DELIVERING RESOURCE EFFICIENCY PROJECTS

In FY2019, 13 projects were completed within the Energy and Water Project Pipeline delivering cost benefits of $1.5 million.

The Star Entertainment Group continues to target reductions in resource use through the allocation of capital and through operational energy and water improvement projects.

Now in its fifth year, the Group’s ‘Energy and Water Project Pipeline’ identifies, prioritises and measures the outcomes of energy and water projects based on their cost savings, and combined energy and carbon benefit.

In the 2019 financial year, a further 13 projects were completed within the Energy and Water Project Pipeline delivering cost benefits of $1.5 million against a business as usual model. To date, the Group has reached a milestone by delivering 50 projects from large scale capital upgrades to optimisation and lighting replacements. These 50 projects have delivered environmental and maintenance savings and over $4.3 million in cost savings in the last five financial years against a business as usual model.

Resource consumption continues to be measured and reported in absolute terms and as an intensity metric measured on a per visitor and per square metre basis. Measuring energy, water, carbon and waste by intensity assists with measuring performance with growing visitation and an increasing portfolio. As more efficient buildings activate, we expect the consumption per square metre to decline as buildings become more efficient over time.

With development and enhancement projects underway increasing the floorspace and scale of the property portfolio, the Group continues to prioritise energy efficiency through optimisation projects, green building ratings and sustainable design to limit the rise in absolute resource consumption. To support a decrease in future resource consumption intensity within the portfolio, the Group continues to set minimum standards within  The Star Entertainment Group’s Sustainable Design and Operational Standards (located on the company website) for the building and large-scale redevelopment of assets.  The Standards specify mandatory and voluntary requirements for development projects across eight material categories aligned to Green Star and the National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS).

The following resource saving projects were delivered in the 2019 financial year:

  • A building optimisation and analytics system has been implemented at The Star Gold Coast which has led to 42 controls, tuning and optimisation opportunities implemented within the year, delivering energy and cost savings
  • The Star Sydney continued with air handling unit and fan replacement initiatives and completed a lighting replacement project (replacing LED lighting in internal corridors, fire stairs and The Darling carpark) which is expected to deliver $53,000 in cost savings annually
  • The Star Gold Coast retrofitted all existing ‘waterless’ woks with knee levers to improve water efficiency. These improvements are estimated to deliver 4,577 kilolitres in water savings and $35,800 in cost savings annually
  • As part of water usage audits previously conducted across the properties in FY2018 and ongoing testing and leak rectification, flow management of showers and taps and operating practices are continually being upgraded or replaced.
ENERGY AND CARBON EMISSIONS

The Star Entertainment Group previously set carbon and water targets in the 2017 financial year to achieve a 30% reduction in carbon and water intensity by FY2023 against the FY2013 baseline on a square metre basis.

In the 2019 financial year, the Group’s total emissions in carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2-e) from purchased gas and electricity were 106,845 tonnes. This footprint equates to an increase of 1,276 tonnes from FY2018, however an overall decrease of 1.6% from base year FY2013 which was 108,595 tonnes. On an intensity basis, carbon emissions remain relatively in line with FY2018 at 0.35 tonnes CO2-e/ per square meter and carbon emissions per visitor at 5.69 kilograms CO2-e/ visitor for the financial year 2019 despite a small reduction in visitor numbers and a reduction in overall square metres due to redevelopment works for the new Sovereign Resort at The Star Sydney. Overall carbon emissions intensity per square metre have reduced 15.5% from base year FY2013 towards the Group’s targets.

A small increase in absolute emissions was expected due to the opening of The Darling Gold Coast in FY2018 which has now operated for a full year in FY2019 and the increase of construction activities at The Star Gold Coast.

The Group’s total energy consumption from purchased gas and electricity for the 2019 financial year was 639,726 gigajoules (GJ), which was a 2.4% increase from FY2018.

Energy consumption per visitor increased in FY2019 by 2.6% from 33.18 MJ/visitor in FY2018 however decreased 8.5% overall from base year FY2013. Energy consumption intensity per square metre also increased over the last financial year by 2.6% from 2.06 to 2.11, however reduced overall by 9.6% against base year FY2013. Energy consumption intensity increased in FY2019 due to the increase of onsite construction and is expected to reduce once enhancements and build activities conclude.

POTABLE WATER USE

The Group’s total potable water consumption was 825,971 kL in the 2019 financial year, an increase of 2.5% from FY2018 and an increase of 20% from base year 2013. On a visitor intensity basis, the Group’s water intensity increased from 42.78 litres per visitor in FY2018 to 43.96 litres per visitor in FY2019 and increased 4.2% against base year.

Notes:
The Group’s total carbon emissions, as reported, equate to emissions from purchased gas and electricity only, which aligns with the Group’s targets that cover our material sources of carbon emissions. Additional sources of Scope 1 emissions include refrigerant gases, and fuel consumption, both of which comprise less than 1% of total emissions for the year. Additionally, 1.6% of FY2019 utility invoices were unbilled at the time of reporting (from water), based on cost. The missing usage has been estimated as 0.0% (12MWh) for electricity, 0.0% (122GJ) for gas.

