Environment Committee Meeting

 

  BUSINESS PAPER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday 14 October 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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                                                                                      14 October 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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, First Floor, 90 Avoca Street, Randwick on Tuesday, 14 October 2014 at 6:00pm.

 

 

Committee Members:          The Mayor (T Seng), Andrews, Belleli, Bowen, D’Souza, Garcia, Matson (Deputy Chairperson), Moore, Nash, Neilson, Roberts, Shurey (Chairperson), Smith, Stavrinos & Stevenson

 

Quorum:                           Eight (8) 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 - 9 September 2014

Declarations of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests

Address of Committee by Members of the Public

Privacy warning;

In respect to Privacy & Personal Information Protection Act, members of the public are advised that the proceedings of this meeting will be recorded for the purposes of clause 66 of Council’s Code of Meeting Practice.

Urgent Business

Environment Reports

E22/14      Proposed Council action to protect Australian bee populations in Randwick...... 1

E23/14      Energy audits of Administration Building and Bowen Library ........................ 5

E24/14      Household Energy Reduction Project, an initiative of the 3 Council Resource Conservation Program with Waverley and Woollahra Councils......................................... 9

E25/14      Barrett House garage retrofit into business incubator / showroom.............. 11    

Notice of Rescission Motions

Nil  

 

 

 

 

…………………………………………………….

Sima Truuvert

acting General Manager


Environment Committee                                                                                      14 October 2014

 

 

Environment Report No. E22/14

 

 

Subject:                  Proposed Council action to protect Australian bee populations in Randwick

Folder No:                   F2004/08272

Author:                   Helen Morrison, Sustainability Project Officer      

 

Introduction

 

At Council’s Ordinary Committee meeting of 23 September 2014, it was resolved (Bowen / Stavrinos) to bring back a report to investigate:

 

1.  Provision of guidelines and assistance to local residents who may be interested in setting up a bee hive;

2.  Such guidelines to ensure hives are operated safely and without disturbance to neighbouring properties;

3.  Council consideration whether further action can be taken to protect the Australian bee population on a community wide basis; and

4.  Installing of native bee hives at the Randwick Environment Park.

 

Issues

 

Due to the strong interest in keeping bee hives and addressing declining honey bee populations, the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has a comprehensive regulatory framework and supporting information related to urban bee-keeping.

 

In short, individuals wishing to keep bee hives in urban backyards are required to register their hives with DPI and ensure they are not a nuisance on neigbouring properties. In general, DPI information indicates around 2 to 3 bee hives are often sufficient for consideration in urban backyards (the approximate cost to residents is between $400 and $600 per hive, plus the cost of registering with DPI as a recreational beekeeper).

 

A future Council information sheet would be developed on urban bee-keeping which would primarily mirror much of the information provided by DPI in their regulatory role as well as emphasise the need to discuss with neighbouring householders plans to place bee hives in urban backyards.

 

Promoting bee hives in the backyards may result in some increase in complaints or concerns from some householders. The key advice provided to potential urban beekeepers is to discuss the siting arrangements with their neighbours to minimize any misunderstanding and issues related to keeping bee hives in backyard areas.

 

It is also important to understand that the native Australian bee variety, regarded as the non-stinging variety of bee, produces very little honey and on that basis are not usually considered for the purposes of honey production. It is the Honey Bee variety which is most often installed for the purposes of honey production, although this is widely known and recognized in the garden as the stinging variety of bee.

 

To overcome these potential issues, it is proposed to encourage residents with an interest in establishing bee hives in their backyards to initially attend free workshops and find out their responsibilities and more information in relation to keeping bees in the urban environment.

 

Council currently engages members of Sydney Beekeepers Club and the Urban Beehive to run occasional bee keeping workshops for residents from across the Eastern suburbs. Subject to Council’s decision, the Sydney Beekeepers Club has tentatively agreed to install and maintain a number of bee hives at the Randwick Environment Park on a no cost basis and then use these for training purposes in conjunction with their workshops provided for residents (they usually charge a small fee for the courses to cover their costs).

