Integrated Sustainability Analysis
@ The University of Sydney

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Input-Output Conference 2010

Partnership between EcoNorfolk Foundation and ISA

In March and August 2007, EcoNorfolk Foundation invited ISA to visit Norfolk Island, with two aims in mind:

  • to brief key decision-makers on the island on the Triple Bottom Line and the Ecological Footprint, and
  • to undertake a number of Triple Bottom Line assessments of businesses on the island, using ISA's BL3 software.

A full Triple Bottom Line report is now available.

Manfred Lenzen meeting Norfolk Island's Administrator, The Honourable Grant Tambling.

Norfolk Island 27 March 2007.

While visiting the island's businesses, Manfred found that - due to Norfolk's unique location, relatively high living and operating cost, and other characteristics - people had come up with creative solutions in order to maintain their businesses profitable. Most of these solutions are also quite benefitial from a Triple Bottom Line point of view. For example, cutting electricity use and emissions, as well as recycling materials in order to save expenses means that - in environmental terms - Norfolk Island products and services often outperfom comparable commodities supplied from the Australian mainland, because the latter are associated with high emissions caused by long shipping transport distances.

Brad Forrester obtaining information, and Manfred Lenzen calculating Triple Bottom Line Accounts .

Norfolk Island 27 March 2007.

Brad Forrester and Manfred Lenzen after having successfully completed yet another Triple Bottom Line analysis.

Norfolk Island 27 March 2007.

Another conclusion that was drawn in meetings with business people and decision-makers was that there is ample scope for advertising Norfolk Island from a sustainability point of view. Looking at the precedent of Fraser Island in Queensland, it was realised how a scientific approach to assessing the sustainability impacts of tourism in collaboration with universities can help distinguishing locations from the general plethora of tourism labelling, avoid “greenwash”, and provides convincing reasons to tourists who desire to take the environment into consideration when travelling. ISA therefore worked with a range of businesses on Norfolk Island.

The Norfolk Island sustainability project creates strong interest from other islands. Kangaroo Island's Natural Resources Management Board invited Manfred to present Norfolk Island's experiences with the Triple Bottom Line.

EcoNorfolk Foundation and ISA envisage running ongoing three-day Triple Bottom Line courses on Norfolk Island, in order to transfer knowledge and skills to the island's business community, as well as to attract people from outside Norfolk to witness a forward-looking and pro-active approach of keeping an island and its businesses at the pulse of time.

Dr Joy Murray
School of Physics, A28
The University of Sydney NSW 2006
+61 (0)2 9351-2627,