|Ellerman House in Cape Town offers Earth-friendly comforts.|
Ellerman House, an iconic hotel located in Cape Town, South Africa, has launched an initiative to become the city’s most eco-friendly boutique hotel. Through newly implemented green projects such as solar panels, LED light bulbs, heat pumps, earthworm farms, and recycling systems, the property aims to be Cape Town’s leader in eco-friendly luxury hospitality by September 2013.
In order to measure the carbon footprint for the entire property, including the main house, villas, spa, art gallery, and all administrative housing and offices, Ellerman House hired an energy efficiency company, BrightBlack, as a consultant and to administer extensive energy testing. The staff at Ellerman House began taking energy-reducing steps immediately, beginning with the installation of energy-efficient and motion-sensor activated LED lights. Since the new lighting system has been put in place, the kilowatt usage at the hotel has been reduced by an outstanding 80%.
In the coming months, Ellerman House will also be installing approximately 230 solar panels. Both the north and south facing roofs of the main house will be outfitted with the panels since they receive equal direct sunlight. On long summer days it will be possible for Ellerman House to be completely self sufficient, with no outside electric supply.
Ellerman House has always been a strong supporter of recycling, but they will be expanding their current initiatives to include composting and water repurposing. The entire staff recycles garden and kitchen trimmings, coffee grounds, and shredded paper and adds them to the eight earthworm farms at Ellerman House. The materials eventually turn to compost, used in the picturesque Ellerman gardens, comprised of indigenous and drought tolerant plants, as well as species from the famed Kirstenbosch Garden. Ellerman House is also building water capture devices on the property, which will be used to irrigate the estate.
The reduction in energy use by the heat pumps that Ellerman House has installed is also significant. The pumps will heat 20 hot water heaters (also known as geysers) and three pools on the property, and will decrease energy consumption by approximately 60%.
Ellerman House is dedicated to the future and well-being of Cape Town, and by reducing their carbon footprint they hope to inspire other business in Cape Town to become more eco-friendly as well. “We have a responsibility to our guests and to the residents of Cape Town to be as environmentally friendly as possible,” said Paul Mavrocoleas, Estate Manager of Ellerman House. “I know I am speaking on behalf of everyone at Ellerman House when I say how excited we are for this new challenge.”
Read Energy Transition in Africa from Amazon.