Green Impact is now closed for the 2019 program cycle. Join us in February 2020 to be a part of the change.
About Green Impact
Green Impact is a fun and flexible program for staff and students to undertake meaningful, positive actions on campus, working together to make the University of Melbourne a healthy and sustainable place to work and study.
Green Impact is a change and engagement program, developed in the UK by the National Union of Students (NUS) and delivered in Australia by Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTS). Piloted for the first time in Australia at the University of Melbourne in 2017, Green Impact has been implemented by over 400 organisations worldwide. The program raises awareness of sustainability within an organisation by giving people a focused approach to tackling issues and supporting them in achieving these actions.
Worldwide feedback regarding Green Impact has been consistently positive, with participants reporting that it is a fun and engaging way to make meaningful environmental and sustainability change in their offices and across campus.
Celebrating our Achievements
The sustainability change and engagement program has been extremely successful since it's launch at The University of Melbourne in 2017. In just two years, hundreds of staff and students have worked together to complete over 2000 actions, making a real impact to the sustainability of the university. To see all the results and winners from 2017 and 2018 visit our winner’s page and gallery.
I loved being part of Green Impact...Not only did it bring different people within our department together, it had a positive and noticeable impact on our department as a whole and our day to day processes. Even those who were not part of the core ‘GO Green’ team were sharing their ideas to be more sustainable and commenting to us on what a great initiative it was. Jess Parker, Marketing Coordinator, Melbourne School of Professional and Continuing Education, 2017
Join Green Impact
Green Impact is now open for 2019! This website contains a wealth of information to support teams taking part, and you can get started by visiting our how to page.
Click on each tile below to see all the exciting new things coming to Green Impact in 2019!
The toolkit has been reviewed and updated with 40 new actions across Bronze, Silver and Gold tabs. An example of just a few of the new actions are:
- The Green Impact team has organised a clothes swap for their department/office to educate on the importance of second-hand clothing.
- The Green Impact team has had a conversation on the topic of the Sustainable Development Goals.
- Adopt an animal! For just a few dollars a month, team members can help conserve and protect some of our most critically endangered animals through a number of well established charities.
Updated Scoring System
The scoring system for the 2019 toolkit has been updated to reflect the addition of a wide range of new actions, as well as the updated Sustainable Labs Accreditation.
- The Bronze section includes actions worth 5 points each. These should be the easiest to get started on. You must complete 20 Bronze actions to receive this award.
- The Silver section includes a list of actions worth 10 points each, as we recognise that these will take more effort and could be more challenging. You must complete 20 Bronze actions and 20 Silver actions to receive this award.
- The Gold actions are worth 15 points each as these are will push your sustainability achievements even further and are the hardest to obtain.You must complete 20 Bronze actions, 20 Silver actions and 15 Gold actions to receive this award.
- The Labs sections has a variety of bronze, silver and gold valued actions specific to researchers and laboratory users. To obtain a sustainable labs accreditation you must undertake a combination of standard and Labs based actions, depending on the level you would like to reach.
This year we strongly encourage participants from all of our campuses to get involved in Green Impact by forming a team in your area. There will be additional support provided for teams (outside of Parkville) such as online training sessions and webinars.
The Green Fund will return in 2019 in a revised format after the pilot last year. More details will be available when applications open.
KeepCups & Water Bottles
Teams can now order glass University of Melbourne branded KeepCups at cost price, with a new range of fun colours now available. Branded glass water bottles will also be available for purchase.
Green Impact Australasia Awards
The University of Melbourne is part of a larger network of universities across Australia and New Zealand implementing Green Impact, administered by Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability (ACTS) in conjunction with the National Union of Students (NUS) UK. Excitingly, 2019 will see the launch of the Green Impact Awards where winners from all participating Green Impact institutions can compete across a number of categories. Institutional winners will be automatically entered into these awards at the end of the year.
How it works
Taking part in Green Impact is as simple as joining or forming a team!
Individuals located in the same physical space (such as an office, department, floor or building) form a team to jointly undertake a series of actions from a pre-designed toolkit. The toolkit has been developed to help teams improve the environmental performance of their workspaces and covers a holistic approach to sustainability. Once teams have completed a certain number of actions, they will be recognised with achieving an accreditation within the program.
The program is fun, flexible, and voluntary. Teams can complete as many actions from the toolkit as they like, even if it’s just one or two. The main aim is to help raise awareness of sustainability and take direct positive action within their workspaces!
The benefits of the program include:
- Increase your awareness of sustainability issues
- Learn how to make positive and healthy changes to your workplace
- Build camaraderie with like-minded individuals from your area
- Contribute to the University’s sustainability strategy and objectives
- Most importantly, learn new things and have fun!
