Growthpoint Properties has won the first ever International Lighting Project of the Year at the 2014 Lux Awards announced in London.
In a massive energy saving project, Growthpoint undertook a low-energy retrofit, introducing more than 100,000 energy-efficient lamps and light fittings in 157 of its multi-tenanted office, industrial and retail buildings across South Africa, over a period of 10 months.
The solution was provided by Aurora Lighting as well as Standard Electrical and is helping Growthpoint, and South African businesses, achieve carbon savings of 12,000 metric tons a year and demand savings achieved of 5.5 megawatts for an annual energy savings of 22,500 MW hours.
Chosen as the most outstanding project outside the UK and the Republic of Ireland, Growthpoint's pioneering energy efficiency beat out remarkable projects from Germany, Dubai, and Turkey.
Norbert Sasse, Growthpoint Properties CEO, comments: "We are thrilled to receive this recognition. Energy efficiency at our properties is important to our environmental sustainability, it also takes pressure off the national electricity grid and supports our clients by helping to keep their total cost of occupation lower."
Commercial properties are large global energy users, and increasingly businesses are burning the candle at both ends, explains Werner van Antwerpen, who heads up sustainability and utilities at Growthpoint. "We realised the necessity of reducing this impact on the environment by prioritising electricity reduction."
And, as South Africa's largest JSE-listed REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust), Growthpoint is having a massive positive impact on energy saving in South Africa.
Growthpoint teamed up with Eskom and the Green Building Council of South Africa to create a benchmark rating system for electricity and water consumption for the industry – called the WEBdex rating – and then applied it to all of Growthpoint's buildings. A first step to improving consumption was for Growthpoint to replace inefficient lights on buildings, and Aurora Lighting and Standard Electrical were tasked with providing the solution.
This colossal low-energy retrofit is one of several energy efficiency projects undertaken by Growthpoint. It is also embracing alternate energies with rooftop solar panel projects, which have been very successful at Lincoln on the Lake in Umhlanga, Infotech in Hatfield, and at Rustenburg's Waterfall Mall.
"What is good for the planet is also good for business. Reducing electricity and water consumption, reduces utility charges. So we are constantly pushing the boundaries of sustainability and focusing on creating space for our clients to thrive," says van Antwerpen.
JSE ALSI Top 40 Index Company Growthpoint owns and manages a diversified portfolio of 434 directly owned properties in South Africa, 51 properties in Australia through its investment in GOZ and a 50% interest in the properties at V&A Waterfront, Cape Town.