AUSTIN, Texas – AUSTIN (AP) The real-estate industry faces “disastrous” climate change, according to the head of the American Real Estate Association.
And, while that’s not exactly a ringing endorsement, it’s an important one given that the real estate sector has been one of the biggest drivers of climate change for decades.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Tom Barrack, the president of the association, said the industry is being forced to do more to help fight climate change by investing in cleaner energy sources and reducing emissions.
The real estate world has been particularly vulnerable, Barrack said, because of its dependence on the power grid.
He said that for the last two decades, real-ty companies have spent more than $3.5 billion to keep electricity and gas in the home while keeping the lights on and cooling.
That means they’ve also been among the biggest users of coal, he said.
It’s a big challenge, he noted, to meet the demand for a product when the supply is constantly changing.
That’s what has driven a huge push to get more renewable energy into the homes of real-titers.
Last year, more than 1.3 million households switched to solar panels.
In 2017, the number of homeowners using solar has surpassed 2.2 million.
“Real estate has a unique position because it has an energy portfolio,” Barrack told AP.
“Real estate is not a renewable resource.
We are going to continue to invest in the energy infrastructure of the future to create jobs in the future.”
Barrack, who is also president of Texas Real Estate Council, said a climate change problem has already created a lot of uncertainty for real-tor buyers, but that the industry needs to be more proactive and get ahead of the problem.
He said the real-trader industry is “working hard” to mitigate climate change.
Barracks has called on the Trump administration to put more focus on clean energy and to develop renewable energy.
Trump and Barrack have talked extensively about the need to protect the U.S. economy from climate change and have made an effort to put together a bipartisan working group on climate change issues.