SM Prime: Green buildings toward decarbonization goals

(Photo caption) Balancing iconic modern aesthetic with environmentally sound practice: The FourE-Com Center, located in the SM Mall of Asia Complex, draws inspiration from crystal formations with its three adjacent rhombic towers.

For property developers, transitioning into energy-efficient buildings and greener developments has become the standard in light of the world’s climate change challenges.

Such is the case for SM Prime Holdings, Inc. (SM Prime), one of the leading integrated property developers in Southeast Asia. SM Prime is committed to building innovative and integrated sustainable lifestyle cities, with an eye toward long-term resilience and a healthier environment for future generations.

“By focusing our efforts on sustainability, climate resilience, and operational excellence, we continue to create practical solutions that will elevate the quality of life of the Filipino people,” said SM Prime president Jeffrey Lim.

Taking the LEED

Over the years, SM Prime has gained international recognition for its leadership in the industry. Taking the LEED Certification program to heart, several SM Prime developments have secured Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold-level certifications from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).

Whether for work or leisure, it is no secret that buildings consume significant energy and resources. Shopping malls have now become vital to a dynamic and progressive urban life, and offices and work spaces in the city play critical roles in a burgeoning economy.

(Photo caption) Attuned to the energy of its city, the SM Aura Premier is now an iconic feature in Bonifacio Global City for its cosmopolitan luxury. Appropriately named from the chemical symbols of the gold element (AU) and radium (RA), this SM Supermall received a Gold LEED Certification.

Thanks to a high-performance building envelope that lowers solar heat, SM Aura Premier by SM Supermalls is the first and only shopping mall in the country to receive a LEED Gold-rating. The mall’s green features surpassed international standards in indoor air quality, thermal comfort, and energy efficiency. Along with other SM Malls, recycled water is used in air-conditioning operations, cooling towers, water closets for flushing toilets, and gardens are kept green.

For SM Hotels and Conventions Corporations, Conrad Manila is an icon in the hotel sector. The high-end hotel and retail complex was awarded a LEED Gold-certification for its sustainable investments in CO2 reducing materials made from non-volatile organic compounds that minimize carbon emissions. Its bicycle facilities, occupancy sensors, and insulated glass that keep heat and noise out, combined with world-class hospitality and the Bay City setting, make it an example of more profound luxury.

Meanwhile, SM Prime’s SM Offices conscientiously built its roster of green commercial properties long before the pandemic. In the Mall of Asia Complex, multiple E-Com Center office buildings are interconnected to the Mall, Hotels, and other destinations through a series of elevated covered bridgeways that help lessen carbon footprint by promoting a more active and pedestrian-friendly lifestyle. Its LEED Gold-certified ThreeE-Com Center and pre-certified LEED Gold FourE-Com Center incorporate expansive sky gardens to earmark spaces that encourage rejuvenation and better work-life balance, as well as emphasize an active effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Adding to SM Offices’ roster of sustainable and innovative properties are LEED Gold-certified office towers linked to SM Malls and major transport terminals, highlighted by the S-shaped Mega Tower landmark at the gates of the Ortigas CBD along EDSA, SM North Towers 1 and 2 in SM North EDSA Quezon City, and SM Aura Office Tower in BGC.

(Photo caption) Reflecting the shipping vessels that ply the nearby Manila Bay, all 347 guestrooms and suites of The Conrad Manila are equipped with energy-saving intuitive technology. It sits atop the two-level retail complex S Maison, with walking bridges that directly connect to the SMX Convention Center and the SM Mall of Asia.

A commitment to Net Zero

In developing communities and creating a climate-resilient future, the property arm of the SM Group believes it is essential to identify and understand the interests of its stakeholders, whether through installing electronic vehicle (EV) charging units across all shopping malls or creating workspaces rooted in innovative green designs. While there is no one-size-fits-all approach toward the decarbonization goal, Net Zero is achievable with the guidance of LEED standards. It has been USGBC’s holistic framework for reducing GHG pollution in buildings for over a decade.

SM Prime commits to achieving Net Zero by 2040 by continuously expanding its renewable energy portfolio, optimizing energy efficiency, and efficient water management. SM Prime commits to sourcing renewable energy for at least 50% of its electricity consumption.

These are among the company’s initiatives underpinning the Department of Energy’s initiative to increase the country’s share of renewable energy supply to 35% by 2030. SM Prime’s journey towards a net zero end, while endeavoring to achieve its business growth and trajectory, is achievable through fruitful partnerships across all sectors.

“SM Prime’s building strategy is anchored on the practical principles of sustainability and the smart use of resources. As we take the lead in the country’s real estate industry, we are determined to become a role model and show how Philippine companies can innovate to balance economic development with environmental conservation and climate action,” says Lim.

The company’s heightened focus on sustainability and resilience will enable SM Prime to navigate tomorrow’s business landscape, ensuring its continued ability to create long-term value for all its stakeholders through sustainable integrated property developments that thrive for generations. SM Prime has cemented its place as the leading real estate developer in the Philippines.


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