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ABB powers Robben Island for 9 months of the year

  • Company’s solar microgrid can produce about 1 million kWh annually, to cut island’s diesel usage by 250,000 litres a year

Mention Robben Island and it immediately conjures up images of Nelson Mandela’s – and other high-profile political prisoners – 18-year incarceration in a tiny cell on the island’s maximum security prison.

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Advanced solar technology of Solarus applied to landmark Vineyard Hotel

The 207-room luxury Vineyard Hotel, in Claremont, Cape Town, is the site of a 60 panel demonstration installation of Solarus Sunpower’s hybrid solar PowerCollectors which will see the 90kWp hybrid photovoltaic-thermal system provide 75kW peak thermal and 15kW peak electric output to the hotel. The system has been endorsed by the Dutch Government who are partially subsidising the cost of installation.

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Cape Town’s Vineyard Hotel chosen for hybrid solar PVT demonstration project

The 207-room luxury Vineyard Hotel, the Petousis family’s flagship hotel, has been chosen for the installation of 60 of Solarus Sunpower’s hybrid solar PowerCollectors. The demonstration project, subsidized by the Dutch government, will see the 90kWp hybrid photo-voltaic-thermal system providing 75kW peak thermal and 15kW peak electric output.
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Black River Park cements its position as Africa’s largest integrated photovoltaic plant

Redefine Properties’ Black River Park in Cape Town has cemented its position as Africa’s largest integrated photovoltaic (PV) plant when it turned on phase 3 of its PV installation earlier this month. The roof top installation at the 75,000m2 office park in Observatory is rated at 1.56MW and is made up of approximately 6,000 panels spread over 9,000m2 of roof space.

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100 MW Kathu solar project in the Northern Cape of South Africa will start construction

ENGIE is pleased to announce that the Kathu Solar Park project in South Africa, owned by an ENGIE-led consortium with South African partners, has signed a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Eskom – South Africa’s state owned power utility –, making it possible for construction at the site to begin shortly. The concentrated solar park, situated in the Northern Cape Province, 600 km South-West of the national capital Pretoria, is expected to be operational in the second half of 2018.

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Growthpoint undertakes its largest solar power projects yet

With seven solar farms successfully generating renewable energy at its buildings across South Africa, Growthpoint Properties is now embarking on its largest rooftop solar installations yet, and furthers its COP 21 commitment to boost its renewable energy generation

Growthpoint, the largest South African primary listed REIT (real estate investment trust), is undertaking two large solar installations on the rooftops of its Northgate Mall and Brooklyn Mall in Johannesburg and Pretoria, respectively. Each has a capacity of nearly 1,2MWp.

 “Growthpoint has already passed the halfway mark in achieving its goal to install rooftop solar farms capable of generating an impressive 6MWp,  Or, in other words, enough solar energy to power nearly 2,500 average South African homes,”says Werner van Antwerpen, Head of Sustainability Growthpoint Properties. 

Harnessing energy from the abundant South African sunshine, Growthpoint has already completed the installation of photovoltaic solar panels with the capacity to generate over 3,2MWp at seven of its office, retail and industrial properties. 

These solar farms are at its landmark assets across the country, including Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront, The Constantia Village, Bayside Mall and Airport Industria. Its InfoTech building in Pretoria, Waterfall Mall in Rustenburg and Lincoln on the Lake office building in Umhlanga also benefit from solar power generating installations.

Growthpoint has a further four projects underway, expected to generate some 2,7MWp of renewable energy. Besides its Northgate and Brooklyn Mall installations, it is also establishing solar farms at Kolonnade Shopping Centre in Pretoria and its office property at 33 Bree and De Waterkant in Cape Town.

And this is only the beginning for Growthpoint. It has identified over 70 buildings across its portfolio for possible future solar PV installations.

“Our solar farms are one way Growthpoint is creating a more sustainable built environment for South Africa. It also delivers on our ambitious commitment to sustainability, energy efficiency and green building, made on Buildings Day at COP21 in Paris last December,” says Rudolf Pienaar, Growthpoint’s Divisional Director.

“Growthpoint is committed to increasing solar energy generation, making all our 185 office buildings energy and water efficient, and ensuring all our long-term office investments and new developments are certified green buildings. We’re already putting our commitment into action,” adds Pienaar.

Growthpoint has established itself as a leader in green buildings. A Platinum Founding Member of the Green Building Council South Africa’s (GBCSA), Growthpoint owns or co-owns the largest portfolio of certified green buildings of any company in South Africa. Growthpoint is a FTSE/JSE Socially Responsible Investment Index company and an index component of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI). 

For some time now it has been Growthpoint’s goal to only develop office buildings that will achieve at least a 4-Star Green Star SA rating from the GBCSA. Now it has broadened its focus to include green performance of all office buildings in its significant portfolio.

Growthpoint has committed that, by 2020, all its office investments will be above the GBCSA Energy and Water Performance Rating Tool benchmark. It has also set a goal for all long-term office investments to achieve at least a 4-Star Green Star SA GBCSA Existing Building Performance certification.

This commitment to a more sustainable built environment goes well beyond nurturing a portfolio of green buildings.

“We want to create buildings and workplaces that support the health, happiness and well-being of the people who use them – places for people and businesses to thrive,” says Pienaar.

Growthpoint owns and manages a diversified portfolio of 474 properties in South Africa, 57 properties in Australia through its investment in GOZ and a 50% interest in the properties at V&A Waterfront, Cape Town. Growthpoint’s consolidated property assets are valued at over R110bn.

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