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President Jacob Zuma officially opens Environmental Affairs’ Green Building

17 October 2014

 

President Jacob Zuma, today, 17 October 2014 officially opened the Department of Environmental Affairs’ (DEA’s) green building, Environment House. The building serves as the Head Office for (DEA) and is located at the corner of Soutpansberg and Steve Biko Roads in Pretoria, Arcadia.

 
 
President Jacob Zuma officially opening the Department of Environmental Affairs’ (DEA’s) green building, Environment House.

The Minister of Environmental Affairs Mrs Edna Molewa turned the sod to mark the commencement of the construction of the green building on 19 July 2012. The Department took occupation of the building in August 2014.

Following a feasibility study in 2006, a conclusion was reached that the DEA’s previous office no longer met the fundamental needs of the staff and was not a proper reflection of what the Department represents.

This project is the culmination of years of hard work and comes after the Director-General of DEA, Ms Nosipho Ngcaba, signed the Public Private Partnership (PPP) Agreement between DEA and the Imvelo Concessions (PTY) LTD (Aveng Grinaker/LTA).

The design and the construction of the building was carried over a period of 2 (two) years and provision of facility management services together with complementary support services shall be provided for a period of 25 (twenty five) years in accordance with the service requirements of the Department. The entire contract period will run for a period of 27 years at a cost of R8 billion. Provision of thefacilities management services includes building maintenance, cleaning of the facility, energy and utilities supply, waste management, conference facilities, furniture management, parking, management, pest control, internal plants, maintenance, telephone equipment, fire, emergency, landscape maintenance and the help desk facility.

Green buildings have the potential to make a significant impact in terms of reducing South Africa’s electricity consumption.  The global economy is rapidly transforming to a low-carbon economy.  A transition to a more sustainable development path may help to open up new investment opportunities and export markets; supports the creation of knowledge based economy and allows South Africa to set standards and demonstrate thought leadership.

The trend setting Green Building showcases the following construction industry green specifications:

  • overall energy consumption in the building will be to a maximum of 115kWh/m2/annum;
  • solar generated power for the facility with 10% of  energy generated from a renewable source (Solar Panels)
  • use of harvested rainwater for the gardens and restrooms, resulting in a 30% reduction in municipal water use compared to buildings of a similar size;
  • Rain Water Harvest System used for toilets flushing and watering land scape gardens
  • lighting efficiencies that maximise natural light sources, cutting edge technology compact fluorescent lights, individual motion sensor light switching system
  • unique energy consumption mechanism- construction industry “first”
  • latest on site state of the art Grey Water Treatment Works system
  • vertical wall/roof gardens for aesthetics and cooling of the building
  • energy efficient Two Stage Evaporative Air Condition System and
  • automatic temperature sensor based window opening system.

The building has received a 6 Green Star SA rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). It is the first government building in South Africa to achieve a 6 Green Star SA rating. It is also the first 6 Green Star rated building in the City of Tshwane.

Some of the areas that the building was awarded the 6 Green Star rating for includes: efficient energy consumption, use of environmentally friendly materials, unique and precedent setting energy consumption mechanism which has not been implemented elsewhere in the construction sector in the Republic of South Africa, environmentally friendly transportation modes, efficient and state of the art water saving devices, on-site grey-water treatment works, emissions reduction systems and solar energy innovation systems.

The green building responds to the commitments made in the National Development Plan, that South Africa’s transition to an environmentally sustainable, climate change resilient, low-carbon economy and just society will be well under way by 2030,. The green office building is also responsive to our Green Economy Strategy.

The green building is an investment by government, designed to meet the green output specifications outlined in the Climate Change Policy which emphasises the use of sustainable materials, promotes urban greening, as well as energy and water efficiency.

To access President Jacob Zuma’s speech, please click on the link below:

>> Address by the Honourable President of the Republic of South Africa, Mr Jacob Zuma, on the ooccasion of the Official Launch of Environment House, the green Headquarters of the Department of Environmental Affairs.

To access the fact sheet, click on the link below:

>>Fact Sheet: Department of Environmental Affairs Green Building, Environment House.

For media queries contact:

Albi Modise
Cell: 083 490 2871