Blockchain and how David Chandler’s team is using it for generate better buildings and track carbon in building materials

Moonshot 2030: Somewhere out there, there’s a building under construction serving as a guinea pig for a “pioneering” tech-enabled quality control system that will hopefully end shoddy building practices for good.

Such a system has long been on the wishlist for NSW Building Commissioner David Chandler, who has been tasked with cleaning up an industry troubled by defects and poor building practices. Known as the “trustworthy index”, central to the system is a distributed ledger (blockchain technology) that will be used to keep track of materials, contractors, building methods and other information that collectively can be used to determine the health and integrity of a building.

The state government is also eyeing off the blockchain system to keep an accurate, unalterable record of the embodied carbon of materials going into buildings.

The technology is now being delivered on behalf of the NSW government by a consortium of players, including KPMG, Mirvac, the Western Sydney University’s Centre for Smart Modern Construction (c4SMC) and Microsoft.

Even the ASX will chip in, according to Mirvac chief digital officer William Payne who is due to speak at The Fifth Estate’s Moonshot 2030 event on eco-proptech on 23 November, by providing its distributed ledger exchange platform that is replacing its legacy CHESS system.

“We’ve got the c4SMC bringing their academic capability, the ASX bringing that blockchain experience, Microsoft bringing the tech experience, KPMG have built previously a sort of similar platform and we’re leveraging their knowledge there, and Mirvac is bringing the industry knowledge.”