DUBAI, UAE, 08 October 2020: Three60 Communities, a subsidiary of Eltizam Asset Management Group, has saved a total of AED 7 million across its portfolio during the first five months of 2020, said Alan Rowlands, General Manager, attributing the achievement to the company’s increased focus on sustainability, with efforts revolving around energy and water conservation. “We have brought in the right technologies to the communities we serve to significantly bring down their power and water use, while further enhancing the comfort, security and overall experience of residents and tenants,” he said.
An integral part of the initiative is addressing chilled water consumption, which Rowlands said contributed AED 2.3 million to the savings. “Controlling the chilled water pump flow rate entails changing the frequency of the pumps using the Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) settings without affecting the service we deliver to the end-users,” he said. “This was made possible because of the oversized chilled water pump system.” Rowlands explained that upon implementing the strategy, the Building Management System (BMS) team was able to calculate the total cooling load required for the communities, which they found to be lower than the load implemented originally, as per the designs. He said that in coordination with Empower, Three60 also shut down two heat exchangers installed in the district cooling systems of some communities, which resulted in a lower chilled water consumption rate. Further, Rowlands said, increased return temperature and higher Delta T were the results of controlling the chilled water flow rate.
However, Rowlands emphasised that the company went even further. “We successfully negotiated a lower tonnage rate from Empower to calculate the capacity charge in some towers, and they discounted a 10% on the capacity charge,” he said. “To eliminate Delta T penalty and further increase our energy savings, meanwhile, we are now in the final stages of our negotiations with the Body Corporate to hammer out a complete Design, Built and Operate agreement.”
Going into further detail regarding the VFDs and adiabatic system, which led to 30% savings in chilled water consumption, Rowlands said the VFDs were installed at Index already and functional. “However, this was not utilised properly, and once Three60 had taken over we optimised the usage of VFD through BMS,” he said.
Elaborating on other measures the company has implemented to meet its sustainability goals, Rowlands said the company has installed a BMS Lighting Control System on residential floors and in parking spaces to control the power being consumed in these areas, especially after midnight. “We utilise the same system to switch off lights on commercial floors after office hours, during which only emergency lights are working,” he said. “Also, by manually setting the differential pressure based on the cooling demand, we can regulate the chilled water flow to lower the chilled water pump frequency.” Rowlands said the company has also a host of other measures in line with its cost-reduction strategy, resulting in savings 49% higher than the same period last year. “By ramping up our sustainability initiatives, we have significantly lowered the operating budgets of our communities and, more importantly, lessened our environmental impact.”
Rowlands also spoke on challenges FM companies face when it comes to implementing energy conservation measures amid a pandemic. “COVID-19 has led to increased energy consumption, which made rolling out an energy conservation measure all the more important,” he said. “The initial costs of deploying power-efficient projects were considerable, thus posing a huge challenge for everyone involved. Admittedly, our initiatives required extensive work, because we not only needed to tap the services of technical consultants and experts, but we also needed to get the consent of homeowner associations and boards, without which we could not proceed with our plans.” Rowlands said the company is confident that the significant capital investments in equipment, facilities and technologies, among others, would return over a fixed period through the savings acquired and the efficiency attained across the communities the company oversees.
Rowlands also shared that Three60, a subsidiary of Eltizam Asset Management Group, made history after becoming one of the two companies in the Middle East and outside the United States to obtain the coveted Accredited Association Management Company (AAMC) seal from the Community Associations Institute (CAI). “We are immensely proud of this achievement,” he said, “and it has pushed us to be more innovative and creative in bringing services that exceed our clients’ expectations.”
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