 

The agreement with Sydney Beekeepers Club would be based on Council covering the cost of room hire at Randwick Community Centre to enable courses to be provided free-of-charge to residents (hire charge at approximately $70 / hour). On the current program of courses held, this arrangement would enable up to 3 courses to be held each year for residents at the Randwick Community Centre.

 

Residents proposing to keep bee hives on their properties would be encouraged to attend one of these free courses and then make their own decision to register with DPI and install bee hives in their backyards.

 

Council would review these arrangements within 12 months and make a recommendation based on the level of continuing interest whether any additional form of assistance could be offered to residents.

 

If appropriate for Randwick Environment Park, both honey bee and native bee hives should be considered as it is the honey bee which is more suited to honey production although both native and honey bees would contribute to local pollination services. It is proposed to consider the location of these bee hives within the context of the Randwick Environment Park Plan of Management, currently under review, but with a view that any potential location would be behind the fenced area at the southern side of the Community Centre boundary with the Environment Park. The views of Dr Benson, currently undertaking the review, would be sought on whether bees are appropriate and in what location.

 

Discussions have been held with other users of the Community Centre and they have advised they are supportive of the proposal to locate the bee hives within the Environment Park. Subject to the results of the review by Dr Benson, Council’s Bushland services would also be involved to ensure any bee hives would have minimal impact on the ongoing bushland maintenance program within the Park.

 

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

 

An amount of up to $2,500 will be provided from the biodiversity budget of the environmental levy program to facilitate workshops and use of the Randwick Community Centre for bee-keeping courses for residents. This cost is intended to cover advertising and venue hire arrangements for the Community Centre at a rate of $70 / hr for a full day workshop, covering approximately 3 workshops over a 12 month timeframe.

Conclusion

 

As recognized by Council, the value of and contribution to food production through the pollination function provided by honey and native bees is substantial. This initiative, although on a local basis in Randwick, is aimed at increasing community understanding of this very important relationship between bees and local food production and supporting local efforts to protect declining bee populations.

 

 

Recommendation

 

That Council:

 

1.  Endorses a number of free courses being provided to residents by Sydney Beekeeping Club on the basis that Council meets the costs for the Randwick Community Centre as the venue for this training with an amount up to $2,500 approved to support this initiative from the biodiversity budget of the environmental levy program;

2.  Endorses the continuation of DPI as the regulatory authority for the registration and guidance of urban beekeeping;

3.  Receives a report on these arrangements within 12 months as to any further assistance which may be offered to residents interested in setting up bee hives in the urban environment of Randwick; and

4.  Subject to the peer review of the Plan of Management for the REP raising no objection to the installation of the beehives in the REP, Council endorse the installation of 12 beehives(around 6 native bees and 6 honey bees).

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee                                                                                      14 October 2014

 

 

Environment Report No. E23/14

 

 

Subject:                  Energy audits of Administration Building and Bowen Library

Folder No:                   F2005/00230

Author:                   Choonghan  Yeo, Sustainability Projects Officer      

 

Introduction

 

In follow up to the recent update provided on Council’s energy and water consumption and costs for the 2013 / 2014 financial year (E18/14 refers), comprehensive energy audits have been completed for 2 key sites, Council’s Administration Building and Bowen Library.

 

These audits were carried out to identify the current level of energy consumption and potential projects capable of delivering substantial cost savings in ongoing energy bills and decreases in Council’s overall greenhouse gas emissions. These two buildings, along with the Des Renford Leisure Centre (DRLC), contribute in the order of 75% of Council’s overall energy consumption.

 

This report aims to summarise the results of these two energy audits and present key recommendations.

 

Issues

 

Comprehensive energy audits have been carried out of Council’s Administration Building and the Bowen Library. These audits have been completed to measure current consumption levels and therefore assist in the identification of new projects and measures capable of delivering substantial cost savings in ongoing energy bills and decreases in Council’s overall greenhouse gas emissions.

 

The audits examined consumption and costs related to the lighting, air conditioning, computer systems and other building uses within both sites and opportunities for savings in the future. These results are summarised below showing:

·      estimated installation costs of energy saving measures

·      estimated annual cost savings

·      potential greenhouse gas reductions and

·      payback periods of the proposed energy saving measures.

