2020 top 10 stories

2.Letter to the editor from former Australian PM Kevin Rudd The Fifth Estate was honoured (and a bit bemused) to receive a letter from former PM Kevin Rudd after publishing a piece that compared Rudd’s GFC economic stimulus response to PM Scott Morrison’s Covid response. While the piece defended the infamous pink batts scheme, Rudd […]

Our podcast, How to Build a Better World: Peter Newman

Listen to The Fifth Estate’s first podcast series, with new episodes released regularly. Our managing editor Tina Perinotto has taken to the mic to chat to the people on the frontline with the power to address the big ecological, social and financial problems of our time. We’ve called it “How to Build a Better World” […]

Mott MacDonald snares ILFI’s Amanda Sturgeon to drive regenerative design leadership

With outfits like Google and Salesforce jumping onto the Living Building Challenge this is a green building growth phenomenon. In a signal it wants to be a regional leader in this fast-growing space, global engineering and development consultancy, Mott MacDonald, has hired someone from the very top of her field to be its first-ever head […]

What’s coming down the line in retail post Covid

How is the retail sector going after this chaotic Covid time and restrictions start to lift? Will we become a country of low-value consumers that disappoint luxury retailers but hasten our sustainability journey or will we pick up speed again?

On why this might be a great time for pause and thought around our next move

News from the front desk Issue 480: Politicians around the country are gearing up to pull the lever on big infrastructure projects to boost the economy. NSW Transport Minister Andrew Constance labelled a second wave of mega transport projects a “silver bullet” to kickstart the NSW economy. Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said the state would need […]

The Fifth Estate Green Bond and other special advertising and promotional offers

How we can help you? Here’s a list of options we’ve put together to help your business or organisation promote itself in the best possible way: TFE Green Bond Any booking you make and pay for before 30 June 2020 will earn you credit to the equivalent value in display advertising any time in the […]

The big winners in the NABERS portfolios index 2020

It’s only the second iteration of the NABERS Sustainable Portfolios Index but it’s seen a 48 per cent jump in participation since last year. There’s now 40 portfolios disclosing their energy and water performance, with overall energy use tracking downwards across the portfolios indexed last year. This year, CBUS Property topped the charts with the […]

The race to crack the safety challenges of UV-C technology with Covid  

We need to get back to work. Soon. But how will we feel safe from infections? Two companies are banking on ultraviolet light to kill the coronavirus but there are major safety threats. Here’s how they’re handling the challenges and creating solutions. Before we can get back into offices, schools, or board planes, buses or […]

No thanks to the Henry Ford of buildings; give us Mr Toyoda instead

Last week an article was published in The Fifth Estate titled “We are looking for the Henry Ford of Buildings”. In my view that’s the last thing we need, especially now as we emerge from the COVID 19 crisis and start to rebuild our devastated economy in a just and equitable way. In modernising the […]

Rebound: the amazing potential of the “third sector” to do this brilliantly

Governments need to think differently to spread the benefits of their post COVID 19 stimulus. Building a new “third” construction sector is an excellent place to start. The NSW Government has prioritised 24 housing, school and industrial projects to undergo the fast-track assessment process, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The hope is that […]

Urban Taskforce responds … to a host of issues on planning and fast tracking

Readers may be surprised to hear that there was much in the Tim Sneesby editorial published in The Fifth Estate on 21 April 2020 which the Urban Taskforce agrees. But there were a few “cheap-shots” at the private sector property and construction sector generally, and the Urban Taskforce in particular, that merit a response. Firstly, […]

On so many ways to not waste a good crisis

News from the front desk No 478: There’s no shortage of optimistic commentary coming out urging us not to waste this crisis. Suddenly, we have hours to kill in self isolation to reconsider existing economic, environmental and social policy, and ponder over better options. With any luck, we’ll seize the opportunity to embark on economic […]

NZGBC announces 2020 Future Thinker of the Year

Tessa Meyer, a corporate responsibility advisor for Panuku Development Auckland, was awarded 2020 Future Thinker of the Year by the New Zealand Green Building Council.

Guess what? Building a better world will also speed economic recovery

As we emerge from this global crisis we have an unprecedented opportunity to create a better world, a healthier world, a happier and fairer world, and a low carbon world. It turns out this also represents better value for money than not doing so.

Builders revealing network platform from Autodesk could bring change

When NSW Building Commissioner David Chandler first took on his challenging assignment to reform the construction sector, he said that at least part of the answer lay in technology and the potential to digitalise construction. His words were spoken almost a year ago but he might have been thinking of BuildingConnected, a kind of LinkedIn […]

Planning in an era of COVID-19 and high density living

In planning circles, debate has ignited around the relative resilience of different dwelling types to the COVID-19 pandemic and the prospect of health threats like it in the future. It’s highlighted the shortfalls high density living – when it’s done badly, at least – so does this mean people will flock to the suburbs?

Introducing The Fifth Estate Live

A series of weekly live stream broadcasts at 1 pm on Wednesdays Featured Wednesday 15 April, 1 pm Our built environment at a time of COVID-19 Guests Bryon Price, group Strategic development director of A.G. Coombs and chair of the Facility Management Association of Australia Claire Bird, founder of Building Fitness Scientist, Litmas Pty Ltd […]

COVID-19’s extraordinary opportunities are on offer

In the short term, the COVID-19 pandemic has stalled the climate action momentum that was growing in Australia following the disastrous 2019/20 bushfire season. In the medium to long term, the pandemic and our response to it may yet prove a watershed for climate action. The pandemic has, of course, delivered an enormous hit to […]

Jobs new: Fremantle, the Greens, Beyond Zero Emission; Energy Efficiency Council; AJ+C  

Beyond Zero Emission waved goodbye to its chief executive officer, Vanessa Petrie, last month. Ms Petrie, a sustainability practitioner with a background in environmental engineering, led the think tank for three years. She has more than 20 years’ experience working across local and state government on infrastructure projects, legislative policy development, major policy reform and […]

Romeciti set to launch its second “green building” in Macquarie Park

Sydney based developer Romeciti has agreed to pay more than $40 million to buy a second site for its “Green and Smart” residential project offering at Macquarie Park, 28 kilometres north west of Sydney. The deal follows  lengthy negotiations with the owners of 36 strata title units to amalgamate the site.