The International Finance Corporation’s (IFC)/Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiency (EDGE) yesterday held a discovery workshop for players in commerce and industry in Takoradi.
It was attended by members of the Sekondi-Takoradi Chamber of Commerce and Industries (STCCI) and the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce and Industries (GNCCI) and other stakeholders.
Speaking at the workshop, Mr Anthony K. K. Sam, Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE), announced that STMA had reduced permits fees paid for project certified as green, in line with the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC) Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiency (EDGE) initiative.
The initiative, is part of the Twin City’s new spatial development framework, a programme to keep the growth of the metropolis on track for sustainable development and also match with the increasing production of oil and expansion of the Takoradi Harbour.
The green projects are those that rely on renewable energy, sustainable development or production and also focusing on the environment.
He said, “To support this narrative, the Twin City is instituting a new policy of 30 per cent reduction in building permit fees for all developments that are certified as green, whether private or corporate-owned. The intention is to encourage resource efficient-development of the property sector.”
The MCE explained that the IFC/EDGE and the Ghana Green Building Society green concept aimed to increase efficiency in the use of resources in the construction of buildings with lower maintenance and operational costs, and also reduce impacts on the environment.
Mr Sam said the Twin City believed that such increasing growth in the economy must be carefully managed to ensure the substantial use of limited resources, stressing that “EDGE encourages solutions to reduce water and energy used to make building materials in the metropolis at least 20 per cent.”
He said, “EDGE, an online platform, a green building standard and certification system from more than 150 countries, including Ghana, is an innovation of IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, created in response to need for a measurable solution to prove the financial case for building green and help enhance the mainstreaming of green buildings.
“With EDGE, design professionals are empowered to quickly and easily find the cost-effective ways to build green-based occupant behaviour, building type, and the local climate.”
As part of its commitment to champion green buildings in the metropolis, he revealed that the Twin City, in collaboration with IFC and Ghana Green Building Society, was the first in Ghana to introduce development control week held in February last year, for government and private sector employees to reshape the house market through more sustainable design practices.
Mr Sam announced that STMA, an active member of the Covenant of Mayors for Sub-Saharan Africa (COMSSA), was preparing its Climate Change Action Plan to define realistic energy and climate targets, and also help realise the Twin City’s civic responsibility in supporting Ghana’s contribution to combat climate change through mitigation, adaptation, and access to sustainable energy.
The Metropolitan Director of Physical Planning, Mr Kofi Yeboah, believed that stakeholders would take advantage of the STMA’s initiative and respond positively to the goals of making the Twin City green.
FROM CLEMENT ADZEI BOYE, TAKORADI