your money, your life, your choice | fashion & CO2

It’s really about bringing everyone together as an industry, and instead of having a few people talk about it, it’s having everyone talk about it and the leaders… actually taking responsibility, putting our money where our mouth is and making an amazing change together.”

Stella McCartney, founder of eponymous fashion company and brand

Consumers, investors, and the fashion industry, when deciding how to spend and where to put their money, are demonstrating a commitment to changing lifestyle choices, changing behaviors, redefining value, reducing emissions of atmospheric CO2 and greenhouse gases, and mitigating human-induced climate change.

The broader textile, clothing and fashion industry have worked during 2018 to specify ways in which, drawing on methodologies from the Science-Based Targets Initiative, they can direct themselves towards a holistic commitment to climate action, achieving net-zero emissions of atmospheric CO2 and greenhouse gases by 2050, while expanding economic opportunity and driving economic competitiveness and innovation.

The apparel and footwear industries together accounted in 2016 for an estimated 8.1% of global climate impacts with emissions of 3,990 million metric tons CO2eq (including emissions generated by processes used for raw material extraction, raw material processing, manufacturing, assembly, packaging production, transportation/distribution, and end-of-life).

The Ellen Macarthur Foundation estimates that “if nothing changes, by 2050 the fashion industry will use up a quarter of the world’s carbon budget.”

It’s really about bringing everyone together as an industry, and instead of having a few people talk about it, it’s having everyone talk about it and the leaders… actually taking responsibility, putting our money where our mouth is and making an amazing change together.”

So observes Stella McCartney while attending an 11 December gala dinner hosted in London by Bloomberg and Vanity Fair. The gala was held to highlight fashion, climate change, climate change mitigation, and the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Change Action, signed in early December.

There is no shortage of capital in the world that wants to go in this direction. The hearts and minds argument of the common man on the street, has been won. My feeling is that what the financial services business needs to do, is to be working with the real innovative companies of today,” said David Fass, Macquarie Group CEO for Europe the Middle East and Africa.

The founding signatories to the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Change Action are: adidas, Aquitex, Arcteryx, Burberry Limited, Esprit, Guess, Gap Inc., H&M Group, Hakro Gmbh., Hugo Boss, Inditex, Kering Group, Lenzing AG, Levi Strauss & Co., Mammut Sports Group AG, Mantis World, Maersk, Otto Group, Pidigi S.P.A, PUMA SE, re:newcell, Schoeller Textiles AG, Peak Performance, PVH Corp., Salomon, Skunkfunk, SLN Textil, Stella McCartney, Sympatex Technologies, Target and Tropic Knits Group.

Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Change Action, excerpts:

· the Paris Agreement represents a global response to the scientific consensus that human activity is causing global average temperatures to rise at unprecedented rates

· goals agreed in the Paris Agreement translate to reaching climate neutrality [read: reduced to zero emissions of atmospheric CO2 and other greenhouse gases from sourcing, manufacturing, distribution, use, and end-of-life of materials and products; reduced to zero use of hydrocarbon-based sources of energy in operations, manufacturing, distribution, retail, transport, etc.] in the second half of the twenty-first century. The fashion industry, as a major global player, needs to take an active part in contributing to the realization of these goals

· all companies, within fashion, retail and textile global value chain, regardless of size and geography, have opportunities to take actions that will result in a measurable reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

· establish a closer dialogue with consumers to increase awareness about the GHG emissions caused in the use and end-of-life phases of products, building towards changed consumer behaviors that reduce environmental impacts and extend the useful life of products

· current solutions and business models will not be sufficient to deliver on the current climate agenda. Fashion industry needs to embrace a deeper, more systemic change and scale low-carbon solutions

· the fashion industry stakeholders have a role to play in reducing climate emissions resulting from their operations, with an awareness that the majority of climate impact within the industry lies in manufacturing of products and materials

