04 November 2010
Standard Bank Group drives energy efficiency.
Standard Bank Group (SBG) has taken another major step towards becoming even more
energy efficient and reducing its carbon footprint. It has installed solar hybrid
energy efficient water-heating systems at its head office in Johannesburg.
The new system will be used to heat 48 000 litres (20 000 litres via solar and 28
000 litres with energy efficient heat pumps) of water a day saving up to 5% of current
building energy consumption. The savings in energy could be used to generate power
for seven households for a year.
The system comprises 100 solar power panels covering more than 200 square metres
on the roof of 6 Simmonds Street, one of the buildings that makes up its head office
complex known as Standard Bank Centre.
A back-up and top-up system consisting of two heat pumps will support the solar
installation for days when the sunshine is not optimal. The new system will save
nearly a R1-million a year in energy costs.
This investment forms a small part of Standard Bank Group's long-term commitment
to and introduction of cleaner energy solutions across the group.
Marius de la Rey, Director of Channel Development, Standard Bank Group, says: "Water
heating, lighting and air-conditioning are three of the biggest energy consumers
at Standard Bank. They are also the areas of energy consumption that can most easily
be addressed in existing buildings.
"The challenge in implementing clean energy solutions is taking the older infrastructure
in existing buildings and upgrading and converting to cleaner more efficient systems
using alternative power sources where possible. We have to be more creative in reducing
the energy consumption in our older assets. Standard Bank Centre is already achieving
benchmark energy efficient performance."
Standard Bank Group is looking at introducing energy saving measures across the
group. The pilot of the large-scale solar system, combined with the use of energy
efficient heat pumps could be used in areas where energy constraints hinder new
business development or the full optimisation of the properties that Standard Bank
Group has in its portfolio.
"We are committed to building all of our new real estate developments to 4-star
green building standards, and cater for reducing CO2 emissions, optimal energy use
and savings, and the introduction of the latest green technology," says Mr de la
Standard Bank Group has also upgraded its air conditioning chillers at Standard
Bank Centre in Johannesburg. Continuous energy audits are also conducted to assist
with the introduction of energy efficient technology and other improvements. With
the introduction of alternative energy solutions in the areas of water heating,
light control and air-conditioning, Standard Bank Group has reduced its energy demand
to 56 watts per square metre well below national averages.
Karin Ireton, Director of Group Sustainability, Standard Bank Group, says: "This
energy efficiency project is part of Standard Bank's commitment to driving sustainability,
and forms part of our contribution to making Standard Bank Group environmentally
and economically efficient.
"In implementing new technologies, companies like Standard Bank can reduce the demand
for fossil-fuel based energy and take pressure of the electricity grid. Energy constraints
are currently a potential cap on growth within the economy and the challenge to
all companies is to increase economic output with less energy."