Environment Committee Meeting

 

  BUSINESS PAPER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday 10 August 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

10 August 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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, 10 August 2010 at 6:00pm.

 

 

Committee Members:           The Mayor, J Procopiadis, Andrews, Belleli, Hughes (Deputy Chairperson), Matson (Chairperson), Notley-Smith, 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 - 20 July 2010

 

Declarations of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests

 

Address of Committee by Members of the Public

 

Urgent Business

Greening Randwick Reports

Nil

Environment Reports

E11/10      Evaluation report - Sustainable Living Workshop program for residents

E12/10      Eco Living School Challenge being held as part of this year's Eco Living Fair at Randwick Community Centre

E13/10      Climate Change Risk Assessment conducted for Randwick City by GHD consultants

E14/10      Development of Community Garden Policy and Guidelines for Randwick

E15/10      Schools Tree Day plantings in Randwick - 30 July 2010    

Notice of Rescission Motions

Nil 

 

 

 

 

…………………………………………………….

Ray Brownlee

General Manager

 


Environment Committee

10 August 2010

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E11/10

 

 

Subject:                  Evaluation report - Sustainable Living Workshop program for residents

Folder No:                   F2010/00241

Author:                   Fiona Campbell, Sustainability Education Officer     

 

Introduction

 

Reporting on the evaluation carried out on Randwick’s ‘Living Smart’ sustainable living courses for residents.

 

Issues

 

Since the commencement of Council’s Sustaining our City environmental levy program, a series of sustainable living courses have been held at least 2 times each year, free for residents. Over the past 4 or 5 years, approximately 800 residents have participated. The purpose of these courses have been to build capacity and confidence of local residents in making changes to make their home, school or workplace more sustainable over the long term and modifying their behaviour when it comes to using energy and water, reducing waste etc.

 

Late in 2009, the course format was adjusted along the lines of the very successful ‘Living Smart’ model which originated in Western Australia and has been recognised with a Eureka Science prize for its structured approach and content delivery relating to the full range of sustainability issues. The ‘Living Smart’ sustainable living courses were delivered in Randwick under a licence agreement creating a more structured course of 6 to 8 sessions covering 10 specific areas of sustainable living advice and learning for residents.

 

As part of Council’s ongoing delivery of sustainable behavioural change advice and training to residents the ‘Living Smart’ program has recently been evaluated by an external specialist confirming the benefits for those attending and behavioural changes occurring as a result of participation in these courses. The evaluation results show:

 

§  a wide take up of actions and ideas by participants attending the course with a focus on saving energy and water, home gardening and composting, changes to the way individuals use their motor vehicles and even in terms of individual health and diet;

§  a much greater understanding of sustainability issues than expected by participants and a willingness to communicate this understanding to neighbours, friends and family members;

§  appreciation of the expertise of presenters used in delivering workshop content;

§  a greater connectedness of participants to their local communities with an interest in extending their involvement in their local community beyond the 6 to 8 week workshop program.

 

As part of their attendance, participants receive an Action Guide which they noted in the evaluation is a strong reference document for them to use during and after the workshop as they continue their learning and understanding of issues covered during the workshop series.

 

As required under the licensing agreement with Living Smart in Western Australia, the evaluation report will be made available via both their website and Council’s site.

Future ‘Living Smart’ sustainable living courses for residents will be enhanced by the points identified in the evaluation report. These future courses will be based around the Randwick Community Centre where an externally funded project is creating a sustainability education hub for the community of Randwick.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 3:       An informed and engaged community.

Direction 3(c):   A community involved in shaping and enhancing our City.

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

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

 

Financial impact statement

 

The current external funding for the sustainability education hub at Randwick Community Centre has approximately $20,000 budgeted to fund the ‘Living Smart’ sustainable living courses at the Centre over 3 years.

 

Conclusion

 

The evaluation of the Living Smart sustainable living courses for residents is an important check to ensure its ongoing contribution and value to the community education program carried out as part of Council’s Sustaining our City initiative. The next ‘Living Smart’ sustainable living course commences in Term 4 from 30 October 2010.

 

 

Recommendation

 

That the report be received and noted.

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee

10 August 2010

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E12/10

 

 

Subject:                  Eco Living School Challenge being held as part of this year's Eco Living Fair at Randwick Community Centre

Folder No:                   PROJ/10386/2008

Author:                   Fiona Campbell, Sustainability Education Officer     

 

Introduction

 

To outline the Ecoliving Schools Challenge being held as part of the Ecoliving Fair at the Randwick Community Centre in September 2010.