· all companies, within fashion, retail and the textile global value chain, regardless of size and geography, have opportunities to take actions that will result in a measurable reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

· actions that reduce GHG emissions are consistent with, among other things, expanding economic opportunity, using resources more efficiently, driving economic competitiveness and innovation, and strengthening resilience

· responding to climate change requires action on both mitigation and adaptation

[Signatories agree to]

11. Establish a closer dialogue with consumers to increase awareness about the GHG emissions caused in the use and end-of-life phases of products, building towards changed consumer behaviors that reduce environmental impacts and extend the useful life of products;

12. Partner with the finance community and policymakers to catalyse scalable solutions for a low-carbon economy throughout the sector

Stella McCartney and friends hit Bloomberg and Vanity Fair gala dinner,” Stephanie Takyi, The Standard, 13 December 2018

Stella McCartney Slams Fast Fashion as a Threat to the Environment,” Lucca de Paoli, Bloomberg, 12 December 2018

Inside the Bloomberg Vanity Fair Climate Exchange,” VF X Bloomberg, 11 December 2018

Milestone Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action launched,” UNFCCC, 10 December 2018

About the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action,” UNFCCC

Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action,” UNFCC

Measuring Fashion, Environmental Impact of the Global Apparel and Footwear Industries Study,” Quantis, 2018

A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning Fashion’s Future,” November 2017, The Ellen MacArthur Foundation & Circular Fibers Initiative

Report: A positive vision for a system that works, and summons the creative power of the fashion industry to build it,” Ellen MacArthur Foundation

our daily bread (& rice) | wheat, rice, & CO2

Plants need carbon dioxide to live, but its effects on them are complicated.

As the level of carbon dioxide in the air continues to rise because of human activity, scientists are trying to understand how the plants we eat are being affected.

According to recent studies, rice, wheat, and other staple crops lose nutrients when exposed to levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere expected by 2050.

Samuel Myers, principal research scientist at Harvard’s School of Public Health and director of the Harvard-based Planetary Health Alliance and colleagues have conducted studies in which crops are grown bathed in air that simulates the predicted atmospheric conditions expected both by 2050 and by the end of the 21st century. The studies showed declines in protein, iron, and zinc in wheat, and declines in iron and zinc in soybeans and field peas.

The scientists compared nutrient levels in field crops grown in ambient CO2 levels, about 380-390 parts per milliion (ppm) at the time of the work, with those grown in the elevated CO2 levels expected by 2050. The latter level, 545-585ppm, is expected even if substantial curbs on emissions are put in place by the world’s governments. In order to take account of variable growing conditions, the researchers analysed 41 different strains grown in seven locations on three different continents.

Wheat grown in high CO2 levels had 9% less zinc and 5% less iron, as well as 6% less protein, while rice had 3% less iron, 5% less iron and 8% less protein. Maize saw similar falls while soybeans lost similar levels of zinc and iron but, being a legume not a grass, did not see lower protein.

The precise biological and physiological mechanisms that cause nutrient levels to fall when CO2 levels increase are not yet well understood.


“Major crops lose nutrients when grown in elevated carbon dioxide levels,” Harvard School of Public Health, 19 June 2018

“As Carbon Dioxide Levels Rise, Major Crops Are Losing Nutrients,” Merrit Kennedy, NPR, 19 June 2018

“Climate change making food crops less nutritious, research finds,” Damian Carrington, The Guardian, 7 May 2014

Increasing CO2 threatens human nutrition,” Samuel S. Myers, Antonella Zanobetti, Itai Kloog, Peter Huybers, Andrew D. B. Leakey, Arnold J. Bloom, Eli Carlisle, Lee H. Dietterich, Glenn Fitzgerald, Toshihiro Hasegawa, N. Michele Holbrook, Randall L. Nels, Michael J. Ottman, Victor Raboy, Hidemitsu Sakai, Karla A. Sartor, Joel Schwartz, Saman Seneweera, Michael Tausz & Yasuhiro Usui, Nature, International Journal of Science, 7 May 2014

It’s your money ・ Hurricanes, flooding, fires. Buying a home?

