A NSW Government program designed to help businesses improve their environmental sustainability is targeting the state’s aged care providers.

A dozen providers are already involved in the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water’s (DECCW) ‘Sustainability Advantage’ program but the department says there is room for more.

The program focuses on improving resource efficiency, managing supply chains and engaging staff.

Participating organisations sign up for at least 18 months and make a small financial contribution.

They then complete a sustainability management diagnostic tool, undertake sustainability advantage modules and meet regularly with other businesses to discuss sustainability initiatives.

At the end of the program, participants report on their progress and take part in an evaluation.

Sustainability Advantage project manager, Pauline Coppin said there are many environmental issues that can be addressed easily at little additional cost.

“One common area is the overheating of hot water,” said Ms Coppin. “Hot water in residential homes can account for up to half of the energy use and this may also relate to aged care facilities and their independent living areas.

“Lighting of areas that are not used very often, such as corridors or basements, and ornamental lighting also waste energy.” 

The department also runs a related program called ‘Energy Saver’ which gives businesses access to subsidised energy audits.

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