Recommendations and Statistics over 20 years

This page lists all recommendations from State of the Environment Reports and reports from Investigations up to 2014.  The charts below show the percentage of recommendations that have been agreed to by the ACT Government.

Government responses to recommendations from investigations

Percentage of agreed and not agreed recommendations

Government responses for SoE recommendations

Government responses for SoE recommendations

Investigations

Investigation into the ACT Government's use of chemicals for pest control (Sept 1996 – May 1998)

Minister Humphries

June 1998

September 1998

Implementation of the ACT Government's ‘No Waste by 2010 Strategy’ (March 1999 – November 1999)

Commissioner Dr Baker

February 2000

May 2000

Review of proposed standards for air emissions and other waste products and monitoring requirements for the Totalcare incinerator (Feb 2000 – June 2000)

Minister Smyth

June 2000

August 2000

Inquiry into lowland native grasslands (Nov 2007 – March 2009)

Minister Stanhope

March 2009

March 2010

Investigation into the Government’s tree management practices and the renewal of Canberra’ urban forest (Dec 2009 – Mar 2011)

Minister Corbell

March 2011

February 2012

Canberra Nature Park (nature reserves), Molonglo River Corridor (nature reserves) and Googong Foreshores Investigation (Oct 2009 – July 2011)

Minister Corbell

October 2011

June 2012

Investigation into the state of the watercourses and catchments for Lake Burley Griffin (May 2011 – April 2012)

Minister Corbell

May 2012

n/a

Source: Commissioner’s annual reports, Hansard, Reports on each of the investigations

Recommendations from State of the Environment Reports

No.

Recommendation

Govt. response

1994

  

Atmosphere

  

1994.1

A survey should be made of meteorological monitoring in the ACT

Agree

1994.2

Current observing stations should be assessed against World Meteorological Organisation standards

Agree

1994.3

Consideration should be given to the need for and location of other monitoring sites, and that existing facilities should be kept to enable data- gathering to continue without change

Agree

1994.4

The Commissioner be provided with a report of strategies adopted (from the Greenhouse Gas Inventory) and their quantitative impact each year (preferably by 31 March), in order to monitor progress and compliance with the ACT Strategy; Ozone

Agree

1994.5

Long-term UV monitoring in the Territory should continue

Agree

1994.6

Particulates less than 10µm in diameter be measured separately as a matter of routine(because these fine particulates are of the greatest significance for human health).

Agree

Water

  

1994.1

Trade waste legislation - It is important that the ACT develop effective trade waste legislation to prevent toxic materials, including wastes from research and educational laboratories, being discharged to sewer. These substances can significantly disrupt the biological processes used in sewage treatment and so cause poor quality effluents to be discharged. Work has been underway for some time but regulations now need to be developed and enforced.

Agree

1994.2

Groundwater Monitoring - Improved groundwater monitoring of both depth and water quality is needed if we are to improve our management of this resource. The Government should develop controls on the extraction of groundwater. The investigation of possible contamination of groundwater from chemicals used in sheep dips should be continued, and appropriate action taken if contamination is demonstrated.

Agree in principle

1994.3

Protection of Groundwater and Remediation of Contaminated Groundwater - Groundwater contamination, although unseen, can ultimately be bad for the environment and the community. Programs should therefore be established to deal with the problem. The ACT also needs to consider applying the draft national guidelines for groundwater protection.

Agree in principle

1994.4

Pest Species - We need to improve our capacity to assess and respond quickly to the introduction of pest plant and animal species into ACT bodies of water. Better management of well established pest species is also important.

Agree in principle

1994.5

Riparian Vegetation - The Government should develop management policies for riparian areas in the ACT so that we have a better idea of what communities exist and how they can be better managed both for their own conservation values and for the protection of water quality.

Agree

1994.6

Water Quantity Management - Water management in the ACT would be improved if a licensing system to control extraction of surface and groundwaters were developed. Then we would have better information on extractive uses and controls over inappropriate extractions.

 

1994.7

Water Quality Management -In the Molonglo River, water quality management needs closer attention downstream of Scrivener Dam. The relevant authorities need to resolve the problems of poor water quality in the bottom water outlets from the Dam, and of uncontrolled storm-water discharges from Yarralumla and Weston Creeks.

