Environment Committee Meeting

 

  BUSINESS PAPER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday 11 March 2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Administrative Centre 30 Frances Street Randwick 2031

Telephone: 02 9399 0999 or

1300 722 542 (for Sydney metropolitan area)

Fax:02 9319 1510

general.manager@randwick.nsw.gov.au

www.randwick.nsw.gov.au


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Environment Committee

11 March 2008

 

 

4th March, 2008

 

Environment Committee Meeting

 

Notice is hereby given that an Environment Committee Meeting of the Council of the City of Randwick will be held in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, 90 Avoca Street, Randwick, on Tuesday, 11 March 2008 at 5:30pm.

 

Committee Members:           The Mayor, B Notley-Smith, Belleli, Hughes, Kenny, Matson (Chairperson), Nash (Deputy Chairperson), Tracey, White, Woodsmith.

 

Quorum:                           Five (5) members.

 

NOTE:    At the extraordinary meeting held on 22 May 2007, the Council resolved that the Environment Committee be constituted as a committee with full delegation to determine matters on the agenda.

 

Apologies/Granting of Leave of Absences 

Confirmation of the Minutes  

Environment Committee Meeting - 12 February 2008

Declarations of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests

Address of Council by Members of the Public

Urgent Business

 

Greening Randwick Reports

Nil

Environment Reports

E4/08        Joining the Sustainable Choice Program conducted by the Local Government and Shires Association

E5/08        Utilising Biodiesel in Council Vehicles via a 12 month Biodiesel Trial

E6/08        Evaluation Results Summer Activities 2008

E7/08        Evaluation Results - "Sticky Beak" Open Days 2007    

 

Closed Session

 

Notices of Rescission Motions

 

 

…………………………………………………….

Ray Brownlee

General Manager

 


Environment Committee

11 March 2008

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E4/08

 

 

Subject:                  Joining the Sustainable Choice Program conducted by the Local Government and Shires Association

Folder No:                   F2006/00678

Author:                   Peter Maganov, Manager Sustainability     

 

Introduction

 

A proposal for Randwick City Council to join the Sustainable Choice Program conducted by the Local Government and Shires Association (LGSA).

 

Issues

 

LGSA has written to Council inviting us to participate in the Sustainable Choice Program which aims to contribute to procurement of environmentally sound products and services.

 

Council has commenced along a path of sustainable procurement through parts of the conditions that need to answered in purchasing documentation submitted by contractors and tenderers and also through Council’s own purchasing decisions covering areas such as recycled paper, Greenpower and printers and computers. Council has also drafted up some Green Purchasing policy guidelines to be considered in conjunction with our general purchasing activities.

 

Linking up with the LGSA Sustainable Choice Program will support our own efforts and initiatives in this area and provide the opportunity to benefit from the experience and purchasing practices of other local Councils in NSW.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 10:              A Healthy Environment.

Direction10a:           Council is leading in fostering environmentally sustainable                                      practices.

 

Financial impact statement

 

There is no direct financial impact for this matter.

 

Conclusion

 

Signing on to the LGSA Sustainable Choice Program supports Council’s own commitments and initiatives in this area.

 

Recommendation

 

That:

 

a)       Council receive and note this report; and

 

b)       Council joins the LGSA’s Sustainable Choice Program.

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee

11 March 2008

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E5/08

 

 

Subject:                  Utilising Biodiesel in Council Vehicles via a 12 month Biodiesel Trial

Folder No:                   F2007/00619

Author:                   Bronwyn Englaro, Senior Sustainability Officer     

 

Introduction

 

To seek approval of a 12 month trial for the use of approved biodiesel fuels in Council vehicles currently using diesel fuel.

 

Issues

 

The increasing contribution of fossil fuels to greenhouse gas emissions and the increasing scarcity and security of world wide fossil fuel are two drivers for an interest in alternative fuels. In response, over 20 local Councils in Australia now use biodiesel with at least five of these running their entire diesel fleet on biodiesel.

 

As an alternative to conventional fuels like diesel or other petroleum based fuels; biofuels are derived from renewable resources such as used cooking-oil or sugar-cane waste. These biofuels deliver substantially reduced greenhouse gas and other air emissions over their full life-cycle as compared with fossil fuels. They are also regarded as being part of a closed carbon loop in which the tailpipe emissions of carbon from a 100 percent biofuel or the biofuel component of a blended fuel are, theoretically, no more than was extracted from the atmosphere by the plants during their growth.

 

Biodiesel is a first generation biofuel produced when ethanol derived from sugar and starch crops are blended with vegetable oil or animal fat. The primary feedstock for biodiesel fuels in Australia, are canola, tallow and waste vegetable oil, typically from takeaway food outlets. Other benefits from the use of biodiesel is that the fuel is non-toxic and safe to handle and to transport because it is biodegradable and provides significant reductions in air pollution (especially particulates and carbon monoxide) than petroleum-derived diesel fuel.

