WESTERN Australian projects have fared poorly in total funding from the latest round of the federal government’s Green Building Fund, announced last month.
The seventh round of funding dished out $35.2 million across Australia, with three WA recipients – the Karratha International Hotel and two inner-city Perth properties – sharing $1.45 million between them.
In the same round 38 New South Wales applicants received $14.5 million, five ACT companies received $2.25m, two in the NT shared $940,000, $7.1m was shared between 18 applicants in Queensland, five South Australian applicants received $1.8 million, one Tasmanian recipient received $500,000, and 18 Victorian recipients shared $6.5 million.
The fund was established in 2008 with a pool of $90 million to grant to companies to retrofit or retro-commission existing commercial office buildings with more energy efficient systems; the aim is to reduce the energy consumed in the operation of the buildings.
The latest round extended the total funding beyond the initial $90 million pool to over $120 million.
Under the scheme, applicants are assessed on an individual merit-based system, which looks at potential greenhouse gas emissions reduction (worth 60 per cent of the merit score), the demonstration potential to measure and share project learning and outcomes (20 per cent of merit judgement), and evidence the project has been well designed to achieve and maintain the highest standards (20 per cent of merit assessment).
Primewest Management received $500,000 in round six, announced in July last year, to install new centrifugal chillers, apply gas-powered heating elements to air-handling units, and upgrade the buildings sub-metering system to incorporate an automated metering system and direct digital controls in its IBM Centre on Hay Street in Perth.
Primewest engaged HFM Asset Management to aid in the application for a GBF grant, and one of Primewest’s asset managers told WA Business News it appeared that buildings with a low National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS) rating, 0 or one, and large scope to increase that to four or five were considered favourably.
“We were aware of the fact that WA hadn’t won many grants at all, and we thought that perhaps that aided in the success of our application,” a Primewest spokesman said.
He said he had been advised that the desired outcome of the scheme would be a framework for the federal government in how to retrofit existing office buildings.
The government has not yet outlined whether there will be another round of funding under the GBF scheme.