A look inside Green Star Buildings

29 Oct 2020

In early 2018 we announced Green Star Future Focus, our ambitious plan to review and reshape our range of Green Star rating tools for the future. One year later we shared our plans for Green Star Buildings, an evolution of our Design & As Built tool and one we anticipated would guide the way to net zero buildings, cities and communities.

Today that vision comes to life with the release of Green Star Buildings, our tried and tested tool that will navigate the way forward for our industry so we can create buildings that are healthy, resilient and carbon positive. Richard Palmer, Integral Group, sat on the tool’s Industry Advisory Group, he says our nation has never seen a bigger sustainability overhaul of the built environment.

“Green Star buildings broadens our appreciation of social and environmental issues and raises our ambition for the levels of performance we need to address these key challenges. By doing that it represents a material step forward for sustainability in Australian cities,” said Richard.

We developed Green Star Buildings in close consultation with industry and government. The result is a  a fresh approach to Green Star which translates industry’s ambition into a much higher standard for action geared towards delivering highly efficient buildings, powered by renewables and designed for the future.

 “What excites me the most is the collaboration of hundreds of industry professionals who co-created the new tool to create high performance, resilient and carbon neutral buildings,” said Margot Black (Charter Hall) who sat on the Industry Advisory Group.

It is no secret that the building and construction industries are responsible for 39% of global energy-related carbon emissions, at the same time these industries want drastic action to change this reality. To make that happen we developed a raft of new credits with the guidance of expert advisory panels made up of industry know-how.

“I think everybody should know that the new Green Star Buildings tool is achievable. It’s a steep change but industry has been involved every step of the way and the new tool is a fantastic way to demonstrate to clients, to tenants, to investors and to the wider community, that you are delivering leading outcomes and that they are verified,” said Sarah Reid, City of Melbourne and Industry Advisory Group member.

To confirm the system can be applied across the built environment without leaving assets stranded it was crucial to check it against every building type, so we signed up 10 early access partners to review and test the tool with their own unique projects.

These projects ranged from sporting facilities and food storage, through to industrial buildings and mixed-use community spaces and GBCA CEO Davina Rooney says that as these projects emerge, their results speak for themselves.

“We’ve been excited to see Darebin City Council’s plans unveiled for the Northcote Aquatic and Recreation Centre which is targeting 6 Star Green Star certification to become Australia’s first fully electric swimming pool.”

“We also have some great examples of industrial facilities targeting Green Star Buildings certifications including a banana ripening facility and Charter Hall’s new temperature-controlled logistics hub which will have capacity to hold 730 million Mars Bars,” said Ms Rooney.

To hear more insider perspectives, we spoke to members of the Industry Advisory Group and to our Future Focus Partners. You can watch their insights and explore the tool further in the below videos.