It’s your money. ・ Hurricanes, flooding, wildfires. Buying a home? Approach your investment with care and due diligence.

Buying a home involves an enormous amount of money, and few people do it often enough to be experts. Given the realities of climate change, the process is now set against a backdrop of radical uncertainty about the very ground you will live on and the air you will breathe.

Given all that, you owe it to yourself to call on every dispassionate expert you can find and grab all available data on any risk you are taking on.”

There is a case for optimism here, where the world comes together and manages to turn the (rising) tides. So if you are a positive thinker or can afford a big loss, by all means bet one of your biggest assets on that possibility.

Otherwise, ask yourself this: Just how much more science and weather will it take before ever larger numbers of people decide to settle in or retire to places that pose less risk? And once they do, do you want to be trying to unload your property in a danger zone so you can afford to join them?

You’re Buying a Home? Have You Considered Climate Change?”, Ron Lieber, The New York Times, 2 December 2016

Research and understand highly pertinent issues such as those that follow below. Examine flood zones, flood insurance, fire zones, and the term Wildland Urban Interface (WUI, indexes the conversion of wildland to developed territory).

In the context of wildfires, a cornerstone of risk evaluation is a metric called the Wildland Urban Interface, or WUI. WUI indexes the conversion of wildland to developed territory. WUI indicates an explosion in wildland development over recent years.

According to the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) measurement framework, the conversion rate from wildlands to urban development has grown to 4,000 acres per day or close to 2 million acres per year.

The explosion in WUI development increasingly puts homeowners, firefighters and communities at risk of wildfire – a risk that is only growing across the United States as the globe warms and aridification worsens. Since the 1980s, large fires in Northern California have increased by 60 percent. Some forests in the Pacific Northwest have seen a 5,000 percent increase in annual burned land

According to the  2017 Verisk Wildfire Risk Analysis, more than 2 million of the 4.5 million homes at high or extreme risk of wildfire are in California.

We should start by learning which regions are most at risk. Many people assume that most WUI lands fall in the western states. The large eastern and southern states have the most land in the WUI. In 2016, Kansas and Oklahome saw over a million acres burn – that’s an area bigger than the state of Rhode Island. 

The so-called “fire season” has continued to lengthen over the past several decades, and that, since 2000, climate change has been attributed to adding 9 additional days of high fire season. The environmental context facing designers and developers is thus increasingly risky.

We Should Plan Homes to Minimize the Threat of Wildfires,” Jesse M. Keenan and Alice Hill, Newsweek, 21 October 2017

Services & infrastructure

Sources & uses of municipal services such as flood- and fire-prevention, -recovery, and related maintenance services.

How much does the locality (village, town, county, parish, state) pay for public services such as roads, pumps, fire services, drinking water, sewage, etc. Where does the money come from. 

Sources & uses of flood- and fire-prevention and -recovery service funds

How are flood- and fire-prevention and -recovery services financed and funded. How long will flood- and fire-prevention and -recovery services be affordable. How is “affordable” defined.

Home-purchase finance

If you plan to finance a purchase with a mortgage, examine how banks and insurance companies are currently managing flood- and fire-prone properties in their portfolios. What are the trend lines? What steps are being taken by banks and insurance companies vis a vis such properties to protect their balance sheets over the long term.


Examine how insurance companies are managing flood- and fire-prone properties in their portfolios. What are the trend lines? What steps are being taken by insurance companies vis a vis such properties to protect their balance sheets over the long term.

What are current premiums? Is the appropriate insurance provided by private companies, by the government? How much will you receive in case of a disaster? Will you receive the full market value of the damaged property?

Sources & uses of energy

Energy matters. Know sources and uses of energy. A house designed and built for low energy unit intensity offers multiple advantages.

