Emira understands the value of implementing sustainable environmental business practices in order to reduce the impact its activities have on its surroundings. Indeed, global warming is widely known as a medium-term risk to business operations around the world.
The Company manages the impacts of its activities through the initiatives articulated in its Sustainability Plan, which is presided over by a dedicated committee. The purpose of this formalised policy is to facilitate continuous improvement: on the environmental, energy and economic performance of new, refurbished and existing buildings over their entire life cycle.
Retaining high-quality tenants and the rentals they provide, creates value for Emira’s stakeholders. This is achieved in part by regularly upgrading the portfolio, which is both a strategic imperative and responsible investing.
Emira takes the interests of all its stakeholders seriously, and protects these interests by adhering to strict requirements for transparency and remaining responsible to the broader community it serves, while operating profitably and respecting the natural environment.
Emira’s specific goals are to:
- Create a common and consistent framework for green building standards across all properties within the portfolio.
- Take better care of the environment in which it operates, including identifying and responding to risks and opportunities associated with climate change.
- Minimise the negative environmental impacts associated with building site selection, construction, refurbishment, operation, maintenance, repair and demolition without impairing the intended use of the function of the building.
- Reduce overall expenditure through improved building performance.
- Lower greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions from buildings by improving energy efficiency and expanding the use of clean, renewable energy.
- Capitalise on other benefits often achieved by green buildings such as healthier, more productive indoor environments and improved asset value.
Carbon footprint reporting and Carbon Disclosure Project (“CDP”)
Carbon footprint — FY17
On an annual basis, Emira discloses the carbon emissions data for the properties that comprise its portfolio. This includes all water, electricity and fugitive emissions and equates to 1 131 547m2 of total normalised GLA forming part of the disclosure (including tenant consumptions).
The tables on page 67 can be summarised as follows:
- Carbon emissions have decreased by 3,82% year-on-year.
- With regard to electricity provided from the national provider, the carbon emissions factor has remained unchanged at 1.00tCO2/MWh this year.
- The prorata of the portfolio’s GLA decreased by 3,51%.
- Intensities/GLA have all declined except for retail due to a change in activities which were in line with expectations.
- Fugitive emissions have decreased by 31,50% due to the ongoing phase out program of R22 gases.
- Stationary fuels have increased by 1 180% due to better reporting and data collection.
CDP — audited results — FY16
For an independent third-party verification of Emira’s greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions inventory for FY16, as quantified by GCX Africa (“GCX”), the Company once again appointed Moore Stephens Cape Town Sustainability (Pty) Ltd (“Moore Stephens”). This was Emira’s third GHG inventory verification, and all have been carried out by Moore Stephens.
The purpose of the verification process was to assess:
- The accuracy, completeness and consistency of the GHG quantification, as well as the methodologies, documentation and data concerning Emira’s emissions-generating activities for the FY16 reporting period;
- The conformance of the procedures, methodologies, documentation, data and GHG reporting with the principles of the WBCSD/WRI GHG Protocol Corporate Standard (2nd edition, 2004).
The verification was carried out in accordance with ISO 14064 Part 3 ‘Specification with guidance for the validation and verification of greenhouse gas assertions’.
Emira has reviewed its previous carbon reduction targets and realigned them using the International Science Based Targets method, which seeks to align reduction targets to the global goal of keeping the average mean increase in global temperatures to a maximum of 2ºC.
The Company has targeted a 13% reduction in absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions from the base year by 2022. This target has been set via the SDA methodology, using 2015 as a base year and a total projected growth rate of 10% in square meters during the timeframe.
Emira recognises that the GreenStar South Africa rating system is the new benchmark for comparative green-building analysis and supports the Green Building Council of South Africa’s (“GBCSA”) initiatives to enhance the South African property sector, wherever possible. Emira is proud to be a member of the GBCSA.
At its Knightsbridge development, Emira is currently constructing three new buildings, which have been submitted for certification by the GBCSA. Each building is aiming to achieve a minimum 4-Star Green Star SA design certification.
Each new building will then undertake a Green Star Existing Building Performance Rating, after a year of operation, and Emira anticipates a minimum of 4-Stars per building. For tenants to experience optimum performance from certified buildings, this rating system ensures that green buildings are operated and managed in the way in which they were designed.
