The City of Cape Town has a holistic approach to implementing energy efficiency in its buildings, including the implementation of smart meters and data monitoring systems coupled with energy efficiency interventionsxlix. The city has also established an Environmental Education, Training and Awareness Strategy to promote behaviour change. Training of key employees was identified as critical to ensuring the sustainability of the energy efficiency programme.l The city hired a private company to train its facility managers on the fundamentals of energy management, requiring that the service provider include a practical component in the training to ensure that the concepts taught are understood by the employees. The city also developed a training guide on how to collect, interpret and act upon the smart meter data.


The focus of the training was for non-technical staff, such as facility managers, building operators and maintenance staff. The city has trained 45 of its building facility managers to date, who are now better prepared to deliver sustainable management of their facilities.

Reasons for success

The success of Cape Town’s customised training was built on recognition of the importance of behaviour change and awareness for delivering sustainable municipal building energy efficiency improvements. By incorporating practical elements into the training, the city and its partners ensured the lasting impact of the training and potential for spreading the message among other employees.

When/why a city might apply an approach like this

Any city aiming to improve municipal building efficiency should consider pro-actively training staff and educating stakeholders about energy efficiency and its benefits, as behaviour has large and direct impact on energy consumption. By engaging the broader public and private sector through information campaigns and awareness-raising efforts, the city can also build a wider support for energy efficiency and stimulate local markets. 

C40 Good Practice Guides

C40's Good Practice Guides offer mayors and urban policymakers roadmaps for tackling climate change, reducing climate risk and encouraging sustainable urban development. With 100 case studies taken from cities of every size, geography and stage of development around the world, the Good Practice Guides provide tangible examples of climate solutions that other cities can learn from. 

The Municipal Building Efficiency Good Practice Guide is available for download here.  The full collection of C40 Good Practice Guides is available for download here.  

All references can be found in the full guide.

  • Environmental
  • Social
Key Impact
The city has trained 45 of its building facility managers to date, who are now better prepared to deliver sustainable management of their facilities
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