Environmental impact

Although Facilities Management is integrating sustainability within the operational environment in a responsible manner, energy conservation is high on our priority list of responsiblities. Energy conservation also affects you, and you can play a role wherever you go!

Facilities Management and sustainability

Facilities Management's operations are closely linked to Theme 5 of SU's HOPE project, namely the promotion of a sustainable environment and a competitive industry. Facilities Management enables all facets of sustainability - from environmental sustainability to the sustainability of the University's core business. Environmental sustainability also forms part of Facilities Management's vision of being the number one leading campus environment in South Africa.

Facilities Management's sustainability initiatives

Facilities Management manages, inter alia, the following sustainability initiatives:

Green buildings

Green buildings

Environmental and ecological sustainability is always taken into account in the planning and specification of facilities within the context of the Master Plan.

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Enery projects

Energy conservation

Energy usage is measured by meters and modems in the various buildings on campus. The PowerWatch programme is used to identify deviations and manage better utilisation of energy. Energy audits are done at certain energy-intensive campus buildings to investigate the potential for savings.

Solar water heaters have been installed on a limited scale in certain areas. Heat pumps for the heating of water have already been installed at most residences.

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Water saving

Water management

Facilities Management is involved in the establishment of special water stations on campus where students can drink fresh water. The use of bottled water is discouraged since the production of one litre of bottled water requires three to five litres of water. The bottles also generate plastic waste. The shower nozzles in residences were replaced by water-saving shower nozzles.

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Energy projects

Building management system

Obsolete building control systems are systematically being replaced by modern operational and management systems to make provision for the central control and optimalisation of air conditioning systems, the control of emergency generators and a load control system.

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Conservation

Mobility masterplan

There is not enough parking available for all the vehicles on campus. In addition to this, vehicles emit harmful carbon dioxide gases. An overarching Mobility Plan was prepared to deal with this. This forms part of SU in terms of which various modes of transport are introduced to reduce the use of vehicles on campus. It involves encouraging students and staff to use car pools or public transport to travel to parking areas just outside campus, from where they can travel to campus on foot, by bicycle or with shuttle buses. Students and staff can rent special bicycles from the University to use on campus.

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Waste management

Waste management

Waste management at the University involves, inter alia, the following:

  • Providing special refuse bins on campus for the recycling of dry waste;
  • Sorting waste with a view to recycling and the removal of recyclable and non-recyclable waste;
  • Utilisation of garden waste for composting, and
  • The Bukhasi project, in terms of which microbes are used to decompose kitchen waste, resulting in a product which can be used on compost heaps.

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Conservation

Owls

Owl nest boxes are installed on campus in conjunction with the local stakeholders to attract owls to the area, thereby helping to control the rodent population.

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Conservation

Birds of prey

Birds of prey, bird nets and ultrasonic devices are used for the effective control of other harmful bird species on campus.

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Conservation

Conservation of mountain areas

Through the rehabilitation of roads and eroded areas on mountain areas rain water is channeled into dams. Old trees and branches in eucaliptus plantations are thinned out and used for the restoration of hiking trails and mountain bike routes. (The conservation of the mountain area is managed in conjunction with the Department of Forest and Wood Science.)

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Conservation

Tree-planting project

Special tree-planting initiatives are implemented from time to time.

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