Planned JCU system outage 23 to 27 May 2024 impacting student and application portals.

About JCU Sustainability Interim Sustainability Report 2022-2023

Interim Sustainability Report 2022-2023

Sustainable development can be interpreted as incorporating three pillars: environment, social and economic sustainability. Sustainable development occurs at the intersection of these three pillars, as represented it this Venn diagram from Elkington, 2004. James Cook University’s efforts towards sustainable development at the intersection of these three spheres is actively making a livable, viable, fair, and sustainable difference to life in the Tropics.

Sustainable development spheres

Figure 1.1: Sustainable development spheres from Elkington, 2004

In the environment pillar, JCU aims to protect the biodiversity and environmental health of its campuses and the broader Tropics, reduce the use of water, energy and resources in its operations and reduce its output of waste and pollution. JCU’s social pillar goals are to create a campus environment free of discrimination of all kinds, a fair and equitable university and improve the lives of people in the Tropics through its outreach and research activities. JCU’s aims under the economic pillar are to create an economically viable university that supports the local community, creates fair and rewarding employment for its staff, and supports sustainable investment respecting human rights and avoiding carbon intensive industries.

2023 has been a year of re-focusing the University’s sustainability priorities, assess where we are now against our goals, and to decide where we want to be as a university in the future. We are proud of the sustainability achievements of our staff and students, in their research, community outreach and stewardship for our region, and we are excited for the plans and projects that are underway for future research and actions for the goals.

In this first sustainability report for James Cook University, we aim to capture the achievements that JCU has made towards the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals across our campuses in Australia and Singapore. We recognise the challenges and difficulties we face in reaching our sustainability goals, in our current fiscally restrained situation, and regional and remote campus locations. JCU’s campuses’ locations give the University its strong and unique sense of place, and a unique student population with rural and remote students. This location adjacent to two World Heritage Areas, incredibly beautiful landscapes, ancient and vibrant Indigenous cultures and amazing endemic biodiversity, gives the University a source of identity and strength, it provides our research foci, and inspires staff and students to do better to understand and protect the environment we live and work in.

Interim Sustainability Report 2022–2023

Download and view a copy of the report (PDF, 17329 KB)

Front cover of Sustainability Report

Students holding sustainability boxes.


James Cook University partners with Russo Higher Education Pty Ltd to deliver the programs available at our Brisbane campus.