Press Release: First "Green" Austrian Embassy takes up operations in Jakarta

Garden View

Jakarta, 22 June 2011. After the topping off of the innovative building was celebrated by the Austrian Federal President, Dr. Heinz Fischer, and Governor Fauzi Bowo in November 2010, today the Vice-Governor of Jakarta, the Secretary-General of KEMLU, jointly with the DG for Infrastructure at the Austrian Foreign Ministry, Nikolaus Marschik, and the Austrian Ambassador to Indonesia, Klaus Wölfer, officiated the first flag-hoisting at the new "Green" Austrian Embassy in Menteng.
Numerous Ambassadors, Honorary Consuls and representatives from the City of Jakarta and the Green Building Council Indonesia attended the ceremony, which coincided with the 484th anniversary of Jakarta. The building can serve as a showcase for more sustainable building practices for Indonesia’s capital city in the future. In front of the Austrian Chancery in Menteng, the flags of the Republic of Austria and the European Union were raised to mark the start of operations at the new venue. The release of white pigeons at the occasion symbolizes the quest for peace and mutual understanding as essentials of diplomatic work.

Austria’s first "Green" Embassy Building has been constructed according to "passive house" standards, adapted to the tropical surroundings of its location. Following the design of the Viennese team "pos architects" aided by the Indonesian architect Jatmika Suryabrata, traditional techniques, local materials and state-of-the-art technology have been combined to guarantee exceptionally pleasant surroundings and a stable cool, dry climate without the use of a conventional AC system or of split units. The Embassy staff and visitors can enjoy these healthy indoor conditions, while at the same time energy running costs are kept at only 17% of those for a conventional office of the same size.

The Embassy building features windows that are mainly oriented North/South, careful shading of all openings and the use of plants to reduce cooling and dehumidifying needs inside the building. In addition, a compact outside facade as well as an air-tight building shell with a high degree of thermal insulation and double glazing contribute to the reduction of humidity levels and overheating.

Austrian Ambassador with Former Indonesian Ambassador for Austria
Solar collectors make use for water heating; the photovoltaic generators on the rooftop will produce 22% of the annual electrical power consumption and contribute to the low energy needs of this revolutionary building.

The new "Green" Embassy underscores the commitment of Austria to its presence and engagement in Indonesia and the whole ASEAN region, while at the same time serving as a showcase of Austrian and European design and technology adapted to local circumstances.

The energy reduction to be achieved by the innovative design and eco-friendly technology may be seen as a small gift to Jakarta on the city’s anniversary and is meant to symbolically support President Yudhoyono’s bold commitments to substantially reduce Indonesia’s carbon footprint in the years to come.