The Green Building Council of Australia has welcomed the 2020 Federal Budget, and hopes the landmark business investment package will result in construction companies purchasing energy efficient equipment.
“We applaud the Australian Government’s strong commitment to productivity through their multi-billion dollar investments in infrastructure and tax incentives, which will assist business confidence,” GBCA CEO Davina Rooney said.
“This will enable businesses to capitalise on the jobs-rich potential from investing in major energy efficiency upgrades and improvements to buildings and industry.
“It complements the previously announced $52.2 million in funding to increase the energy productivity of Australia’s buildings.
“Not only could such investments create more than 91,000 job years of employment, they could deliver substantial secondary dividends including lower energy costs, improved resilience outcomes, and reduced emissions.
“Business can use this extension to purchase more energy efficient equipment for commercial buildings such as large energy-intensive equipment like chillers, air handling units, pumps, and fans.”
Ms Rooney notes there was however a missed opportunity from the Government to push for even greater sustainability in the building sector.
“Whilst we welcome the timely investment in infrastructure there is no indication that these projects will be tied to standards for better environmental performance or encourage more de-carbonisation at the community level.
“We have argued that, done right, our response to the economic impacts of COVID-19 would not only minimise short to medium-term pain, but also build the foundation for a healthier, more liveable, and prosperous future.
“With investments in transport infrastructure now topping $110 billion, it is extremely important that they are delivered in a sustainable way through independent certification.
“We urge the government to use the strong foundations for economic recovery it is pursuing to also deliver the cost-effective added benefits that come from a more energy efficient built environment.”