British Land said it will be carbon neutral by 2008/9 in its annual Corporate Responsibility Report published today.

The reported detailed a range of continuing initiatives to substantially improve British Land’s resource usage efficiency. It said it had reduced its energy usage by 4% and its water usage by 16% across the portfolio. Its biggest CO2 emissions reduction improvements came from the London Offices portfolio, because of energy management at its 30 acre Broadgate Estate in the City of London. Meadowhall Shopping Centre, one of British Land’s largest assets, reduced energy consumption by 11%.

Stephen Hester, chief executive at British Land, said: ‘Sustainability has been at the heart of our operational principles and establishing British Land as a carbon neutral company does not signal a change in strategy, but an acceleration. We are taking an activist approach, stepping up existing efforts and aim to lead the market in developing and managing buildings in a sustainable manner.’

British Land’s carbon neutral drive has three elements: managing and reducing direct emissions; reducing the carbon content of energy supply - installing turbines and solar panels and investing in combined heat, power and cooling sources - and off-setting – or introducing a Benchmark cost against which carbon reduction initiatives can be measured to incentivise reduction in energy use.