Solar farm projects
During FY15, Emira installed a R6 million photovoltaic or solar power farm on the roof of its Epsom Downs Shopping Centre in Bryanston, Johannesburg. This pilot project was Emira’s first investigation into adding renewable energy solutions to its property portfolio.
At 100% efficiency, the system was designed to produce a theoretical 515 172kWh. By operating at optimum efficiency for over a year, it is delivering substantial carbon emission savings and will continue to do so for years to come.
During the year under review, the Company has successfully completed the installation of a 1,2MWp solar power farm on the roof of its Randridge Mall Shopping Centre. It is estimated that the R17,6 million solar power farm will save an estimated 2GWh of electricity per year, which will be available for consumption in the shopping centre.
The current water shortages being experienced across the country have been identified as a medium-term risk to the ongoing lettability of certain properties. During the last financial year, numerous water efficiency projects were undertaken within the portfolio. A case in focus is the recent installation of a rainwater harvesting system at One Highveld, which will save in excess of 1 000 000 litres of drinking water annually. Rainwater is harvested, purified on site and then stored in tanks for later use by tenants.
Emira endorses the South African Government’s B-BBEE initiatives and appreciates the importance of achieving a sustainable economic and political environment through the meaningful participation of Black people in the mainstream economy.
To this end, Emira aims to meet the requirements and principles as set out in the Property Sector Transformation Charter (“the Charter”). The Board acknowledges that B-BBEE shareholding in Emira is an important step towards achieving the targets as set out in the Charter and these fundamental principles form part of the Board’s transformation agenda.
During the year Emira completed a B-BBEE transaction which resulted in 5% of the Company’s shares in issue being placed in the hands of black partners. Emira’s B-BBEE holdings at year-end was 6,1%.
The key shareholders are:
- Tamela Property Investments (Pty) Ltd
- Luxanio Trading 57 (Pty) Ltd
- Micawber 410 (Pty) Ltd (“Micawber”)
- The Shalamuka Foundation Trust (“Shalamuka”)
The shareholders of Micawber are:
- The RMBP Broad-based Empowerment Trust
- Avuka Investments (Pty) Ltd
- Ben van der Ross
At the time of the compilation of this report, Emira was in the process of verifying its annual B-BBEE rating. The current assessment is being performed in terms of the amended Property Sector Code which became effective on 28 June 2017. Emira’s existing B-BBEE status is a Level 5 Contributor, which was assessed under the previous Property Sector Code.
Shalamuka is one of Emira’s B-BBEE shareholders and the funder of Penreach, a social impact organisation that was established in the early 1990s to provide improved education for children from marginalised communities. Penreach is a non-profit in-service education development organisation that assists disadvantaged and under-resourced schools in Mpumalanga by improving the teaching skills of both qualified and unqualified educators.
By improving the quality of education and school management, Penreach contributes to the upliftment of local communities. It focuses on the development of quality teaching and learning outcomes, and provides leadership development in schools. By reaching approximately 500 000 beneficiaries per annum, the programme is the largest of its kind in the world.
Penreach clearly articulates its mission: “to improve the quality and accessibility of education in under-resourced schools in black rural communities”. It aims to provide skills training for teachers and ultimately help schools teach young people the requisite skills to become well-balanced, productive, economically active adults.
Beneficiaries include primary and high school educators, (focusing on literacy, numeracy, mathematics, physical science and English language development), school governing bodies, school management teams, learners (through IT-assisted online learning), early childhood development (“ECD”) practitioners, children in home-based ECD situations and their caregivers.
The programme’s beneficiaries are 100% black with 86% comprising black women, of which more than 50% are rural-dwelling.
The Shalamuka trustees provide their services on a voluntary basis and are respected members of the business community. Shalamuka is 100% compliant as a broad-based organisation in accordance with the Department of Trade and Industry Codes and has Empowerdex certification.
Emira reaches out to local communities that surround its portfolio of retail shopping centres, engaging through social initiatives programmes during the course of every year. Initiatives are developed to address a wide range of social needs, and implemented by centre management that are familiar with their respective local areas and communities across South Africa. Emira helps to create opportunities for social upliftment and attracts people who wish to assist in a variety of worthy causes. By helping to build a better society and making a difference to communities in need, Emira is playing its part in building a better South Africa. Below are some of the initiatives undertaken by Emira’s retail property portfolio:
Wonderpark Shopping Centre
- The Wonderpark Cares Calendar assists various organisations as the centre hosts a variety of charitable days on a monthly basis. The campaign aims to enhance the centre’s involvement with its immediate community.
