As European leaders in shopping centres, ECE accept responsibility for running a sustainable business. In our view, this involves aspects of ecological, social and economic sustainability in equal proportion.
As early as 2007, we set up a cross-functional ECE sustainability team. Every management area sends at least one sustainability coordinator to the team, so that all areas can contribute to the sustainable development of ECE. The teams responsibilities include, in particular, the strategic control of all sustainability activites of ECE, observation of the societal, commercial and political environment, preparation and communication of findings, initiation and control of activities and a systematic exchange of know-how.
ECE is taking a pioneering role in the property sector, with the founding of a sustainability council, including external experts. The council consists of five independent experts, who advise ECE in ecological, economic and social subjects, and their influence on the development of the company. The sustainability council consists of the following people:
Andreas Wente, former chairman of the board at Philips Deutschland GmbH
Ole von Beust, Premier Mayor of the Free Hanseatic City of Hamburg a.D.
Arved Fuchs, polar explorer
Prof. Kuniberts Lennerts, University of Karlsruhe (TH)
Bärbel Schomberg, property expert
In recent years, a number of ECE property developments have been awarded a full or pre-certificate from the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Nachhaltiges Bauen (DGNB, or German Society for Sustainable Construction)
As an initiative of the sustainability team, the research project “Sustainable shopping centre” was created. After intensive research, and in conjunction with academics form the university of Karlsruhe University (TH), ECE produced the first comprehensive handbook for the development of shopping centres. The basis for the work of the project team was the criteria set out by the DGNB (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Nachhaltiges Bauen or German Society for Sustainable Construction) for the construction and operation of sustainable buildings. The handbook lists all the sustainability measures required during the development of a project - from planning, through the building stage, all the way to operation of the centre. The aim is to ensure sustainability becomes a fixed part of the everyday work of the centre.
To complement the handbook “Sustainable planning, construction and operation of shopping centres”, the handbook “Sustainable operation of shopping centres” was produced. It acts as an aid to centre managers and technical managers on site, and gives practical recommendations for action using best practice examples for the sustainable operation of shopping centres. As well as raising awareness amongst shopping centre staff, the handbook and training programmes aim to contribute towards a common environmental standard in all ECE centres.
Sustainability in existing centres such as this centre
Implementation of sustainable measures in centres already open is complicated and requires intensive engagement with the material. In order to cover the unavoidable need for energy in an as environmentally friendly way as possible, all national ECE centres, plus head office in Hamburg, were converted to eco-power, as an initiative by the sustainability team. This means ECE consciously chose an energy supplier whose eco-power has been certified with a recognised seal of approval by an independent body. Conservative calculations estimate using eco-power in 84 centres has reduced carbon dioxide emissions by a total of 148,000 tonnes.
Lighting concept to save energy
Long before the subject of CO2 reduction arose, ECE had stated that energy conservation was one of their main aims. For out shopping centres, the critical question is, above all, how we can save costs and energy in the areas of light and cooling. Heat generation only accounts for around 20-30% of the energy consumption in the shopping centre. The remaining energy is used for ventilation, cooling and light.
Installation of light bulbs with the latest technology has reduced energy consumption in new centres by an average of 20%. A lighting handbook produced by ECE has also helped optimise energy consumption by tenants.
E-service stations in Berlin, Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein
We offer customers emission-free refuelling in the Berlin shopping centres Eastgate, Ring Centre, Allee Centre and Gesundbrunnen Centre. There are also electro charging stations in the Alstertal Shopping Centre, the Elbe Shopping Centre, in the Billstedt Centre and the Holsten-Galerie in Schleswig-Holstein. This gives environmentally-aware customers the chance to recharge their car at the charging columns in the centres’ car parks, while they do their shopping.