Western is committed to sustainable growth by reducing its environmental footprint across all of the campuses (Western Sydney University Strategic Plan (opens in a new window)) and implementing initiatives for renewable energies and sustainable practices in our supply chain.
Western has committed to Carbon Neutrality by 2030 (Western Sydney University Strategic Plan) (opens in a new window). As part of that commitment Western’s baseline energy and consumption has been measured and improvements mapped.
A broad range of energy efficiency initiatives have already been implemented on campus, including, building management systems and high efficiency solar hot water heating.
Expanding on these, a sustainable energy strategy is being implemented, and current implementation activities include:
- Purchase of GreenPower (opens in a new window) electricity (100% in 2021)
- Rooftop solar and batteries on Building Z, Kingswood campus as part of a solar Living Lab with Engineering. An additional 100kW was installed in 2021
- Kingswood pilot carpark solar structure to address urban heat, commenced operating in October 2020. Two additional structures are being planned for 2022
- A 100kW was installed on Building K16 at Hawkesbury in 2021
Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions
Western is committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 (Sustaining Success 2021-2026 Strategic Plan, Page 29) (opens in a new window).
A Carbon Neutrality Implementation Plan is underway and provides a pathway towards Climate Active Accreditation, which includes emissions based on Scopes 1, 2 and 3.
Waste and Recycling
The pathway to carbon neutrality includes reducing emissions from waste generated by Western’s operations.
Over the last 10 years Western has not only increased its recycling (diversion) rates (up by 78%) but has reduced its overall waste generation (down by 70%). This has been achieved by implementing the following initiatives:
- Recycling of materials which has increased substantially through waste compaction on Bankstown, Hawkesbury, Campbelltown, Nirimba, Parramatta and Penrith campuses
- Collecting paper and cardboard waste to be sorted into material grades for recycling processes (confidential papers are securely transported to a waste facility and shredded prior to recycling)
- Other waste services including trade waste (grease traps), and recycling of metals, cooking oil, fluorescent lights, toner cartridges and green waste.
- Hawkesbury Water Recycling Scheme on Hawkesbury Campus, using recycled waste water supplied by Sydney Water and incorporating stormwater harvesting and reuse for farm and grounds operations
- Rainwater harvesting from roof spaces at Parramatta and Kingswood campus for irrigation and toilet flushing
- Rainwater harvesting and re-use at Campbelltown student residences for landscaping
- Water efficient fixtures in architectural guidelines for all building refurbishments
- All newly constructed buildings meet Green Star Building water efficiency criteria