Africa’s population is projected to reach 2.4 billion by 2050, that’s 1.3 billion more people than there is today. This growth means a huge demand for buildings and an estimated 80 per cent of those that will exist in 2050 are yet to be built. Data from the International Energy Agency shows that buildings and construction are currently responsible for almost 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions and by improving the energy efficiency of buildings, we could reduce energy consumption by 5-6% and subsequently reduce operational costs of a building.
SPACE – a two-day business exploring the business value efficient and smart build investment have on the African market – will debate whether building with sustainable methods and materials is also the most cost-effective way to ensure a long-term profit for real estate projects.
Matthew Weihs, founder of the SPACE event, said: “Although the green building movement is in its infancy in Sub-Saharan Africa, the past year’s developments show that great work is already taking place, with more than 25 projects in the pipeline for green accreditation. The temptation to avoid sustainability on the grounds of cost is a huge misconception. Environmentally friendly materials and building methods are becoming increasingly accessible, and in the long-term they prove not only better for the environment, but also cost-effective, and more profitable. Crucially, they show the potential to achieve better investment returns and higher valuations and it’s something that the big investors want to put their money behind.”
Weihs continued, “We’re really pleased that, as well as all the financial speakers at SPACE, we have the World Green Building Council participating as expertise from such councils is vitally important in the growth of this sector.”
Building a better future
Jane Afrane, recently appointed Regional Head of the Africa Regional Network at the World Green Building Council will be a keynote speaker at SPACE. She is focused on the setting up, establishment and advancement of Green Building Councils across the Africa region and spearheads project development and advocacy initiatives in the region to raise and promote awareness of green building. Afrane comments “WorldGBC is delighted to be participating at SPACE. This conference is taking place at a critical point in time where the green building discourse is gaining traction in the African region. The role of the private sector in meeting Africa’s infrastructure needs requires an enabling environment that is centred around sustainable development and awareness raising on green opportunities.”
SPACE will take place at the Radisson Blu, Nairobi Upper Hill from 13-14 March 2018. Prominent speakers include: Prashant Kapoor, Principal Industry Specialist-Green Buildings, International Finance Corporation (IFC); Gloria Mamwa, Head, Property, East Africa & Kenya at Standard Chartered Bank; Raphael Mwito, Business Development Manager at BRITAM; Myles Kritzinger, Deal Maker, International Housing Solutions; Koome Gikunda, Associate, Principal and Director, Actis Capital; Bruce Walker, Chief Executive Officer, Verde Hotels; Ritu Kumar, Director, Environment and Social Responsibility, CDC Group; Elizabeth Wangeci Chege, Chairperson, Kenya Green Building Society and Abraham Muthogo Kamau, Director, Business Origination, Miradi Capital.
SPACE is Africa’s only conference for real estate professionals exploring the ROI of efficient buildings. SPACE is a collaborative venture between Bench Events and Africa Events Services, and is the brainchild of Matthew Weihs, Managing Director of Bench Events, who has realised the continent’s huge potential during seven years running the successful and on-going Africa Hotel Investment Forum (AHIF), also taking place in Kenya later this year.
For more information about SPACE, please visit www.space-conference.com.
About World Green Building Council
The World Green Building Council is the organisation driving forward the green building movement around the globe, with 72-member Green Building Councils carrying out incredible work to push forward green building in their own countries. Green Building Councils are equipped with the right knowledge to communicate the benefits and the business case for green buildings.