Source: Construction Week
200 public and private sector delegates came together for the first time at the Retrofit Tech conference in Dubai in March, this looks set to be a hot topic for the region as as many buildings reach the end of their natural lives and require complete retrofitting or replacement.
Holley Chant, Executive Director, Corporate Sustainability at KEO International Consultants, told delegates: “There is green gold to be mined in existing buildings, and this green gold can benefit each and every one of us across the planet, people, profit spectrum.”
“I am very pleased about all the attention that is now being focused on potential sustainability gains in existing buildings. For the past 10 years or so the majority of the sustainability efforts in the GCC were focused on new build construction rather than existing buildings. Yet the opportunities for energy and water savings are actually huge in existing buildings as well as opportunities for enhancing public health.”
She added: “Now that some utilities companies in the region are reducing energy and water subsidies and raising tariffs, building operators will become more interested in how a green retrofit can positively impact their bottom line. Consideration of the MEP system will be first and foremost in any energy audit/ retrofit action plan for optimisation. Of course re-commissioning and retro-commissioning will critical tools to maximise returns on investment as part of the retrofit.”
The Dubai Supreme Council of Energy strategy aims to position Dubai as a model for safe and effective energy use and retrofitting an initial target of 30,000 buildings with green technologies in the first phase at an estimated cost of at $544.5m.
The strategy covers eight specific areas of opportunity for achieving significant reductions in electricity and water demand across Dubai.