 

Bowen Library:

 

Energy use from

Energy saving installation costs

Reductions in greenhouse gas emissions (estimated)

Estimated cost savings

Payback period

 

Lighting

 

$54,000

 

119 tonnes / yr

 

$23,000

 

2.3 years

 

 

Air conditioning

 

$45,000

 

116 tonnes / yr

 

 

$22,000

 

2.0 years

 

Totals

 

 

 

$99,000

 

 

235 tonnes / yr

 

$45,000

 

n/a

Council’s Administration Building:

 

Energy use from

Energy saving installation costs

Reductions in greenhouse gas emissions (estimated)

Estimated cost savings

Payback period

 

Lighting

 

 

$104,000

 

222 tonnes / yr

 

$43,000

 

2.4 years

 

Air conditioning

 

 

$26,000

 

37 tonnes / yr

 

$6,000

 

4.2 years

 

Total

 

 

$130,000

 

 

249 tonnes / yr

 

 

$49,000

 

n/a

 

 

On the basis of these audits and recommendations provided, it is proposed to work with Building Services staff to seek tenders for the lighting upgrades and obtain quotes separately to follow up on the recommendations related to enhancing air conditioning systems. It is expected to undertake these projects over two financial years utilizing the energy saving budget of the environmental levy program. Any works to be undertaken will comply with Council’s purchasing requirements and procedures.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

Direction 10(g):  Greenhouse gas emissions are reduced.

 

Financial impact statement

 

Estimates of installation costs of these energy saving measures at the Bowen Library and Council’s Administration Building are in the order of a one-off cost of approximately $230,000.

 

The annual estimated savings from the installation of these energy saving measures is in the order of $50,000 per year, with the main savings from upgraded lighting systems achieving financial payback in just over 2 years.

 

Installation costs and projects will be managed over two financial years, 2014-15 and 2015–16, from the energy saving budget of the environmental levy program.

 

Conclusion

 

A major focus of Council’s ongoing Sustaining our City environmental levy program has been on identifying and implementing significant energy and water savings capable of delivering environmental and financial benefits for our local community. The savings generated from these additional projects will continue to demonstrate the sustainability leadership of Council and savings for ratepayers through energy efficiency programs applied on two of our highest energy consuming sites.

 

Recommendation

 

That Council:

1.  Notes the completion of the energy audits of Council’s Administration Building and Bowen Library;

2.  Approves the process of obtaining quotes for the installation of energy efficient lighting systems and energy efficient air conditioning upgrades over a period of two financial years for these buildings;

3.  Notes the lighting upgrade will require a tender process to be conducted and preparation of a report seeking Council approval at a later date.

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee                                                                                      14 October 2014

 

 

Environment Report No. E24/14

 

 

Subject:                  Household Energy Reduction Project, an initiative of the 3 Council Resource Conservation Program with Waverley and Woollahra Councils

Folder No:                   F2005/00230

Author:                   Peter Maganov, Manager Sustainability      

 

Introduction

 

Earlier this year, Randwick was advised of its successful funding application on behalf of the 3-Council project with Waverley and Woollahra Councils, to the NSW Government’s Environmental Trust for a residential energy saving initiative. The $40,000 project is aimed at assisting households from across the 3 Local Government Areas to increase their understanding and actions taken to reduce their energy bills.

 

This report aims to explain the project and seek Council’s endorsement of its implementation across Randwick.

 

Issues

 

The NSW Government has advised Randwick, Waverley and Woollahra Councils of the success of their funding application to the Climate Change Fund for their household energy reduction project (report E8 / 14 also refers).

 

This small scale project aims to assist residents reduce their household energy consumption, contribute to cost savings, as well as achieve reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Following the grant notification, the 3 Councils worked together to select the successful business delivering this project for residents. The business is a partnership between 3 organisations, the 10% Challenge, Do Something and Easy Being Green.

