There has been a great deal of media attention focused on the COP26 Climate Change Conference over the last several days, particularly around Australia's commitments and what they might mean for delivery of transport services and infrastructure in the years ahead.
It goes without saying that climate policy in Australia has had a long and difficult journey towards a consensus position, but the trend is clear. The Federal Government's embrace of electric vehicle charging infrastructure as an "enabling technology" for achieving net zero emissions in its Low Emissions Technology Statement this week is a clear sign that the parameters of the debate have shifted. It is no longer a question of 'if' EVs will replace internal combustion engines, but when.
Similarly, the statement identifies a clear opportunity for Australia to develop a low emissions cement industry. Given concrete is the most widely-used construction material in the world, the development and production of low emissions cement will be essential if we are to provide infrastructure that is more sustainable and actively contributes to emissions reduction.
Of course, none of this will come as greatly surprising news to those delivering transport infrastructure and services. In large part, the drive for greater sustainability has been driven by innovation and leadership from within the industry itself, rather than through regulatory measures being imposed by government.
Sustainability features prominently within the three policy goals set out in RA's Strategic Plan:
1. Optimise the use of our roads for environmental, social, economic and cultural outcomes.
2. Improve the stewardship of our roads for the workers on them and the people who use them.
3. Decarbonisation of the economy through integrated transport and the efficient use of resources and energy
As policy-makers seek practical ways to embed sustainability goals within core economic objectives (including employment growth), our industry must now grasp the opportunity to point the way forward by showcasing transport projects and services that align with community expectations around decarbonisation.
I am confident this is a challenge RA and its members will not only meet, but embrace.
Chief Executive Officer
What does Inland Rail mean for you?
Roads Australia strives to achieve a robust integrated transport system for people and freight - and freight transport projects don't come much bigger than the 1,700km Inland Rail, now under construction.
However, Inland Rail is far more than just a rail project. It will have a transformative impact on the operation of our supply chains, support the development of intermodal hubs feeding into the road network, improve road safety and congestion and deliver environmental benefits for the community.
Moreover, the pipeline of construction work generated by the project will create opportunities for companies that provide transport engineering, construction, maintenance and technology services.
Next week's RA Industry Webinar with Rebecca Pickering, Interim Chief Executive, Inland Rail will allow you to learn more about these opportunities - and put your question directly to the person leading this once-in-a-generation transport infrastructure project.
Secure your participation today
The 2021 Australian Infrastructure Plan released by Infrastructure Australia in September this year included a recommendation that governments and industry transition away from 'digital by exception' towards 'digital by default' in the planning, delivery and maintenance of infrastructure. There are a variety of reasons why the Australian infrastructure market has lagged in its embrace of digital engineering (DE).
There are multiple factors behind the lack of progress to date, including regulatory requirements that have not kept pace with technological evolution, a lack of digital skills in the marketplace and a general lack of understanding about the availability and potential benefits of going digital.
Our upcoming RA Policy Webinar on Tuesday 16 November is your opportunity to learn more about how DE can benefit your organisation.
Join us as our panel explores how we can boost uptake and maturity around digital technology and innovation across industry and government, and considers what actions are needed to ensure our workforce is prepared.
Kelly Maslin has been appointed as Vice President Sales, Asia Pacific and Middle East at Jacobs. Kelly is an Environmental Engineer and has held various technical, project and business leadership roles throughout her 25-year career. She joined Jacobs seven years ago and most recently was in the role of Executive Director of Operations for New Zealand, Eastern Australia and Southern Australia.
At Stantec, Simon Davis has taken up a new role as Client Development Director. For the past five years, Simon has been the organisation's National Director of Business Development, first commencing with GTA Consultants prior to its acquisition by Stantec. He has a significant background in client development, marketing and commercial management across the infrastructure sector.
GHD has announced an expansion of its global Inclusion and Diversity (I&D) team which includes the appointment of Coralee Fitzgibbon as APAC (Asia Pacific) I&D Leader. Based in Auckland, she was previously the Diversity and Inclusion Lead at the Bank of New Zealand and has a professional background in psychology, people experience and analytics.
EOIs - Indigenous representation on RA's D&I Committee
RA's Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Committee is a subcommittee of the RA Board and works closely with the RA CEO and staff in the development and promotion of initiatives that help us to champion a diverse, inclusive, sustainable and values-led organisation and industry.
We are now seeking expressions of interest from Indigenous industry participants who wish to contribute to the development of RA's programs and initiatives in this space by becoming a member of our D&I Committee.
If this opportunity is of interest to you, please contact Prue Northey, Manager - Membership and Programs for details on how to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI).
The Construction Industry Culture Taskforce (CICT) continues to seek feedback from industry participants to shape its Culture Standard, designed to improve work life balance, deliver improved mental and physical health outcomes for the industry's workforce, and enhance the diversity and inclusiveness of our industry.
