Smart, green finance delivering efficient buildings in Sydney

An innovative finance agreement has given the green light for a $700,000 energy efficiency upgrade to a commercial office building in the heart of Sydney.

In June, the City of Sydney signed an Environmental Upgrade Agreement (EUA) to fund energy efficient lighting, air conditioning and building management system (BMS) upgrades to James’ Hall at 169-171 Phillip Street, Sydney, which is owned by the Anglican Church Property Trust Diocese of Sydney on behalf of the Parish of St James.

EUAs are a voluntary tripartite agreement between a building owner, a finance provider and a local council, made possible by changes to the Local Government Act to encourage building upgrades.

Under these agreements the financier provides the building owner with funds for the upgrade, and the owner repays the loan by paying an additional charge on their rates notice, called an environmental upgrade charge. 

Tenants provide contributions equal to or less than the savings they make in their utility bills as a result of the works. These contributions can then be used by the building owner to service the loan repayments and greatly improve the return on investment.  In addition, once the EUA is paid off, the tenants and building owner continue to benefit from reduced utility bills.

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