 

Issues

 

Randwick Council’s annual Ecoliving Fair is being held this year on Sunday 19 September 2010 at the Randwick Community Centre from 10.30am to 3.30pm. The event is expected to see the stage 1 completion of the sustainability retrofit of the Community Centre as part of the 2-year externally funded project supported by the NSW Government.

 

In conjunction with this flagship environmental event for Randwick, schools are being invited to participate in the Ecoliving Schools Challenge, aimed at showcasing school projects completed throughout the year that progress conservation or sustainability activities or projects at local schools. Schools are being asked to submit their work in the form of a powerpoint or DVD of class projects carried out as part of the schools existing program to avoid unnecessary new work or material being developed by the school. Schools will be also be eligible to submit works that have been created for the NSW Department of Education’s separate environmental initiative, known as “Enviro Inspiro!”

 

This is a new initiative of the Ecoliving Fair to encourage wider school participation as part of the environmental proceedings and is intended to support the new focus of the Randwick Community Centre as a sustainability education hub for the City.  Prizes on offer to schools for winning entries include the school’s choice for either:

 

1.     A school’s kitchen garden installation or Native Haven garden installation or a school educational visit on water or energy conservation.

2.     Further prizes include visits for the school to Council’s Barrett House Sustainability Demonstration project, a compost system or tours of the water and energy conservation trail at the Randwick Community Centre.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 3:       An informed and engaged community.

Direction 3(c):   A community involved in shaping and enhancing our City.

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

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

 

Financial impact statement

 

Approximately $10,000 is budgeted for the Ecoliving Schools Challenge through Community Education programs of the environmental levy program with a further $6,000 paid through the Public Facilities grant provided by the NSW Government for the sustainability retrofit of the Randwick Community Centre.

 

Conclusion

 

Schools involvement in Council programs is always a challenge including their participation in our Ecoliving Fair. This is in part due to the high pressure on schools in terms of key education and curricula requirements etc. This approach to invite them to participate in our Schools Challenge, including prizes on offer, has been established through communication with schools as a way for them to take part without creating new demands on existing school programs or commitments. It is intended to extend this offer to schools for next years Ecoliving Fair to create consistency and early notice for their potential involvement in 2011. 

 

 

Recommendation

 

That Councillors note this new initiative as part of Randwick’s annual Ecoliving Fair and encourage schools to participate where applicable.

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee

10 August 2010

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E13/10

 

 

Subject:                  Climate Change Risk Assessment conducted for Randwick City by GHD consultants

Folder No:                   F2009/00068

Author:                   Peter Maganov, Manager Sustainability     

 

Introduction

 

To advise Council of the report completed for Randwick by GHD consultants assessing climate change risks for the City.

 

Issues

 

As reported in December 2008, (E26/08 refers), GHD Consultants have undertaken an extensive assessment of climate change risks relevant to Randwick Council. This has been completed through funding received from the Commonwealth Government. A briefing was provided to Councillors on the results of this assessment earlier in July.

 

Broadly speaking, the assessment, which incorporated a number of workshops with Council staff, identified a number of key issues for Council to consider in future policy areas, infrastructure investments and educational programs for the community.

 

These include:

 

Priority area - Extreme

Approaches for consideration

Increased coastal erosion particularly in low-lying areas of Randwick and increased occurrences of extreme weather

Develop a Plan of Management for Coastal Open Space incorporating Council responses to mitigate risks associated with flooding and coastal erosion.

 

Develop strategies to inform Council and establish funding sources for works necessary to upgrade or replace necessary infrastructure, drainage etc

Increased incidence of flooding due in part to extreme weather events

Completion of flood studies and integration of findings into relevant reports and policies of Council.

 

A longer term communications and community education strategy to increase understanding of adaptation measures which may be required for Randwick.

Priority area - High

Approaches for consideration

Decreased water availability

Incorporate mechanisms and responses aligned with City Plan that recognise and respond to climate change impacts such as decreased water availability.

 

Undertake research into Council vulnerabilities with regard to access and supply of water and establish responses to Council’s critical threshold for water availability.

Damage to property and life including responding to ‘heat stress’ in the community from extreme weather events

Integrate climate change related risks into responses under emergency and disaster planning within the City with a view to facilitating community responses and capacity to longer term climate impacts.

 

A longer term communications and community education strategy to increase understanding of adaptation measures which may be required for Randwick.