 

In 1998/99, Council’s vehicle fleet emissions accounted for 14 percent of Randwick’s corporate greenhouse gas emissions. Council currently consumes approximately 30,000 litres of diesel each month to run vehicles based predominantly at Council’s Works Depot. The use of diesel in these vehicles equates to approximately 970 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year, which is close to 10 percent of our 1998/1999 emissions.

 

A recent research report on biodiesel in Australia, released in June 2007 reported reductions in greenhouse gas emissions as the main motivator for the increased uptake of biodiesel by local Councils. Randwick Council, through the Cities for Climate Protection (CCP) Program, has committed itself to reducing Council’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2012.

 

In addition, Councils who are using biodiesel in their fleets have reported no differences in vehicle performance or operational characteristics including no changes to normal servicing routines and no required diesel vehicle modifications. Reported benefits from the use of biodiesel have included smoother vehicle operation and less odour from vehicle exhausts.

 

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 10:            A Healthy Environment.

Direction10a:           Council is leading in fostering environmentally sustainable                                       practices.

Direction 10g:          Greenhouse Gas emissions are reduced.

Direction10h:            Local Air Quality is improved.

 

Financial impact statement

 

There is a current NSW Government contract for the supply of biodiesel with the per litre biodiesel cost guaranteed as below that of the bulk diesel price.

 

A number of options exist for the delivery of biodiesel under the NSW Government contract for Randwick Council’s plant equipment and vehicles. These options, each based at the Storey Street Works Depot include:

 

Weekly delivery for Council vehicles

Current biodiesel/litre price + delivery charge

(minimum 1,000 litres/wk for 10 – 12 trucks) 

Bulk delivery for Council vehicles

Current biodiesel / litre price + delivery charge

Delivery of an on-site bulk storage and bowser system

6 month lease = $330/wk (minimum 10,000 litres/wk)

12 month lease = $302/wk (minimum 10,000 litres/wk)

(lease/purchase convert 75% of lease to purchase)

 

While costs of biodiesel fuel as a replacement for diesel fuel in Council vehicles would be met through Corporate payment systems, the cost of the on-site bulk storage and bowser system for the 12 month trial period would be funded through the environmental levy.   

 

Further to the above prices, Council could consider the installation of a designated biodiesel tank when underground storage tanks are scheduled to be replaced at the Works Depot in 2008, at a cost of approximately $70,000 or consider converting the lease of the portable storage and fuel tank system at the end of the lease period.

 

Conclusion

 

Inner City Council’s are currently being supplied with biodiesel by a Department of Commerce approved supplier which can provide a certificate of sustainability identifying the feedstock of the oil with every delivery of biodiesel.

 

Council has made great progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions but will still have great difficulty in meeting its 2012 target. This is also likely to impact upon Council’s emissions results to be quantified in the soon-to-commence Local Government Emissions Trading Scheme (LGETS). Biodiesel has the potential to significantly reduce Council’s greenhouse gas emissions with minimal outlay and alterations to existing operations.

 

 

 

 


Recommendation

 

That Council endorse a twelve month biodiesel trial for existing diesel vehicles at Council’s Works Depot utilising the portable storage station option above.

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee

11 March 2008

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E6/08

 

 

Subject:                  Evaluation Results Summer Activities 2008

Folder No:                   F2006/00662

Author:                   Helen Morrison, Project Officer Sustainability     

 

Introduction

 

To provide a report to Committee on Randwick Council’s 2008 Summer Activities program.

 

Issues

 

The Summer Activities program, now in its fourth year, aims to build community awareness and understanding of the shared responsibility of protecting our fragile coast and marine environments. The program supports a regional campaign over the January holiday period established by the Sydney Coastal Councils Group (the 15 Sydney Councils with sea and harbour frontages that collectively represent almost 1.5million Sydneysiders).

 

The Summer Activities are open to people of all ages and levels of fitness, with a general cut-off for children aged 10 years. A major focus of the program is to bring parents/ guardians and their children together to learn and discover aspects of the coastal and marine environment that they may have previously been unaware of or taken for granted.

 

Four hundred residents and visitors participated in 27 activities offered by the program over the 2 weeks of January 2008. This participation represents a 20 percent increase from 2007. Most sessions in 2008 were fully booked or over subscribed.

 

The Summer Activities were held from January 7 to January18 January. Eight new activities were added to the 2008 program. Previously organised activities included snorkeling, learn to surf, Bare Island Discovery Tour with National Parkes and Wildlife Service, Guided Rockpool Rambles, introductions to SCUBA, guided Bush Tucker walks, and Science of the Surf presentations Slideshow.

