The Green Globe Awards are the NSW Government’s premier awards for sustainability and environmental leadership across the state. The Awards celebrated their 20th anniversary in late 2019 and Green Connect was lucky enough to be a part of the incredible group of environmental leaders who were acknowledged for their work in working towards a more sustainable future for New South Wales.
The NSW Government has just released an e-book which tells us about the remarkable projects and achievements of the 2019 winners and finalists – check it out HERE.
We were nominated for the Green Globe Community Leadership Award which recognises outstanding community leadership from NFP organisations providing locally relevant initiatives that positively impact local communities. Our work with unemployed young people and former refugees in the Illawarra and our focus on finding meaningful work in a region which has some of the highest unemployment rates in Australia allowed us to take home this year’s Award!
Green Connect was also awarded the special honour of taking home the Premier’s Award for Environmental Excellence for 2019. The judges of this prestigious award credited Green Connect’s holistic approach to environmental, social and economic outcomes as a “replicable vision of transitioning to a thriving, inclusive community” – what incredible recognition of the hard work of our amazing staff!
We were honoured and privileged to be a part of such an incredible gathering of local leaders in sustainability and innovation across New South Wales. Check out just a few of the amazing organisations who won awards on the night…
Built Environment Award Winner
To meet the challenges of an ageing population, the University of Wollongong (UOW) conceived and built Desert Rose House: the first environmentally sustainable home designed specifically to help older and dementia-affected Australians age in place. Working with Kiama Dementia Alliance and Illawarra based suppliers and sponsors, Team UOW has produced a ‘House for Life’. The eco-friendly design combines technological innovations with wheelchair accessible dimensions and elderly-friendly fittings and lighting to allow occupants to live independently for as long as possible.
Business Leadership Award Winner
Sprout Stack is pioneering commercial vertical farming in Australia to revolutionise agricultural efficiency. Sprout Stack grows chemical-free vegetables in a hydroponic system that is 95% more water efficient than traditional farming and uses 80% less fertiliser. Vegetables are grown in recycled shipping containers with each unit yielding the equivalent of one hectare of standard agricultural production. Sprout Stack uses renewable energy wherever possible and has created a near closed-loop system reusing waste material as a medium for growing mushrooms.
Innovation Award Winner
Reconophalt is an asphalt alternative incorporating soft plastics, glass, toner cartridges and reclaimed pavement. In partnership with Close the Loop, Downer developed Reconophalt in response to an industry need to replace oil-derived bitumen with a sustainable product. It is more durable than asphalt, achieving a 30% reduction in CO 2 per 1km, and is perpetually recyclable. Downer partnered with Sutherland Shire Council to deliver the first ‘plastic road’ in July 2018. It has since laid 41 Reconophalt roads throughout Australia repurposing 3.2 million glass bottles, 14 million plastic bags, and toner from 327,000 used cartridges. Soft plastics are sourced from supermarket REDcycle bins, creating a market for used plastic bags and offering a circular economy solution to a large-scale waste challenge.