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Green makeover for lifestyle villages and holiday parks to cut emissions and energy costs

Green makeover for lifestyle villages and holiday parks to cut emissions and energy costs

11 February 2021 

A $75 million CEFC investment in affordable accommodation for lifestyle and holiday communities will spur market-leading sustainability measures across new and existing properties, helping lower carbon emissions and reduce electricity costs.

The CEFC investment, on behalf of the Australian Government, is designed to demonstrate how energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies can reduce costs for residents and owners and encourage greater uptake across the industry.

In a move that positions Ingenia Communities as an emerging sustainability leader in its sector, the Group has committed to reducing its carbon emissions by 30 per cent in the next five years as it targets a carbon neutral operation by 2035.

CEFC CEO Ian Learmonth said: “The property sector presents a great opportunity to accelerate Australia’s pathway to a lower emissions economy. Buildings account for more than half of our national electricity use1 and almost a quarter of emissions across the Australian economy.

“Australia’s leading property companies have been recognised for their progress against international sustainability benchmarks and we must look for ways to extend this across our built environment.

“If we can reduce energy use from the residential property sector and curb its emissions, we will make significant advances in our decarbonisation efforts, as well as produce more sustainable housing.”

Ingenia Communities will pilot the Green Building Council of Australia’s Green Star Homes Standard across 30 new homes, providing healthy, resilient and energy efficient living options for senior Australians. The new standard will assess Australian homes against a series of sustainability measures, including carbon footprint, how they are powered, energy and water efficiency, ventilation, comfort and climate change resilience.

Mr Learmonth added: “Cleaner, greener homes produce fewer emissions, and they also cost less to heat and cool. This investment extends the economic benefits of clean energy technologies to residents of affordable housing through lower energy bills.”

Ingenia Communities is investigating a range of sustainability measures including rooftop solar on existing homes and clubhouses, replacing low-efficiency lighting, hot water systems, and air conditioners with modern efficient models and exploring energy supply agreements that deliver clean energy to residents and common areas.

The Group’s focus on energy efficiency will extend across its portfolio of communities across New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia and Queensland. The Group’s development pipeline of more than 3000 potential homes, provides an opportunity to innovate in terms of sustainable community and home design.

Ingenia Communities Group CEO, Simon Owen said that the CEFC finance would assist the Group as it sought to implement a range of sustainability initiatives across the business, including programs to reduce energy emissions.

“As our portfolio and business matures we want to be at the forefront of developing more sustainable communities, providing our residents with affordable homes, lower energy costs and liveable communities that will enhance their quality of life. Our commitment to reduce our emissions is representative of that ambition,” Mr Owen said.

1 Property Council of Australia, Every Building Counts October 2019 

Media release, 2021