Sustainable Builders Alliance Launch

Oct 2, 2023 | News

After 3 years, 9 months and 15 days we have finally launched the Sustainable Builders Alliance. – And we’re incredibly proud to do so.

Simon, GM of Sustainable Homes Melbourne explains:

In 2019 I received an email from a notable Architect based in Melbourne, Steffen Welsch. We’d collaborated on a project with Steffen previously and no doubt Steffen knew me as passionate and ambitious. No doubt, I was the perfect candidate for his request.

Steffen, along with many other esteemed Architects Australia-wide had just formed, Architects Declare Australia with the intention to reduce the carbon footprint of Australia’s construction industry.

No doubt aware that architects could only do so much, Steffen reached out to me with the request to start a Builders Declare Australia.

When I saw Steffen’s email come through, I knew if I was really committed to sustainability I had to say “yes”. So, that was the easy bit!

I then reached out through social media and email to other like-minded builders. A week or so later, we caught up as a group of like-minded legends to ask ourselves; What can we do to help more Australian builders build more sustainable, low-carbon homes?

This question was different to previous questions we’d asked ourselves at SHM. Typically we were focused on, how we build more sustainable homes or renovate sustainable homes.

We had now flipped the script from ‘how can we build sustainable homes’ to ‘how can we help the Australian construction industry build sustainable homes’. 

After plenty of back and forth, we finally had 7 environmentally focused builders, and we would establish Builders Declare Australia together.

Over the next few years, through the pandemic, lockdowns and a challenging time in the Australian construction industry we pushed ahead with the establishment of Builders Declare Australia.

Although, we soon realised that Australian Builders declaring a climate emergency wasn’t all that tangible, and we were left thinking; okay, we have hundreds of builders that have declared a climate emergency, but now what?

This question ignited intense discussion amongst the 7 of us builders. Eventually, we realised we couldn’t solve it ourselves so we dug into our pockets and engaged a business consultant to help us understand how we, as a group of sustainable builders could have the biggest impact and where we should take Builders Declare Australia.

Over a few months, of what felt like pulling teeth, we finally landed on the Sustainable Builders Alliance. – This was to be our vehicle to improve the sustainability of the Australian construction industry.

About a year later, we had a Sustainable Builders Alliance website and were planning our launch. 

Bear in mind, while we were putting together the Sustainable Builders Alliance we were all still working on our own sustainable building companies. We were also putting out a Webinar with a presentation from an industry expert and recording the Sustainable Builders Yak podcast every month. – We were keeping busy!

Finally in September, 2023, we were ready for the launch event of the Sustainable Builders Alliance in Melbourne, Australia. – And what a turnout it was!

We had 150 builders and industry partners attend. I was fortunate enough to give a presentation to thank the Sustainable Builders Alliance founding sponsors (noted at the bottom of this article). We heard from two of the other directors talking about why the Sustainable Builders Alliance exists and what we intend to do.

simon presenting

Thanks to the Sustainable Builders Alliance founding Platinum sponsors; Provans Timber & Hardware, Holcim Australia Pty Ltd, Sustainability Victoria, Rylock Windows Pty Ltd, CSR BRADFORD, Pro Clima Australia, Thermotek Windows, HIP V. HYPE, Live Life Build, Stiebel Eltron

Thanks also to the Sustainable Builders Alliance directors

Michael Limb – Michael Limb Builders, Brian Guinan – Ismart Building Group, Jesse Glascott – G-Lux Builders, Hamish White – Sanctum Homes, Michael Murphy – Aligned Building, Jeremy Spencer – Positive Footprints and of course myself Simon Clark – Sustainable Homes Melbourne.

I’m really excited for where the Sustainable Builders Alliance may go. The feedback we’ve received from other passionate builders and industry professionals has been outstanding. The Australian construction industry is ripe for change, and don’t we need it if we are to manage our climate challenges?

Watch this space!

~ Simon Clark
General Manager, SHM

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