Please click on the icons below to learn more about Green Impact.
There are three standard accreditation levels to achieve, as well the newly added LABS section. Each section has a range of different actions.
- The Bronze section includes actions worth 5 points each. These should be the easiest to get started on.
- The Silver section includes a list of actions worth 10 points each, as we recognise that these will take more effort and could be more challenging.
- The Gold actions are worth 15 points each as these are will push your sustainability achievements even further and are the hardest to obtain.
- The Labs tab has a variety of bronze, silver and gold valued actions specific to researchers and laboratory users. To obtain a sustainable labs accreditation you must undertake a combination of standard and Labs based actions, depending on the level you would like to reach.
- All awards (standard and labs) are incremental. Teams must achieve bronze before silver and bronze & silver before moving onto gold.
There are a minimum number of actions you must achieve to reach an accreditation level, however we obviously encourage you to do more if you can. We do acknowledge that teams are busy and have other priorities, so even if you only complete a small number of actions you will be recognised for your efforts with a "Working Toward Accreditation" status.
Green Impact is also all about continual improvement rather than a one-off ranking exercise. The process of completing the actions helps departments develop individual plans for greening their workplaces, helps change behaviours for individuals and culturally around the university and hopefully implement change with a long-term impact!
You don’t have to do every action! Each level has a selection of different actions for teams to choose from. Choose the actions from each level that you want to complete to gain that award. This gives teams the flexibility to choose things they enjoy, are passionate about and have the influence to change in your area of work.
No competition is complete without an overall winner! Teams within the program can compete to gain the most points. Awards for first, second and third place will be awarded to the 3 highest point-scoring teams. This means that even if you are not able to reach the next official award level, you can still undertake additional actions to increase your point score and be in with a chance of winning.
There are also special awards! These give you the chance to nominate individuals, ideas and projects in your team that you think go above and beyond what is included in the toolkit or are particularly innovative. The winners will be decided by a panel of judges.
All University of Melbourne staff and postgraduate students can make up a team and follow the step by step guide below to get involved!
Register your team
- Teams sign up to take part in Green Impact; they may be any size and typically are composed of members from a department or floor.
- Assign a primary and secondary team leader but get as many colleagues involved as you can.
Sign up to your online Toolkit
- Participants take part in Green Impact by completing actions and recording them in an online toolkit.
- All team members can have access to the toolkit if they wish.
- Actions are grouped into themed criteria such as waste and recycling, energy, water, engagement, procurement, health and wellbeing, biodiversity, and travel.
- Participants progress through these simple, clear and easy criteria, completing multiple actions within the workbook to work towards a bronze, silver or gold accreditation, and NEW sustainable labs accreditation.
Detailed instructions on how to use the toolkit and how to achieve accreditation are included in the Green Impact Toolkit User Guide (PDF).
- You won't be alone! You can be assigned a project assistant to help you through the process.
- The Sustainable Campus team are here to provide support at any time and every step of the way: by phone, email, in person visits, as well as support workshops throughout the Green Impact 'year'.
- And a dedicated Yammer group linking you to all the other Green Impact participants.
- Submit your toolkit by the 22nd August.
- Your online toolkit will be audited by student auditors in September.
- Teams will be awarded with internationally-recognised accreditations.
- Come to the celebration at our end of year Green Impact Award ceremony!
We are looking for student volunteers to get involved to gain practical work experience, have fun and to help make positive changes to the University!
Why join GI as a student volunteer?
- Improve your understanding of sustainability and behaviour change
- Develop professional and employability skills
- Improve your CV
- Gain direct workplace experience
- Learn team work and engagement skills
Green Impact allowed me to work with some of the key drivers behind the University's sustainability movement which was a rewarding and eye-opening experience. It expanded my knowledge on implementing sustainability especially on multiple scales. I really enjoyed working with my team, Bio 21 who were not only enthusiastic to learn together, but also from each other. Overall, it was a unique two way learning opportunity I know I can learn more from. Auriel Jing Xin Yeap, 2017 & 2018 Project Assistant
Students can join Green Impact as a Project Assistant and/or a Student Auditor. No technical knowledge is needed for either role and full training will be provided to fit in with any learning or access requirements. All you need is an interest, enthusiasm and commitment!
