InfrastructureThe Department of Public Works is calling on the construction industry to embrace innovative technologies that promote energy efficiency.  

Commenting after a recent visit to Agrément South Africa, located at the CSIR buildings in Pretoria Public Works Minister Nkosinathi Nhleko said energy efficiency will contribute to sustainable development, while eco-labelling construction products will contribute towards South Africa’s green building policy.

The minister pledged support for Agrément’s Vision 2030 which aims to ensure that innovative, modern and improvement methods of construction technologies are widely used across the country.

Nhleko said Agrément SA is mandated to ensure provision of assurance by carrying out its testing, evaluation, confirmation and certification of fitness for purpose of non-standard construction products and systems through quality products and services in order to improve service delivery.

Reducing innovation risks

Agrément SA Chief Executive Officer, Joe Odhiambo, who heads the only organisation on the continent recognised by the World Federation of Technical Assessment Organisations, said his organisation reduces risk involved in the use of untested innovations.

Odhiambo said that his organisation is responsible for the safe introduction of advanced construction technologies from overseas and introduces them in the South African market, ensuring that substandard products are prevented from accessing the local market.

Widespread use of some of the over 600 Agrément South Africa certificated products include hollow concrete blocks, metal roof tiles, lightweight internal partitions, hard drawn copper tubing, variety of waterproofing and wall coating materials, bath tubs and popular JoJo water tanks used in farming and rural communities.