Emira Property Fund fully compliant with Energy Performance Certificate regulations ahead of Dec 2022 deadline

9 Long Street in Cape Town is one of 31 Emira buildings to receive an EPC.

Emira Property Fund has become fully compliant with the new government-mandated Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) regulations following the certification completion of 31 of its buildings in July 2022 – ahead of the 7th of December 2022 deadline.

The Regulations for the Mandatory Display and Submission of Energy Performance Certificates for Buildings, in terms of the National Energy Act, requires specific commercial buildings to have EPCs, which includes public sector buildings of more than 1 000m2 and private sector buildings bigger than 2 000m2 i.e., offices, schools and tertiary institutions, places of public assembly, indoor sport, and theatres.

The EPC must be displayed in the foyer of each mandated building and submitted every five years to the South African National Energy Development Institute (SANEDI). Based on energy performance, which is defined as net energy consumed in kilowatt-hours per square metre a year, they are graded on their efficiency from A to G, with A-grade certifications being the most efficient.

According to Emira Property Fund’s COO, Ulana van Biljon, the REIT will be voluntarily certifying a further 23 non-mandated buildings by the end of March 2023.

Between July 2021 and June 2022, Emira reduced its total emissions by 3.8% to lighten its carbon footprint. Supporting this, it reduced grid electricity usage by 2.0% with 79 different energy efficiency projects, including installing solar power that increased its renewable energy production by 16%, as well as converting to LED lights at its properties and upgrading its heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.

The company has turned to solar power to support a green power supply to its buildings to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change, having increased its installed capacity of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and now has solar panels at nine properties. Its latest solar PV installation is at the prime office asset, Knightsbridge Block A in Bryanston, Johannesburg, which has become one of the first Net-Zero Carbon buildings in South Africa and was first building to get an EPC in the Emira portfolio. In the year to 30 June 2022, Emira’s PV farms saved 9.9 million kWh and removed 10 543tCO2e emissions annually.

The expansion of its Pretoria Wonderpark Shopping Centre system of 1.6MWp (DC) to 2.8 MWp (DC) will boost its positive environmental impacts. Emira’s solar farms also position it to feed power back into the grid. 

Its water efficiency initiatives saved 151,080KL. Working with nature, not against it, by enhancing biodiversity, Emira has installed beehives at a number of properties and recently launched a Spekboom project, helping to plant more of these hardy indigenous plants, celebrated for their ability to remove CO2 emissions from the atmosphere.