Reid and Parkes blocks

Site testing on Parkes and Reid blocks

Reid and Parkes blocks

In March this year, the ACT Government entered in to a precinct deed with UNSW which details the investment in to a new campus, including approximately eight hectares of land in Reid and Parkes.

UNSW Canberra has since been working actively with the ACT Government on the planning for the Precinct and as part of this process, are required to undertake site testing on the Reid and Parkes blocks.

Testing will determine the presence and extent of any environmental contamination on the Reid and Parkes blocks for the future UNSW Canberra City campus development. Disruption caused by site testing will be minimal, details of the testing schedule are as follows:

  • Part closure of the Parkes gravel carpark on Constitution Avenue will commence on Monday,14 December 2020 and the carpark will be available at full capacity again from Thursday, 30 December 2020.
  • Testing on the Parkes site will be coordinated in two phases allowing the gravel car park to operate at 50% capacity during testing.
  • Testing on the Reid site (CIT campus) will commence Monday, 4 January 2021 and be completed by Friday, 15 January 2021.
  • Testing on the Reid site, has been scheduled outside of the teaching semester to keep disruption to a minimum.

The ACT Government will be erecting signage in the Parkes carpark advising patrons of the part closure of the carpark. All efforts have been made to minimise any impact to people using the carpark by scheduling the site testing during the CIT semester break and the Christmas holiday period. However, we apologise in advance for any disruption.

If you are experiencing any issues as a result of the site testing activity, or have any questions, please contact Access Canberra on 13 22 81.

Alliance of top universities urges G20 leaders to prioritise net zero emissions

The International Universities Climate Alliance’s first major initiative will call on world leaders to act on the climate emergency.

UNSW Sydney will lead an international coalition of top climate research universities when it issues its first Declaration today ahead of the G20 Summit on 21 and 22 November 2020.

The International Universities Climate Alliance member universities span all populated continents, representing one-third of the 100 highest performing climate research universities and a quarter of the top 100 environmental research universities worldwide.

Its Declaration implores world leaders to use the post-COVID recovery to implement measures to counteract climate change, warning that failure to do so will lock in catastrophic consequences for generations to come. Regional media events will be held with a panel of speakers from Asia Pacific and UK university members.

Watch Ian Jacobs speak here.

Professor Ian Jacobs, President and Vice-Chancellor of UNSW Sydney in Australia, which founded and leads the Alliance, said he and his colleagues recognised the need for experts with diverse voices to speak out about the climate crisis.

“Many challenges lie ahead of us in combatting the existential crisis in which the world finds itself. The International Universities Climate Alliance is a rich resource upon which governments, business, industry and the wider community can rely for evidence-based expert advice.”

UNSW Scientia Professor Matthew England said that Australia was highly exposed to the worst impacts of climate change – as demonstrated by recent bushfires, coral bleaching, floods and droughts – and has a pivotal role to play in contributing to the Alliance.

“With G20 member countries representing nearly 80 per cent of global COemissions and 85 per cent of global GDP, they have the obligation, the opportunity, and the means to lead global systemic change,” Prof. England said.

UNSW has a proud history of being at the forefront of climate science and renewable energy – the solar cell technology which underpins 50 per cent of solar panels around the world was developed at the University. Prof. Jacobs has also committed to divesting UNSW’s fossil fuel assets by 2025 as part of its net-zero emissions goal, in line with the Paris Agreement commitment to limit global warming to 1.5°C.

The Climate Alliance is unprecedented in scale and scope and will support world leaders, policymakers and industry in planning for, and responding to, climate change. The advent of the Climate Alliance comes as momentum is building for countries to decarbonise their economies. In recent months there have been moves by various nations to fortify incremental efforts with policies and actions equal to the urgency of the situation.

The Alliance will provide a central hub for universities to share the latest climate research and enable greater collaboration between leading research teams.

Update: watch the panel of climate research experts from across the Asia Pacific discuss the Declaration urging G20 leaders to prioritise net-zero emissions.