Three commercial giants have been recognized for their substantial reduction in energy usage by the City and its partners.
Financial services company Old Mutual and retailers Ackermans and the Clicks Group have been recognized by the City of Cape Town and its partners for helping to make sustainable progress possible as a result of their efforts to reduce their energy consumption.
They were lauded for leading by example during the 2016 Energy Efficiency Forum (EE Forum) Awards which took place this morning, 1 November 2016.
The commercial sector uses an estimated 44% of the electricity supply in the Cape Town area and is responsible for 26% of Cape Town’s total carbon emissions. Given the rising electricity tariffs and the serious constraints on South Africa’s electricity supply, energy efficiency is critical to economic growth and stability. It is also key to a more affordable, sustainable and secure energy future for Cape Town. This is reflected in the City’s Energy 2040 Goals, which include a 37% reduction in carbon emissions, with 22% coming from energy efficiency alone.
The City, Eskom and the South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) congratulate the winners on their comprehensive energy efficiency drives which have resulted in significant reductions of their electricity consumption.
The winners are:
· In the Large Building Retrofit category: Old Mutual’s Pinelands office is using 15% less electricity now than it did four years ago. Its annual saving of about 6 470 MWh is thanks to the introduction of LED lighting and a set of operational and behavioral changes, including rewarding its staff for saving. A solar photovoltaic (PV) system is currently being installed to generate some of its own power.
· In the Small Building Retrofitcategory: the Clicks Group head office in Woodstock is saving 31% on electricity costs as a result of the energy efficiency initiatives that have been implemented since 2010. It has 1 298 solar PV panels on the roof, which is equivalent to the size of a rugby field and which can generate an average of 1 795 kWh per day. The building’s energy management has been improved and they have introduced smart metering, LED lighting, heat pumps to replace electric geysers, and variable speed drives for air-conditioning
· In the Special Merit Award category: Ackermans has done a full lighting efficiency upgrade in all of its stores over the past three years. Innovative internal campaigns have also been implemented to improve the energy usage habits of the retailer’s staff.
The 2016 EE Forum Awards applications were judged by the Energy Research Centre’s Monitoring and Verification Unit, which is based at the University of Cape Town.
“Companies were judged on their unwavering commitment to significant energy efficiency interventions through behavioral change and not just technology upgrades, which have resulted in substantial reductions in energy consumption. Clear plans for sustaining these savings have also been implemented,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Environmental and Spatial Planning, Councillor Johan van der Merwe.
Cape Town’s EE Forum has been assisting commercial buildings and operations with practical know-how since it was launched in 2009 by the City, in partnership with Eskom and the SAPOA. During this time, many organisations, including the City, have improved their energy efficiency, which has helped to reduce Cape Town’s overall electricity demand. Energy-efficient businesses reduce their costs, increase their competitive potential, and lower their carbon footprint.
In recognition of this leadership and to motivate the continued reduction in energy consumption, the Forum partners created the EE Forum Awards, which were introduced in 2012.
The Forum is co-funded by Old Mutual, the Friederich Naumann Foundation, and the Western Cape Government and is supported by several other organisations.