Sydney Metro - Western Sydney Airport project committed to net zero carbon emissions

Sydney Metro - Western Sydney Airport project is the first rail infrastructure project in Australian history to commit to being certified carbon neutral from the start of construction, all the way through to operations.

All carbon emissions generated during construction and operations will be reduced and offset. This includes carbon emissions from manufacturing materials like concrete and steel used to build tunnels and viaducts, the fuel used by excavators for earthworks, electricity in the site sheds and even the emissions generated by waste breaking down in landfill.

The project will also use solar panels onsite and renewable energy as part of the operational electricity offset commitment.

To ensure full transparency and a robust third-party verification of net zero carbon, Sydney Metro - Western Sydney Airport will seek recognition under the Australian Government’s Climate Active Carbon Neutral Service certification program, once the project is complete.

The CPBG JV team (CPB Contractors and Ghella) delivering the project has identified a 27 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from base case to design. Other opportunities and initiatives that have resulted in reductions include:

  • precast segments are being made with a lower volume of steel and concrete, resulting in lower embodied carbon. Precast segments account for 58 per cent of the project’s carbon footprint reduction
  • renewable energy represents 13 per cent of total energy use for the project
  • 100 per cent of clean reusable excavated material has been reused or recycled as of December 2022
  • The project is currently recycling 95 per cent (by weight) of suitable construction and demolition waste, and 80 per cent (by weight) of office waste as of December 2022
  • reuse of suitable excavated materials on-sites has been used as backfill behind permanent walls which results in reduced emissions that is associated with sending spoil offsite and importing new spoil
  • the project has reduced total water use by 13 per cent by selecting water efficient tunnel boring machines, water efficient fixtures and fittings on temporary site facilties.

The city-shaping project, from St Marys through to the new airport and the Western Sydney Aerotropolis, will provide a major economic stimulus for western Sydney, supporting more than 14,000 jobs during construction for the NSW and national economies.

The 23-kilometre new railway will link residential areas with job hubs including the new Aerotropolis, and connect travellers from the new airport to the rest of Sydney’s public transport system.

All Sydney Metro projects have committed to offsetting 100 percent of carbon emissions associated with electricity consumption during operations, thereby managing about 70 percent of carbon emissions generated over the project life cycle.