DIFC Continues to Turbo Charge Sustainability Drive with LEED Certifications across Multiple Buildings
- Iconic DIFC Gate Building Achieves LEED Platinum Certification; 14 Buildings within DIFC Including Innovation One Receive LEED Gold Certification
Dubai, UAE; 12 December 2023: In a major sustainability milestone that reflects its commitment to responsible environmental practices, the portfolio of buildings under Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading global financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, have been awarded 15 LEED Certifications by the US Green Building Council (USGBC).
The iconic 15-storey DIFC Gate Building, the gateway to the financial district, was awarded the prestigious LEED Platinum Certification, the highest rating within the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) framework, recognised for implementing several sustainable strategies including energy efficiency, water conservation, waste management, transportation, and human experience.
14 additional structures within DIFC including Innovation One, also received LEED Gold certification for excellence in green building practices.
The distinguished achievement is a testament to DIFC’s ongoing efforts in integrating best-in-class practices that aim to foster a smarter, resilient, and more sustainable future in line with its DIFC Strategy 2030, the Centre’s decarbonisation drive, and the UAE’s Net Zero by 2050 initiative.
Peter Templeton, President and Chief Executive Officer, US Green Building Council, Green Building Certification Institute and Arc Skoru, said: “We are excited to celebrate the certification of 15 Dubai International Financial Centre LEED certified buildings across this incredibly community. This is a great example of ongoing progress, coinciding with COP28, truly highlighting all the great work that is taking place around the world to advance our collective goals towards decarbonisation and the Paris Agreement targets that has been set for us. The LEED certification stands as an impressive real-life example here in the centre of Dubai of what is possible with the commitments of organisations like DIFC behind it.”
Arif Amiri, Chief Executive Officer, DIFC Authority, said: “Achieving LEED certification across our world-class sustainable infrastructure and urban community sets a global standard, delivers tangible value and reinforces the Centre’s commitment to ensure DIFC is a leading sustainable financial hub. Aligning with the UAE’s Net Zero goals, COP28 commitments, and DIFC’s Strategy 2030, the multiple LEED certifications further showcase DIFC’s dedication to creating a built environment, benefitting like-minded tenants and clients, by driving innovative solutions crucial for a sustainable future.”
To fulfil its sustainability aspirations, DIFC executed a series of practical and measurable strategies and technological solutions to optimise and enhance building design, construction, operations, and maintenance across its portfolio of buildings. Incorporation of innovative HVAC cooling systems and use of renewable energy sources such as solar PV cells have enhanced energy efficiency while regular audits are conducted to identify and address energy inefficiencies. DIFC has also upgraded conventional lighting solutions with LED and other energy efficient control systems.
In addition, investments in low flow fixtures, efficient irrigation systems, and usage of TSE water for landscaping, have led to significant improvements in water conservation while comprehensive recycling programmes are helping reduce waste. To improve the health and quality of life of its occupants, buildings across DIFC also regularly monitor and address indoor air quality.
Energy and water conservation measures across DIFC have led to average annual savings of 10.5 million kilowatt hours of energy and 39.7 million Imperial Gallons of water.
Khaled Bushnaq, Chief Executive Officer, Energy Management Services, said: “Energy Management Services congratulates DIFC on achieving LEED certification for its entire existing building portfolio. Our consultancy expertise supported DIFC's sustainability journey, evaluating environmental performance across energy, water, waste, transportation, and human experience. Collaborating with the DIFC team underscores our joint commitment to environmental stewardship and responsible building practices, aiming for a more sustainable future.”
The LEED Certifications were presented to DIFC by Peter Templeton, President and Chief Executive Officer, US Green Building Council, Green Building Certification Institute and Arc Skoru; Ms. Deepthy B, Regional Director, GBCI MENA; Khaled Bushnaq, Chief Executive Officer, Energy Management Services; - and received by Arif Amiri, Chief Executive Officer, DIFC Authority; Alya Al Zarouni, Chief Operating Officer, DIFC Authority; Saleh Al Akrabi, Chief Real Estate Officer, DIFC Investments Ltd; Christian Kunz, Chief Strategy, Innovation and Ventures, DIFC Authority; and Mahmoud Nsouli, Senior Vice President, Marketing & Corporate Communications; and Gopakumar Pillai, Vice President Property Management, DIFC Authority; at an honouring ceremony held at DIFC.
LEED is the most widely used sustainable buildings rating system in the world. It provides a framework for healthy, highly efficient and cost-saving sustainable buildings and has gained global recognition for its comprehensive approach to evaluating and certifying sustainable building practices.
DIFC is the first financial centre in the region to have 100 per cent of own building assets LEED v4.1 Certified, the latest next generation LEED standard for green building design, construction, operations and performance.
DIFC is renowned for its urban architecture and breath-taking skyline including the record-breaking ICD Brookfield Place tower, the tallest and largest office building in the EMEA region to achieve LEED Platinum certification in 2020.