Environmental Sustainability

The Environmental Sustainability unit is part of the Office of Estate and Commercial (OEC)

The Environmental Sustainability team at Western seeks to develop practical and collaborative actions to emerging issues such as climate change and social responsibility. Progress in relation to organisational commitments and expectations, mitigation of environmental risks, and ensuring environmental compliance are all part of the business of environmental sustainability.

Key strategies and initiatives

  • Living Labs for strategic teaching, research and engagement on our campuses
  • Environmental Sustainability Action Plan as a program of continuous improvement
  • Hawkesbury Farm as best practice peri-urban agriculture.

Policy and Commitment

Environmental Sustainability Policy

As a signatory to the Talloires Declaration (opens in a new window) and to the SDSN Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Initiative (opens in a new window) committing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (opens in a new window) (SDGs), Western has a clear obligation to plan and implement actions for a more sustainable future, and a clear role of leadership in the future sustainability of Western Sydney.

In stating this commitment,Western recognises that it has an ethical and legal responsibility to protect and enhance the environment and that this responsibility extends to Western’s staff, students and visitors. Toward the fulfilment of its stated commitment Western will:

Western expects its staff, students and visitors to comply with the principles of this policy and to support fulfilment of the University’s stated environmental sustainability objectives.

To this end staff, students and visitors are expected to familiarise themselves with and support the efficient implementation of the Environmental Sustainability Action Plan, and to take appropriate action to ensure that their activities are carried out in an environmentally-friendly manner.

Individuals and/or groups who participate in activities that contravene this policy or the governing legislation may find themselves subject to disciplinary and/or legal proceedings.

Individuals should be aware that they can be personally pursued for crimes against the environment and those penalties for crimes against the environment include significant fines and incarceration.

Western's Commitment

In becoming an educational signatory to the SDSN Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Initiative (opens in a new window), the University has committed to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Western will:

  • Recognise the enormous social, economic and environmental challenges facing the world
  • Recognise that future development must take place in a way that is socially, economically and environmentally sustainable
  • Recognise that the SDGs establish an agenda for the achievement of sustainable development by 2030
  • Stress the vitally important role that universities can play in achieving a sustainable future through teaching, research and operations.

Western will:

  • Support and promote the principles of the Sustainable Development Goals
  • Undertake research that provides solutions to sustainable development challenges
  • Provide the educational opportunity for our students to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development
  • Contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by ensuring our campuses and major programs are environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive, and
  • Report on our activities in support of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Strategic Alignment

The Environmental Sustainability Action Plan supports Western’s strategic plans, including the Securing Success 2018-2020 Strategic Plan (PDF, 3859.29 KB) (opens in a new window), and developing decadal and strategic plans. The Plan has an associated risk register, and compliance requirements can be found in Western’s Compliance Program (PDF, 792.27 KB) (opens in a new window).

Environmental Sustainability Action Plan Themes


Please contact our team for any further information at enviro@westernsydney.edu.au