Designing our future at the Cleantech Effect
  • Wednesday 23 August 2017

Leading industry experts including Grand Designs Australia host Peter Maddison and futurist Dr Keith Suter gathered today (August 23) at the Sunshine Coast for the only cleantech conference of its kind in Australia, The Cleantech Effect 2017.

The two keynote speakers agreed that cleantech will have a big role to play in shaping our future.

Dr Suter said he viewed the Sunshine Coast “as the Silicon Valley of cleantech”.

The Cleantech Effect is one of the strategic directions outlined in council’s Draft Environment and Liveability Strategy and showcases leading industry experts and innovative cleantech solutions to help businesses find cost-effective solutions to support their operations.

Today’s event attracted an audience of more than 200 attendees.

Peter Maddison said the conversation at today’s event would help build sustainable communities into the future.

“The interface between built environment and the natural environment is absolutely critical to creating sustainable communities,” Mr Maddison said.

“The natural environment has got a huge part to play in moderating the environment that we’re in.

“Landscape isn’t something that you plug in after a piece of urban infrastructure is done.

“It has to be something that is embedded as part of the design.

“To the uninitiated, cleantech may sound like an event where people sell cleaning products, but when you get your head around it, I would call it clean futures because this is about finding a better way, not for individual sectors of industry or for the residential market, but for the entire community.”

Dr Suter said it was events such as the Cleantech Effect that helped to identify future trends that were sure to have a positive impact on our future generations.

“Cleantech really means the way of the future,” Dr Suter said.

“We have to find a new way of making money, but at the same time, protect our environment.

“We have to find a way to do well by doing good, and cleantech is the bridge between those two considerations.”

Dr Suter said that hosting events such as Cleantech Effect, and focusing on sustainability, positioned the Sunshine Coast as a leader in the cleantech space, and opened great opportunities for the region into the future.

“The industrial revolution was started in small, local factories and built and spread across the world, Dr Suter said.

“What we see here today is a similar process of supporting a local initiative, driven by local people that will continue to gain more attention.”

Economic Development and Innovation Portfolio Cr Steve Robinson said Cleantech Effect was a major drawcard for our region and attracted attendees from around Australia.

“This is the second year of the Cleantech Effect and I’m pleased to see the event continue to grow as a vital conference for the cleantech industry,” Cr Robinson said.

“This year’s event saw more than 10 leading industry experts speak on a range of topics from architecture trends, local energy trading and microgrids through to a case study of UnitingCare Queensland’s significant sustainability program which has resulted in some outstanding outcomes for the not-for-profit business.

“With more than 10 speakers, over 30 exhibitors and 200 attendees, the event was a great success.”

For more information about The Cleantech Effect 2017, visit

The Cleantech Effect 2017 was supported in partnership by Sunshine Coast Council and Cleantech Industries Sunshine Coast and was held at the Lake Kawana Community Centre on Wednesday August 23 from noon to 5.30pm, with networking drinks from 5.30pm to 7.30pm.