 

The assessment concluded the impacts of climate change to Randwick may not be focussed on direct impacts to our coastline but more probably from a lack of capacity of existing infrastructure, particularly in flood prone or low lying areas of Randwick, to cope with the expected impacts of more regular extreme weather events.

 

The findings of the GHD risk assessment will now be considered in future work planning of a number of areas of Council including Strategic Planning, Infrastructure and Technical Services and Sustainability.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

Direction 10(b):  Environmental risks and impacts are strategically managed.

 

Financial impact statement

 

The report for Council was prepared from a $50,000 externally funded grant paid by the Commonwealth.

 

Conclusion

 

Although the time frames for this assessment extend from 2030 and beyond it is important that Council continues to consider the necessary policy and engineering responses to climate change into the future.

 

 

Recommendation

 

That this report is received and noted and that Council receives a report in 12 months on the next level of response as a result of the GHD climate change assessment for Randwick.

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee

10 August 2010

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E14/10

 

 

Subject:                  Development of Community Garden Policy and Guidelines for Randwick

Folder No:                   F2010/00241

Author:                   Peter Maganov, Manager Sustainability     

 

Introduction

 

Seeking approval for Randwick’s Community Garden Policy.

 

Issues

 

Over the past 12 months Council has received a number of enquiries from local residents and school organisations seeking support for the development of community vegetable gardens and food gardens in local schools. There is presently only one community garden established with Council support about 5 years ago, the Randwick Community Organic Garden in Paine Reserve, Kingsford.

 

In order to provide a positive and consistent response to the number of enquiries received, a new Community Garden Policy and Community Garden Guidelines have been developed. This policy and guidelines focus on community proposals to establish community food gardens but the intention is to develop a similar policy to assist and respond to the development of local school food gardens.

 

A community garden by definition relates to:

 

§ a community based enterprise (involving a number of residents or households);

§ usually on public land owned or land managed by Council; and is

§ primarily for the purposes of growing vegetables or other food in a community setting.

 

The benefits of such locally driven enterprises are well known in terms of enhancing local neighbourhoods and precincts, as well as providing significant recreational, social and health benefits for local residents growing their own food and vegetables on small plots within an approved community garden space.

 

The policy sets out the principles, considerations and procedure in brief, while the Guidelines establish in more detail how these steps will be implemented taking into account Council’s responsibilities for the safety and access of other users and the community gardeners themselves on public land managed or owned by Council.

 

Steps involved for the approval of community gardeners include:

 

§ incorporation as a local group and taking out public liability insurance;

§ development approval for their proposed garden;

§ preparation of a community garden design and plan of management; and

§ licensing by Council for the use of the public land as a community garden.

 

A limited level of support will be provided in the start up of the community garden through Council’s environmental levy program but the concept of a well functioning community garden is that they are self reliant and operating separately from Council, just as with any other voluntary or sporting organisation.

 

Council support mechanisms and other relevant information for local residents include Randwick’s Community Garden Guidelines, currently being finalised but which will be progressively updated and refined as Council’s experience with community gardens increases over time. The guidelines have been prepared based on the experiences of successful community gardens underway in other local government areas and incorporate the current planning and legal requirements and responsibilities of Council in its management of public land.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 2:       A vibrant and diverse community.

Direction 2(a):   Maintain a current understanding of our community’s needs.

Outcome 3:       An informed and engaged community.

Direction 3(c):   A community involved in shaping and enhancing our City.

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

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

 

Financial impact statement

 

There is a community gardens budget in the environmental levy program which will be used to support the establishment of community gardens as they arise in Randwick.  Support of up to $4,000 will be provided depending upon whether soil tests are required for the site.

 

New groups will also be encouraged and supported in the preparation of funding applications to external grants programs to assist them remain as self reliant as possible.

 

Conclusion

 

Randwick’s Community Garden Policy and Guidelines provides a consistent and transparent process for Council in its support and processing of applications by community groups interested in establishing community gardens across Randwick. Supporting the development of community gardens where practicable also supports other key policy areas of Council including the Social Inclusion and Cultural Randwick policies.

 

 

 

Recommendation

 

That Council approves the Community Garden Policy and notes the Community Garden Guidelines will be progressively updated to assist residents seeking to develop community gardens in Randwick.

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

1.View

Community Garden Policy

 

 

 

 


Community Garden Policy

Attachment 1

 

 

 

COMMUNITY GARDEN POLICY

 

Folder No: F2010/00241

                             

POLICY STATEMENT

 

To provide a systematic process for community members to apply for Council assistance in starting community gardens on Council owned land and for Council’s deliberation and decision making regarding such proposals.