- As it has done for a number of years, the centre grows vegetables for Luvuyo Orphanage in Soshanguve, which visits the garden regularly. The fresh vegetables are grown behind the centre and collected on a regular basis to feed the children at the orphanage.
- To make the centre more accessible to surrounding communities, a user-friendly, covered mini taxi rank was built on the premises, complete with clean restrooms. The taxi rank can accommodate the various buses and taxis that transport customers from as far away as the centre’s tertiary catchment area.
- In August 2016, the centre celebrated Nurses Day by donating 60 Wonderpark branded, gift-filled cooler bags to the Akasia Netcare Hospital staff, to the value of R6 200.
- In September 2016, the centre hosted a Coca-Cola campaign, and the remaining soft drinks were donated to charity, to the value of R6 850.
- In October 2016 for Oncology Day, the centre visited a home care unit that treats cancer patients, treating them each to a small gift, cupcakes and set up an amusing photo booth for comic relief, to the value of R4 200.
- For Police Day in November 2016, the centre visited Akasia Police Station to deliver pizzas and bonus vouchers sponsored by Panarotti’s, while the centre sponsored soft drinks, all to the value of R960.
- In November 2016, the centre hosted the Groot FM Stationery Drive, where customers were encouraged to sponsor stationery, which was then distributed to a number of non-profit organisations. Groot FM did an on-site broadcast to boost awareness for the event, with donations totalling R3 000.
- In December 2016, the centre placed festive gift-wrapping stations at the Pick n Pay, Absa and Woolworths court areas. The charity drive raised a total R14 400, which was donated to the Gracia Children’s Home.
- In February 2017, the centre hosted its annual cancer fundraiser, the CANSA Shavathon, at the food court area. The centre helped to raise donations of R2 035 and provided the setup for the event.
- In March 2017, the centre’s marketing team visited Wollies Animal Shelter, after a month in which customers donated dog and cat food in a branded car provided by Toyota Pretoria North. The centre also donated food items to the shelter, with the charity drive achieving a total value of R5 800.
- To celebrate Oldies Day in April 2017, pensioners from the community were treated to a movie at the centre’s Ster-Kinekor theatres. The centre sponsored popcorn and beverages as they watched ‘Beauty and the Beast’. The value of the donation reached a total of R9 600, and some pensioners watched their first ever movie in a cinema.
- In May 2017, the centre held a Blood Donation Drive in conjunction with the South African National Blood Service (“SANBS”). Located at the Pick n Pay court, the first 50 blood donors received a free Wonderpark branded blanket, and the value of the centre’s sponsorship was R8 350.
- In May 2017 the centre sponsored Akasia High School’s first rugby team, donating Wonderpark branded kitbags as part of its brand awareness campaign, to the value of R6 200.
- In February 2017, the centre hosted a highly successful annual CANSA Shavathon. The centre and its patrons raised the most funds for the year within the Johannesburg area, collecting a total of R103 342 for this worthy cause.
- The centre continued its support for small business “Blessed Hands”, and its founder Tish, who has become part of the community. Trained in small business enterprises by Seeds of Africa, Tish helps unemployed people start their own businesses. Now some three years later, he helps five unemployed women who assist with arts and crafts.
- Every month, the centre assists the SANBS by sponsoring exhibition space to accommodate their mobile blood donation unit and staff on the premises. The number of donors is growing on a monthly basis, as patrons’ awareness of the drive is increased.
- The centre sponsors exhibition space for the National Sea Rescue Institute (“NSRI”) for one week per six month cycle at a discounted rate. The aim is to build awareness around the NSRI and the crucial services is provides, while collecting donations to help keep it running.
- In January – June 2017, the centre held the Nelson Mandela Day Squares project, with tenants, employees and patrons taking part for the second year running. Volunteers helped by either collecting or making knitted squares for the annual Nelson Mandela Day blanket drive where the squares are made into blankets for the needy This year saw an excellent response from the elderly in retirement homes, as they helped to knit many of the total 1 700 squares produced for the project.
