Ingenuity in sustainable building practices honoured via Green Star awards

by Helena Morgan
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The Green Building Council of Australia has applauded the efforts of engineers, planners, architects and numerous industry leaders who have demonstrated an aptitude for creating a more sustainable and mindful built environment.

For four years, the Green Star Champion awards have emphasised the importance of Green Star certifications in maintaining a strong, efficient and durable built environment.

Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) chief impact officer Jorge Chapa says the awards celebrate astuteness and creativity when combating the challenging impacts of climate change in the built world.

“Each and every recipient has demonstrated tireless dedication to the creation of healthy and efficient places that respond to climate change,” says Chapa. 

This year’s winners shared an appreciation for circularity and adaptive re-use, two areas within sustainable building practices that require greater attention. Champions include  E-Lab Consulting director of sustainability Alex Kobler, Holcim head of sustainability Cyril Giraud, The Footprint Company associate Julia Halioua, BlueScope sustainability manager Philippa Stone and many more industry leaders. 

Unseen work given a forum 

Architectus’ national leader for resilience and renewal Alex Lawlor says his champion status is immensely encouraging as design management involves strenuous behind-the-scenes activity.

“[This award] is a validation of the hard work that goes on behind the scenes that makes sure that client’s environmental and social sustainability aspirations are pushed across the project lifecycle,” says Lawlor. 

Sustainability interwoven into building practices 

Clean Energy Finance Corporation’s head of property Michael Di Russo shares Lawlor’s sense of fulfilment in being recognised as an industry leader in the sustainability transformation of the built world. 

Di Russo also says sustainability is now inseparable from nearly every industry and influences the daily life of all Australians – and design is an effective vessel in which to instigate lasting change. 

“The buildings we live and work in play a huge role in our lives and have the capacity to significantly reduce Australia’s carbon emissions,” says di Russo. 

“Seeing and being a part of the rapid change in the property sector in the past eight years  has been exciting and I’m really looking forward to seeing what the next decade brings.”

Many commend how GBCA and Green Star awards have normalised an embrace of sustainability in the built environment. “The GBCA and Green Star have been pivotal in making the Australian built environment sector much more sustainable,” says Hassell senior researcher Doctor Brett Pollard. 

Green Building Council Australia assesses biodiversity in built environments.

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