Power cuts force Gauteng property developers to becpome more energy concious

Another property developer, Fritz van Graan, Inframax’s Regional Manager for Johannesburg, says that the ongoing power cuts could in the long run prove a blessing to South Africa – because they are forcing designers and developers to be more energy conscious and less reckless in their energy use.

“From now on,” said van Graan, “developers will be far more conscientious about reducing energy consumption.”

They will also, he said, become very creative at the drawing board stage and be more willing to consider alternative energy sources such as gas and solar heating.

“On a recent visit to Holland and Belgium I came across wind farms with ±3 000 wind turbines. In my view many areas of South Africa are suited to this type of energy production and recent studies have shown that even a relatively small initial step in this direction could result in a 15% saving.”

On its 1 Athole project in Craighall, Inframax has already been told that the city cannot supply the originally required capacity within the next two years. Inframax has, therefore, isolated the hot water system (the main electricity consumer) and are now looking at making it solar powered. They are likely to make gas an option for the ovens and hobs.

“Until now,” said van Graan, “power in SA has been relatively inexpensive and, knowing little about global warming, we had no incentive to reduce consumption – but that has all changed and we are looking at a future in which to a greater or lesser degree all buildings will be green.”

For further information contact Fritz van Graan on 011 912 7744.