Growthpoint and The Waste Transformers launch waste-to-energy initiative at N1 City

11 December 2018

The improper disposal of waste is one of the fastest growing risks to our planet and way of life. Rotting food leads to increases in methane gasses as the food decomposes in landfills. To address this, the City of Cape Town plans to start banning wet waste from its landfills from 2022.

The Waste Transformers from the Netherlands and South Africa’s Growthpoint Properties have united to help meet this challenge. They are leveraging end-of-pipeline food waste from shopping malls and adopting a decentralised approach to organic waste.

An on-site, anaerobic digester has been installed at Growthpoint’s N1 City Mall in Cape Town, which is processing the waste from the mall to generate clean methane. This is consumed by an internal combustion engine to produce green electricity and hot water for the shopping centre. A fertiliser is also created, which will be used for the mall’s gardens.

It is an on-site, smart, green, transportation-free approach to realising zero-landfill that makes sense.

Gavin Jones, Growthpoint Properties Regional Retail Asset Manager, Western Cape, says, “Shopping centres can be big food waste generators, especially those with a significant selection of restaurants and grocery shops. This makes them excellent locations for waste-to-energy conversion. N1 City Mall is proud to lead this initiative for its environmentally conscious retailers and customers.”

Nardo Snyman of Growthpoint Properties says, “Organic waste is one of the last barriers to truly achieving Net Zero waste at a number of our properties. It is no longer a case of best practice to re-purpose our waste but rather a necessity. The containerised, small-scale, on-site approach to transforming waste into energy holds great potential. This pilot project will focus on positive impacts and financial feasibility and, if successful, we would look to roll it out to other Growthpoint Properties by 2022.”

Lara van Druten, CEO of The Waste Transformers, comments, “This project demonstrates how companies can cooperate in a mutually inclusive way that generates energy for positive economic and social change. We are excited at the opportunity to transform an unused resource – waste – into new energy for South Africa. And, we are truly delighted to embark on this journey with a company of the stature of Growthpoint.”    

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