You can have your say via the CICT's virtual consultation room, where you can provide responses and feedback to a number of questions and share your own thoughts and experiences.
The consultation runs until 30 November.
GHD has launched its Reconciliation Action Plan 2021-2023, which sets out the organisation's commitment to reconciliation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities.
The plan also highlights recent achievements and successes, including the launch of GHD's new national Cultural Awareness Training Program for employees, and annual celebrations for NAIDOC and National Reconciliation Week, as well as how GHD's partnership with the CareerTrackers Indigenous Internship Program has provided opportunities and enhanced workforce diversity.
Remember, if you have news or achievements in the D&I space to share with our readers, please send details through to Prue Northey at RA.
A joint venture between AECOM and Aurecon has been chosen by the NSW Government to undertake investigation work for the feasibility of what will become the nation's longest road tunnel project. The joint venture will undertake technical investigations and detailed studies to develop a preferred concept design for the proposed 11-kilometre tunnel between Blackheath and Little Hartley, as part of the Great Western Highway upgrade between Katoomba and Lithgow. This follows AECOM recently being awarded a contract to develop the Environmental Impact Statement for the project.
Industry and community input is being sought on the design of Sydney's M12 Motorway. The M12 will be a critical link in this fast-growing region, linking the Western Sydney Airport now under construction to the Northern Road and to the M7 in the east (via Elizabeth Drive). The 16km of dual carriageway will be constructed to accommodate potential future expansion to six lanes, and the designs released this week also incorporate active transport infrastructure, landscaping features and a showcase for Aboriginal art. The consultation period on the designs runs until 28 November.
In Tasmania, Jacobs is developing a corridor strategy for the state government that will identify upgrades for the Ridgley Highway. The strategy will take particular account of the crucial role the highway will play in supporting the North West region's new mining and resource projects. Industry and community input on the strategy is welcome, and the the completed study will set out prioritised short, medium and long-term upgrades for the Ridgley Highway.
To Western Australia, where RA members Acciona, Clough and WSP have been awarded an alliance contract to deliver Phase 2 of the Stephenson Avenue Extension. This part of the project will provide an enhanced connection from Cedric Street to Scarborough Beach Road, including a grade separated Mitchell Freeway interchange and southbound Smart Freeway on-ramp. The works will also provide an expansion of the Stirling Bus Interchange and the installation of enhanced active transport infrastructure.
The acquisition of Lendlease Services by Service Stream first announced in July this year has now been completed. The transaction is a key aspect of Service Stream's transformation into a diverse, multi-network essential service provider operating across the growing infrastructure services sector, and provides Service Stream with an established transport infrastructure division.
Ventia has finalised its acquisition of Kordia Solutions Australia (KSA), allowing Ventia to offer broader telecommunications services to its clients by bringing on board the end-to-end telecommunications, communications and broadcast services KSA has offered to its Australian customers.
Remember, if your organisation has news to share with the readers of RA Insider, please send details through to Simon Morgan
Technology developed by Australian researchers has the potential to enhance road safety and protect cyclists and pedestrians, according to a report released this week.
A project jointly funded by the iMove CRC, the University of Sydney's Australian Centre for Field Robotics and Cohda Wireless has produced a system that enables an autonomous vehicle to share what it ‘sees' with others using vehicle-to-X (V2X) communication.
The system uses an emerging technology called cooperative or collective perception (CP), which is capable of tapping into a wider range of viewpoints. In tests conducted as part of the project, this allowed vehicles to track a pedestrian visually obstructed by a building - and take preemptive braking action based on the pedestrian's predicted movement.
Learn more about the study here.
2021 RA Annual Lunches
Please note: Due to COVID capacity restrictions in place for many venues, bookings for Annual Lunches are currently only open to RA members. Places will sell out - so book quickly!
New RA events are continuing to roll out all the time. Check out our Events Calendar and keep an eye on our website www.roads.org.au to make sure you don't miss out on networking opportunities.
Please contact email@example.com with all event enquires.
Upcoming Industry Events/Training
RA Insider is proudly sponsored by Cardno. If you'd like to add more people in your organisation to our distribution list, or if you have industry news to share, please email Simon Morgan - RA Director Corporate Affairs.
Copyright © 2021 Roads Australia. Roads Australia does not warrant, guarantee or make any representations regarding the currency, accuracy, correctness, reliability, useability, or any other aspect, of the material presented in Roads Australia Insider, nor of material provided by others to Roads Australia and presented in this newsletter, nor of material provided by others and accessed from this site using links or connections to their Web sites or distribution services. The user accepts sole responsibility and all risk for using material presented on or accessed from Roads Australia Insider. Roads Australia does not accept any liability for any loss or damage which may be incurred as a result of using Roads Australia Insider or any material presented in or accessed from Roads Australia Insider.