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Adelaide ‘Living Laboratory’ to test new pathways to low carbon living

Posted 2 December 2014 - 9:10am

The first Adelaide Living Laboratory (ALL) program was launched today (1 December 2014) when the South Australian Government announced a new partnership with the Cooperative Research Centre for Low Carbon Living (CRCLCL) and the University of South Australia. The Laboratory will be an innovative research hub designed to investigate ways to lower carbon emissions in our built environment. 

The four year venture is an action based research project located across three key development sites at Tonsley, Lochiel Park and Bowden where community, industry and university participants will undertake on site research. 

The unique program will help provide better understanding of low carbon living. It allows industry and the community to draw their research from current development sites to help shape the future of low carbon living and design both in South Australia and across the country. 

Professor Deo Prasad, CRCLCL CEO said not only did the partnership allow participants to interact with similar CRCLCL projects across the country, it also opened up opportunities to collaborate with the growing network of European living laboratories. 

“A number of research projects in Australia are already underway and vary in focus from energy demand management and modelling to community engagement and the evaluation of broader cultural, physical, economic and social impacts of low carbon living,” Professor Prasad said. 

“These research outcomes will provide an evidence-base that can be rolled out nationally to enable significant reduction of carbon emissions of the building and construction development sector and urban communities. Our findings in turn can be of use to our European colleagues and vice versa,” he said. 

University of South Australia Vice Chancellor, Professor David Lloyd says the Living Laboratories partnership is an exciting opportunity for South Australia to emerge as the national leader in low carbon research. 

“This is really enterprising research with enormous potential to change the way we design communities and the way we live in the future,” Professor Lloyd says. 

“One of the early deliverables will be to report on the economic, social and environmental value of zero carbon housing and urban development. 

“The very nature of the research collaboration is exciting because it is bringing together university researchers with government, industry and community to devise and test better ways of living in the environment. 

“Even more importantly the project will contribute to tangible reductions in greenhouse gas emissions in the built form, and deliver industry collaborations to prototype, test, develop and commercialise the products, systems and services that can underpin future low carbon communities.” 

Stage 1 of the Living Laboratory is currently underway at Tonsley and Bowden with a focus on integrated energy, water, waste, transport precinct modelling and energy demand management solutions to be put under the microscope.

The CRCLCL Adelaide Living Laboratory project will be an innovative part of helping Tonsley and Bowden to achieve its targeted Green Star-Communities 5 star rating.