Queensland's budget a golden opportunity for green
The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) urges the Queensland Government to continue its commitment to green schools, hospitals and offices, after the 2012-13 state budget was tabled on Tuesday.
“The Queensland Government has been a long-time supporter of a more efficient, productive and sustainable built environment and has achieved Green Star ratings for a range of projects, including schools, hospitals and offices. We applaud this commitment, and call on the Newman Government to commit to Green Star ratings for all the new healthcare and education projects earmarked for funding in the budget, as well as for all new government office projects,” says the GBCA’s Executive Director of Advocacy, Robin Mellon.
The budget includes $1.3 billion to construct, expand and redevelop hospitals across Queensland, including $51.6 million to improve and upgrade health facilities in regional and remote areas.
“In mandating Green Star for all these healthcare projects, the Queensland Government will not only stimulate the economy and provide new ‘green collar’ jobs, but future-proof the state’s healthcare assets by ensuring that they can be operated in the most efficient way possible,” Mr Mellon explains.
“Solid international research confirms that green hospitals improve patient recovery times, reduce staff turnover rates, and decrease operating costs. Green Star ratings for these new hospital projects will ensure the people of Queensland capture these benefits,” Mr Mellon adds.
The Queensland Government has also earmarked new funding for school maintenance, infrastructure and planning.
“The Queensland Government has already supported the development of six Green Star-rated schools throughout the state, under a public-private partnership model, and we would like to see this continue as a way to achieve better outcomes for students, teachers and the community.
“Greening our schools and hospitals is one of the Green Building Council of Australia’s five advocacy priorities, and we welcome the opportunity to work with the Queensland Government to ensure that Queensland affirms its status as a ‘sustainable state’,” Mr Mellon adds.
“We also urge the Queensland Government to seek Green Star certification for all new government office developments, to ensure it continues to capture the benefits of more efficient, productive, healthy and fiscally-responsible buildings, and maintain Queensland’s reputation as a leader in the green office sector.
“The Queensland Government has indicated that the property and construction industry is one of its ‘four pillars’. Investment in the state’s sustainable built environment will deliver better economic, social and environmental outcomes including improved health, increased productivity and vastly reduced outgoings over the long-term, securing a better future for the people of Queensland,” Mr Mellon concludes.
Green Building Council of Australia
Phone: 0412 179 135
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