Sources, uses, costs, & quality of water

Water matters. Know sources, uses, costs, and quality of water.

Building materials

Building materials and construction matter. Know how and of what materials the house is constructed. Is the house built for fire resilience? Is the house built for flood resilience?

Access & transportation infrastructure

Access matters. How is the neighborhood served by transportation. Can you get to work / school / the doctor’s and dentist’s office / the grocery store and shops / all those important places by foot, bike, bus, train? Must you drive a car? (Think of the CO2 emissions that are exacerbating both the floods and the fires.) Are there multiple lines of access? One road?

Climate change

Research climate change and its effects in your geographical area of interest.

A team & teamwork matter

Develop a team of experts, whom you can trust and consult and with whom you can work together, in your geographical area of interest.

As you delve into these questions, here are links to articles, and there are many more, that provide information, insight, perspective and links to further sources of information.


You’re Buying a Home? Have You Considered Climate Change?”, Ron Lieber, Your Money | The New York Times, 2 December 2016

Flooding Risk Knocks $7 Billion Off Home Values, Study Finds,” Laura Kusisto, The Wall Street Journal, 25 August 2018

Your coastal property has already lost value to sea rise. This site can tell you how much”, Alex Harris, Miami Herald, 25 July 2018

Fire Weather Outlooks (updated daily), NOAA’s National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center, Fire Weather Outlooks

Why does California have so many wildfires?”, Kendra Pierre-Louis, The New York Times, 9 November 2018

Forced Out by Deadly Fires, Then Trapped in Traffic,” Jack Nicas, Thomas Fuller, Tim Arango, The New York Times, 11 November 2018

Jesse M. Keenan in Newsweek: time is now to evaluate design risk, enhance resilience against wildfires,” Travis Dagenais, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 24 October 2017

We Should Plan Homes to Minimize the Threat of Wildfires,” Jesse M. Keenan and Alice Hill, Newsweek, 21 October 2017

North Carolina, Warned of Rising Seas, Chose to Favor Development,” John Schwartz and Richard Fausset, The New York Times, 12 September 2018

Perils of Climate Change Could Swamp Coastal Real Estate,” Ian Urbina, The New York Times, 24 November 2016

Underwater. Rising Seas, Chronic Floods, and the Implications for US Coastal Real Estate,” Union of Concerned Scientists, 2018

Del Mar stands firm against ‘planned retreat”, Phil Diehl, The San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 May 2018

Can Miami Beach survive global warming?”, David Kamp, Vanity Fair, 10 November 2015

Rising seas, distressed communities, and ‘climate gentrification’: Jesse M. Keenan talks Miami in Vice, Scientific American,” Travis Dagenais, Harvard University Graduate School of Design, 14 August 2017

California Today: Now Comes the Insurance Challenge,” Mike McPhate, The New York Times, 11 October 2017

Climate change and commercial real estate: How resilient is your portfolio?” Jeffrey Kanne, Carlos Madex-Madani, Sam Bendix, Institutional Real Estate, Inc., 1 June 2017

Settling post-catastrophe insurance claims: What agents should know,” Bernice Ross, Inman, 5 September 2017

High Ground Is Becoming Hot Property as Sea Level Rises,” Erika Bolstad, Scientific American, 1 May 2017

Wildland-Urban Interface: Key Issues,” L. Annie Hermansen-Báez, Jennifer Seitz, and Martha C. Monroe, Joint product of InterfaceSouth of the Centers for Urban and Interface Forestry, Southern Research Station, U.S. Forest Service and the University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS). Published March 2009.

Key findings from the 2017 Verisk wildfire risk analysis,” Arindam Samanta, Verisk, 12 July 2017

The Wildland-Urban Interface in the United States,” Susan I. Stewart, Northern Research Station, USDA Forest Service, Evanston, IL (, Volker C. Radeloff, Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Roger B. Hammer, Department of Sociology, Oregon State University

Christopher Wool: “Untitled” (silk-screen, 2001, detail)

Detail of Christopher Wool’s “Untitled” (silk-screen, 2001).

