The Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) has accredited two buildings at Vodacom South Africa’s headquarters (HQ) in Midrand, Johannesburg, each with a 5-Star Existing Building Performance (EPB) certification.

Vodacom’s Business Park and Corporate Park buildings, which are part of the HQ campus, have each achieved this rating, which signifies excellence in sustainable building operations and management. This comes after the company has practically demonstrated responsible business practices over a sustained period and continues to do so.

Resource efficiency, especially in respect to energy, water, and waste management, are some of the important features that the GBCSA interrogates when awarding the certification. In addition, Vodacom has adopted green cleaning principles, indoor air quality management and occupancy feedback.

“As a purpose-led and environmentally conscious organisation, we are constantly looking for ways to minimise our carbon footprint,” says Vodacom South Africa CEO Sitho Mdlalose. “Organisations need to start taking decarbonisation goals seriously if we hope to slow the effects of global warming.

“However, this cannot be limited to high-level corporate initiatives. We are extremely proud of all our initiatives, big and small, as well as the changes we have made to achieve this certification.”

Lisa Reynolds, CEO of GBCSA, adds: “The Green Building Council South Africa are proud to be part of Vodacom’s sustainability journey. Vodacom’s tagline of “Further Together” sums up the spirit of this journey which has progressed from their low carbon vision to achieving these new certifications. The Green Star certifications independently quantify that Vodacom has ‘walked their talk’. I am looking forward to partnering with Vodacom and their project teams into the future.”

The recent installation of an extensive onsite solar farm and an electric vehicle charging station for customers and staff, further highlights Vodacom’s commitment to its planet goals and the company’s continued efforts to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. The electric vehicle charging station, doubles up as a recycling pod for waste collection, making it convenient for all staff and customers to drop off their recyclable items.

“Our eco-village provides both staff and Vodacom customers with easy access to the resources they need to make green choices. The eco-village project is also a first step towards our plan to migrate 20% of our fleet to electric vehicles by 2030, further accelerating us towards a net-zero future,” says Mdlalose.

The 25-year-old campus was recently kitted with 6,2MW solar panels as part of the company’s sustainable strategy around energy management. This solar installation, now completed, will allow Vodacom’s HQ to generate around 10,8GWh of its own clean power every year, roughly 25% of the headquarters’ power consumption. This will effectively result in the reduction of about 11 000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) annually.