RECOGNISED as a world leader in quality of life services, Sodexo is making waves in sustainability at its Brisbane headquarters. Sodexo has reduced mains water usage for non-drinkable purposes by 50 percent by substituting it with rainwater harvested on site.
The facilities management company, which has been conducting improvements of its Eight Mile Plains office since 2015, has captured 584,828 litres of rainwater since the project began.
The rainwater is now being used 50 percent of the time for non-drinkable purposes, such as for outdoor taps, ponds and irrigation, instead of relying fully on Queensland’s water supply.
Sodexo director od on-site services, Keith Weston said the direction was a win for the environment, while also saving the company on water costs.
“The project aligns with Sodexo’s goal of being more sustainable across the business, including reducing waste and lessening pressure on the environment,” Mr Weston said.
“Population growth and decreased rainfall continues to put pressure on limited State Government water supplies. Smart buildings such as Sodexo’s Brisbane office assists in reducing this demand, saving water for others in the community.”
Along with preserving water, Mr Weston said the direction helped the business be resilient.
“Every now and then there can be disruptions to main water supplies, which in the past would result in complete loss of water supply to buildings in our business park,” he said. “Having our own water systems in place allows us to continue to be operational, no matter what happens.”
Sodexo has been able to achieve these results by installing a dual feed water system which separates potable and non-potable plumbing.
Rainwater is harvested from the Sodexo roof to an inground 20,000 litre rainwater tank. Floats within the tank talk with a RainPro controller and when a high water level is detected the controller selects water usage from the rain tanks. When the water level is detected as low, the controller automatically switches the supply to come from the street water mains.
Sodexo plans to continue its focus on saving water at the site.
“We’ve had discussions with our landlord and we believe we can get to 100 percent rainwater usage for our non-potable purposes if we install additional rainwater tanks,” Mr Weston said.
The project aligns with Sodexo’s Better Tomorrow 2025 corporate responsibility roadmap, with one focus being on waste.
Sodexo in Australia employs a diverse workforce of more than 5,000 employees delivering a unique array of over 100 integrated services lines including catering, facilities management, concierge services, security, asset maintenance and hospitality services to the corporate, healthcare, education, government, energy and resources sectors. The company was founded in Marseille, France, in 1966 by Pierre Bellon and has since developed as a global leader in services that improve ‘quality of life’ in over 72 countries.