 

Each of the Councils have previously participated in the 10% Challenge when it was originally established as a voluntary initiative to assist Local Councils reduce their own energy consumption. Do Something is a not-for-profit with a substantial track record of environmental initiatives. They are also recent recipient of an $870,000 energy efficient grant from the Commonwealth Government to assist small businesses. Easy Being Green are long time providers of energy efficiency services accredited under both Victorian and NSW Government Energy Efficiency schemes.

 

The main offer to residents through this externally funded energy conservation project is a free energy assessment, aimed at a minimum 600 households (aiming for a minimum of 200 per Local Government Area). The assessment for householders will examine water and household heating, lighting, solar opportunities, air conditioning, weather sealing and insulation and behavioural change activities (e.g. leaving power and lighting switched on).

 

This free energy assessment will identify ‘no cost’ and ‘low cost’ options as well as options where changes can be made via appropriate technology changeovers i.e. electric hotwater to gas or solar.

 

Householders will have an option to follow up themselves on energy assessment recommendations or consider them and follow up at a later stage. If they do wish to implement any of the recommendations identified from their free energy assessment, they will also be able to consider going through the group of businesses who provided the energy assessment. However, any such implementation will be at the householders’ costs and will not be paid via the external grant to the 3 Councils.

 

An overall target of a 10% reduction has been set for the 3 Council’s, and those householders receiving and following up on the energy assessments provided. The program will be open to all residents across the Eastern suburbs so savings typically may be below or above the 10% reduction, depending on the dwelling type or follow-up action taken.

 

As well as a final report to the NSW Environmental Trust on the results and savings achieved, a report will be provided to each of the Councils late in 2015 with corresponding advice on the overall results.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

Direction 10(g):  Greenhouse gas emissions are reduced.

 

Financial impact statement

 

While this project will be funded by the $40,000 external grant provided to 3-Councils Resource Conservation Program, it is expected some in-kind promotion and marketing support will be provided through messages prepared and circulated across Council’s various social media outlets.

 

Conclusion

 

Few Councils in the NSW metropolitan area have as strong a collaboration on environmental issues as Randwick, Waverley and Woollahra. This Household Energy Reduction project funded by the NSW Government’s Environmental Trust continues to demonstrate the strong relationship reflected in the 3-Council Resource Conservation Program, which has now been running continuously for the past 7 years.

 

Recommendation

 

That Council:

1.  Notes this project is funded via the $40,000 external grant provided by the NSW Environmental Trust; and

2.  Endorses the delivery and implementation of the Household Energy Reduction Project through the 3-Council Resource Conservation Program as outlined above through the partnership of services provided by Do Something, 10% Challenge and Easy Being Green.

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

Nil

 

 


Environment Committee                                                                                      14 October 2014

 

 

Environment Report No. E25/14

 

 

Subject:                  Barrett House garage retrofit into business incubator / showroom

Folder No:                   F2008/00384

Author:                   Peter Maganov, Manager Sustainability      

 

Introduction

 

The Barrett House Sustainability Demonstration project provides residents across the Eastern suburbs with a working example of practical sustainability measures for consideration in their home or unit aimed at reducing waste, saving water and reducing energy costs. The demonstration house was one of the first tangible results of the 3-Council Ecological Footprint collaboration between Randwick, Waverley and Woollahra Councils which commenced in 2007.

 

The development approval for this demonstration project also included retrofit of the small single garage attached to Barrett House into a sustainability ideas business incubator and showroom space.

 

This report seeks Council endorsement of the retrofit of the Barrett House garage for this purpose.

 

Issues

 

With the commencement of the 3-Council Ecological Footprint project between Randwick, Waverley and Woollahra Councils in 2007, Barrett House at 6 Barrett Place Randwick, was adopted as a sustainability demonstration house by the 3 Councils. The house, or small cottage as it is, was bequeathed to Council by the estate of the late Franklyn Barrett with a requirement that it be retained as a public space and opened on a regular basis to the public. It also continues with two long term tenants in rear units of the property.

