As part of its ongoing efforts to promote the concept of greening existing buildings, the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry hosted a delegation of sustainability experts attending the International Conclave in the Power and Energy Sector organised by Centre of Excellence for Green Development in Dubai, part of Dubai Education.
The green building tour and workshop familiarised the visitors with Dubai Chamber’s efforts in greening its existing building over the last 15 years including its low and no cost initiatives which could be easily applied across other buildings in the region and beyond. The workshop also highlighted the benefits of shifting towards eco-friendly and sustainable practices.
The 35-member delegation, consisting of engineers, university professors and professionals in the energy sector, were briefed about the Chamber’s pioneering achievement of becoming the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Existing Building in the Arab world and one of the greenest buildings in the region.
Dubai Chamber accumulated an estimated Dhs15 million in energy and Dhs3.06 million in water savings between 1998 and 2012 totaling Dhs18.06 million. This was mainly done through low cost methods like installing aerators on taps, switching off the AC as well as lighting after hours, setting the temperature to 24’C and using energy efficient light bulbs. Higher investment methods – installing sensors for water and lighting systems, collecting condensate water from the air-conditioning system, and using recycled water for toilet flushing– have also been used however the paybacks were generally less than two years demonstrating that it pays to green existing buildings.