Climate change

SDC Cooperation Office Pretoria is implementing a Climate Change Mitigation Programme in South Africa on Energy Efficiency (EE) in the Building Sector. To address the global issue of Climate Change, SDC supports measures for global reduction of greenhouse gases (GHG) and fosters innovative solutions in the domain of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources. The residential sector is the third largest emitter of CO2 emissions in South Africa. The building sector accounts for 25 to 40% of global energy consumption and 30 to 40% of greenhouse gas emissions.

The objective of this programme is to contribute to a significant reduction of energy consumption through enhanced energy efficiency in the full life cycle of buildings.

The Programme has three levels of interventions:

  1. Policy Framework: setting, enforcement and monitoring of the policy framework related to energy efficiency in the building sector
  2. Capacity Building and development skills of builders, architects, engineers, labs, institutions, municipalities and others in the areas of energy efficient buildings
  3. Implementation of projects to demonstrate energy efficiency in the production of building material, by the design and the construction of the building and by the use of energy efficient basic equipments and behaviors during the rest of the building life cycle.

The programme will have a financial volume of 16 million CHF committed over 4 years as from 2009. It will focus on building local ownership, facilitating South-South Know-how and technology transfer and regional outreach.

The programme will be implemented through local actors from governments (central and municipal levels), research institutions, NGOs and the private sector.


Several projects are under development with the Government of South Africa, private sector and NGOs. Below is a summary of the already approved project:

  • VSBK Project: The Vertical Shaft Brick Kiln (VSBK) Project is one of the projects within the SDC expertise focusing on Energy Efficiency in the building sector. The main objective of the project is to reduce CO2 emissions in the production of clay bricks while improving the working conditions and informing policy of the sector. It will focus on establishing local ownership, facilitating South-South know-how and technology transfer and regional outreach.
    Fact sheet

    (PDF, 2 Pages, 116.1 kB, English)
  • The Energy Efficiency Skills Development Project: The Energy Efficiency Skills Development Project (2010 - 2013) - aims to equip municipal control officers with the necessary skills to take energy efficiency into consideration when approving building plans, and ensure that builders acquire the necessary skills and qualifications to build in accordance with the new Energy Efficiency Building Regulations. The third component of the project supports the training of plumbers to assist them acquiring the necessary accredited qualifications for installing solar water heaters.
    Fact sheet

    (PDF, 2 Pages, 99.4 kB, English)
  • The Energy Efficient Monitoring and Implementation Project: The Energy Efficient Monitoring and Implementation Project (2010 - 2013) – focusing on developing and supporting the introduction of a monitoring system for national energy efficiency targets, and the implementation of energy efficiency in the building sector at national and municipal level.
    Fact sheet (PDF, 2 Pages, 100.0 kB, English)

The Global Programme Climate Change (GPCC)

Responding to Climate Change impacts has become a global priority. The impacts associated with global temperature increases will undermine global progress made on development interventions and poverty alleviation efforts, particularly to the vulnerable and poor communities in developing countries. Thus response measures are required to avoid the unmanageable through mitigation efforts and to manage the unavoidable through adaptation efforts. The GPCC is SDC’s programme linking policy dialogue with concrete mitigation and adaptation actions. The programme is actively engaged in China, India, South Africa as well as the Andean region. The overall objective of the GPCC mitigation programme is to contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases by supporting low carbon development pathways in developing countries. The specific Mitigation Programme for South Africa will focus on Energy Efficiency in the Building Sector.

SDC/Toni Linder

The impact of climate change has no geographical boundaries. It affects everyone, all over the world, and is particularly hard on those who derive their means of subsistence directly from nature. Climate protection and the management of climate change are a growing preoccupation in the context of development cooperation.

The SDC's worldwide engagement