our industry and society faces today.”
Prior to this role, Izzo served as Vice President-Construction, working closely with the Hines New York team to evaluate climate risk and carbon emission reduction opportunities on the Hudson Square building portfolio. Elements have already been implemented within the portfolio, most notably at 555 Greenwich, which is forecast to achieve carbon emissions reductions 45% lower than New York City’s 2030 targets for office buildings. The project is also designed to align with a 1.5oC pathway while meeting the state’s 2050 carbon neutral targets. It is expected to be one of the most sustainable buildings in the city and is one of Hines’ pilot projects in our formative embodied carbon reduction initiative.
“We believe over time this approach will become the industry standard, driving material suppliers to do better and rewarding those that do. By bringing focus to significantly reducing embodied carbon, while continuing to decrease operational carbon, we intend to address the holistic impact buildings have on increasing global temperatures, and partake in the transition to net zero,” commented Izzo. “We encourage all in the real estate sector to join this commitment to create a decarbonized built environment, as it is imperative for us all to collaborate to achieve this momentous goal.”
Hines is a privately owned global real estate investment firm founded in 1957 with a presence in 255 cities in 27 countries. Hines oversees investment assets under management totaling approximately $83.6 billion¹. In addition, Hines provides third-party property-level services to more than 367 properties totaling 138.3 million square feet. Historically, Hines has developed, redeveloped or acquired approximately 1,486 properties, totaling over 492 million square feet. The firm currently has more than 171 developments underway around the world. With extensive experience in investments across the risk spectrum and all property types, and a foundational commitment to ESG, Hines is one of the largest and most-respected real estate organizations in the world. Visit www.hines.com for more information. ¹Includes both the global Hines organization as well as RIA AUM as of June 30, 2021.