The Dow Chemical Company and The University of Queensland have unveiled a strategic partnership that will establish the Dow Centre for Sustainable Engineering Innovation.

Funded through a Dow contribution worth $10 million over the next six years, the newl Centre will pursue a program of research and collaboration aimed at harnessing solutions to the sustainability challenges of the 21st Century.

“This is a lighthouse initiative - hot-housing innovation at the urban energy, water and carbon nexus, which will attract international attention to the issues of sustainability and position Dow and UQ as leaders, achievers and contributors to society,” Dow Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Andrew Liveris said.

“The Center confirms our mutual commitment to sustainability through its focus on high impact outcomes of global significance and delivery of knowledge and leadership for future generations within an operational framework that provides economic prosperity while respecting community values and the environment.”

This is the first time Dow has signed such an agreement with an Australian university.

“Dow and UQ are natural partners,” Mr Liveris said. “The University's strategic intent and core strengths in science and engineering align well with those of Dow. Dow's culture of discovery and innovation, a focus on advanced manufacturing and new markets, and a commitment to sustainability are closely matched by the new initiatives driven by global sustainability challenges that are defining UQ's strategic direction.”

UQ Vice-Chancellor Professor Deborah Terry said The Dow Centre for Sustainable Engineering Innovation would be a driving force of the University's sustainability agenda.

The Federal Government has passed legislation that will abolish the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) through the Senate.

The South Australian Government has released a discussion paper aimed at ‘ensuring not only the survival but the expansion of South Australian manufacturing.’

Consult Australia has recommended that Governments undergo significant reform in their procurement processes, to ease the burden of the engineering skills shortage on the private sector.

Engineers Australia has proposed that a nationally consistent scheme of engineering registration be part of the COAG ‘seamless economy’ reforms.

Consult Australia has released results of a  benchmarking study into gender diversity within the engineering workforce, marking a first step by industry towards overcoming the issue.

Bankstown advanced manufacturer Quickstep has won a contract valued between $75 million and $100 million to make carbon fibre wing flaps for C130J Hercules military transport aircraft.

Leighton Contractors has signed five-year Framework Agreements with mining giant Rio Tinto for the delivery of a stream of earthworks projects and a stream of structural, mechanical, piping (SMP) projects as part of Rio Tinto’s 353 million tonnes per annum expansion program in the Pilbara.

Federal Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese and Victorian State Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder have welcomed the completion of the $40 million Altona Intermodal Enhancement project, hailing the initative as an important step towards growing the rail freight sector.

The Western Australian Government has given final approval for a rail and power supply project in the Pilbara estimated to be worth more than $400 million, and which is expected to generate 600 jobs in the region.

Infrastructure giant Downer EDI has announced it has been awarded a rolling stock contract to supply Downer Electro-Motive Diesel services to BHP Billiton’s Iron Ore operations in the Pilbara for the next five years.

The Federal Government is aiming to streamline the tender process for Government funded building works after releasing the Implementation Guidelines for the National Code of Practice for the Construction Industry paper.

University of Wollongong scientists are behind the establishment of a global consortium which is using sunlight to convert water into important chemical fuels such as hydrogen gas.

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