In May 2022 a few days after my appointment as President of BOMA Québec, I expressed my vision of three major areas of focus that would mobilize our energies in the months and years to come: succession, ESG factors and innovative practices.
The major issues of our time require answers, solutions and transitions that will take years to implement. These include the energy transition of the province's buildings, which will accelerate as new regulatory requirements come into effect, and the integration of ESG factors into the building policies of the future.
Nelson Mandela said that education is the most powerful tool for changing the world. In our humble capacity, that's what we want to do by helping our members integrate ESG into their management strategies so as to mitigate risk and support long-term value creation.
There's a lot of talk about ESG, but how do you actually integrate it into your real estate practice? Owners and managers need concrete tools to navigate through an evolving context. As promised, an ESG working committee has been formed to clearly define our objectives and provide a framework for our actions in that regard.
The committee met for the first time on November 24, 2022 to agree on the elements required to provide BOMA Quebec members with a toolbox and relevant training that will allow them to fully grasp this issue and implement ESG approaches anchored in their own building management context. Proposals for services have been solicited from two specialized firms. The project is co-directed by Éric Deblois, Senior Leasing Manager at Beneva and a member of the BOMA Québec board of directors, and myself. We will make our recommendations to the Board after analyzing the proposals received. We are confident that we will be able to announce several actions and services to members throughout 2023.
Doing Better without being Forced To
Speaking of evolution, I draw your attention to the Building Energy Challenge. In an effort to inspire engagement, collaboration and knowledge sharing, we have always presented the program as a user-friendly competition committed to making a voluntary difference. While that is true, I'd like to emphasize that the BEC is first and foremost a tool. Participating in the program gives you access to a number of cutting-edge resources and information that will help you implement those all-important projects to improve the energy performance of your assets.
Inevitable? Yes. With the new Montreal bylaw and the upcoming advent of a new province-wide regulatory framework, the question is not "if" but "when" to make the energy shift. In that context, the BEC offers a tangible response to four fundamental needs of property managers: the need (and obligation) to better manage energy, the importance of developing a culture of innovation and continuous improvement, supporting actions aimed at concrete results, and confirming the ongoing commitment of all stakeholders; employees, suppliers, tenants, peers, etc. We have said this many times before but I will say it again, the BEC is free and there is still time to register. The 2nd edition of the Participant's Guide is available here.
I will stop here to allow you to continue your reading of the first 2023 edition of BOMA Info.
I wish you all an inspiring and positive New Year.
President of the Board, BOMA Quebec
Executive Director, Property Management, Fonds immobilier de solidarité FTQ