2015 Finalists


University of Melbourne – Melbourne School of Design

The Melbourne School of Design at the University of Melbourne’s Parkville campus, is a state-of-the-art academic facility, setting a new standard for design education. Embedded in the design is a commitment to sustainability and green architecture. The building has been awarded a 6 Star Green Star Design – Education Design v1 rating by the Green Building Council of Australia. An exemplar in the sustainable building sector, it is the first education facility to be awarded the maximum 10 Green Star innovation credits. more


Garage Sale Trail Foundation – Garage Sale Trail

Garage Sale Trail is a national grass roots waste education program and champion of the REUSE movement that organises communities around Victoria to hold garage sales on the same day to promote reuse, minimise waste to landfill, enable new neighbourly connections and provide a platform for fundraising. The initiative is supported by 170 councils and seven state government organisations Australia-wide. In 2014, 8,242 garage sales were registered, representing some 2.9-million items listed for reuse at an approximate value of $8.4 million. more

Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority – Fruit Industry Employment Program

SPC Ardmona’s April 2013 announcement of major fruit intake cuts was a massive blow to growers across the Goulburn and Murray Valleys who supplied to the company, with huge flow-on effects to the regional economy and broader community. With the support of Fruit Growers Victoria, the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority conceived the Fruit Industry Employment Program (FEIP). Forty people worked under the FIEP, contributing almost 40,000 hours of environmental works while receiving significant income, skills training and informal social network support. more


Lalor Primary School – Kids Building Computers Using Electronic Waste

A trial was conducted at Lalor Primary School teaching children to use electronic waste to make a fully functioning computer for less than $100. Children were taught about the origins of electronic waste, operating systems and introduced to robotics. While the program was initially designed to provide a sustainable solution for e-waste and help socio-economically disadvantaged children obtain access to low-cost computers, it has expanded to provide computer education, give computer savvy kids a place to meet and assist children with special needs. more

Melbourne Law School, The University of Melbourne – Sustainability Business Clinic

In 2014, Melbourne Law School teamed with leading global law firm, Ashurst Australia, to establish the Sustainability Business Clinic. The first of its kind in Australia, the clinic connects law students to small, start-up community and social enterprises working in the public interest to advance sustainability. Under supervision, students give free commercial legal advice to new and innovating community and environmentally-minded enterprises including businesses supporting the fair food movement, community energy projects, urban greening projects and e-waste diversion businesses. more


The Australian Youth Climate Coalition – Seed Indigenous Youth Climate Network

Seed, a newly launched arm of Australian Youth Climate Coalition, is Australia’s first Indigenous youth climate network, building a youth-led movement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people for climate justice. Since launching in 2014, Seed has grown to be a powerful network, training and supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth so they may lead community change on the issue of climate change and sustainability, while supporting young people to create a more inclusive, and diverse sustainability movement. more

Voices of the Valley – Revealing the Community Cost of the Hazelwood Mine Fire

Voices of the Valley is a community advocacy group, formed in the wake of the Hazelwood Mine Fire of February-March 2014 to determine the health effects and risks experienced by the residents of Morwell. Through public forums, which consider employment, social and economic issues, Voices of the Valley discovered the mine fire affected the whole Latrobe Valley in a range of ways. It highlighted the economic fragility of the community, demonstrated the environmental risks and helped result in the re-opening of the Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry. more


Barwon Health – Barwon Health Food Services Central Production Unit Recycling Initiatives

Barwon Health is Victoria’s largest regional health service. With more than 6,000 staff working across 21 sites, Barwon Health’s Food Services Central Production Unit (CPU) produces in excess of 3,000 meals per day for patients, residents and clients, and employs 150 staff. The CPU at the McKellar Centre, where all meals are produced and dispatched is committed to waste reduction and recycling and is the first Victorian health service to successfully implement the Closed Loop Organics System CLO300, an onsite composting machine for food waste. more

Statewide River and Stream Management – Environmental Management Training for the Construction Industry

Statewide River and Stream Management developed targeted environmental training to influence behavioural change and ensure environmental management best practice is embedded in the culture and operational activities within the construction industry. Delivered by industry experts, topics include new and emerging risks and technologies, new environmental protection measures, onsite stormwater management and updates in legislative requirements. In 2014, 211 participants engaged in training, resulting in more people managing their sites in compliance with best practice principles for an environmentally sustainable outcome. more


