The City of Cape Town’s Mayco member for utility services, Ernest Sonnenberg, welcomed a delegation from African Utility Week to the City’s green electricity services headquarters in Bellville on Friday May 20.
The African Utilities Week programme served as a global meeting place, conference and trade exhibition for African power and water utility professionals; offering a unique networking opportunity for engineers, stakeholders and solution providers alike.
The delegation was taken on a tour of the building’s green features, which includes smart lighting controls, motion sensors and timers, a design which maximises natural light, a system of 400 solar panels and grey water re-use capabilities.
“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,” said Mr Sonnenberg.
“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,” said Mr Sonnenberg.
African Utility Week presented a platform for role-players from all over the continent to share ideas and build relationships.
“We are proud to have played host to this event and are hopeful that all delegates walked away from the conference confident that it has opened the door to mutually beneficial collaborations,” said Mr Sonnenberg.
He added: “We hope that this visit would have demonstrated that green interventions aren’t necessarily at the cost of humanitarian goals.”