Sustainable Energy

Building on the Sustainable Energy Strategy (PDF, 1912.14 KB) (opens in a new window) and the Carbon Neutrality Implementation Plan (PDF, 956.37 KB) (opens in a new window), a number of key initiatives are underway, including the electricity supply contract now being 100% renewable through accredited GreenPower (opens in a new window). Related initiatives include the roll-out of rooftop and carpark solar, solar hot water heating, the provision of EV charging stations across our campuses, and a range of energy efficiency initiatives such Green Star accredited CBD campuses.


Key Strategies Emerging

The establishment of 100% GreenPower (opens in a new window) for the large sites electricity supply contract was a significant step in 2021, addressing 39% of our carbon footprint estimated for our Carbon Neutrality Implementation Plan (PDF, 956.37 KB) (opens in a new window). Additional strategies for fuel switching away from petrol and gas are part of our pathway towards Carbon Neutrality.

On-site solar energy generation is continuing to rollout, including additional rooftop solar PV, rooftop solar hot water heating to minimise gas heating for central HVAC plant, and increasing solar carparks following our Kingswood pilot.

Management Initiatives Underway

On-site solar energy generation is a key initiative undergoing an increasing roll-out, reducing reliance on the grid and contributing to peak-load reduction. The Engineering Precinct at Kingswood now has 300 kW of rooftop and carpark solar associated with the our first micro-grid demonstration. An additional 300 kW of rooftop solar PV at Hawkesbury campus, with further roll-out planned for 2022. A design and procurement strategy is underway for solar carparks, beginning with locations where EV chargers are installed, along with an additional location at Parramatta South in 2022.

Fuel switching away from natural gas and petrol are underway, consistent with the Carbon Neutrality Implementation Plan (PDF, 956.37 KB) (opens in a new window). Apricus solar hot water heating continues to be rolled out as an alternative for gas heating for HVAC central energy plant and EV charging stations have been installed on Hawkesbury, Kingswood, Campbelltown and Parramatta South campuses.

A range of other key energy efficiency strategies are continuing, including a focus on Green Star rated vertical CBD campuses, continued coordination of BMS control systems with load-shedding in place for Parramatta South, and other initiatives including voltage optimisation at Hawkesbury and LED lighting on all campuses.

Related Living Lab Initiatives

Compliance Requirements and Risk

Mandatory annual reporting for National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting scheme (opens in a new window) (NGER). Risks include financial costs, supply continuity, reputational loss.

Trends and Interdependencies

Trends in energy use continue to increase, though this is influenced by the changing footprint of Western’s campuses, and changes in reporting inclusions.

Energy usage and sourcing renewable supplies contributes to both mitigation and adaptation actions for climate change.


2021100% renewables in electricity supply contract achieved
2023Carbon neutral accreditation from Climate Active (opens in a new window)
2025100% renewables in energy supply

Initiatives and Case Studies

Kingswood pilot micro-grid

Building upon the living lab collaboration with the School of Engineering, Design and Built Environment (opens in a new window), Building Z is now supplied by 200 kW of rooftop solar PV and 100 kW of carpark solar, along with 60 kW of batteries. Depending upon the energy utilisation at any point of time within Building Z, this locally generated energy feeds into the buildings of the Engineering precinct below the local Low Voltage Substation. Investigations into the behaviour of this micro-grid will be monitored in collaboration with Engineering and Technical Services.

Integrated design for solar carpark

In collaboration with Infrastructure Services (opens in a new window) and the Design team of Estate Planning and Strategy (opens in a new window), options for combining design elements of solar carparks and their landscape context is underway. The intention is to build upon the commercial solar carpark designs available, to reflect the character of each campus location. Following the earlier pilot solar carpark on Kingswood campus, this approach will be implemented during 2022 adjacent to the EV charging stations installed on Hawkesbury, Campbelltown and Parramatta South.

Engineering aerial view

SDGs 4, 7, 11,13