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A delegation of Utility Services professionals from throughout the country visited the City’s Electricity Services Department headquarters in Bellville to see first-hand the green design features. Read more below:

The City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Utility Services, Councillor Ernest Sonnenberg, was today happy to welcome a delegation from African Utility Week to the City’s Green Star-rated Electricity Services headquarters in Bellville.

The African Utilities Week programme is the only global meeting place, conference and trade exhibition for African power and water utility professionals and offers a unique networking opportunity for engineers, stakeholders and solution providers alike.The delegation was taken on a tour of the building’s green features. Notable features include:
· an air conditioning system that achieves a 150% improvement on the requirements set out in the South African national standards for energy efficiency, without compromising the comfort levels of staff

· smart lighting controls, motion sensors and timers that ensure that lights aren’t left on unnecessarily

· a design which maximises natural light

· a system of 400 solar panels to power the building

· water-wise plants the recreational areas

· grey water reuse capabilities

In addition to the above, all materials used to construct the building were chosen to minimise pollution.

‘In terms of eco-friendly design, this building is one of the continent’s flagships and, as such, can serve as a blueprint for municipal buildings in Africa. We trust that the visiting delegates gained valuable insight into which green interventions would be feasible for their own unique contexts back home.

‘In the modern context one cannot think about the provision of utility services without discussing how to use resources in an efficient way. This is especially challenging in Africa due in no small part to the legacy of coal-reliant development. Furthermore, due to the economic contexts of many of our neighbours where large sections of the population have no access to electricity at all, the use of green technology often takes a back seat to other development goals. We hope that this visit would have demonstrated that green interventions aren’t necessarily at the cost of humanitarian goals,’ said Councillor Sonnenberg.

Africa Utility Week presents a platform for role players from all over the continent to share ideas and build relationships.

‘Any opportunity for the City to facilitate progress of this nature is of great value. We are proud to play host to this event and I’m hopeful that all delegates will walk away from the conference confident that it has opened the door to mutually beneficial collaborations,’ said Councillor Sonnenberg.

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