Jade Synergies as a solution for meeting our sustainability goals at Quares
The real estate sector is responsible for 40% of global CO2 emissions. If we want to meet the climate goals of the Paris agreement, we will have to invest massively in renewable energy, energy efficiency and the performance efficiency of new building technologies. Jade Synergies was set up as a subsidiary of Quares in 2018 to accelerate this transition.
As a property manager with clear sustainability ambitions, we noticed at Quares that there was often a split incentive between property owners and tenants. Why would the owner invest in further sustainability if the savings are largely absorbed within the tenant’s energy bill? Third party financing from an Energy Service Company (ESCO) was the solution; and as a property manager with a portfolio of 1.8 million m² under management, and a business park manager of more than 30 business parks in Flanders, we were ideally suited to work on this.
Unlike many other players in the market, Jade Synergies does not have its own products to sell. Jade Synergies can therefore put together a technical consortium (supplier, installer and maintenance team) on an independent basis based on the specific needs and expectations of the customer. In this sense, the main focus at Jade Synergies is to offer total solutions that address the energy performance of the buildings in their entirety. We do not do cherry picking whereby other technological interventions may no longer be viable.
Focus on total solutions for the customer
Jade Synergies currently finances projects in the field of relighting, solar panels, HVAC, charging stations for E-mobility as well as batteries for balancing the supply and demand of renewable energy. Our service is based on the total unburdening of the customer. We always start with an analysis of the possibilities. Secondly, we take care of the financing of the installation, so that the customer can reduce their operational energy costs without any investment. In addition, we are responsible for the implementation and management of the installation.
Local Energy Communities and ‘as a service’ solutions
The evolution from a central to a decentralised energy market is essential. Renewable sources such as wind and sun currently provide only a limited percentage of our energy demand. Yet there is huge potential for additional locally produced renewable energy.
Further control of that energy production is not yet in place. Energy grid overload is always an event just waiting to happen, so we have not yet succeeded in optimally deploying the available capacity of the renewable energy supplied. Local Energy Communities can play an important role in moving towards a balanced supply of renewable energy. Within a Local Energy Community we try to keep the supply and demand of energy locally in balance. Active insight into and control of the energy demand and production of buildings is crucial in this regard. And therein lies the success of a complete transition to renewable energy.
Jade Synergies wants to actively contribute to the creation of these kinds of energy communities by offering energy services as a service. It is currently running a large living lab project ‘Become’, with support from the Flemish government, to establish one such energy community on the Mechelen-Noord industrial estate in collaboration with Intervest, Engie and Continental.
Innovation in financing sustainability
Jade Synergies, together with Quares and its funding partners, is also building new innovative forms of financing for investments in sustainability. For example, in 2020 it launched its very first ComboBond, a new type of bond loan in which the yield increases as collective behaviour becomes more sustainable. For the first time, the yield of a bond is linked to a climate indicator instead of a financial indicator.