Players in the built industry have been urged to construct buildings that are EDGE-certified.

EDGE (Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies) is a green building certification system focused on making buildings more resource-efficient.

Speaking to Joy Business at the launch of the IFC EDGE Green Building Challenge, Commercial Director at Goldkey Properties, Alexander Dordor said green building provides value for money.

“The emissions of the old buildings, if not done with a green building mentality, is normally way higher than if the building is designed green from onset. Because with that, you have in mind minimising carbon dioxide emissions and for that matter less pollution to the environment.”

Mr. Dordor added that “our very survival is threatened if we don’t go green, adding, “because the more harmful gases that are emitted from our developments and the processes leading to our development, the more susceptible we are to the danger.”

In her opening remarks at the launch, Cemile Hacibeyoglu, IFC’s Senior Country Officer for the Ghana cluster, stated that the drive towards sustainability in the built environment represents both a challenge and business opportunity for building design professionals.

“However you choose to see it, it is the future. Designers must develop the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to support the built environment’s move onto a low-carbon path,” Ms Hacibeyoglu said.

Dennis Papa Odenyi Quansah, Programme Lead for Ghana, Nigeria and Kenya, provided an overview of the EDGE program, which is a global innovation by the World Bank Group.

EDGE offers a faster, easier, and more affordable way to build and brand green. It includes a software that helps to identify the most practical ways to build green.

Goldkey Properties is the headline sponsor for the challenge. The Ghanaian developer has EDGE-certified a number of its buildings.

Fuseina Abu, Managing Director of Goldkey Properties, reiterated her company’s support for environmental sustainability through initiatives such as this challenge.

Speaking on behalf of Francis Asenso-Boakye, the Minister of Works and Housing, Rev. Stephen Yaw Osei, the Director at the Policy Planning, Budgeting, Monitoring and Evaluating Directorate (PPBME) reiterated the Minister’s endorsement and support for the Challenge.

 Rev. Osei said, “my expectation of this competition is that it will generate innovative ideas that will provide Ghana’s own developed solutions to green building. I can assure you that my Ministry, on behalf of the government, would be looking forward to receiving pragmatic policy recommendations in this regard.”

Prizes for the Challenge include a six-month internship with Goldkey Properties, an all- expense paid trip to South Africa to attend the Green Building Convention in Cape Town, plaque and publication in the media and free EDGE Expert Training.

The EDGE Green Building Challenge is organized by IFC EDGE programme with donor funding from the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO).

IFC EDGE Challenge

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) launched the EDGE Green Building Challenge for architectural and engineering students as well as professionals in the built environment.

The Challenge is in two strands: the Net Zero Ready Design Competition, which is aimed at getting architecture and engineering students and recent graduates in the built environment to exhibit their understanding of green buildings using the EDGE App and utilising knowledge from the Design for Greater Efficiency (DfGE) course.

The DfGE course covers the basics of energy and resource efficiency measures in design from the technical and commercial perspective, and seeks to encourage and incentivize resource efficiency in the construction sector.

The second strand, the Green Building Awards, is open to professionals who can submit new buildings or retrofits completed in the last seven years which have come as close to Net Zero Ready as possible, whether certified or not.