- In May 2017, the centre assisted the Northcliff Rotary Club’s Blanket Drive, by helping to sell the blankets for charity. The drive was well received by the centre’s patrons, collecting over R10 600 for the worthy cause.
- Throughout the year, the centre also provided exhibition space to assist a number of other non-profit organisations, namely: the Ann Harding Cheshire Home, Milk for Change, UNICEF, and Fourpaws.
- In April 2017, the centre assisted local schoolgirls with Thandanani — the Randpark High charity drive to help members of the community. The centre donated space to help raise funds for Thandanani, which was also hosted by Randridge Mall. The schoolgirls raised an impressive R8 000 in a matter of just eight hours, thanks to the kindness of patrons and tenants alike.
- The centre continued to assist the Marike De Klerk Children’s Fund during the year. For one Friday and one Saturday of each month, a representative of the fund is stationed in front of the centre’s Woolworths store to raise funds for children in need.
- In December 2016, the centre hosted the UIP and Rotary Carols by Candlelight event for the fifth consecutive year. The centre’s festive season charity programme is well known and supported by the surrounding communities, with games and competitions for the family as well as prizes awarded to the winners by Father Christmas. Donations from patrons, holidaymakers and passers by were then distributed to underprivileged children.
- The centre’s Woolworths store donates surplus food to different charities each day of the week, thereby supporting seven different charities. The tenant also supported the Sikhone Charity in Bester for Mandela Day, spending time with the children and donating food, clothes and toys.
- In October 2016, the centre supported the Pink Drive, to offer free testing and educate the local community on breast cancer. The centre’s pharmacy and Spar assisted the campaign, offering pap smears for just R150 for the weekend of the drive. The campaign was extensively promoted and a total 54 customers received breast examinations and four PSA examinations.
- The centre gives discounts and special offers to local retirees in its pensioner days, held throughout the year. The centre has a strong retired community presence in the area.
- On a quarterly basis every year, the centre facilitates the collection of pet food and blankets for the Plett Animal Welfare Society (“PAWS”). The centre also holds a car boot sale to collect funds for PAWS, which has been successful for a number of years.
- Once again, the centre hosted the WP Blood Transfusion Service blood drive, every eight weeks during the course of the year. This important service received a significant contribution of blood from visitors to the centre during the year.
- On one Saturday morning every month, the centre hosts a local school or charity, which can then bake and sell pancakes to raise funds.
- In September 2016, the centre again hosted the annual Wittedrift High School “Entrepreneurs Day”. In the event, learners had the opportunity to win centre vouchers by putting their learned entrepreneurial skills on display.
- In December 2016, 12 charities were selected to benefit from the annual festive season gift-wrapping stations located around the centre. Over R65 000 in funds were raised, up from R53 000 in the previous year.
Quagga Shopping Centre
- In August 2016, the centre held a guide dog campaign, in support of the South African Guide Dogs Association. The aim was to create awareness around the crucial role of guide dogs in communities, with donations totalling R3 300.
- Also in August 2016, the centre collaborated with the City of Tshwane, which launched the “Fraud stops with me” campaign. The aim of the campaign was to make the reporting of corruption and fraud easier for the community.
- In September 2016, Clearview clinic had an exhibition in the centre’s parking area. The clinic offers a place of healing for people coping with harmful habits and addictions. The value of the donation of space was R1 000.
- In March 2017, the Departments of Education and Health partnered to focus on the health of school children with a basic health screening for learners. National school health week took place during the month, and Die Heuwel Primary School received health-related puppet shows to educate learners.
- Also in March 2017 the centre visited the SAVF Margaretha Ackerman Old Age Home, delivering cupcakes to treat the elderly residents.
- Throughout the year, the centre donated exhibition space valued at R12 000 to Doctors without Borders.
- From November 2016 until March 2017, the centre hosted the SANBS, accommodating them in the parking area for a total value of R10 000. During the blood drive, the SANBS gained a total of 35 new donors, and bled 167 donors in total.
- In June 2017, the centre partnered with the Women’s Network SAPS Academy: Tshwane, donating 770 bath soaps and face cloths to all Patogeng Primary learners in Atteridgeville.
