With last November’s acquisition of London-based sustainable design consulting firm Upstream, Jones
Lang LaSalle beefed up its already meaty “green”
client offerings. News of the agreement came just
months after Chicago-based JLL formed a global energy and
sustainability services group, charged with integrating and
expanding those practice areas. Such moves have helped to
solidify the company’s position as a leading provider of environmentally conscientious services.
But like a growing list of commercial real estate companies,
JLL’s commitment to promoting sustainability doesn’t end
with its business lines, but extends to its own operations. As
members of the industry work to minimize the environmental
impact of the properties
they sell, build, manage
or invest in, many are
taking stock of their in-house practices, making sure they
observe the same green principles that are being advocated to
“We’ve always been sensitive to things like our energy consumption, knowing that if we are going to give advice on
energy, we need to be utilizing it wisely, in a thoughtful manner that demonstrates the recommendations that we are giving,” explains Dan Probst, chairman of the global sustainability board at JLL.
By Danielle Douglas
Named one of the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2007
Energy Star Partners of the Year, the firm is credited with helping clients decrease greenhouse gas emissions by 89,856 tons,
resulting in aggregate savings of $33 million in energy-related
utility costs in 2006.
Around that time, Probst says the decision was made to
broaden the internal scope of concern from energy consumption to overall sustainability. JLL launched an initiative known
as Act for a Cleaner Tomorrow aimed at reducing the company’s usage of energy, water, paper and other waste material.
The program centers on the design of JLL’s approximately 160
office locations worldwide as well as engaging employees in
During an office build out, for example, the company incorporates recyclable materials, like carpet and wall coverings,
says Probst. With a design that is conducive to sustainability,
it’s then up to employees to maximize the efforts. The goal, he
says, is to “get our employees to think about turning lights and
computers off when they go home at night and not printing
documents if they don’t have to. It’s also about looking at
things like transportation and how we can reduce airline
miles,” he explains.
Employees, says Probst, are enthusiastic about the program,
often generating further ideas to support a process that at times
can be daunting. “Unlike most of our clients, we don’t own any