Innovations for Infrastructure - ISCouncil

Innovations for Infrastructure

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Innovations for Infrastructure

Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia (ISCA) and the CRC for Low Carbon Living (CRCLCL) partnered together to deliver a forum for infrastructure owners, operators, consultants, suppliers and contractors to learn about CRCLCL research projects and other infrastructure sustainability industry innovations which could be directly and immediately applicable on Tuesday 23 February 2016.

Integrated Carbon Metrics

Dr Tommy Wiedmann of the CRC for Low Carbon Living spoke at the recent Innovations for Infrastructure event about the Integrated Carbon Metrics (ICM) project that can provide designers, manufacturers, planners and developers with information on how to reduce carbon emissions in the built environment.

The project develops tools that unravel the ‘carbon fabric’ of the built environment, addressing a range of relevant activities, from the production of building materials to the design and construction of whole precincts and infrastructure projects. It provides guidance on how to reduce direct as well as the indirect, embodied carbon emissions and associated costs.

At the core of the project is a comprehensive database of embodied carbon life cycle inventory data for building products and materials. The database will track carbon along production and supply chains, show the carbon outputs of industrial sectors at great detail, and map carbon flows spatially across Australia. Urban precincts will be used as case study scenarios to test and validate the data and calculation methods and evaluate options for low carbon precincts, with links to Precinct Information Modelling (PIM).

For further information about the ICM project, visit the CRCLCL website or contact Ms Judith Schinabeck at

Download Dr Wiedmann’s presentation here.

Distributed Renewable Energy Systems & Energy Efficiency

Professor Alistair Sproul of the CRC for Low Carbon Living spoke at the recent Innovations for Infrastructure event about his research which is providing evidence that buildings and infrastructure projects can lower their energy, and ultimately achieve zero energy or become net energy exporters, through rooftop PV, efficient appliances and efficient thermal envelope design.

Currently, five per cent of Australia’s electricity is produced by rooftop solar, but most of these systems are on residential rooftops, presenting an enormous opportunity to increase the use of solar PV through the commercial building and infrastructure sectors. Peak demand in commercial buildings occurs in the middle of the day, coinciding with solar PV output, providing an additional incentive for developers and building owners to consider implementing new technologies.

Additional energy savings can be made through energy efficient technologies such as LED lighting, which will soon become standard and represents the most energy efficient lighting option available on the market today.

For further information about the benefits of installing solar PV on commercial buildings and infrastructure, or maximising energy efficiency, visit the CRC for Low Carbon Living website.

Download Professor Sproul’s presentation here.

Disruptive Innovation and Energy

Professor Peter Newman of the CRC for Low Carbon Living spoke at the recent Innovations for Infrastructure event about trends and innovations that will shape our future cities and how these apply to the infrastructure sector.

Peter explained how growth in GDP is no longer associated with a reliance on fossil fuels, and how solar electricity use has increased as its cost has become more comparable to that of grid electricity and with the availability of solar battery storage. Josh’s House, a CRCLCL Living Laboratory, has demonstrated how a residential building can become carbon positive through the use of solar batteries, and this has been scaled up to precinct level at redevelopments including White Gum Valley in Perth.

With regards to transport, Peter showed how Australian car use has now peaked, driven by the speed of rail in relation to traffic (increasing investment in rail projects), and new economies in walkable urban areas. He provided evidence of increasing GDP and wealth in areas with higher investment in rail projects. Read the recent article on the Entrepreneur Rail Model for further information.

The CRC for Low Carbon Living’s Node of Excellence in Regenerative Cities and Regions, based at Curtin University in Perth, is developing a strong research agenda that will increase the evidence base for innovative building, construction and transport based on Curtin’s plans. For further information about disruptive innovation and energy and how it might apply to your infrastructure project contact Peter Newman at

Download Professor Newman’s presentation here.

Low Carbon Concrete

Professor Stephen Foster (Professor and Head of School in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of NSW) spoke on materials and geopolymer, including concrete, concrete standards as well as other low carbon alternatives to concrete.

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