EmiratesGBC working on first industry energy and water benchmark for schools in the UAE

Organisation inviting schools in Dubai to participate in its Building Efficiency Accelerator project.

Emirates Green Building Council (EmiratesGBC), says it has invited private schools in Dubai to participate in its Building Efficiency Accelerator (BEA) Benchmarking Project.

The BEA project assesses the energy and water performance of existing buildings against similar buildings within the same typology. According to EmiratesGBC, the project is the first-of-its-kind in the MENA region and aims to establish the first industry energy and water benchmark for schools in the UAE.

Schools are one of three building typologies selected for this project, because of their operational and social importance, it added in a statement. By evaluating energy and water data shared by schools, the project aims to assess the energy and water saving potential of school buildings.

The BEA project is a global initiative led by World Resources Institute (WRI) under the UN program Sustainable Energy for All (SEforAll), which aims to double the global rate of building energy efficiency by 2030. Dubai is the first and only city in the Middle East committed to the BEA, and EmiratesGBC is serving as the BEA City Liaison in partnership with Dubai Supreme Council of Energy (DSCE) to measure energy performance of 100 buildings in Dubai across three focus groups – Hotels, Schools and Malls.

“This initiative is an important step forward in encouraging Dubai based schools to improve their building efficiency year on year, and save on their operational costs,” noted EmiratesGBC. “There are about 165 private schools in Dubai which can play a pivotal role in supporting the government’s target of reducing energy and water usage by 30% by 2030, as per Dubai’s Demand Side Management Strategy. The BEA is an opportunity for schools to take a step toward understanding and improving their environmental performance and supporting Dubai’s energy reduction directives.”

Saeed Al Abbar, Chairman of EmiratesGBC, described benchmarking as an important step for schools to evaluate their energy and water usage.

“It enables the sector to make decisions backed by solid data on how to improve their consumption rates and track their progress. Energy and water management are inherently embedded into the core of green schools, and today, a very limited number of schools fulfil the requirements to be sustainable. Educational institutions are a priority sector and we therefore encourage all schools in Dubai to participate in the BEA benchmarking project and become leaders, and advocates, in the drive to sustainable development in the UAE,” he said.

Participating in the BEA project is free and involves schools filling out a questionnaire about the general characteristics of the school, its facilities, and its annual energy and water consumption. Each participating school will be provided a tailored scorecard at the end of the project to compare its energy performance against other participants. To participate, schools can email the BEA team on bea@emiratesgbc.org. The deadline for submissions is 15 June, 2018.

Stephen White / MEConstructionNews