Australia’s industrial market has taken a step towards improving its environmental footprint, with the first warehouse being rated under NABERS’ new industrial-focused benchmark.  

The Syngenta Australia Vegetable Seeds Warehouse in Somersby, New South Wales achieved a 6-star rating on the newly launched NABERS Energy rating for Warehouses and Cold Stores. 

The Somersby warehouse was used to store vegetable seeds under temperature and humidity control, until they were ready to be packed and distributed. 

The Somersby warehouse achieved the rating based on use of 100% GreenPower – government-accredited renewable energy offered by most electricity retailers to households and businesses in Australia. 

The NABERS Energy rating for Warehouses and Cold Stores was launched at the end of September, and is a sustainability initiative to help the industry measure and improve the energy efficiency of warehouses, cold stores, and combined facilities. 

“The partnership with NABERS and our energy auditors Knight Frank helps to support our ambitious emissions reduction target and provides us with an opportunity to benchmark against similar sites,” said Mike Tremaine, Health, Safety and Environment Manager at Syngenta ANZ.  

“We are excited to be the first warehouse and cold store site to achieve a NABERS Energy rating.   

“As part of Syngenta ANZ’s continued focus on sustainable operations, our team is investigating additional projects to drive down energy use and our environmental footprint that make business sense.” 

NABERS said the new tool will provide a benchmark for the industrial property sector to target higher standards in energy efficiency and a pathway to continuous emission reductions. 

The rating was completed by Michael Christensen of Knight Frank Australia’s ESG team.  

Knight Frank Director of ESG Stephen Coman said they expected many warehouse owners and tenants to seek NABERS energy ratings soon. 

“Until now, there has been no reliable way to benchmark warehouse energy efficiency, but we anticipate many warehouse and cold store owners and tenants, including the institutional owners, will now want to have their properties rated and promote their energy efficiency,” Coman said.  

“This rating becomes doubly valuable in the context of current steep increases in energy costs. 

“With three NABERS assessors now qualified to rate warehouses and cold stores, Knight Frank is well positioned to assist warehouse owners and tenants with NABERS Energy ratings and sustainability improvement plans.”