J. Tomilson Hill, the vice chairman of the Blackstone Group who manages its hedge fund business, is the first American private collector to display his works of contemporary art in Asia.

“Christopher Wool: Highlights from the Hill Art Collection” opened during Art Basel Hong Kong in Central District’s H Queens, the new skyscraper designed by William Lim’s Hong Kong-based CL3 architectural practice and custom-built to house art galleries.

The exhibition, on view from March 27 through April 8, was produced by Hong Kong-based advisor Alexandre Errera.

While Mr. Hill ordinarily does not attend art fairs (dealers call him with works of interest instead), he did make it to Art Basel Hong Kong this spring for the opening of his exhibition of the works of Christoper Hill.

Following Hong Kong, Mr. Hill and his daughter left for Beijing to visit the studios of the about 15 artists there whose works he collects. Mr. Hill collects, for instance, works of Liu Wei. (See my post of yesterday regarding Liu Wei’s “Purple Air D1” of 2008).

Asked about the attraction of Chinese art now, Mr. Hill observes:

“Let’s go back to the different collections that we have,

“which is Renaissance bronzes, old master paintings, a dozen post-World War II artists, and now emerging artists.

They all have one thing in common: At the moment that the art was created, the country of origin was going through a massive series of changes.

“China, in my mind, is going through the same thing now.

“And so I said, ‘I want to be educated.'”


See: 1) “J. Tomilson Hill on the Attraction of Contemporary Art,” Ted Lois, The New York Times, 26 March 2018; 2) “J. Tomilson Hill is Giving Asia Its First Christopher Wool Show in Over a Decade,” Nate Freeman, Artsy, 27 March 2018


#christopherwool #art #artmarket #arthistory #contemporaryart #jtomilsonhill #collection #portfolio #collectionsmanagement #alexandreerrera #artadvisory #blackstone #blackstonegroup #finance #hedgefund #hongkong #beijing #seoul #tokyo #newyork #london #paris #berlin #vienna #zurich #oslo #dubai #luxury #realestatedevelopment #architecture #design

Leonardo’s ‘Salvator Mundi’ sells for US$450,312,500, makes auction history

Breaking (smashing through) auction records, Leonardo da Vinci’s “Salvator Mundi” (oil on panel, painted circa 1500) has sold today at the Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale in Manhattan for $450,312,500 (hammer price plus buyer’s premium, net of any applicable fees).

The New York Times quotes art advisor Todd Levin as saying, “This was a thumping epic triumph of branding and desire over connoisseurship and reality.”

Alan Hobart, director of London’s Pyms Gallery, observes, “It’s been a brilliant marketing campaign. This is going to be the future.”


Post-War & Contemporary Art Evening Sale | Christie’s, New York, 15 November 2017

Leonardo’s Salvator Mundi makes auction history” | Christie’s, 15 November 2017

Leonardo da Vinci Painting Sells for $450.3 Million, Shattering Auction Highs” | Robin Pogrebin and Scott Reyburn, The New York Times, 15 November 2017

elegance in design & engineering meets recycling

Ten years in the making, a public-private partnership between the New York City Economic Development Corporation and Sims Municipal Recycling, a division of Sims Metal Management, designed and master-planned by Selldorf Architects, New York City’s 11-acre South Brooklyn Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility performs.

Opened in December of 2013, the 140,000-square-foot facility is the principal processing facility for all of New York City’s residential metal, glass, and plastic recyclables. The facility has the capacity to process 1,000 tons of recyclable material every day.

Selldorf Architects (architect to museums and galleries worldwide, including the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego) organized the buildings to create the site’s own urban context and designed the facility to optimize environmental performance.

