Monday, 21 June 2010

Submission to Boroondara Council on GHG targets and strategies

Further to my address at the Services Special Committee Meeting (Boroondara) on Monday 21 June, the Lighter Footprints group strongly supports Boroondara's  "Our Low Carbon Future" (July 2009)  strategy document.

We support the statement that "Council has committed to stepping up its action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions" ( Intro para., page 1) .

Lighter Footprints suggests that:

  • To achieve the "Low Carbon Future" target of 30 - 40% reduction in GHG's by 2020 (Corporate target) , the Council needs to set a Performance target of  3 to 4% reduction each Budget over the 10 years from 2010 to 2020.    (reference page 65 of SSC Agenda 21 June 2010,  and also p.29 of DRAFT Budget 2010-11).
  • Council consider engagement of a consultant to do an extensive energy audit of all Council facilities and one who can work collaboratively with Council stakeholders to develop the required 'Performance target' roadmap. (for example consultants with expertise in Energy Efficiencies Opportunities for major businesses - Federal legislation)
  • Council accelerate its "Buildings Sustainability" program in 2010-11, by adopting specific measures (such as 6-star standards) to provide assets that will be assets rather than legacies, in a  'low carbon', 'low rainfall' future.
  • Council adopt a fiscal approach whereby the additional 10% building cost is seen as an investment. An investment that ensures Council assets will be cheaper to operate for the next 25 years. The 10% capital cost for 6-star assets could be covered by phasing of cashflow in budget cashflow terms of one building 6 months later. For example, Hawthorn Library, Hawthorn Town Hall Arts Precinct and Camberwell Library & Office projects will cost $12.8m.....in order to achieve 6-star with 10% on-cost of $1.2 million, one building would be delayed 6 months.

The GHG target be achieved by  a strategic & systematic approach to :

  • Energy efficiency of buildings, particularly for new and re-development  capital projects ;   
  • roll-out of Cogen projects; 
  • modernize HVAC (heating, ventilating, air-conditioning),  
  • Procurement Policies e.g. Vehicles with low emission (including diesel), bikes, etc;
  •  Eco-buy procurement forum;  
  • T5 street lighting; Behavioural awareness training of all employees; 
  • carbon-storage in form of trees and soil, other generated from comprehensive energy audit.

Michael Nolan, on behalf of Lighter Footprints

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