GBCSA a key participant and sponsor of upcoming RICS Summit Africa 2018

Dorah Modise, CEO of the Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA).
Dorah Modise, CEO of the Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA).

The Green Building Council of South Africa has announced its key participation and sponsorship of the RICS Summit Africa 2018 taking place later this month, as a result of green building being a crucial part of developing smarter and more sustainable African cities. 

The council’s association with the RICS Africa Summit has seen an integration of green and sustainable building content in the programme with the addition of another key speaker, David Pierre-Eugene, Head of Group Facilities at Discovery whom will participate on the panel on ‘optimising real estate costs’. This panel will look at how improved workplaces are creating happier, healthier and more productive work forces whilst driving cost and resource efficiencies for employers. Pierre-Eugene will join more than twenty other local and international speakers and panelists set to take part in the various discussions.

In its fourth year, the summit has entrenched itself as one of the main events on the global RICS calendar with more than two hundred delegates set to attend the two-day event. Other sponsors include Broll Property Group, Cushman & Wakefield Excellerate and Colliers International.

As the preeminent green building organisation in Africa, the GBCSA was established over a decade ago and has pioneered the green building movement in South Africa and on the continent. It’s great to have secured the GBCSA as participants and sponsors of RICS Summit Africa 2018, especially considering the theme of this year’s event being around sustainability and smart urbanisation” commented TC Chetty, RICS’ South Africa country manager.

He added: “Besides its significant contribution to green building and sustainability in the property and built environment sector in South Africa, the GBCSA has also played an important role in supporting the establishment of green building organisations in other African countries. We have several sustainability experts already on the line-up to speak at the summit. However, the participation of the GBCSA is noteworthy considering its role in driving green building in both the private and public sectors, which ultimately contributes to environmental sustainability and climate change mitigation.”

GBCSA chief executive, Dorah Modise, said the council was excited about its association with RICS and proud to be supporting the RICS Summit Africa this year, to up the ante around green building and urban sustainability across Africa. Modise views sustainability in the built environment sector as a joint initiative, and said that it is through collaboration with industry bodies such as RICS that much bigger strides will be made.

We have had a head start in South Africa with the GBCSA having been launched in 2007. Today, more than 360 new and existing buildings have been rated by the GBCSA with the Green Star SA, Energy and Water Performance Tool as well as EDGE for residential buildings accreditation. This could not have been achieved without the support of the commercial property and broader built environment sector, as these green buildings have made a significant contribution to reducing our carbon footprint, enhancing wellbeing and productivity for those who live, work and play in them. However, we have a long way still to go towards entrenching green building across the African continent. Collaboration is crucial to this,” she said.

Modise added: “The GBCSA currently chairs the Africa Regional Network of the World Green Building Council, and through this network we share lessons learnt in the establishment and running of Green Building organisations. To date, we have seen differing but great progress in Kenya, Mauritius, Zambia, Rwanda, Tanzania, Sudan, Namibian, Botswana, and Zimbabwe etc. Different countries within the continent, use different certification tools, but the rate of green building certification is increasing exponentially.”

As part of RICS Summit Africa, this year’s event will again include a Technical Tour and an opening Gala Dinner, which takes place on 30 May. The power packed full-day conference takes place the following day at the Maslow Hotel in Sandton Central. The Technical Tour is sponsored by JSE-listed, Attacq Limited, while the International Facilities Management Association is also a supporter of RICS Summit Africa again this year.

The Technical Tour will see delegates visit Attacq’s Waterfall precinct, a signature mixed-use mega property development that is fast-becoming the centre of Gauteng’s commercial and logistics industries. Waterfall is setting new standards in real estate. The Technical Tour will allow participants to enjoy an introduction to the benchmark architecture and sophisticated space and operational efficiencies of several buildings in the precinct, including Waterfall Corporate Campus; PwC’s new head office at Waterfall City; Deloitte’s new head office currently under construction; Cummins buildings; Waterfall Park; and, a residential estate under construction. The tour culminates with refreshments and conversation with the RICS & Waterfall teams.

Chetty concludes: “RICS is committed to Africa. We will continue to collaborate with property institutions, businesses and associations across Africa, working together to accelerate the professionalism of the land, construction and property sectors on the continent. In line with this, we are glad about our association with the GBCSA and working together to drive green building and urban sustainability in Africa – a continent with a burgeoning economy and rapid urbanisation.”