Beyond carbon footprint and sustainability

03 November 2017

Being conventional has never paved the way for innovative action. Absa has consistently made an effort to be on the cutting edge of what’s happening globally when it comes to groundbreaking technology, inventive thinking and original action. Even our building reflects this.

This Sunday, we’re celebrating World Environment Day. It’s celebrated annually on 5 June to raise awareness around how humanity can protect nature and the planet. The theme for this year’s World Environment Day is “Go Wild for Life” and the intent is to encourage the preservation and celebrate the diversity of our plants and wildlife. We spoke to Aveshen Moodley, Barclays Africa Manager, Corporate Real Estate Solutions, to find out how Absa’s contributing to raising awareness around nature conversation and how we can contribute to protect our planet.

Apart from the fact that Barclays Towers West (BTW), which forms part of Absa’s CBD campus, is the first 5-star “as built” green building in South Africa, BTW has one of the largest grey water systems in the country, fully fitted with light sensors in the offices – and even the water in the building is heated via heat recovery from the gas turbine. On top of these featured solutions, we have an Energy Centre that is fitted with 4×2.8MW gas turbines which will decrease Barclays Towers West’s carbon footprint by an estimated 19 000 tons per year. According to Aveshen, energy consumption per employee has reduced by more than 60% in two of their largest offices.

Speaking of energy consumption – the Lumen board that lights up Johannesburg’s skyline uses solar and gas powered energy from the Absa CBD campus. “This allows us to run Lumen even during power interruptions,” says Aveshen.

How is Absa contributing to this year’s World Environment Day you ask? “We will be sponsoring birdhouses on one of our buildings in partnership with Egoli Gas. The building in question is home to Peregrine falcons. It’s the only seen breeding pair in Gauteng at this moment in time. So we’re going to be putting up birdhouses at undisclosed locations across Gauteng to help promote the breeding programme.”

In celebrating World Environment Day, the entire Absa head office campus in Johannesburg CBD will go off the grid and generate its own power this coming weekend starting today, Friday, 3 June to Monday, 6 June to save 392 tons of CO2 (550 000kWh).

Disclaimer: The advice contained on this blog is for general purposes only and does not take into account individual circumstances, objectives or financial needs. Accordingly, readers are advised to seek appropriate advice from licensed professionals prior to making any investment, or taking up a financial product or service.