Darebin City Council – Darebin Solar Saver

Darebin City Council has made solar power more accessible to low income residents through the Solar Saver program – the first of its kind in Australia enabling households to install solar PV systems and pay them off through Council rates, interest free over 10 years. As a result, 1,476 tonnes of greenhouse gas will be prevented annually by participating households, savings that will continue for 20 years, and 292 heat-stress vulnerable households will be provided low-cost energy sources and efficiency advice, decreasing the cost of cooling in summer. more

The Inner Melbourne Action Plan; City of Melbourne, City of Yarra, City of Stonnington, City of Port Phillip – The Growing Green Guide for Melbourne

Innovative methods are required to help Melbournians adapt to climate change and maintain the mantle as the world’s most liveable city. The University of Melbourne, Inner Melbourne Action Plan and the State Government partnered to develop The Growing Green Guide for Melbourne, a free, comprehensive and practical guide to the construction of green walls, roofs and facades. Released in February 2014, the Guide has achieved significant success in Australia – with more than 70,000 website downloads – and has been translated to Spanish and Chinese. more


Austin Health – Healthy Environment, Healthy People

Austin Health drives sustainability through leadership, commitment, passion and education. It was the first Melbourne healthcare facility to recruit a dedicated sustainability officer in 2008 and the first to host the Victorian Green Health Round Table Group in 2009.  It is also the only Australian health organisation recruiting a gardens officer to develop green spaces for the therapeutic benefit of patients and staff. Austin Health’s Environmental Sustainability Unit is passionate and motivated to develop new ideas and initiatives, supported by senior management and staff across the facility. more

Melbourne Health – Melbourne Health Thinks Green

Melbourne Health, Victoria’s second largest public health service, is developing a culture with its precinct partners to care for the environment, enhanced by the supportive actions and initiatives of both the organisation and its people. In 2011 Melbourne Health introduced the Think Green Strategy 2011-2015, promoting their vision to be recognised as an industry leader in environmental sustainability and outlining priorities for four years. Sustainability initiatives include improved waste segregation, decreased waste to landfill and increased staff engagement in environmental sustainability and health. more


Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co. – The Mineral Water Eco-Keg

The Daylesford & Hepburn Mineral Springs Co revolutionary 30 litre eco-keg uses the existing reticulation systems seen in many restaurants and bars for beer on tap. The benefit of serving water through a reticulation system such as a keg is that, whilst cutting packaging to a minimum, it also eases the costs and environmental impacts of travel and shipping. The custom-made kegs are crafted from recycled plastic and customers are encouraged to return the eco-kegs for refilling, closing the loop. more

ECO2Sys Australia and Geelong Manufacturing Council – GreenLight Collaborative Industry Network Program

GreenLight is an innovative group program designed to support resource efficiency in competitive, innovative and sustainable small to medium sized enterprises.  The program helps businesses achieve resource efficiency gains and commercial benefit arising from waste avoidance, reduction and re-use, and improved resource management, all leading to better environmental outcomes, community participation and boosting economic development. With GreenLight, businesses undertake a baseline of their performance, create a vision, develop a sustainability policy and implement an action plan that delivers significant bottom line benefits. more


Dennison Foods Manufacturing – Dennison Foods Manufacturing

Dennison Foods Manufacturing, a family-owned manufacturer embraces continuous learning and improvement and has demonstrated it is serious about resource efficiency. The company has successfully implemented three major projects:  a 100kW solar photovoltaic system, reducing carbon emissions by 15 per cent and saving 135 tonnes/annum of CO2; LED lighting throughout the factory reducing energy usage and enhancing the workplace environment; and a bulka bag system to provide efficiencies in raw materials, saving five tonnes of flour in the first eight months of operation. more

Roses Gap Recreation Centre – Roses Gap Power Project

Roses Gap Recreation Centre is a 120 acre school camp facility located within the Grampians National Park where, each year, thousands of children are educated about environmental sustainability.  Following major loss of infrastructure in the 2014 Grampians bushfires, operators designed and implemented a new and more sustainable power system including 40kW’s of solar and large battery storage banks. Combining this new system with other sustainability initiatives has seen a dramatic reduction in emissions, noise pollution and costs. more