The holy grail of Green Buildings

The National Australian Built Environment Rating Scheme (NABERS) has now announced a new energy and water 6 star rating designating market leadership.  This will lead to a new holy grail of 6 star Green Star As Built and 6 star NABERS, that could surpass the milestone recently achieved by Santos House (being 6 star Green Star As Built and 5 star NABERS).

When combined with the recently released IPD Green Property Investment Survey, which showed buildings with 4 star or above ratings returned 32% better than lower rated buildings, and the mandatory disclosure scheme, the green ratings war will become even fiercer.  A 6 star building represents a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and water use from a 5 star building.

Ratings on the up

The existing ratings up to 5 stars do not change with introduction of the new ratings. However, by moving beyond the 5 star rating of "excellent", new buildings or existing buildings which are already operating above and beyond, the requirements for a 5 star rating will now have the opportunity to be recognised for this market-leading achievement. Buildings already performing at a 5.5 star or 6 star level will be issued with new certificates.

New Rating Scale


Very Poor




Below average








Market leading


What is changing and when?

The 6 star rating is available for offices, hotels and shopping centres.

It is proposed that the rating tools for homes, waste and indoor environment will be similarly extended by mid 2012.

What is needed to achieve 6 stars?

From a technical perspective, no climate correction will be applied and a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from the 5 star benchmark is required to be awarded a 6 star rating, or a 25% reduction to achieve a 5.5 star rating. For further technical information, click here..

What does this mean for you?

In an ever changing and competitive construction industry, the revision of the NABERS energy and water tools highlights the need to continually strive to stay abreast of evolving industry drivers, such as environmental initiatives, to remain a star performer by being innovative and quality driven.

It is essential that your contract framework reflects the rating to be achieved and adequately protects you and facilitates the attachment of the rating.

For further information, please contact:


Kristina Giorgio, Lawyer
T: +61 (0)7 3135 0656

The information in this publication is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, we do not guarantee that the information in this newsletter is accurate at the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future.

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