Tramshed Shopping Centre
- From July to December 2016, the centre donated space at the exhibitions court to the SANBS for its blood drive campaign, bleeding a total 52 donors. The centre donated advertising space and exhibition space to the value of R1 000 and R9 000 respectively.
- To raise awareness around HIV/AIDS and the prevention of child abuse, the centre hosted Universal Peace Federation at the Pick n Pay court, with brochures, pens and promotional merchandise for fundraising. The charity received a discount from the centre to the value of R4 550.
- From August 2016 until May 2017, the centre hosted non-profit organisation Doctors without Borders, which delivers emergency medical services worldwide. The centre donated R4 500 worth of exhibition space to this worthy cause.
Springfield Retail Centre
- In May 2017, the centre donated much needed furniture to the Liv Village, a home for orphaned and vulnerable children. The home relies heavily on donations, as it provides long-term cluster foster care, where children have a sense of belonging in a supportive community, modelled on an African village lifestyle. The Liv Village looks after each child holistically, seeing to all of their developmental and educational needs.
- The centre’s Foodlovers store supports a number of charities, supplying monthly groceries to take care of orphans and abandoned babies. Donations of vegetables and cash are made by Foodlovers every month to benefit the food, education and clothing needs of disadvantaged schools, also providing bursaries for qualifying students.
- In October 2016, the centre hosted the local SPCA, which ran an anti-animal cruelty awareness campaign and donation run.
- In November 2016, the centre welcomed the Uelzen Church, which held a highly successful Christmas fundraiser, with the proceeds going to fund their Christmas children’s event.
- Also in November 2016, the local Rotary Club held their Christmas fundraiser for the local SPCA and managed to collect a significant amount of donations, food and blankets.
- In December 2016 the centre once again hosted the SPCA, which ran a Christmas gift-wrapping service to raise funds.
- In January 2017, the Department of Health held a “Milk Bank” awareness campaign at the centre, to promote and encourage the donation of breast milk to local clinics and hospitals as well as natural breastfeeding.
- Also in January 2017, the local athletic club ran through the centre and parking areas to raise awareness and promote healthy living.
- In February 2017, CANSA held its annual Shavathon at the centre, and was successful in collecting donations and raising awareness for cancer.
- In April 2017, the centre accommodated the Uelzen Ladies Guild, which held its annual Easter sale to raise funds for the Uelzen Church meals on wheels endeavour.
As always, Emira remains committed to being an environmentally responsible property fund, and makes a difference by developing and implementing initiatives in the areas and communities surrounding its properties. This proactive approach inspires others to join the effort and multiply the positive effect on society and the environment. Some of the portfolio’s retail property environmental initiatives from the year under review are listed below:
Wonderpark Shopping Centre
- The centre has generated its own compost for a number of years, by using food and plant waste supplied by the centre’s tenants and members of the community. All organic material found on site is turned into compost, which is used in all of the centre’s gardens and flowerbeds.
- Three public recycling stations feature outside the centre, at locations around the property. Tenants and members of the public use the facilities on a daily basis to recycle their waste metals, plastics, paper and glass. As part of its green initiative, a waste collection area for recycling materials is positioned behind the centre to decrease the impact of pollution on the environment.
- The centre replaces all light bulbs with approved power saving bulbs to reduce its carbon footprint.
- The centre’s photovoltaic (“PV”) solar farm project is now fully operational. The system significantly decreases the centre’s carbon footprint and provides consumption data that is accurate and credible.
- The centre installed power saving LED lights throughout the Kingsmead shoes premises.
- The centre’s glass recycling initiative continues to be successful, having gained the support of tenants and members of the public.
- To address the country’s persisting water shortages, water harvesting is being considered for possible implementation at the centre.
Epsom Downs Centre
- The centre’s PV solar farm project has been fully operational for a number of years, generating about 30% of the centre’s electricity requirements, saving a substantial amount of energy each year.
- The potential cost savings of solar streetlights is being investigated for possible implementation at the centre.
- Energy efficient geyser blankets have been installed throughout the centre’s public areas.
- The centre’s waste plan is in place.
- The centre systematically replaces its older globes with newer, energy efficient ones to save on cost and be kinder to the environment.
- Solar street lights with modern technology are being installed at the centre to reduce its carbon footprint.
- Newer, more efficient globes and light fittings with day and night sensors were installed at the centre during the year.
