Africa Logistics Properties (ALP) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) are partnering to accelerate the adoption of green building practices through the promotion of voluntary green building certification programs based on the World Bank’s Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies (EDGE) standards.
The two parties will collaborate to help transition Kenya’s real estate industry into a lower carbon and resource-efficient path. The partnership will see IFC providing education on the principles and applications of the EDGE software, standards, and certification system. At the same time, ALP will promote sustainable design and construction practices within the industry.
According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the building and construction sector accounts for 34% of all energy demand and produces around 37% of energy-related CO2 emissions.
Maruza Chikwanha, ALP Development Director, underscored the need to transition to climate-smart building as a priority for the country.
“There is an immediate need for the real estate industry to move towards green development as we try and slow climate change down. ALP will continue to promote sustainable design practices and, jointly with IFC, present the benefits of using the EDGE certification system to other developers, hoping to green the industry further,” said Maruza.
EDGE is a green building standard and international certification system by IFC that stipulates measurable factors to be considered in green buildings. Developers who meet the criteria for green buildings are then awarded an EDGE certification that indicates water and energy resources that have been saved.
ALP North in Tatu City was the first industrial building in Africa to receive EDGE certification for its 41% savings on energy usage, 52% water savings, and 50% less embodied energy in the materials used for construction.
“We are the first industrial developers in Africa to get EDGE certification and the first African signatory to the World Green Buildings Council Zero Carbon Commitment. We are on the path to having 100% of our developments green-certified. In addition to being good for our tenants, this provides a business case for other industrial developers. Already, the government is taking steps to combat climate change, and concerted effort will be needed to bear significant fruit,” said Maruza.
Earlier this year, President William Ruto established the State Department for Environment and Climate Change as part of the government’s commitment to protecting Kenya from the adverse effects of climate change and global warming. Kenya’s president is also the coordinator of the Committee of African Heads of State on Climate Change (CAHOSCC), which will hold the Africa Climate Summit in Kenya later this year.