The buildings are made from 99% recycled American-made steel. The buildings, wharf, recycling equipment, and electrical substations are elevated four feet – using a blend of recycled glass and crushed stone from Second Avenue subway tunneling operations – to prevent damage from sea level rise and storm surges. New York City’s first commercial-scale (100 kW) wind turbine and the City’s largest solar installation (600 kW) generate energy on site. On-site storm water management is included as are two acres of native plantings.

Access by barge will help eliminate 150,000 annual truck trips (240,000 truck miles). Newly-renovated freight rail will be used for the export of processed recyclables.


Sustainability and Design Tour of Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility” | AtlasObsura, May 2017

Selldorf Architects’ Sunset Park recycling facility in Brooklyn sets a new standard in sustainable design” | Pei-Ruh Keh, Wallpaper, 13 December 2013

Mayor Bloomberg, Deputy Mayor Holloway and Sanitation Commissioner Doherty Announce Opening of New State-of-the-Art Recycling Facility – Able to Process Metal, Glass and All Plastics in One Location” | Office of the Mayor, City of New York, 12 December 2013

Sunset Park Material Recovery Facility” | Selldorf Architects

Sims Municipal Recycling

Sims Recyling Solutions

Sims Metal Management

#sunsetparkmaterialrecoveryfacility #Brooklyn #NewYork #NewYorkCity #SimsMetalManagement #SimsMunicipalRecycling #SelldorfArchitects #NYCEconomicDevelopmentCorporstion #recycling #architecture #design #art #museums #galleries #luxury #smartluxury #urbanluxury #resilience #energy #solar #solarenergy #windenergy #engineering #construction #buildingtech #tech #sealevelrise #stormsurge #CO2 #H2O #realestate #commercialrealestate #CRE #finance #ROI

towards ‘net zero’ construction for all buildings

“Our vision is to create possibilities to make net zero construction in an efficient way, giving everyone the possibility to do so.”

So articulates Jonathan Karlsson, Founder and CEO (with degrees in theoretical and construction physics) of Innenco, an international company based in Malmö, Sweden that performs.

Reports Inhabitat,

“It starts with their active systems: pipes are integrated into the frame construction to utilize a building’s thermal mass. Adding heat pumps and chillers to the system allows Innenco to get four to six times greater efficiency in heating and cooling. At this point they’re able to reduce energy by 85%, so to cover the last 15% they install Innenco Quantum Solar panels. ‘This makes an investment in solar cells much lower than a traditional system, and we can get net zero for a really cost-efficient investment.'”


This new energy concept from Sweden can make any building net zero” | Lacy Cooke, Inhabitat, 11 October 2017


#Innenco #Malmö #Sweden #JonathanKarlsson #architecture #design #energy #netzero #CO2 #H2O #buildingtech #tech #physics #builtenvironment #resilience #thermalmass #efficiency #energyefficiency #costefficiency #performance #luxury #smartluxury #urbanluxury #urbanliving #realestate #finance #ROI #construction #Inhabitat

energy-efficient buildings & significant ROI

The return on investment in energy-efficient building features is significant and results accrue to corporate bottom lines.

According to the Morgan Stanley Research report, “Building Energy Efficiency,” the ROI in energy-efficient features can lower the cost of ownership by 50% for commercial buildings.

Green buildings” can yield significant savings at every scale of construction, operations and maintenance. Rising global demand for such buildings is fueling growth of a high-tech, industrial-strength sector focused on delivering state-of-the-art building materials, equipment and energy management.

Observes Europe-based Sustainability Analyst Faty Dembele,

With residential, commercial and public buildings accounting for more than an estimated 30% of the world’s energy consumption, this is an area of growing interest for consumers, building owners, tenants and regulators.”


