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ZAGREB, CROATIA-Colliers International Southeast Europe, based here, has announced that it has hired a regional sustainability advisor, and hopes to integrate green building practices into its daily operations over three million sm (30 million sf) from 10 European offices in six countries, as well as into consulting services with clients. The office here has also adopted its Regional Initiative for Sustainability and the Environment.

Erin Inglish, the new green advisor, tells GlobeSt.com that Southeast Europe, with countries that include Greece, Montenegro and Albania, owners and developers here are at the tipping point of green awareness. “Their immediate reaction is that it’s not tangible or applicable, but I think it’s because they associate sustainability with expensive, high-tech designs that include solar panels or green roofs, when in fact it’s more about the fundamentals of social and economic efficiency,” Inglish says.

She says that just like in the states, owners and developers of commercial real estate in Southeast Europe have to see that sustainability makes sense, as well as being cost-effective in the long-run. “There’s no silver bullet to show them, per se, but we need to show them that it’s not just helpful, but critical, for emerging economies at the end of the day to have less wasted resources,” Inglish says.

Another problem, she says, is that other countries don’t have the US Green Building Council to promote standards for sustainability. “We’re trying to help spearhead a green building council, and this matches our consulting goals. Over the next few years, we want to make this a permanent fixture of our consulting package,” Inglish says.

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