 

In responding to requests for support of community garden proposals Council adheres to the following principles, considerations and procedures.

 

PRINCIPLES

 

1.       Community gardens increase opportunities for Council and local community members to work collaboratively to improve individual health, recreational and neighbourhood amenities through the establishment of community garden spaces in appropriate locations of the City;

 

2.       The importance of establishing a clear consistent process for community members interested in developing community garden spaces particularly on Council owned and managed public land;

 

3.       Integrating community garden outcomes with other key outcomes and directions as adopted in Council’s 20-year City Plan;

 

4.       Maximising learning opportunities and appropriate assistance for community capacity and confidence, cooperative planning, problem solving and decision making particularly those contributing to the responsible management of public open space;

 

5.       Providing positive interaction opportunities between Council and community gardeners.

 

CONSIDERATIONS

 

1.       Availability of land suitable for community gardening e.g. open space areas, easements, nature strip verges etc;

 

2.       Community or Council demand for particular land for purposes other than community gardening:

 

3.       Suitability of land for community gardening with regard to previous landuses, possible contamination, topography, drainage, microclimate and the existence of services such as stormwater pipes and infrastructure, underground and above ground cables, structures and easements;

 

4.       Attitudes of neighbours to a proposed community garden;

 

5.       Capacity of the relevant community garden group to self-organise, start and manage a community garden over the long term with minimal Council support and assistance;

 

6.       Continuing public and safe access across public land areas occupied under licence as community garden areas;

 

7.       The need for Council planning, OH&S and safety procedures and legal instruments to be applied in the development and maintenance of community garden areas on public land managed by Council.

 

POLICY PROCEDURE

 

1.  Formation of a community garden group (i.e. a number of households or residents).

 

2.  Submitting a Community Garden Application form to advise Council in the first instance of a community group’s interest;

 

3.  On-site meeting with relevant Council staff to discuss the community garden proposal:

 

4.  Continuing liaison between a Council appointed officer and community garden representative(s);

 

5.  Reference to Council’s Community Garden Guidelines and supporting resources developed especially for community groups proposing  community garden spaces in Randwick; 

 

6.  Development Application preparation and obtaining necessary approval from Council or an explanation as to why an approval cannot be provided;

 

7.  Subject to receiving Council approval, preparation of a community garden Plan of Management by community garden members incorporating design, and setting out governance, administration OH&S and safety responsibilities and procedures for the group;

 

8.  Legal incorporation of the Community Garden group and taking out of Public Liability insurance

 

9.  Licence Agreement between Council and the incorporated Community Garden group for the conduct of a community garden on public land or land managed by Council:

 

10. On going management, implementation and maintenance of the community garden as agreed between Council and community garden group.

 

 

Minute No:                                      Meeting Date:                    8 August 2010


Environment Committee

10 August 2010

 

 

 

Environment Report No. E15/10

 

 

Subject:                  Schools Tree Day plantings in Randwick - 30 July 2010

Folder No:                   F2010/00241

Author:                   Bettina Digby, Supervisor Bushland and Nursery      

 

Introduction

 

To report to Council on the Schools Tree Day supporting native tree plantings at Randwick schools.

 

Issues

 

As part of National Tree Day celebrations, Council is supporting tree planting for the community and in local schools. The community tree planting around Latham Park will see over 5,000 grasses, shrubs and trees planted out with community volunteers on the day.

 

In addition, 6 local schools will be supported by the Bushland team planting out more than 1,000 native plants in their school grounds and at Burrows Park, Clovelly.

 

The schools involved include:

 

§  South Coogee Primary School;

§  Moverly Children’s Centre;

§  Brigidine College;

§  Claremont College;

§  St Mary St Josephs Primary School; and

§  Coogee Public School.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 3:       An informed and engaged community.

Direction 3(a):   A community involved in shaping and enhancing our City.

Outcome 5:       Excellence in recreation and lifestyle opportunities.

Direction 5(b):   A range of cultural, sporting and leisure activities.

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

Direction 10(c):  Land use planning and management enhances and protects biodiversity and natural heritage.

 

Financial impact statement

 

The biodiversity budget in the environmental levy program supports National Tree Day with approximately $10,000 for plants and supporting material.

 

Conclusion

 

National and Schools Tree Day has a national focus and provides an important opportunity for community planting days that supports Council’s ‘green corridor’ planting program.

 

 

Recommendation

 

That the report be received and noted.

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil