Sun City resort has been awarded ISO 14001 certification for the responsible manner in which it interacts with its environment and the responsible way in which it uses scarce resources.
The holiday resort, a jewel in Sun International’s crown, won the award for water and energy management. ISO 14001 is an international certification and systematic framework to manage the immediate and long-term environmental impacts of an organisation’s products, services, and processes.
Sun City is a hospitality industry pioneer when it comes to achieving certification and joins the ranks of international hotels in Germany, Switzerland, Greece and Spain.
Lwazi Mswelanto, Safety, Health and Environmental Manager, explains that, globally, the hospitality industry is moving towards obtaining international recognition and certifications. Given Sun City’s client demographics, it is important for guests to know that the resort conforms to international norms and standards in terms of managing its environment for a sustainable business development.
This will also aid economic growth, as more visitors means more spending on the local economy.
In terms of water management, Sun City has a freshwater project, which has also resulted in savings. “We implemented a water balance project aimed at accounting for all water uses, which includes metering from primary fresh water sources to the end user, and accounting for all water treated after use,” says Mswelanto.
The project focuses on specific business partners, pools and mechanical plants/equipment that require vast amounts of water to operate. The resort also has its own WasteWater Treatment Plant, which recycles wastewater into grey water that, in turn, is used for irrigating the golf courses. “This is essential for water conservation.”
In addition, says Mswelanto, live meters have been installed to measure water flow from all hotels, staff accommodation, Bush Bungalows, the Sun Vacation Club, the Valley of Waves, two golf courses and other site leisure activities.
The projects started in 2020 and Phase One has been completed, with Phase Two set to begin in September 2021.
“The objective is to enable early detection of leaks and effect repairs promptly. In addition, we are able to use consumption data and analyse this based on seasons and occupancies.”
When it comes to energy management, Sun City recently completed a solar project for its staff village. This has alleviated the cost of electricity and also ensures security of power supply. The project involved the removal of 700 old element geysers and replacing them with 216 solar units, saving at least 90,000 kWh per month, and more than 1MWh per annum.
Mswelanto explains there is also a planned solar project aimed at pre-heating boiler water to a temperature above 50°C before the water heaters increase the temperature to an ideal 65°C. This will lower the electricity bill further.
In addition, more than 15,000 halogen downlighters were replaced with LED downlighters. “This resulted in an energy saving of at least 400kW for every hour that the lights burn. Street signage and building lights have also been converted to LED.”
Currently, the most cost effective and eco-friendly power source is used in the kitchens for the preparation of food. The LPG infrastructure has been replaced and repaired, new vaporisers have been installed at all four bulk tanks and connected to the Building Management System (BMS) to accurately monitor tank levels and receive instant warnings.
“The entire purpose of sustainable environmental management is to reduce waste, consumption of resources, and limit the damaging effects that organisations have on the environment. Changing public perception is at the core of our operations as we aim to have a positive reputation with surrounding communities,” says Mswelanto.