This award recognises the outstanding achievements of an organisation, project or person who has come up with an original and successful initiative in regional or rural areas.
All nominees from the 10 open-for-nomination categories located outside greater metropolitan Sydney are automatically considered for this award.
Last year the judges presented the Regional Sustainability Award to two winners. Both winners demonstrated a ‘bricks-and-mortar’ approach to sustainability and a ‘roots-and-branches’ attitude to collaboration for change.
Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University (CSU) is Australia’s largest regional university and the first Australian university with the structure and vision to achieve certified carbon neutral status.
CSU has also integrated sustainability principles across its curriculum, research and operating practices, and with its internal and external community.
Professor Andrew Vann, Vice Chancellor and President, says the university hopes ‘that we can inspire other organisations, both regional and national, to reduce their carbon footprint and do their bit for the planet’.
Jaliigirr Biodiversity Alliance
The Jaliigirr Biodiversity Alliance was established in 2012 and comprises 20 natural resource management stakeholders. It’s the only successful voluntary partnership operating at such a large regional scale.
A partner of the Great Eastern Ranges Initiative, the alliance carries out many large, multi-partner projects across a region spanning 337,000 hectares on the mid-North Coast of NSW.
The alliance is unique because it provides leadership and equity between stakeholders and promotes partnership. Its independence allows it to proactively apply for project funding and ensure that long-term conservation helps people reconnect with each other and the land.
Widespread interest in the Jaliigirr model has led to several other networks following the alliance’s lead.