Greening the Cape: R110m saved as 32% reduction in electricity use reported

2016-09-19 10:43
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Cape Town - Another successful step towards a greener Cape Town! We have seen the city going to great lengths towards green tourism and a greener economy.

Not only is Cape Town International monitoring its carbon footprint and Robben Island is in the process of going off the grid in favour of solar power; but now an investment in energy efficiency is leading to a reduction in electricity usage across the city overall. Electricity usage is reducing, residents are saving money in the long run and jobs are being created, this is according to the City of Cape Town. 

ALSO SEE: Greening the Cape: 3 Exciting initiatives

Saving electricity

The City of Cape Town’s investment in energy efficiency has led to almost 45 000 street lights being fitted with energy-saving light-emitting diode (LED) lights thus far.

A R3.8 million LED street lighting pilot has lead to a 32% reduction in electricity load usage. A total of 1 100 street lights have been retrofitted in Burgundy Estate, Summer Greens, Eversdal, Bothasig and Aurora.

The City says its energy efficiency programme has resulted in savings of more than R110 million over the past five years. Since 2010, the City has saved almost 80 000 MWh of electricity and 79 000 tons of carbon through its municipal operations energy efficiency programme.

This is the equivalent of the power needed to operate all of Cape Town’s street lights for a whole year.

Energy2040 goals

Energy efficiency is central to the City’s Energy2040 goals which aim for the overall reduction of 37% in carbon emissions. Some 21% can be achieved through energy efficiency alone. 

‘We are saving our residents money over the long-term by investing in a more sustainable way of performing our core functions. At the same time, through our emphasis on procuring more “green goods”, we are enabling job creation in the local economy. 

‘The City will do whatever it can today to create a more financially and environmentally sustainable tomorrow,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Energy, Environmental and Spatial Planning, Councillor Johan van der Merwe. 

Given the public sector’s significant purchasing power, the City now has integrated energy efficiency requirements into its procurement and is using greener technologies for certain projects, such as for the lighting of buildings. The City’s LED building lighting retrofits have supported the growth of a local LED manufacturer, which has increased its permanent employees from 18 to 80 over the past three years.

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