Square metres, are square metres of conditioned space only, which is defined as space that has been mechanically heated or cooled that the Group had operational control over at the close of each financial year.

Visitation numbers have been restated for The Star Sydney in FY2016 impacting the FY2016 intensity per visitor metric.

Notes:
1.6% of FY2019 utility invoices were unbilled at the time of reporting based on cost. The missing usage has been estimated as 8.15% (67ML) for water. The FY2013 baseline for waste has been recalculated. ‘Recycling intensity’ kg/visitor has been used in FY2019 to FY2017, not ‘waste to landfill intensity kg/visitor’ as used in FY2016, which better reflects recycling performance.

Square metres, are square metres of conditioned space only, which is defined as space that has been mechanically heated or cooled that the Group had operational control over at the close of each financial year.

Visitation numbers have been restated for The Star Sydney in FY2016 impacting the FY2016 intensity per visitor metric.

Measuring water intensity by square metre, consumption has increased by 2.7% from 2.65 litres per square metre in FY2018 to 2.73 litres per square metre in FY2019 and increased 3% from base year FY2013.

Absolute water use was expected to increase from base year due to the opening of new floor space including The Star Event Centre and  The Darling Gold Coast since FY2013. The ongoing construction activities onsite at The Star Gold Coast including the building of  The Darling and the Dorsett hotel, in addition to the ongoing refurbishment works, have affected water intensity.

Water use remains a material issue and efficiency projects have been prioritised for FY2020 including maximising recycling water opportunities and expanding the existing water auditing and leak detection projects. Post construction, water intensity is expected to decrease.

INCREASING RECYCLING

As waste is a material issue,  The Star Entertainment Group sets increased recycling targets each year to lift performance and continues to provide ongoing employee training and education. Waste and recycling includes all waste from operations, with recycling programs focusing on organic waste diversion, and increasing the number of recycling streams and the percentage of landfill diverted.

The Group has been tracking recycling performance against a base year of FY2013 to ensure that improvements are measurable, continue to divert increased waste volumes from landfill and promote behavioural change across the organisation.

Across the Group’s properties, total recycling rates have increased from 10% diversion in FY2013 to 39% diversion across all operations in the 2019 financial year. Recycling rates continue to be measured and performance reported monthly and annually.  The Property Sustainability Committees have been tasked with innovation in waste reduction and process improvement.

The Star Sydney continues to  lead the individual property performance by achieving a recycling rate of 57% within the year, which is an increase from 54% in financial year 2018. On an intensity basis, recycling per square metre in tonnes has increased as the Group’s recycling performance increased.

During the 2019 financial year a number of initiatives were introduced to achieve continuous improvement in recycling, including:

  • Launch of the Group’s ‘Single-Use Plastic Reduction Commitment’ which targets the removal of plastics in favour of Forest Stewardship Council certified wooden, cornstarch (compostable) and  paper alternatives
  • Working in partnership with OzHarvest, The Star Gold Coast and The Star Sydney have redistributed 13,669 kilograms of food, contributing to the charity’s school program and providing the equivalent of 41,007 meals to vulnerable communities
  • The Star Sydney redistributed 4.5 tonnes of obsolete furniture, equipment, uniforms and hotel linen to charities in FY2019 – resulting in a total of 17 tonnes of redistributed items since the program began
  • Multiple site audits across the Group’s hotels, retail outlets, restaurants and bars have been undertaken and specialised training was conducted in waste management for housekeeping, public area and food and beverage teams to maximise recycling rates
  • Through Soap Aid’s used soap recycling program, the Group has recycled 905kgs of soap, creating 9,050 soap bars critical to communities facing major hygiene challenges
  • The Group expanded its Nespresso recycling program and recycled 29,200 capsules, an increase of 17,200 on the last financial year
  • Mei Wei at The Star Gold Coast introduced reusable portion containers in their kitchen, reducing the purchase of 300 cases of disposable lids and containers annually.

SINGLE-USE PLASTIC REDUCTION

As part of the Group’s wider sustainability strategy, during the 2019 financial year, The Star Entertainment Group launched its ‘Single-Use Plastic Reduction Commitment’ targeting the reduction and substitution of single use plastics items with alternatives where they exist on the market.

This commitment focussed upon removing or replacing single-use plastics including straws, cutlery, and packaging over time in favour of sustainable paper, Forest Stewardship Council certified wood and compostable alternatives across the Group’s 60 bars and restaurants. The initiative has removed over 7.5 million plastic straws and a number of plastic cutlery items and takeaway packing lines from landfill within the year.

Part of the ongoing commitment is to continue to test and improve our use of sustainable products over time as new alternatives come to market. The Group has taken an innovation approach with its partners to create and manufacture new sustainable cutlery and restaurant supplies where needed that deliver on exceptional guest experiences setting new industry benchmarks.

Working across the food and beverage, procurement and sustainability teams, team members and restaurant managers have been trained as part of the consolidation and replacement project with single-use plastic stocks being depleted over a number of months to reduce wastage. Water fountains have been specified in new designs to reduce water bottles and other practices (including offering straws on request) are in place.

Supporting this on-going commitment, The Star Sydney is a founding signatory to the City of Sydney’s Plastic Reduction Pledge.