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New data shows that real estate investors are seeing the opposite of “greeniums” in some instances – “brown discounts” for assets “that are not on a credible course to decarbonisation,” according to New Private Market‘s coverage of a webinar hosted by the PERE Network

“An audience poll showed that 66 percent of those tuning in reported seen brown discounts in the market, with around a quarter (24 percent) describing ‘higher discounts’. More than a third (35 percent) said they had not seen brown discounts.”

One panelist expressed surprise about “how many [net-zero] committed buyers are willing to buy brown assets that are not aligned without asking us some critical questions about what it is going to take to get them aligned.”

Then there is this very reasonable explanation about the depressed asset pricing:

“[Brown discounts are] a natural outcome of increased regulation on the one end, but also increased [net zero] target setting commitments. It is also showing up in debt markets … where lenders are asking for net zero plans as a route to a lower cost of capital, or to access capital at all.”

Another panelist cautioned that data on brown discounts may be somewhat misleading, saying “the market was not currently active enough to give a clear picture.”

Regardless of how you interpret the market data at the moment, we now have another ESG-oriented buzzword to add to our lexicon. Because we needed more of those.

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The Editor

Lawrence Heim has been practicing in the field of ESG management for almost 40 years. He began his career as a legal assistant in the Environmental Practice of Vinson & Elkins working for a partner who is nationally recognized and an adjunct professor of environmental law at the University of Texas Law School. He moved into technical environmental consulting with ENSR Consulting & Engineering at the height of environmental regulatory development, working across a range of disciplines. He was one… View Profile