War on Waste takes out the Gold Banksia award

By Lauren Davis
Friday, 03 November, 2017

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The 2017 Banksia Sustainability Awards were presented in Sydney on Wednesday night, celebrating some of the most innovative, effective and outstanding contributions to improving Australia’s sustainability. And in what is probably no surprise, the overall winner on the night was a program that has popularised a term now widely used across the sector.

The ABC’s three-part series War on Waste, produced by KEO Films Australia, won the Gold Banksia Sustainability Award — making it the ‘best of the best’ of all Banksia Sustainability award winners this year — for its provocative, controversial look at how much waste we produce as a nation. The program reached a massive 2.6 million people, which is comparable to finals night at the football.

“[War on Waste] created a groundswell of interest that soon turned to a tidal wave of action,” the judges said of the series, which also took home the Banksia Communication for Change Award. “It designed an innovative, winning formula that combined a credible yet relatable host that presented the facts in a way that made the issues feel real, relatable and local to the viewers.”

War on Waste was joined by 10 other winners over 12 categories, narrowed down from 39 finalists. Highlights included the Banksia Sustainable & Resilient Communities Award, which went to the Victorian town of Yackandandah (in collaboration with AusNet Services) for setting the task of generating 100% of its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2022. The Banksia Large Business Sustainability Leadership Award was meanwhile won by AccorHotels Australia for its commitment to positive and sustainable hospitality, including reducing emissions and food waste.

The Minister’s Award for the Environment, selected by the Hon Josh Frydenberg, was presented to Sundrop Farms, also the winner of the Banksia SMART Award. Sundrop has developed an innovative form of agriculture growing fresh fruits and vegetables using renewable inputs, making Australia’s harsh, dry land viable for agricultural production.

Other winners include:

  • Banksia Food for Sustainable Thought Award: Cullen Wines
  • Banksia Sustainable Cities Award: Fitzroy Gardens Redevelopment (City of Melbourne)
  • Banksia Small to Medium Sustainability Leadership Award: Austral Fisheries
  • Banksia Natural Capital Award: Murray-Darling Basin Balanced Water Fund (The Nature Conservancy Australia)
  • Banksia Indigenous Leadership for Sustainability Award: Arnhem Chair (Winya Indigenous Furniture Pty Ltd)
  • Banksia Leadership in the Circular Economy Award: Yarra Valley Water — Converting Waste to Energy

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Gino Santa Maria

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