Landlords encouraged to reduce electricity usage

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Public Works and Infrastructure Minister, Patricia de Lille, has appealed to landlords to help drive down electricity demand in their private offices that the department rents from them.

“I also appealed to the landlords that we want to see a reduction of 50% in electricity and water use within the next year [by] them implementing water and energy efficiency measures in their buildings,” De Lille said.

Addressing the media on the sidelines of the Landlords' Conference in Bokburg on Thursday, De Lille said the DPWI property portfolio is a big user of electricity and water, and generates a significant amount of waste.

De Lille said the aim of the conference was to forge a greater understanding and links between the department and private landlords to improve respective processes and operations, and work together more seamlessly and productively.

“In line with the President’s announcement on Monday evening for us reduce demand while we work on increasing supply, I appealed to the landlords to help drive down demand in their private offices that we rent from them,” De Lille said.

She said in as much as companies exist to provide services and make a profit, government has a responsibility to delivery services but to do so effectively, while practising sound financial management.

“While we want to support and do business with the private sector, we also have a duty to optimise utilisation of our many buildings we own as the State landlord and custodian of State-owned properties,” De Lille said.

De Lille said the conference was a critical engagement, as there are a number of challenges in the work of letting properties for use by government departments.

“The issues that we are confronted with in this work are complex at times but that does not mean we can’t fix things. We simply must.

“I conveyed to the landlords that as DPWI, we are doing our part and we now turn to the private sector to do their part by putting in measures to reduce water and energy demands in their buildings that we lease from them,” the minister said.

De Lille explained that the DPWI, as the largest landlord and facilities manager in the country, has a responsibility to not only deliver and manage quality infrastructure but to combat climate change and enhance sustainable development through its mandate, including providing buildings for government service delivery.

In the 2021/22 financial year, DPWI spent over R764 million for the year and an average monthly payment of over R63 million on municipal services payments on leases from the private sector. -