Facilities and operations
Achieving a vibrant and sustainable campus
In facilities and operations, Macquarie strives to embed sustainability in all that we do, from creating new buildings using sustainable design principles, to reducing our ecological footprint by ensuring efficient resource use.
One Planet Campus
As the Campus develops to accommodate more students, as well as research and development partnerships, it is important that we are able to grow while also reducing our impact on the planet. Property project staff are working to incorporate One Planet principles into all projects, both new builds and refurbishments, by embedding sustainable design standards into the project process.
Learn more about One Planet at Macquarie
Building E7A – one of the University’s oldest buildings - is undergoing a major upgrade. The refurbishment showcases sustainable adaptation and reuse of an existing building.
Australian Hearing Hub - 5 Star Green Star
A unique, purpose-designed facility to assist collaborative research into hearing and hearing related speech and language disorders. A 5 Star Green Star “Design Rating” was awarded by the Green Building Council of Australia in 2013, followed up by a 5 Star Green Star “As-Built Rating” in 2014.
The building design was inspired by the native parklands of the campus with an emphasis on environmental sustainability, light and connection.
An arboretum is a collection of plants, and at Macquarie University our whole campus is included in our Arboretum. Discover all the different aspects of our arboretum, from teaching and demonstration gardens, to self-guided walks and tours.
Bushcare volunteers alongside professional regenerators have been working to restore native vegetation on campus since 2008.
Endangered Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest on Campus requires effort to be focused on regeneration and reducing the impact of weeds.
This project involves Macquarie reclaiming a mown landscape, and returning it to a bushland recovery site using a variety of ecological restoration techniques.
Mars Creek wetland
A rehabilitation project along the length of Mars Creek as it flows through campus uses innovative environmental management.
Permaculture demonstration garden
Permaculture is an amalgamation of the words “Permanent Agriculture”. It combines landscape architecture with sustainable agriculture and ecological principles. Permaculture designs incorporate natural elements such as sun, landscape, wind, rainfall, and climate, with the aim of maximising benefits to people and planet.
Resources are reused and recycled around the University in a number of ways:
The Furniture Store
was setup as a method of incorporating sustainable initiatives into everyday university practices. Established in 2010, the re-circulation of used furniture items has:
- diverted over 400 tons of reusable items from landfill
- reused more than 4,000 items
- realised more than $1.2 million in savings for the University
One Bin System — Clean and Green Campus
Our one bin waste management system has resulted in less than 25% of waste ending up as landfill. Waste is taken to the Doyle Brothers' Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) which successfully recovers recyclable/reusable materials including plastic, paper and cardboard, organics and metals.
We have partnered with City of Ryde to host a recycling station for students and staff. The drop off station is located in the MUSE Student Connect Foyer (18 Wally's Walk) where the following items can be recycled:
- Household batteries
- Fluorescent light globes - all sized compact gloves and tubes (household lights only)
- Printer cartridges (excluding large cartridges from multi-function devices)
- Mobile phones - including handsets, batteries and accessories
Macquarie University uses Sims E-Recycling to dispose of our e-waste. Hazardous substances such as lead and cadmium are safely recovered and disposed of in the most eco-friendly way possible. Any components sent overseas for processing are sent to large firms and do not end up with small-scale street processors.
To request an e-waste collection from your area, please contact Property via the online Services Request form.
Paper & Cardboard recycling
100% of waste paper and cardboard is recycled by Australian Paper Recovery.
Request an under-desk paper recycling bin, or a blue otto bin, via the Property online Services Request form.
The small amounts of mercury along with glass, phosphor and aluminium contained in fluorescent globes used in lighting all over Campus is collected and recycled by Chem Collect.
Our challenge is to reduce the University's energy use whilst the built infrastructure increases. We have set an ambitious target to achieve a 50% reduction in carbon emissions over 2012 levels by 2030, whilst growth in our operations is projected to increase by 40%.
Energy efficiency means using less energy to achieve the same outcomes. Here on Campus we have implemented considerable energy demand reduction across Campus using a variety of initiatives including:
Solar installation E6B
A 21.12 kW solar PV panel array is installed on the north facing roof at E6B. The system abates 2,300 kg CO2e p.a. and generates an average of 53kWh per day. The panels themselves consist of 96 x 220W photovoltaic modules.
Solar lighting has been installed in various locations across Campus, including street lighting along Link Road and on the pathway through the Mars Creek wetland.
Solar hot water systems
Where viable, as existing boilers fail solar hot water systems are installed. Current installations include Bike Hubs, X6B Banksia Childcare Centre and W10A Sports & Aquatic Centre.
Off-peak thermal storage tanks
A number of thermal storage tanks are installed across campus (E7A, F7B, E3A, C3C/AHH). Thermal storage tanks chill water overnight and store it for distribution the following day. This means we need less equipment, can chill water when it’s cold outside, take advantage of off-peak energy usage and as a result operate at far greater efficiency.
1.5MW co-generation plant
Our co-generation plant in building C7A is actually a “trigeneration” plant. The waste heat from the University’s co-generation plant is used to generate electricity, to heat water and also to chill water. The University’s co-generation plant was commissioned in 2001, which makes it one of the first applications of co-generated power outside of heavy industry.
Geothermal heat displacement field - E11A
A geothermal heat displacement field is where boreholes are drilled deep into the earth and outside air is pumped down these holes to be cooled (or heated) by the naturally consistent temperate temperatures underground.
There are 64 holes laid out beneath the grass (and lots of earth and stabilisation material) between E11A and the lake.
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Biennial surveys allow us to measure progress and ensure we are tracking towards our targets.