Winner of Australia’s leading sustainability award spotlights SDGs

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A social, not-for-profit enterprise enabling progress towards 15 of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has won gold at Australia’s foremost sustainability awards.

The 2019 Banksia Gold Award was won by Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia (ISCA) at the Banksia Sustainability Awards ceremony in Sydney last night.

ISCA is a member based NFP and social enterprise operating across Australia and New Zealand. Its Infrastructure Sustainability (IS) Scheme provides a common framework and language for sustainability requirements, which are now included as standard in all highly competitive project tenders.

ISCA took out the Banksia Not-For-Profit Award early in the evening, before claiming the ‘best of the best’ Gold Award.

“The Banksia judges admired ISCA for walking the talk when it comes to the sustainable development goals,” said Banksia Foundation CEO Graz van Egmond.

Twenty-three IS Scheme registered projects have recorded an impact reduction of 18% in energy, 31% in water and 29% in materials. The Scheme is now working on quantifying how infrastructure can affect better social outcomes.

“The Scheme isn’t just an overarching system, but dives down to an operational level, so it is delivering outstanding outcomes. It’s clear that ISCA are open to sharing their success with others because they are truly committed to creating long-term and ongoing change.”

The Banksia Awards are in their 31st year and are the longest-running sustainability awards in Australia. Each year, the Awards bring together and celebrate the most innovative and effective contributions to sustainability in Australia.

This year saw an increase in small business entries, especially ones that demonstrated alignment to the SDGs, which is a priority for Banksia.

“Each year we’re seeing stronger alignment to the SDGs and much stronger understanding of what they’re about, and how they can guide businesses to have a positive impact,” said Ms van Egmond.

“By embracing the SDGs, we’re hoping the Awards can help raise awareness of them, and demonstrate how entrants are contributing to global issues,” Ms van Egmond said.

ISCA is joined by ten other winners over ten categories of the Banksia Sustainability Awards. Other winners include Fujitsu Australia’s Digital Owl solution, and Monash University’s Master of Environment and Sustainability program. 

 
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