 

New activities for 2008 included: Learn to Sail with Yarra Bay Sailing Club, a guided family Bicycle Ride at Yarra Bay and La Perouse and coastal Boat Trips with a guest commentary from the very eminent Professor Bruce Thom, formerly Chair of the NSW Coastal Council.   

Evaluations conducted after each activity confirms that participants enjoyed the range of activities held and increased their knowledge and understanding of coastal and marine issues. The knowledge rating before and after the activities indicates that the learning content within the activities resulted in an increase in understanding of coastal awareness.

 

Participants were asked to indicate a number (from 1-10) that showed how much they knew, and now know about our marine life and ways of caring for our coast before and after the activity. 100 percent of participants indicated their knowledge of our marine life and ways of caring for our coast had increased, some indicating by up to 70 percent.

 

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 2:               A Vibrant and Diverse Community

Direction 2(a):           Enrich our range of community services that meet our community’s needs.

Outcome 10:              A Healthy Environment

Direction 10(a):         Council is a leader in fostering environmentally sustainable practices.

 

Financial impact statement

 

Summer Actions program costs amounted to approximately $12,000 funded from the Community Education budget of Council’s Sustaining our City program. A funding application to support Council’s program was unsuccessful in 2008 but will be sought again for next year’s program.

 

Conclusion

 

Now in its fourth year, Randwick’s Summer Activities Program is probably the most comprehensive amongst coastal Councils in the Sydney Coastal Councils Group. Its increasing popularity suggests its importance as a key element in Council’s community activities program. Evaluations of the program continue to show the value of the Summer Activities in engaging and informing local residents and beach visitors of the importance of protecting our spectacular but fragile coastal and marine environment.

 

Recommendation

 

That the report be received and noted.

 

Attachment/s:

 

1View

Evaluation Report – Summer Activities Program, January 2008.

7 Pages

 

 

 


Evaluation Report – Summer Activities Program, January 2008.

Attachment 1

 

 







 

 


Environment Committee

11 March 2008

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E7/08

 

 

Subject:                  Evaluation Results - "Sticky Beak" Open Days 2007

Folder No:                   F2007/00483

Author:                   Helen Morrison, Project Officer Sustainability     

 

Introduction

 

To provide a report to Committee on Randwick Council’s “Sticky Beak” Open Day series.

 

Issues

 

Council’s Open Days, promoted to residents as “Come and Have a Sticky Beak behind the Scenes” or “Sticky Beak” Open Days were organised over a five month period at the end of 2007, specifically to showcase Council’s innovative water-saving projects carried out as part of Randwick’s Environmental Levy program.

 

The series of community Open Days were run at five key Council sites in the second half of 2007. Up to 3,300 residents and visitors participated over the 5 locations. Four of the five Open Days form part of Randwick’s ‘Sustaining our City’ community education focus.

 

The Open Days were organised to support and coincide with national environmental events and celebrations including: Biodiversity Month in September; National Water Week, in October 2007; National Recycling Week, in November 2007; Coastcare Week and Ocean Care Day in December; and Local Government Week, in August.

 

The Sustaining our City “Sticky Beak” Open Days were held at the Community Nursery, Works Depot, Recycling Centre and Des Renford Aquatic Centre.

 

Evaluations were conducted at each of the Open Days and showed clearly that residents and visitors enjoyed the opportunities to visit Council’s sites and gained an increased appreciation and knowledge of Council’s core operations and environmental initiatives. Additional information and giveaways were provided to encourage those attending to increase their own sustainability practices at home, in the garden, at school and in the workplace. Visitors were drawn from a cross section of the Randwick community. 

 

With the popularity of the Open Days and their educational value for residents it is proposed to hold Open Days at the two most popular sites in 2008. These are planned for the Community Nursery on September 6 coinciding with Biodiversity Month and the Works Depot on October 25 in support of Water Week.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 2:               A Vibrant and Diverse Community

Direction 2(a):           Enrich our range of community services that meet our community needs

Outcome 10:              A Healthy Environment

Direction 10(a):         Council is a leader in fostering environmentally sustainable practices.

 


Financial impact statement

 

Funding for these Open Days are allocated from the Sustaining our City’s Community Education budget with the costs coming in between $2,000 and $4,000 per event. 

 

Conclusion

 

Evaluation results confirm the value of Council’s Sticky Beak Open Days as a valuable way of informing residents on environmental initiatives undertaken by Council and providing additional opportunities for them to find out how to improve their own sustainable efforts around the home, garden, school or work.

 

Recommendation

 

That Council note the 2 Open Days planned for 2008.

 

Attachment/s:

 

1View

Evaluation Report – Sticky Beak Open Days 2007.

9 Pages

 

 

 


Evaluation Report – Sticky Beak Open Days 2007.

Attachment 1