Green Buildings Power Savings & Return” | Morgan Stanley Research, 20 June 2017

#realestate #commercialrealestate #CRE #residentialrealestate #ROI #finance #investments #greenbuildings #resilience #energy #luxury #smartluxury #urbansmart #art #MorganStanley

bricks, mortar, health, wellness, & sustainable amenities → enhanced value + premium pricing

AMLI Residential, a company founded in 1980, owned by PRIME Property Fund, a core commingled institutional fund, and focused on the development, acquisition, and management of luxury apartment communities in the United States, has recently completed the first AMLI Sustainable Living Index. Residents of AMLI apartment properties were asked after their views of sustainability and green living. The survey was conducted in August of this year at properties in Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Seattle, Southern California and Southeast Florida.

There were 2,812 respondents. 12 percent of the respondents were younger than age 25, 47 percent were ages 25-34, 16 percent were ages 35-44, and 25 percent were 45 or older.

A majority of residents are willing to pay slightly more to live in a “green” residence

The survey indicates that a majority of residents are willing to pay slightly more to live in a “green” residence.

64% of respondents are willing to pay more for sustainable housing

84% of respondents say living in sustainable homes is important to them

85% of respondents believe living in sustainable homes is beneficial to their health.

The following features are most valued by respondents:

a smoke-free community – 94% of respondents

energy- and water-efficient features – 93% of respondents

access to public transit/ strong walk and bike scores  – 85% of respondents

77% of respondents report that AMLI’s green living features have saved them money in utility costs.


AMLI Vice President of Sustainability Erin Hatcher discusses the resilience factor. Buildings can be made more resilient to environmental, market, and regulatory risks through the incorporation of a holistic features. “Utility price increases, unpredictable power outages and other unforeseen events just don’t affect them as much as their less environmentally-friendly counterparts.”

Sustainability is good business when done right & done smart

Ms. Hatcher reports:

Sustainability is good business when done right and done smart. In multifamily residential, a developer should consider a sustainably holistic approach that includes value adds for the resident, our buildings, and the immediate communities where they reside. Operating costs, and ultimately residents’ utility bills, can be reduced through LEED-targeted construction, as well as efficient HVAC, lighting, and water systems. These […] enhance both the resident experience and asset values. Efficient systems can go far to decrease the wear-and-tear (i.e., maintenance costs) on the property’s equipment and the overall power and water grids, too.

Green buildings are also more resilient to environmental factors. Utility price increases, unpredictable power outages and other unforeseen events just don’t affect them as much as their less environmentally-friendly counterparts. Similarly, avoiding potentially harmful building materials promotes the longevity of our buildings and the health of residents who live in them. More frequent fresh air exchanges and non-smoking policies at sustainable communities add to the health benefits. Keeping residents safe and comfortable in their home is always top priority, but that need not conflict with our sustainable mission, nor erode the bottom line.

Sustainability on the community level is often overlooked, yet is a by-product of any eco-conscious development. Adding green space and rainwater management features such as rain gardens or ponds have great civic potential at a low cost. These efforts provide scenic, natural amenities for building residents and the community at-large, while reducing the loads on shared, often aged community infrastructure, especially storm-water drainage.”

Twenty-eight AMLI properties (more than one-third of the company’s portfolio) are LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified and 15 AMLI communities are ENERGY STAR certified.

AMLI received two awards this month from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC):

the Outstanding Multi-Family Developer LEED Homes award for its outstanding leadership and innovation in the residential green building marketplace, and

the LEED Power Builder award, which recognizes developers that certify at least 90 percent of their units built in the past year.

AMLI currently owns and manages 59 apartment communities including more than 19,900 apartment homes and has approximately 4,600 additional apartment homes under development at 14 new properties.



