Macquarie University campus to be powered by renewables

22 April 2020


Macquarie University has signed a seven-year contract with Red Energy to switch to a 100 per cent renewable electricity source for its North Ryde campus.

The move will see the University’s total greenhouse gas emissions cut by 92 per cent, with the campus’ electricity being sourced from Snowy Hydro from 1 July 2020. Under the contract, Macquarie will purchase approximately 54,422 MWh of clean energy per annum, saving the equivalent of 8,500 households’ worth of emissions each year.

The renewable electricity agreement is the latest in Macquarie’s long-standing commitment to embedding sustainability across campus.

The largest project in its Campus Development Plan, the Central Courtyard precinct, has been designed and will be constructed to target a 5.0 Star Green Star rating (considered to be Australian Excellence) under the Green Building Council of Australia. This scheme is an internationally recognised sustainability rating system. The Central Courtyard is funded by an award-winning $250 million Sustainability Bond.

Other sustainability initiatives to reduce waste have resulted in less than five per cent of the total waste generated on campus going to landfill, as well as the use of recycled and sustainable materials in building works and the revitalisation of existing buildings to improve energy efficiency.

“Macquarie University is dedicated to reducing our environmental footprint. These measures demonstrate our leadership and innovation in sustainability and protect one of our greatest assets – our green, parkland campus,” says Vice-Chancellor Professor S Bruce Dowton.

“With this new agreement with Red Energy, I am extremely pleased to report that we have far surpassed our original aim of reducing emissions by 40 per cent by 2030. This partnership will also create new collaboration opportunities in sustainable energy research which benefits the wider community.

“This is alongside our commitment to sustainable building design, energy efficiency, waste reduction, water conservation and biodiversity management. We take our responsibility seriously to be a more sustainable University and encourage others to do the same.”

Paul Broad, Managing Director of Snowy Hydro, which owns Red Energy says: “On-demand hydro from the mighty Snowy Scheme will underpin our contracted wind and solar generation, meaning Red Energy will be proudly supplying Macquarie University with reliable renewable energy.

We’re also very pleased to announce a collaboration with Macquarie University which will allow students to work with our trading team on some research and energy forecasting projects, giving the students valuable exposure to some of the most experienced energy experts in the industry.”

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Lucy Mowat

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