 

A major incentive for the 3 Councils to develop Barrett House as a sustainability demonstration house was the approval of an external grant to fund the design and sustainable retrofit of the house itself. Designs and consultation with the local community and Councils were developed as part of the grant, utilizing the skills of sustainability consultant, Michael Mobbs. Implementation of the Michael Mobbs designs have been implemented over subsequent years. The retrofit of the house included major structural work and improvements but did not include the garage retrofit which was intended for consideration at a later stage. Over time, additional energy and water saving measures, waste reduction improvements and the installation of permaculture garden features have been added within and adjacent to the property.

 

The development approval for Barrett House included the retrofit of the small single garage attached to Barrett House into a sustainability ideas / business incubator and showroom space. The planned retrofit of the garage wasn’t eligible for funding under the externally provided grant as the funding was aimed at assisting residents, while the garage retrofit was aimed at providing assistance for local businesses. Also, due to the very poor condition of the garage and the cost of enabling it to meet the necessary Building Code of Australia requirements, the decision to retrofit the garage into a business ideas incubator was deferred until the key features of the house and garden were completed.

 

With these works completed, designs and costings have been prepared to realize the sustainability ideas business incubator and showroom space of the garage. The concept of the garage retrofit as a business incubator is primarily as a showroom or display space available to businesses for a number of weeks and then supplemented by a number of workshops or demonstrations by the business owner(s) for residents, delivered within the house over the period the product(s) are on show. It is not expected or likely the space will be able to offer a temporary working space for the idea to be designed, developed or assembled as in the more common view of a business incubator.

 

A number of different funding models have been considered including charging businesses utilizing the space once constructed or applying for additional external funding. Neither approach presents the likelihood of meeting the estimated cost of $95,000 to complete the retrofit which would enable the completion of the sustainable business idea or incubator space.

 

It is proposed to utilize the environmental levy program to provide the funding to complete the Barrett House garage retrofit. This is particularly appropriate due to the purpose of the environmental levy funding, the asset that Barrett House provides to Randwick, the assistance the project can provide in supporting sustainability business ideas, as well as the project’s capacity to contribute social, economic and environmental benefits and returns both to householders and businesses.

 

The works involved to complete the retrofit are shown in the attached plan and include:

 

·      Removal of the old concrete slab and reinstate to comply with BCA

·      Raising the existing roof including the installation of louvre windows on the raised extension for light and ventilation purposes

·      Installing a new timber framed roof

·      Repairing and replacing parts of the existing brickwork

·      Installing new rear door and glass fronted doors in place of the roller door (to the display / showroom area)

·      Neutral painted finish to internal walls.

 

Relationship to City Plan

 

The relationship with the City Plan is as follows:

 

Outcome 4:       Excellence in urban design and development

Outcome 5:       A liveable city

Outcome 8:       A strong local economy

Outcome 10:      A healthy environment.

 

Financial impact statement

 

The estimated cost to complete the Barrett House retrofit is $95,000. Designs ensure compliance with all requirements of the Building Code of Australia for a showroom. It is proposed to fund this amount from the environmental levy program.

 

Conclusion

 

The Barrett House Sustainability Demonstration project has attracted significant interest and attendance since it was developed through the 3-Council Resource Conservation Program in 2007. It provides a practical and working example of sustainability features which can be considered for installation at affordable prices by householders across the Eastern suburbs.

 

The completion of the retrofit of the Barrett House garage adds to these features by providing a space for display and demonstration of new or existing sustainability business ideas to support these ideas in their development or at an early stage. The retrofit also completes the original intent and application of Barrett House and its practical application to progress sustainability across the City and Eastern suburbs.

 

Recommendation

 

That Council:

1.  approves the allocation of up to $95,000 from the environmental levy budget for the retrofit of the Barrett House garage as part of the Sustainability Demonstration project and for the purposes of providing a sustainability business ideas incubator and showroom; and

2.  a report be brought back to Council within 12 months of the retrofit to advise on the performance of the garage retrofit in supporting sustainability businesses and ideas.

 

 

 

Attachment/s:

 

1.View

Barrett House retrofit - prepared by Archology Design for Randwick City Council

 

 

 

 


Barrett House retrofit - prepared by Archology Design for Randwick City Council

Attachment 1