News from the front desk: We know, we know…our massive 127-page ebook Flick the Switch based on our event on net zero and all electric buildings and cities, is barely off the virtual printing presses and here we are announcing a new event, with ebook to come.
As many as 50 churches owned by the Uniting Church in metropolitan Sydney alone lie dormant and unused. Meanwhile there is a shortage of crisis and affordable accommodation.
It certainly seems that in life’s frantic struggle to compete and be competitive, one’s level of productivity is the definitive measure of one’s worth. But does this really need to be the case?
If an infrastructure megaproject is completed late and over budget, it is widely judged to be unsuccessful. For instance, the delay to Crossrail, a new train line across London and the south east of England, has been labelled “appalling news”. Crossrail is also projected to cost nearly £4 billion more than its original budget.
The World Green Building Council has called for net zero emission by 2050 in the Asia Pacific region along with a primer on getting there. The Asia Pacific Embodied Carbon Primer highlights what embodied carbon is, where it occurs throughout a building and infrastructure asset’s lifecycle, and how tackling it can catalyse APAC to rebuild […]
According to one of the authors of a new report the focus on water in NSW has traditionally been on centralised infrastructure that utilities want to build rather than water efficiency. But what saved us during the Millennium Drought was the citizens, not utilities. Nor was it the winding back the BASIX sustainability index that some quarters advocate.
First we had “slow food”, “slow parenting”, “slow fashion” and “slow gardening”. Now there’s a “slow cities” movement emerging, where people take slower modes of transport to reduce damage on public health and the environment.
More than $5 billion was poured into social housing after the GFC and most economists supported the tactic for its propensity to boost jobs and stimulate the economy. This time round funding for social housing was a glaring omission from the federal government’s Covid-recovery 2020 budget. The sector wasn’t ignored completely: an extra $1 billion […]
If you caught the ABC’s Four Corners episode on Monday night about the dire state of our economy, you’d have seen the eerie shots of near-empty streets that were once the busiest in the country. It’s no surprise that Melbourne’s CBD is still deserted but new data from the Property Council of Australia shows that […]
The following is a response to the NSW Productivity Commission Green Paper. The Green Paper argued zoning is restrictive and recommended it be loosened. Unfortunately, the commission misses the forest for the trees and fails to recognise the economic and strategic value of zoning. Economic recovery has thrown up complex tasks for government, with minds […]
The Kakadu plum is a renowned native Australian superfood whose health benefits were long known by the Aboriginal people of the region. In the past 10 years the tiny plum that tastes like a pear and apple combined, has been widely recognised as having more vitamin C than an orange and high in antioxidants. Now an Indigenous […]
While the New South Wales government’s revamped housing diversity policy is being touted as the answer to the state’s shortfalls in affordable housing, I believe the unintended consequences may have the opposite effect. The proposed changes (Housing Diversity SEPP) are far more likely to suffocate future supply. This is due to the removal of provisions […]
Some of us learned in chemistry class that hydrogen molecules can spin. But our teachers never told us how much spin we’d see, and how much energy it would take not to fall for it.
Millennials are the most stressed-out demographic group on the planet — they are also the group most sensitive to sustainability issues
The booming industrial sector is going great guns under Covid with people shopping more online and forcing up demand for more logistics space, but will the low carbon profile of many of these buildings as flagged by the Green Building councils of Australia and New Zealand potentially lead to unintended consequences. As the need for […]
UPDATED 8.55 PM 15 September 2010. The prime minister’s Scott Morrison’s “gas-led recovery” is charging full steam ahead, with the government throwing $52.9 million at a bunch of gas projects despite advice from energy experts, such as AEMO, to prioritise renewables to bring costs and emissions down. Unless AGL replaced its Liddell coal-fired power station, this […]
OPINION: For near on 30 years we have cruised down the road of economic growth feasting on the fruits of the “lucky country”. Sure, there were a few speed bumps along the way, a few wrong turns, and more than a few prime ministers, but it was mostly smooth sailing. Hit in the face by […]
Fremantle-based Montreal Commons, set to become one of the first carbon neutral apartment buildings in Australia, will save its tenants 50 per cent on body corporate fees under a renewable energy deal between OP Properties and Power Ledger. The five-storey, 39-apartment complex has set a benchmark for sustainable apartment design and will use developer-funded 75kW […]
There’s a draft NSW State Environmental Planning Policy (draft SEPP) for housing diversity out for discussion and it’s sparked the interest of the property developer lobby group Urban Taskforce. The Fifth Estate welcomes thoughts and contributions from other readers on this topic. “Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, […]
Have you ever wondered what the world would be like if electricity was free? Tesla is the well-known trademark of entrepreneur extraordinaire Elon Musk and his electric cars, but what about Tesla, the man? More than 100 years ago, Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) invented alternating current (AC), the polyphase alternating current system, which laid the foundation […]
In this episode of our podcast How to Build a Better World, our managing editor, Tina Perinotto, spoke with Amy Marks from Autodesk, the “queen of prefab”, on why building and construction is not an industry but an ecosystem.
Australia currently leans towards tearing down homes and buildings and starting fresh.. It’s cheaper but it doesn’t bode well for the environment.
Flow Systems has recruited around 10 people in the last six months and has plans to hire around another 10 in the coming months to join the team of 80 to 90 people. The recruitment drive is to help the company cope with an influx of work providing embedded energy systems, mainly in Queensland but […]
The answer is, not very, if it’s anything like the old one The COVID-19 pandemic is like an X-ray into all the broken parts of our economy. We know what they are and have a grand opportunity to fix them, but it will take some visionary leadership, some exceptional courage, and an ample measure of […]
Predicting the Jobs of the future is not as straightforward as the government’s uni fees meddling would suggest.
The Covid -19 pandemic has been nothing short of a monumental experiment. Within weeks, workplaces were forced into changes that would normally take years to implement. Reactions to the current state of work have been as varied as the experiences of the people going through it. Accounts range from horror stories to fairy tales and […]
Like cheese from Chernobyl, the prospect of prolonged debt and deficit has long been viewed as unpalatable.
A corridor of park land cutting through Western Sydney’s dense and busy suburbs is set to be developed into a thriving urban farm, bolstering the city’s food bowl that is at risk of disappearing.
The truth is, governments have the power to solve social housing shortages and homelessness. But once social housing becomes a bloody-minded numbers game of delays, deficits, and denials, it invariably degenerates into the dark art of political obfuscation.
In these stormy days, one is reminded of Charles Dudley Warner’s quip: “Everyone complains about the weather, but no one does anything about it”. This past week, much to the exasperation of Wamberal residents as they forfeit a good slice of their back yards, we remain confused about what to do and who should do […]