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India and sustainable real estate – miles to go but getting there

Property Report
Areas of Orissa have yet to be touched by India's growing real estate developments.

Areas of Orissa have yet to be touched by India's growing real estate developments.


The real sector has emerged as one India’s largest drivers of economic growth. As a sector, it provides large scale employment and contributes significantly to the GDP. For decades, environmentalists have been warning that frenetic human economic activity associated with the breakneck speed of economic growth is placing a huge strain on the earth and its natural resources.



Of course, we keep pushing those limits back with clever new technologies; yet eco-systems are undeniably in decline. Since real estate is emphatically driving this growth, it is also directly impacting the environment. Sustainable development is all about minimizing this impact and ensuring we keep the planet green and alive.

Sustainability is often misunderstood as curtailing use and stifling developmental activity. Nothing can be farther from the truth. The number of certified green buildings in India has witnessed a four-fold growth in the last 4 years. This is testimony to the growing popularity of the concept. If one goes by the published statistics on the IGBC website there are currently 223 registered green buildings in the country.

As an absolute number the growth has been more than four folds in the last 4 years, but is it enough? Hardly! The commercial real estate stock in the top seven cities alone is approximated at 310 million sqft. Further, the forecast is that commercial real estate development will grow at an annual rate of 8-10 per cent. With this backdrop, the number of projects committed to green design and construction are minuscule.


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Disclaimer: The information presented and opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of Estates Report and/or its partners.