Close

Lowy Packer Building recognised in Sustainability Awards

Moving towards a more sustainable future at the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute

2 March 2021

The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute, in collaboration with St Vincent’s Centre for Applied Medical Research, are delighted to be announced as a finalist in the CitySwitch Awards, honoring excellence in business sustainability. The recognition highlights the success of a joint project which has significantly reduced the environmental footprint of the Lowy Packer Building in Darlinghurst, Sydney.

Colin McRobbie, Facilities Manager of the building said, “At the beginning of 2020 we conducted a review and discovered we could be operating more efficiently and subsequently reduce the impact the Institute has on the environment. Changes were implemented in May and astonishing results were recorded soon after. We are very proud of the work we have done.”

The project involved making changes to the mechanism for managing the building’s air conditioning, to reduce energy waste. The team also removed many of the older style light globes and replaced them with low power usage LED lights. In addition, timers were added to the natural gas steam boilers, which are used to process biological waste created from the Physical Containment Laboratories that operate in the building.

The work resulted in savings in operational costs also:

  • The building’s gas and electricity usage has reduced by approximately 12%, saving $92,720 per year and;
  • The building’s carbon footprint has reduced by 407.5 tons.

“That’s the equivalent of taking 80 cars off the road per year or saving the energy of running 42 homes,” said Mr McRobbie.

Chief Operating Officer from St Vincent’s Centre for Applied Medical Research, Philip Cunningham echoed Mr McRobbie’s enthusiasm, “Typically medical research buildings with laboratories are very inefficient, they use a lot of water, a lot of energy and a lot of gas. This exercise and the reduction we have seen has been a revolution.”

Professor Jason Kovacic, Executive Director of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute expressed his commitment to the ongoing fight against climate change. “The world has been so focussed on COVID this year, but we must not lose focus of the other real issue the world has to address- global warming.” 

He added, “Our children and grandchildren depend on the actions we take now, we must do everything we can to reduce our emissions, as individuals but as organisations as well. I am delighted we have been shortlisted as a finalist for the CitySwitch Awards. These results are impressive but are also just the beginning of the Institute’s commitment to reduce our energy use and emissions, and to do everything we can to help tackle climate change.”

“I encourage other organisations to consider what changes they can also make to their operations. Not only are these results crucial for the environment but ultimately they will allow us to spend less on operations and focus much-needed funds on research into heart disease.”

For all enquiries please contact:

Karen Tan
Media Manager
media@victorchang.edu.au
0419 003 989


Read more from our Newsroom