Residents Will Pay More for Sustainable Spaces, Says Survey” | Jennifer Hermes, Environmental Leader, 20 September 2017

New Survey: 84 Percent of Residents Say Living in a Green Home is Important to Them; 85 Percent Believe Living in a Green Home Benefits Their Health” | Business Wire, a Berkshire Hathaway Company, 18 September 2017

Leaders Unveil Their Secrets: Business Case for Environmental Stewardship” | Jennifer Hermes, Environmental Leader, 18 July 2017

Bricks, Mortar, and Carbon | How Sustainable Buildings Drive Real Estate Value” | Morgan Stanley Institute for Sustainable Investing, March 2016

#realestate #commercialrealestate #investments #finance #ROI #bottomline #sustainability #resilience #health #wellness #value #enhancedvalue #luxury #smartluxury #AMLI #USGBC #LEED #EnergyStar #BerkshireHathaway

art-market disruption & the brick-&-mortar gallery

In a time of disruption of the art market by auction house and online agents, global accumulation of wealth at the high end, and growth of the world’s contemporary art market (21 times between 2001 and 2008), Belgian investment banker and art connoisseur/collector Alain Servais believes in the brick-and-mortar model of the art gallery.

In his opinion, a brick-and-mortar gallery, like a museum or an art biennale, is where works of art look best. Galleries are a “right location” and a “right context” for works of art. “There is an aura to the work of art in the right location and the right context, which nothing replaces.”

Mr. Servais provides insight into his collecting and offers his thoughts as to how the gallery could well evolve.

Why collect?

I don’t believe that one decides to become a collector, but rather that you are or you are not. And more generally, collecting is more than acquiring works of art. It is a way of living, a way of thinking.”

To express myself. Adding my “sentence” around the “words” created by the artists. To share new ideas, questions, doubts, and surprises. To learn about myself and the world I am living in, so to open my mind to other options. To participate in the constitution of the history of the art of today. To feed my insatiable drive to learn what is not taught. To think outside of the box.”

Finally, art must surprise me, challenge me, open up my mind and heart following the definition that I heard many years ago from Mera Rubell: “Art is a language which opens your heart to the Other.”

How does he collect?

In “constant conversation with art history, because when you look with connoisseurship you can find people who are completely forgotten, disregarded, or underestimated.”

How should the gallery model evolve?

The goals of the gallery are to court collectors, sell artists’ works, and give priority to the artists and to the art.

What must galleries do to evolve well?

reinforce legal and best-practices infrastructure

stabilize the artist-gallery relationship

balance contracts at all levels of the industry

provide more transparency

on pricing: “there are growing conflicts of interest between artists and gallerists. Sometimes what is in the interest of the gallery is not in the interest of the artist. For example, pricing policies. How fast do you want to raise the price?”

on the gallery-museum relationship, “what’s dubious about the gallery system? One thing is the relationship between the museums and the galleries. Right now only the wealthy galleries can get their artists work into museums because one of the problems is: who can produce the works? Who can put the money up front for massive pieces for exhibitions and biennales?”

develop multiple exhibition strategies

multiple exhibition spaces

select art-fair participation

space exchanges in different cities

pop-up exhibitions in dedicated spaces

cooperative events with artists and peer-group galleries

 animate with intellectual discourse

art spaces need to be “animated” – with talks, conferences, and events

this will serve to enable meeting spaces – forums for exchanges – between artists, galleries, dealers, curators, collectors, and other stakeholders


Interview with Alain Servais” | BMW Art Guide

Collector Alain Servais on Why Galleries Should Act Like Luxury Brands to Survive the Internet” | Alain Servais, Artspace, 27 December 2016

Collector Alain Servais on Insider Trading in the Art Market, “Blood-Sucking Leeches,” and Why We’re Now Just the Fashion Industry” | Andrew M. Goldstein, Artspace, 23 May 2015

Art in the shadow of art market industrialization” | Alain Servais, NYAQ/LXAQ/SFAQ International Art and Culture, 10 November 2014

#art #artmarket #smartluxury #luxury #artcollecting #collectors #collections #connoisseurship #AlainServais #museums #galleries #brick-and-mortar #auctionhouse #disruption #finance