As a Project Assistant you will:
- Receive training on how to be a successful Project Assistant
- Be assigned to a staff team for the duration of the Green Impact program (March - September)
- Commit a minimum of 30 mins per week to support your team to undertake toolkit actions
We are looking for student volunteers to be Project Assistants – please sign up by clicking the button below:
As a Student Auditor you will:
- Participate in 1-2 days of auditing in September, including required training
- If you would like to express your interest to be a Student Auditor, please fill in our volunteer form
2019 Team Training Dates
- Tuesday 12 March 2019
12pm-2pm | Arts West North Wing 356
Project Assistant Training #1
- Thursday 21 March 2019
10am-12pm | Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room
Project Assistant Training #2
- Tuesday 26 March 2019
- 10am-12:30pm | Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room
- Wednesday 29 May 2019
- 12pm-1pm | Arts West North Wing 161
- Tuesday 18 June 2019
12pm-1pm | Arts West North Wing 454
Drop-in Q&A #1
- Tuesday 6 August 2019
12pm-1pm | Arts West North Wing 454
Drop-in Q&A #2
- Thursday 15 August 2019
11am-12pm | Arts West North Wing 161
Drop-in Q&A #3
- Tuesday 10 September 2019
9am-5pm | Yasuko Hiraoka Myer Room
Auditor Training and Audits
- Tuesday 15 October 2019
12pm-2pm | Arts West North Wing Forum Theatre
Project Assistant Wrap-Up Session
2019 Green Impact Project Cycle
- Thursday 21 February 2019
Green Impact Launch
- March 2019
Project Assistant Recruitment
- March 2019
Staff Team Recruitment
- Thursday 22 August 2019
- Tuesday 10 October 2019
- Late Oct / Early Nov 2019
Feedback & Evaluation
Check out the helpful University of Melbourne (and NUS) resources like poster templates, action plans etc. All available to download and ready to use. We will regularly update this page to include UoM specific resources.
Most posters below can be downloaded and printed at A3 size (recommended) but feel free to print at other sizes as needed. Please note for a full range of general sustainability posters and other resources please visit our Resources page under our A-Z of Sustainability.
Download the examples below and contact us with your preferred stickers. In the email please be specific in regards to sticker type and quantity. If you'd like to customise stickers or need some straight away please download this printable sticker sheet which contains all the current designs.
Please feel free to use the images below to promote Green Impact. Right click and save images to your computer or right click and copy image. Then place via your preferred email software or online email account and resize as necessary. Remember to hotlink the image back to http://sustainablecampus.unimelb.edu.au/greenimpact if possible.
- TAKE2 Action Poster ((PDF 580.3 KB))
- Smart Action Plan Template ((DOCX 1.2 MB))
- Green Impact Travel Log ((XLSX 13.0 KB))
- Sustainable Catering Checklist ((JPG 3.2 MB))
- First Meeting Agenda Template ((DOCX 120.7 KB))
- Team Agreement Template ((DOCX 122.7 KB))
- Green Impact Mentor and Auditor Roles ((PDF 234.8 KB))
- Green Impact Project Assistant Expectations ((PDF 293.0 KB))
- Green Impact Teams Expectations ((PDF 290.3 KB))
Check out the videos below, and for an extensive list see the Green Impact NUS Youtube Playlist.
- GI Toolkit Introduction - Homepage
- GI Toolkit Introduction - Logged In
- Green Impact Information Webinars (playlist)
- University of Westminster
- Green Impact NUS
- University of Oxford
- University of Essex
- University of Cambridge
Frequently Asked Questions
- 1. Is there a standard size for teams?
Teams can be any size, there are no restrictions. Teams should be set up within a physical location so a floor, department, building etc. One space/building can have multiple teams (split by floors or existing departmental teams), or departments may decide to cover the whole space/ building. The decision is on a case by case basis. However, we do recommend that team size is manageable. Green Impact is not designed for individuals but nor should it be unrealistic in its expectation of team size.
- 2. I'm not sure if there's a team in my department?
Please check this team list, which we will update every couple of weeks. Feel free to contact the team leaders listed.
- 3. Is there a deadline for signing up?
Once the program has launched for the year you can sign up at any time before the 22 August. However, we do recommend signing up sooner rather than later as this gives teams more time to implement the actions and take advantage of the training and support activities provided by the sustainable campus team. The program is an annual one. Officially the 2019 program opens on 21 February and closes on 22 August 2019.
Actions can be recorded within the toolkit during this time. However, we encourage teams to undertake actions all year round, to ensure a continuity with the sustainability message but also to take the pressure off teams during the toolkits opening. Actions can then just be recorded during this time period.
- 4. Can I have a look at the toolkit without signing up?
Yes. If you would like to look at the toolkit and get a feel for how it works you can use the following log on details:
- 5. My team received a bronze accreditation last year, can we make a start straight for silver or do we have to accomplish bronze again?
