Institute to reach new heights in green buildings

Wednesday, 22 August, 2012

Some of the country’s leading green building experts are launching a new organisation dedicated to setting higher sustainability standards for the built environment - the Living Future Institute Australia.

The institute will be formally launched in Melbourne on Sunday 26 August at an event featuring Jason F McLennan, a world-renowned green building thought leader and CEO of the International Living Future Institute.

As part of the institute’s inaugural celebrations, McLennan will present at the Living Building Challenge Tour, a series of free public lectures and industry training in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, hosted by the institute and sponsored by engineering and management consultancy firm Aurecon.

“The institute encourages aligning the modern built environment with the ecosystem it inhabits, achieving a degree of sustainability rarely seen in Australia,” said Warren Overton, Board Chair of the institute.

“The industry workshops are an opportunity to explore the transformative potential of designing, creating and operating buildings in a manner that allows building inhabitants to become active stewards of their own environment,” said Suzette Jackson, Executive Director of the institute.

The institute will also promote the Living Building Challenge, which calls for the creation of building projects at all scales (from single-room renovations to whole communities) that operate as cleanly, beautifully and efficiently as nature's architecture.

To achieve certification, a project must meet 20 rigorous imperatives (including net-zero energy, waste and water) over a minimum of 12 months of continuous occupancy. Over 140 projects are now pursuing the challenge worldwide, including three in Australia.

As national sponsors of the Living Building Challenge Tour, Aurecon says the tour should help those involved in the cities and buildings sector to explore environmental best practice.

“At Aurecon, we believe sustainable design is good design, so we are always open to opportunities that will encourage industry and the general public to look at international trends and emerging technologies that might help us improve the environmental performance of our built environment,” said Jeffrey Robinson, Sustainable Design Leader at Aurecon.

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