Sunday, September 4, 2011

Economic developments across SA, Africa and the world

CAPE TOWN COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS COULD IMPROVE EFFICIENCIES – Roughly one in three tons of carbon produced by Cape Town’s energy use is generated by commercial buildings, according to Cape Town Energy Efficiency Forum for Commercial Buildings coordinator Sarah Rushmere. While this is equivalent to the global value for buildings, the high carbon cost means there is still much to be done in improving the efficiencies of Cape Town’s office blocks and other commercial buildings.

Speaking at a session of the Cape Town Energy Efficiency Forum on Green Leasing, Rushmere says, while many large companies, such as Vodacom, MTN and BMW, have recently embarked on projects to improve the energy efficiency of their offices, these types of projects are not typical of the majority of South Africa’s commercial property space, which is why the concept of green leasing is important.

“The issue here is that these are owner-occupied buildings and the vast majority of our existing building stock is multiple-tenanted commercial buildings, where the owner has got many tenants to deal with. The [energy efficient] headline news is not coming from multiple tenanted buildings that are retrofitted, it is mostly coming from new builds and refurbishments of owner-occupied buildings,” says Rushmere.

The Cape Town Energy Efficiency Forum is run by the City of Cape Town, Eskom and the South African Property Owners Association and is directed at owners and managers of commercial buildings and related stakeholders. The forum provides practical case studies and addresses how to overcome barriers to energy efficiency. “I think this is the first collaborative forum about green leasing in this country. This is a pioneering session,” Rushmere says.

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