Businesses and organisations are managing their greenhouse gas emissions to position themselves for growth and competitiveness in a lower-emissions future. Businesses are also choosing to go one step further and demonstrate leadership and corporate responsibility by becoming carbon neutral. Carbon neutral means reducing emissions where possible and compensating for the remainder by investing in carbon offset projects to achieve zero emissions (Figure 1). In working towards carbon neutrality, precincts can achieve cost savings from improved energy productivity or other operational efficiencies, and can respond to demand from occupants and tenants for sustainable and energyefficient accommodation. The Australian Government, in partnership with the property sector and business, has developed the National Carbon Offset Standard for Precincts (Precinct Standard). The Precinct Standard is a voluntary standard to manage greenhouse gas emissions and to achieve carbon neutrality. It provides best-practice guidance on how to measure, reduce, offset, report and audit emissions that occur as a result of the operations of a precinct. The Precinct Standard has been designed to accommodate a wide variety of precincts in Australia. From large-scale mixed-use developments with hundreds of offices and dwellings to smaller university precincts, the standard can be used to achieve carbon neutrality and showcase climate leadership. The Precinct Standard can be used in a number of ways. It can be used to better understand and manage carbon emissions, to credibly claim carbon neutrality and to seek carbon neutral certification. For precincts certified by the Australian Government, the Carbon Neutral Certification Trade Mark (the certification trade mark) is available for use. It provides a legitimate stamp of approval that a precinct has met all the requirements of the Precinct Standard and provides further opportunities to demonstrate climate commitments to stakeholders. Certification against the standard is provided through the Australian Government’s Carbon Neutral Program, also described in this document (Section 3).

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