MS TIERNEY (Western Victoria—Minister for Training and Skills, Minister for Higher Education) (12:33): Our environment matters, and we want to secure its future for generations to come. That is why I was proud to announce an $11 million investment to help Monash University slash its emissions to net zero by 2030. It will form part of this government’s pledge to halve emissions in Victoria by the end of the decade, ahead of our net zero target by 2050. Our investment will help Monash transition to 100 per cent renewables across its four campuses. The university has already reduced its emissions by 40 per cent, and currently more than half of its energy is clean and green.
The next phase will take Monash through a complete physical and digital transformation: powering heating and cooling systems with electricity at the Clayton campus; implementing new artificial intelligence systems to increase energy efficiency at Clayton, Caulfield, Peninsula and Parkville; and creating a new virtual learning platform to foster collaboration between the university and renewable energy sectors on commercially viable net zero solutions. By protecting our environment we are also creating opportunities for Victorians. One hundred jobs in energy efficiency and construction will be created as part of this project, as well as great research and learning opportunities.
This project is setting an example for other universities, and it would not be possible without the unprecedented $350 million Victorian Higher Education State Investment Fund, which has helped local universities with game-changing projects throughout the pandemic. The Monash net zero project is great news for Victorians and great news for Victoria’s clean, green future.