The program is all about continual improvement. As such, the award is valid on an annual basis. You have to accomplish bronze each year before you can move onto silver or gold. However, if you have accomplished bronze once, templates and actions will already be available and teams should be able to achieve this award relatively easily and quickly next time around. Also, if teams keep up their actions all year they should be able to tick off multiple actions right at the start.
- 6. What are Project Assistants and does our team have to have one?
Project Assistants are student volunteers that can be assigned to your team to support you in implementing Green Impact. Teams do not have to have a student assistant but we would highly recommend them. Staff teams can help to provide a valuable volunteering role for students, to help improve their skills and give them work experience.
Students will offer extra resources to teams, as well as bring a fresh perspective/skill set to that team. They are an extra resource for teams and can perform any task set out by the team. We encourage teams to include them in their planning and implementation. Teams will be offered a project assistant once their training has been completed.
- 7. I see there are new actions within the toolkit this year, does that mean we have to do more actions this year?
There are a number of new actions within the toolkit but this does not mean you have to do more. To reach a Bronze or Silver Award, a minimum of 20 actions must be completed and a minimum of 15 actions for Gold. However, the new actions give variety to teams and ensures we are capturing sustainability actions that are relevant holistically across the university. Please check out the ‘scoring’ on the How To page .
- 8. Do I have to complete all available actions to reach the accreditation level?
No, teams do not have to complete all available actions within that level to reach accreditation. Teams have to do a minimum of 20 actions for Bronze and Silver and a minimum of 15 for Gold. However, we do encourage teams to do more if they can, not only will this be a win for sustainability but it also means you can compete with other teams for the highest point scoring prizes at the end of the year. First, second and third place are recognised. However, the program should not be onerous either, we appreciate teams have limited capacity so please just do what you can.
- 9. Can students be part of our team?
Absolutely! We encourage students to get involved in any capacity they can. This can be as a direct team member (esp. post graduates/PhD students who will often have dedicated space of their own), or in a volunteer support role as either a project assistant or a student auditor.
Assistant & Auditor Role Info
- 10. I’m not at Parkville can I take part?
Absolutely! We want to ensure Green Impact is open and relevant for everyone within Melbourne university. The pilot program did primarily focus on the Parkville campus but in 2018 and beyond we want to encourage other campuses to get involved. Absolutely any space within UoM can get involved no matter where you are. We are hoping to reach out to different campuses in 2019 and if you are off Parkville and want to start a team or can help promote Green Impact within your campus please do get in touch.
Toolkit User Guide
Please read through the user guide for help on navigating and using the GI Toolkit. Also see the toolkit intro videos in the video resources above.
The Green Fund
The Green Fund is a grant scheme that supports staff to implement practical sustainability projects across campus. The fund will provide a number of grants for projects and/or programs that demonstrably reduce the University’s environmental impact over the next 12 months.
For 2019, the Sustainability Team is looking for a range of projects that address the key targets of the Sustainability Plan.
Any staff member is invited to submit applications for consideration of funding allocation.
- Projects will demonstrate environmental and sustainability improvements, ideally with measurable savings and payback.
- Projects will, ideally, demonstrate tangible or operational benefits.
- Projects will need to demonstrate how they address targets within the Sustainability Plan.
- Activities with a one-off benefit for a select group of people only, such as small-scale engagement projects will not be considered for funding. This includes, but is not limited to; purchasing Keep Cups, recreational activities for an individual team, or similar activities.
- Teams granted funding must submit an evaluation report to the Sustainability Team by 31 January 2020 (using a provided template).
- The Green Fund will open for applications from 22ndMay 2019.
- Applications must be submitted by completing an online form, available below.
- Applications must be submitted via the online form by 22ndJune 2019.
Green Impact Points
Green Impact teams that apply for funding in the 2019 round will be eligible for the following Green Impact points, contributing to their teams overall score:
- 10 points will only be granted to teams that submit a valid application to the Green Fund – typically requiring an outlined budget proposal and endorsement from the budget approver for equivalent financial requests.
- An additional 10 points will be awarded to teams that are granted funding to complete their projects.
Points awarded for the Green Fund in 2019 will not roll over or be allocated in the 2020 program.
For all queries please contact: Rhiannon Boyd, Sustainability Engagement Coordinator
2018 Green Impact Program
In 2018 we saw 44 teams sign up (39 reach award level), with 443 people taking part and achieving 1377 sustainability based actions!
2017 Green Impact Program
In 2017 the ‘pilot’ year saw 30 teams sign up (22 reach accreditation level), with 274 people taking part and achieving 588 sustainability based actions!
Green Impact is a fun and flexible program for staff and students to undertake practical actions to make our University more sustainable.