Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 3 2016 Contents 59
Issue 3 2016 Defence
58 Defence Issue 3 2016
40 years ago, she did not
imagine she would still be
working for Defence today.
“There have been some interesting times
throughout my career, lots of changes – some
good some not so good,” Wendy says. “I have
met lots of wonderful people and formed many
Wendy received a Secretary’s award for 40
years’ service in April
After starting her working life in the
Public Service in 1975 in Adelaide with the
Department of Employment and Industrial
Relations, Wendy left two years later when she
was accepted into the Air Force.
“I started on 28 February 1977,” she says.
“Arriving at Block 100 at RAAF Base Laverton
with 93 other recruits on a freezing cold and
wet Melbourne day, all I could think was, ‘what
have I got myself in for’?”
She soon settled into the routine of the Air
Force and spent the next decade in uniform.
“I really enjoyed my 10 years in the RAAF,
especially the people I worked alongside – the
camaraderie of my colleagues made all the
While she enjoyed this aspect of being
in uniform, she never really liked the more
‘formal’ side of serving.
“The one thing I really did not like was
parading, especially in winter,” she says.
Eventually she decided to “move over the
civilian side of the fence”. In 1987 she joined
the APS and worked in the Defence Regional
Office in Melbourne. She was successfully
promoted to Publications Officer and later to
She currently works for Defence Publishing
Services at RAAF Base Edinburgh, providing
printing and binding services for South
Australia and the Northern Territory. She is also
the Technical Publications Officer for units at
RAAF Base Pearce in Western Australia.
Major highlights in Wendy’s career include
receiving an Australia Day Medallion in the
early 1990s and being asked to become part of
a new publishing team at the Defence Regional
Wendy Turnbull has seen Defence from ‘both sides of the fence’
EFENCE is working to
confirm its position as a leader
in the area of sustainable
Across Defence, a number
of initiatives that support this vision are
achieving great successes.
The Defence Ecologically Sustainable
Development Program is one way that
Defence is encouraging improvement in the
sustainability of our estate.
The program funds projects that improve
energy and water efficiency and minimise waste
to landfill. Regional and national projects that
receive funding are aligned with the Defence
estate energy or water strategy priorities.
One of the projects delivered through
this program is the new solar power array
at Bathurst Island in the Northern Territory.
Previously, all of the electricity on the island
was powered by diesel generators. The Bathurst
Island alternative power generation project
implemented a hybrid 32kW solar system with
lithium ion battery backup and a variable speed
generator. As a result, solar energy can provide
up to 55 per cent of the electricity demand on
the site, reducing fuel usage to 40 litres a day.
This generates savings of $321,000 a year, with
return on investment expected in one-and-a-half
The Bathurst Island project is not the only
one to have achieved success. In 2014-15, there
were 26 projects approved and delivered under
the program, at a total cost of $4.9 million. The
26 projects resulted in a combined net operating
cost saving of $8.7 million over the life of the
Another recent achievement in the
sustainability area is the implementation
of the Smart Infrastructure manual, which
aims to continuously improve the efficiency,
effectiveness and sustainability of the Defence
The manual enables infrastructure delivery
to be linked to operational performance.
It provides clear and consistent advice to
designers and contractors on ecologically
sustainable development and whole-of-life
Defence is undertaking
a range of initiatives to
be a leader in sustainable
expectations. To build on this, the manual
enables standardised monitoring, facilitates the
capture of lessons and opportunities to inform
future policy and encourages innovation.
Defence also participated in Earth Hour
for the ninth consecutive year on 19 March.
Earth Hour is an annual international event that
encourages people to switch off non-essential
lighting and appliances for one hour to promote
energy efficiency, reduce the effects of climate
change and contribute to a sustainable future.
In Defence, the Earth Hour activity was
also used to identify opportunities for ongoing
initiatives to improve resource efficiency.
The results from Earth Hour 2016 revealed
an average reduction in energy use of 10 per
cent across the Defence estate, compared with
energy use figures the previous weekend,
achieved simply by switching off all non-
essential lights and equipment. This opportunity
for ongoing implementation in Defence every
weekend has the potential to achieve even
greater efficiencies and could lead to annual
savings of more than $1 million.
The results pleased the Assistant Secretary
Environment and Engineering, Alison Clifton.
“Earth Hour is a great initiative to raise
awareness of our energy use and promote our
commitment to the efficient use of energy – a
critical enabler for Defence capability. Defence
employees share the responsibility for using
energy and water efficiently. Everyone can
make a difference,” she says.
Defence will continue to do more work to
support its vision to be a leader in sustainable
environmental management. The future is sure
to bring more exciting developments.
towards a sustainable future? Is your work
area already doing something innovative? Let
the team know at environmentandheritage@
It’s been a varied an fulfilling career, but
her thoughts are now turning to life beyond the
Department and full-time work.
She has plans to relocate to Western Australia
to be closer to her family.
“I would still like to work part-time in
the printing/publishing field, but am looking
forward to spending time with my grand-
nephews, relaxing and travelling,” she says.
“I HAVE MET LOTS
Conserving energy can be as easy as switching off, from lights to monitors, to help contribute to a
Photo: Kimiah Alberts
Wendy Turnbull cel-
ebrates a rewarding
career in Defence.
Photo: Corporal David Cotton
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