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November 20, 2015

CitySwitch Awards highlight resource efficiency

Members of our in-house Design and Sustainability Committee attended the annual CitySwitch Awards at Council House yesterday. The CitySwitch program supports commercial office tenants to improve energy and waste efficiency, and it was inspiring to hear about the latest initiatives undertaken by fellow CitySwitch signatories. Congratulations to the RAC for winning the WA Signatory of the Year for the third year running.

Emerging themes include upgrading to new LED lighting technology, and installing end of trip facilities. Commercial buildings account for around 50 per cent of the CBD’s greenhouse gas emissions, and employee transport accounts for almost 30 percent, so these areas are primary targets for improvement.

Mayor Lisa Scaffidi presented the awards and spoke about the City of Perth’s forward-thinking strategies for ensuring we are an energy resilient city. It is great to see the City of Perth taking a proactive approach to creating a sustainable future, as detailed in their Strategic Directions Paper.

Guest speaker Dermot Costello from the Clean Energy Council spoke on the emergence of lithium iron batteries as the game changer in the energy industry. Allowing the energy generated by renewable sources such as PV cells to be efficiently stored, the challenge now is to develop the smartest integration models.  A trial system in Alkimos Beach over the next four years will provide valuable technical and commercial insights. This will influence the way we design future residential communities, so we be watching closely to see how things develop in this exciting sector.