2022 Future of Ageing Awards: Bolton Clarke awarded highly commended for Sustainability

Bolton Clarke, Thornlands QLD

In this profile, we feature Bolton Clarke and its initiatives to reduce carbon emissions by incorporating solar energy, an electric vehicle share scheme and research to help improve energy efficiency with respect to heating and cooling.

Bolton Clarke is the largest not-for-profit provider of health and aged care services in Australia. It offers an integrated continuum of care services to residents and clients that match their needs and their health and lifestyle journey. The organisation is committed to creating sustainable and energy-efficient communities to future-proof its services. Bolton Clarke’s property development team has been working with corporate and research partnerships to embark on a variety of sustainability projects across its key locations.

Why it came about

The aged care sector, and more broadly, the health care sector is one of Australia’s largest users of energy. According to QUT research, the healthcare sector contributes an estimated 4.4% of global net emissions. Additionally, the aged care sector consumed around 7.8 million gigajoules of energy across Australia each year, according to 2018 research by the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage. With a rising discourse surrounding renewable energy and energy efficiency, and the increasing cost of energy, the aged care sector needed to address energy consumption and emissions.

A substantial contribution to the pursuit of sustainability. While the actual projects involved in this programme may not all be scaleable across Australia – the knowledge gained from them might well contribute to more sustainable activities everywhere.

2022 Future of Ageing Awards judge

How it works

Bolton Clarke has embarked on a suite of key projects to address energy consumption and emissions across residential aged care and retirement living. The organisation has successfully completed some trials and is gathering further information on improving energy efficiency, not only in its own communities but across aged care, to ensure the longevity of the services provided to residents.

Current focus projects

Residential Aged Care Solar Installation: The organisation engaged a provider to install a 100kW Solar PV system across 20 communities in Queensland and NSW. The systems range in size from 40kW to 300kW with a collective kW total of 2,995kW.

i-HUB: The i-HUB initiative is an ongoing partnership between Bolton Clarke and the Queensland University of Technology. The objective of this initiative is to facilitate a collaborative approach to innovation and to advance the industry’s transition to a low-emissions future without disrupting the high standard of care for residents. The Fernhill, Caboolture community is testing and trialling innovative technologies, including sensors to identify temperature, humidity, CO2, motion, air pressure, and reed switches for when windows are open or closed.

NABERS: The National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS) is used to measure the sustainability of a building through audits and comparisons of buildings through a star rating. Bolton Clarke has implemented NABERS early in the design process to ensure sustainability is an integral part of its new developments.

During the testing phase of the NABER project within the Thornlands community, a score of 5.5 out of 6-star rating for water efficiency was achieved, while in the energy management category – a score of 1.5 out of 6-star rating. The installation of a solar PV system at Thornlands is expected to address this lower energy efficiency score, which will be reassessed by NABERS auditors as part of another star rating review.

Ohmie-Go electric vehicle sharing


Bolton Clarke has successfully implemented sustainable energy initiatives across several of its communities. The organisation has rolled out solar PV installations to 20 communities across Queensland and NSW and has implemented an industry-first electric vehicle share scheme in partnership with Ohmie-Go! at its Europa on Alma retirement living community in Melbourne. Bolton Clarke has demonstrated its commitment to creating sustainable and energy-efficient communities to future-proof its services.

Bolton Clarke has set the sustainability standard for the aged care industry and has demonstrated that energy efficiency can be achieved while maintaining a high standard of care for residents.

Entries for the 2023 Future of Ageing Awards open May 1, 2023 – For further information.

Thanks to those companies who have shown their support for the awards through a partnership.  They are listed below:


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