Nine innovators working to improve water collection, lighting systems and energy savings received top awards at the National Energy Efficiency Awards held in Melbourne this week.
Although awards spanned 11 categories, this years’ judges decided not to present awards in the Best Commercial Building Energy Efficiency Project below 2000 square metres and the Best Small Medium Enterprise Energy Efficiency Project categories.
Award organiser the Energy Efficiency Council said nominations were not just judged against other nominees, but also by standards set in previous years.
Best Industrial Energy Efficiency Project 2017
This award went to Toll for its upgrade of the Australia Nike warehouse as part of their Smarter Green program. This project included the rewiring and reprogramming of each conveyor section to automatically identify product/cartons in the system adding new barcode scanners and conveyor blade stops. The conveyor system productivity and throughout efficiency increased by 25 per cent as well as delivering energy savings of 18 per cent. The project also replaced more than 1300 fittings with LED technology including high bays, aisle bays and in rack luminaries.
Best Innovation in Energy Efficiency 2017
This award went to MATRIXX for developing an intelligent, energy-efficient lighting and service solution for the industrial and commercial markets. The Australian designed and manufactured technology consistently generates benchmarked energy savings in excess of 80 per cent, reducing energy cost and life-cycle environmental impact.
Energy Efficiency Champion 2017
Alan Pears received this award for contributions to the energy and climate policy in Australia since the 1980s. He has implemented programs such as the Home Energy Advisory Service, and helped develop appliance energy labelling and mandatory building insulation regulations. All of this has named him the “go to” authority on energy efficiency. Mr Pears has also advised and assisted politicians, policy makers, researchers and non-government organisations.
Best Smart Energy Project 2017
RMIT University took the prize for the Best Smart Energy Project with its Sustainable Urban Precincts Program (SUPP), which is the largest of its type in the Southern Hemisphere. The SUPP represents a $128 million commitment by RMIT to reduce emissions associated with University operations (25 per cent by 2020) while also delivering changes in asset management practices and end user experience. The SUPP was delivered across RMIT’s three Melbourne campuses by two Energy Services Companies, Siemens and Honeywell, over a construction period of three years and included approximately 60 individual energy and water saving projects.
Best Energy Savings Program 2017
The Victorian government dominated this category for its Victorian Energy Upgrades program, which provides households and businesses with access to discounted energy-saving products and upgrades through accredited providers. It is Australia’s largest and longest-running energy efficiency obligation scheme. This year, energy retailers were asked to help reduce Victoria’s greenhouse gas emissions by 5.9 million tonnes through energy efficiency. The target increases each year and will be 6.5 million tonnes in 2020.
Best Commercial Building Energy Efficiency Project above 2000 SQM 2017
This year this award went to the Melbourne Cricket Club and Siemens who partnered to deliver an Energy Performance Contract (EPC) to improve the energy efficiency of the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Specific objectives of the EPC in 2014-15 were to cut water use at the ground by five per cent and reduce CO2 equivalent carbon emissions by 19 per cent annually, resulting in a utility cost saving of 20 per cent each year.
Leading Energy User 2017
Unity Water tackled this category with a program designed to increase year-on-year energy savings and to foster change across the business, making energy-efficient operation business-as-usual, reducing Unity Water’s overall electricity bill by 19 per cent by June 2018.
Best Residential Energy Efficiency Project 2017
This award went to a program called Switch Your Thinking: a local government energy efficiency program that works with the community to find innovative solutions to electricity problems. Under a partnership agreement, 14 Perth metro local governments – servicing one million residents – have joined the program to deliver energy efficiency initiatives under one collective brand. Rewards for Residents offers the community discounts on energy efficiency technology including solar panels, battery storage, eco-pool pumps and electricity audits.
Young Energy Efficiency Professional 2017
Twenty-seven-year-old Jason Harrison received this award on behalf of his accomplishments and advocacy for energy efficiency in the HVAC&R Industry. His goal is to move towards a more data-driven industry with energy efficiency at the forefront. In addition to working full-time, he is currently undertaking his thesis on “Design A ‘SMART’ Control strategy algorithm”, which is designed to minimise and manage peak electrical loads in occupied buildings to ultimately reduce energy tariffs and maximise energy efficiencies.
The awards were announced at the National Energy Efficiency Conference 2017 Gala Dinner in Melbourne.