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Why Building Certification Tools are an Executive Strategy Imperative

By Zola Tau, GBCSA Key Account Specialist

The battle against climate change has resulted in a socio-economic awakening. Carbon reduction and green development principles are no longer confined to the domain of sustainability officers. The impacts of climate change are tangible. It is no longer sufficient for sustainability initiatives to be isolated within specialised departments; they must be fully integrated into company decision-making and culture.

The timing of conversations is what makes history and as a global business community, we are at a sustainability tipping point 1. More formalised international regulations as well as investor concerns for measurable green interventions are about to force business-as-usual to convert to business-as-sustainable. The change this will require in thinking elevates these discussions to the highest organisational levels and boardrooms (CxO and Board level) and calls for the incorporation of these initiatives into company KPAs.

The apparent choice then becomes: Are we going to position our companies and teams as green leaders, or green defaulters? If we choose this moment to act, initiating conversations along the entire corporate chain about sustainability and certification, we choose leading over lagging. We choose first adopter advantage over frantic compliance.

Certified green assets offer a key step on the journey to total sustainability. There are some amazing tools available such as the annual MSCI SA Green Property Index 2; and the GBCSA, ASAQS and University of Pretoria’s 2022 Cost of Green Report 3 that build out the business case to assist you in shaping a climate-sensitive company culture. Beyond the investment case, there are other studies to get different departments talking sustainability, like the well-being and productivity benefits of building green 4.

The correlation between environmental sustainability and business resilience is clear.
Proactively investing in risk mitigation and adaptation measures that deal with regulatory change head on, not only future proofs company operations but enhances competitiveness.
The certification of property assets and implementation of measurable sustainability solutions is in the end what will demonstrate our conviction as the business community. What conviction, you say? Whether we care enough to put our money where our mouth is today to secure environmentally-sound tomorrows.

There has never been a better time to get the green conversation going than now!

At the GBCSA, we strive to collate, collect, and share as many of these certification conversation starters as possible, because we know that green buildings can serve as a gateway to broader green thinking, climate-sensitive company culture development & future-proofed bottom lines. You can find some of them on our website.

Let us help build your sustainability blueprint, and start the journey to your company’s certification.

  1. 2024: a tipping point for investing in sustainable buildings | World Economic Forum ( ↩︎
  2. MSCI SA Green Property Index 2023. ↩︎
  3. Cost of Green report is currently available on request. Please send your enquiry to [email protected]. ↩︎
  4. ↩︎

Individual Membership

Designed for professionals acting in their individual capacity, including single consultant-businesses.

Organisational Membership

Ideal for companies, government departments, and organisations.

  • Total Employees: 1 - 5 Employees - R 4080.00
  • Total Employees: 6 - 20 Employees - R 12570.00
  • Total Employees: 21 - 50 Employees - R 24690.00
  • Total Employees: 51 Plus Employees - R 43840.00

Lisa Reynolds

Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director

Lisa Reynolds is the CEO of the Green Building Council South Africa.

Lisa was the driver for the drafting of Energy Efficiency Standards and Regulations for Buildings and has been involved in Energy Efficiency since 2003. She serves on many committees in the SABS and within the energy management professionals’ space. She was President of the SAEEC from 2016 to 2019 and was the previous President of the ESCo (Energy Services Companies) Association. Lisa was instrumental in the formation of SAFEE (Southern African Females in Energy Efficiency) within SAEEC.

She has assisted the South African Government with its Green Building Framework policies, Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives and Energy Efficiency Strategies

Her passion for the “Green space” started with the birth of the Green Building Council in 2007. Lisa served on the Board and the Technical Committee of the GBCSA, as well as on several Technical Working Groups for Rating Tools and Criteria. Lisa. became CEO in June 2020.

Lisa has a BSc, an MBA and a CEM. Lisa’s awards include the 2007 ETA Award for Women, 2008 Individual Energy (SAEE), 2012 SABS Standards Writer Award; the 2014 Women in Energy (SAWIEN); and the 2016 Ian Lane Hall of Fame award.

Lisa is committed to growing the Green Economy within a Green Recovery.

Organisational categories

As an organisational member, you will fall into one of the below categories, and be charged according to specific size indicators. Please reach out to us for any further clarity on which category is best for your organisation

Property Developers

Annual Turnover

Investors, Owners, Property Managers

Total Asset Value

Major Corporate Tenants & Retail

Annual Gross Rentals

Building Contractors

Annual Turnover

Building Product Manufacturers & Distributors

Annual Turnover

Professional Services: Architects, Designers, Engineers, Quantity Surveyors, PM’s, Consultants, Legal

Number of employees

Research, Higher Education, NGO’S & Regulators

NGO or Research/Higher Education/ Regulators

Related Interests: Utilities, Financial, Insurance, etc.

Annual Turnover


Local/ municipal/ provincial/ state 
Contact GBCSA to confirm your category