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Sustainability hits a six at the MCG

Energy efficiency upgrades will confirm the Melbourne Cricket Ground’s (MCG) standing as one of the most environmentally sustainable stadia in the world – and save enough electricity to power the light towers for nearly six years.

The Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC), working in tandem with Siemens, is close to finishing a project at the iconic sports ground that will deliver a host of significant environmental savings.

Once completed, the program of works, which commenced in May, will result in the MCG generating enough energy savings annually to power 835 houses.

Siemens ambassador, Cadel Evans, took time from his busy schedule since returning home to enjoy a first-hand tour of the facility and the upgrades. The sustainability advocate also jumped at the opportunity to ride his bicycle around the perimeter of the famous ground. The 2011 Tour de France winner commented:

As a long-time advocate of the environment, it’s really heartening to see the MCG – Australia’s spiritual home of sport – take such a significant step. As an athlete I welcome the chance to play a role in creating awareness around environmental and sustainability issues. The work the MCC and Siemens have undertaken has enhanced the MCG’s reputation not only as a sporting showcase but also as a beacon for energy and environmental efficiency.

While the MCC has invested more than AUS$8m in the project, expected savings from the reduced energy consumption over the next 5-10 years will offset the cost.

Examples of the work involved include:
•    Replacing the existing lighting systems with low-energy lighting technologies.
•    Installing a new building management system.
•    Implementing changes to heating and ventilation systems.
•    Installing new chilled water systems and modernised room control systems.

Roland Busch, member of the Siemens AG Managing Board and responsible for Asia/Australia, took time to see first-hand the upgrades at Australia’s favourite sporting stadium as part of his visit to Australia. He noted:

I have been fortunate enough to visit some of the great sporting stadia around the world. It’s clear to me now that the MCG truly ranks as one of the greatest arenas on the planet. The MCG is part of the heart and soul of Melbourne and Siemens is proud to be involved in the environmental upgrade that has ensured the sustainable future of such a wonderful sporting arena.

MCC CEO, Stephen Gough, said the Club took the issue of sustainability very seriously, as he outlined:

This commitment follows other recent MCC environmental initiatives, including the Yarra Park restoration project and water recycling facility, which has seen the MCG save more than 240 million litres of water since it was implemented two years ago.  The savings that this project delivers means it will pay for itself. It truly represents the ultimate in sustainable efficiency. It was terrific to work with Siemens’ engineers to ensure the MCG remains a world-class and environmentally responsible stadium.

The project benefits include:
•    Utility costs cut by 20 per cent
•    Water use cut by 5 per cent
•    CO2 equivalent carbon emissions cut 19 per cent

Energy saved each year by the upgrades will:
•    Power 835 houses for a year
•    Run the MCG light towers for 5.75 years

C02 saved each year by the upgrades would:
•    Fill 127 million black balloons
•    Fill the MCG 10.92 times

Caption

From left to right: Cadel Evans (Siemens Australia Ambassador), Stephen Gough (MCC CEO), Dr Roland Busch (Siemens Global Board Member) and Jeff Connolly (Siemens Australia CEO).