Serco’s Acacia Prison in Western Australia has been recognised for excellence in environmental management and sustainability at the National Save Water awards held on 26 October 2012.
Acacia was highly commended in the Prime Minister’s Water Wise Award category for its overall program of environmental sustainability. The national recognition is a welcome reward for the prison after several years of planning and implementation.
Acacia’s sustainability program is based on its environmental management plan, with the key objective of creating an environmentally sustainable relationship between the service obligations of Serco Australia in managing the prison and minimising the facility’s impact on the environment.
The initiatives implemented at Acacia range from permaculture programs to grow fresh produce for use in the kitchens, water irrigation, direct recycling schemes to reduce landfill, and an innovative ozone laundry system and compactor service to significantly reduce water usage – the equivalent of one Olympic swimming pool a year.
Acacia Prison’s contribution to environmental sustainability highlights Serco’s wider commitment to the communities in which we live and work, and both the staff and several offenders have succeeded at championing sustainability within the prison through their day-to-day activities. For offenders, this focus provides opportunities through education and vocational training to gain practical life experience, empowering them for their return into the community.
The National Save Water award’s judging panel said that Serco Australia was to be commended for its overall commitment to sustainability.
‘The combination of technological and behavioural change strategies is a fine example to other prisons and community buildings. Serco Australia has achieved impressive water-savings during the reporting period as well as educating stakeholders.’
Serco Australia Chief Executive Officer David Campbell congratulated Acacia Prison staff and offenders on the win, saying it was another example of Serco’s commitment to the local communities in which it operates.
‘I am delighted about this award, and I commend Acacia Prison staff for their hard work in ensuring the facility continues to be as environmentally friendly as possible. Their efforts will have a lasting, positive impact on not only the environment, but on those in our care.
‘This award adds to Serco’s green credentials and joins other accolades gained for environmental initiatives at our prisons including Australian Business Awards for Environmental Sustainability in 2012 and 2011 in recognition of Serco’s leadership and commitment to the enhancement, preservation and protection of the environment.’