- The centre uses a private service provider to control, sort and recycle the centre’s waste, paper and glass. The results of the recycling of the waste generated at the centre are expected to be encouraging.
- When the centre replaces its air-conditioners, it does so with eco-friendly R410A units, while replacing all older units that use harmful R22 gas.
- When replacing its light fittings, the centre ensures that only new technology energy saving fittings and globes are used.
- The centre has a glass-recycling bin, installed on the premises by the Glass Recycling Company, and used daily by the centre’s restaurant tenants.
- The centre also has paper bin on property to encourage the local community to recycle paper waste materials.
- The centre launched its Art Smart campaign to encourage local schools to collect various recyclable goods to turn into art. The best artworks were showcased at the centre, the creator of the winning artwork collected a cash prize, and a cash prize went to the overall winning school. First place and R1 500 was awarded to an eight-year-old from Chelsea Preparatory, which won R5 000 as the winning school. Prizes for second and third place were also awarded.
- The centre once again held its Durban beach clean up in June 2017, to coincide with National Environment Month. The clean-up was in association with #CleanBlueLagoon, a group dedicated to cleaning up and maintaining the Blue Lagoon and Beachgrove Mangrove areas, as well as other areas of Durban in need of improvement.
- To help alleviate the country’s scarce water shortages and ease demand, the centre performs regular inspections to ensure that it has no costly leaks on the premises.
- The centre installs newer, environmentally friendly air conditioning units that do not use harmful R22 gas, as and when its older air conditioning units are replaced.
- The centre’s smart meter system delivers cost savings through accurate readings and monitoring. The centre only uses modern, energy saving light fittings and lamps.
- The centre continued with its recycling effort during the year, as all cardboard box and paper waste generated by tenants was separated from other waste and collected for processing.
- All of the centre’s bulbs have been replaced with energy efficient ones to reduce its carbon footprint, while all neon signage was removed from the centre’s main sign and replaced with more efficient LED fittings.
- Quagga Shopping Centre and Tramshed Shopping Centre
- In December 2016, the centres replaced less efficient, old light fittings in the basement area with modern LED lighting to improve utility cost savings.
- In July 2017, the centre collaborated with the SAPS Pretoria West to address the issue of illegal dumping, which is increasingly becoming an environmental challenge in Pretoria North.
Springfield Retail Centre
- The centre uses a specialist service provider to control, sort and recycle the various types of waste materials generated. The move has already proved to be successful, with 62% of all waste at the centre being recycled.
- To address the nation’s water shortages, the centre promotes and encourages water saving, leading by example to tenants. High-pressure water cleaning of walkways and roofs is done less often to conserve water.
- When older air-conditioners reach the end of their lifespan, the centre replaces them with eco-friendly R410A units.
- The centre’s smart meter system curbs utility wastage, and only new, energy saving light fittings and lamps are used.
- The centre’s two waste cages are located behind its stores for cardboard and plastic waste, which is collected for recycling by a local business.
- The centre has new energy saving light fittings and globes, thereby replacing inefficient products and reducing consumption. Environmentally friendly air conditioners are also being installed at the centre, to replace older technology.
- To further reduce consumption and cost, light fittings with day and night sensors are installed throughout the common area.
- The centre has a JOJO water tank to collect rainwater, which is then repurposed for use in the restrooms. Due to its success, the installation of additional tanks is being investigated for implementation.
Health and safety initiatives across Emira’s portfolio
- Emira has awareness meetings with its contractors, which must comply with the requisite health and safety standards.
- Emira ensures that all applicable agreements with mandatory and workmen’s compensation documentation are in place by conducting internal administrative assessments on all suppliers.
- All of Emira’s centre contractors must comply with OHS requirements, and specialist contractors are hired to provide on-site fire equipment and safety training for centre staff.
- Emira ensures that all fire fighting equipment is properly maintained and kept in working order through scheduled services by accredited companies.
- Emira has implemented a hazard identification programme, which improves the occupational health and safety reporting process across the portfolio.
- On-going training for cleaners and security staff ensures that Emira complies with safety standards.
- Emira’s centres perform regular health and safety inspections, to ensure regulatory compliance.
- Emira attends to all required maintenance and repairs swiftly, to prevent health and safety incidents.