Agree

Land

  

1994.1

Community groups (e.g. Landcare), and especially those in urban and rural communities, be encouraged, by means of expanded educational programs, to take responsibility for the land;

Agree

1994.2

Community consultation in land management decisions be improved by fostering interaction between land users, planners and land resource scientists;

Agree

1994.3

A more energetic program for locating and managing hazardous waste residues, particularly at urban landfill sites and in rural areas, be developed;

Agree

1994.4

A program be established specifically aimed at developing land quality indicators in the ACT, especially in relation to soil acidity (pH), soil nutrient supply, waste infiltration into soils, soil biology and the behaviour of subsoil clays that are exposed by various forms of land disturbance;

Agree

1994.5

A Code of Forest Practices for ACT forestry plantations be finalised, and procedures implemented for monitoring its application and effectiveness in improving sustainable yield while protecting land and water quality;

Agree

1994.6

Water quality monitoring programs be established in key urban catchments to investigate sources and movement of chemical pollutants (e.g. nitrates, phosphates) from gardens, parklands and recreational areas;

Agree

1994.7

A few key sites be established for the full monitoring of the environmental variables - air, water, land and biota - and promote a holistic approach to environmental management in the ACT;

Agree in part

1994.8

A program be developed to investigate fire management and impacts in the ACT (to consider both low-intensity prescribed burning and wildfires);

Agree

1994.9

A native vegetation strategy for the ACT be developed, with special reference to rural areas to test whether native vegetation is sustainable;

Agree

1994.10'

A pest plants and animals strategy be developed for the ACT based on co-operative action between all land managers (see also the recommendations of the Reference Group on Plants and Animals);

Agree

1994.11

The natural resource survey for the rural areas be continued, so as to provide a support base for land management/land use decisions, and ensure that the natural resource data already collected is made available to the community and that this information is in a form suitable for end users;

Agree

1994.12

A cross-border working group be established to oversee natural resource management (land, water, vegetation and animals) and land development for those catchments which originate in NSW;

Agree in principle

1994.13

The ACT Government continue to promote and assist in the development of catchment management and property management plans;

Agree

1994.14

Three maps be developed to fill current gaps i.e.:

  • a Geological Heritage map of the ACT (mainly for public education and also for highlighting the geology of conservation areas) -scale 1:100000;
  • a regolith/soils map of the ACT
  • scale 1:100 000; and
  • an extension of the engineering geology mapping into Tuggeranong and Jerrabomberra- scale 1:100 000.

Agree in principle

Plants and Animals

  

1994.1

That a Biological Survey Unit be established to be responsible for:

  • establishing and maintaining an inventory of the flora and fauna of the ACT:
  • determining the distribution and status of the flora and fauna;
  • carrying out initial assessments and subsequent monitoring of the status of ecological communities and individual species of conservation concern; and
  • carrying out or commissioning studies aimed at increasing the understanding of the dynamics of the ecosystems and communities with which species of conservation concern are associated. The Unit should co-operate with research institutions and volunteer groups in carrying out the above.

Agree in principle

1994.2

That high priority be given to the studies necessary to identify places which are essential for the protection of communities and species of conservation concern; and that,

Agree

1994.3

As a matter of urgency, steps should be taken to secure the identified areas within the reserve system.

Agree in principle

1994.4

That the management objectives for natural areas should be to maintain them in as intact and undisturbed a condition as possible. Where this is not practicable, management should aim to minimise disturbance.

Agree in principle

1994.5

That the proposed amendments to the Nature Conservation Act 1980 be enacted and the new requirements implemented as soon as possible.

Agree

1994.6

That legislation aimed at controlling pest animals and plants be strengthened both to bind the Crown and to ensure that potential pest species can be subject to regulatory control.

Agree

1994.7

That adequate resources should be provided to deal with potential weeds and pest animals rather than waiting until they are well established and significantly more difficult to control.

Agree

1994.8

That adequate resources be provided: - to identify and describe communities and species of conservation concern; and - to plan, implement and monitor their management on a sustainable basis;

Agree

1994.9

That adequate resources be provided for the continuation and development of active programs of public awareness and involvement, in order to maintain the level of support for biological conservation that already exists in the community.

Agree

Urban Environment

  

1994.1

That the impact of the ACT natural environment on urban form be a theme addressed by the next State of the Environment Report;

Matter for the Commissioner to decide

1994.2

That criteria be developed for the evaluation of the impact of the built form on the goals for a sustainable natural environment as discussed by the other Reference Groups;

Agree

1994.3

That the "quality of life" dimensions outlined in the introduction to this chapter be pursued in the next Report in relation to the key elements of the ACT's urban environment;

Matter for the Commissioner to decied

1994.4

That monitoring baselines be developed for issues of priority to ACT urban residents, such as:

  • the health and environmental effects of wood fires;
  • the health and environmental effects of point sources of pollution under ACT temperature inversion conditions;
  • the capacity for protecting water as an environmental resource by reusing water; and
  • effects of increased urban densities;

Agree

1994.5

That ACT residents' priorities for the preservation of local native flora and fauna be established;

Agree

1994.6

That standards be developed for the quality of indoor air;

Agree in part

1994.7

That the apparent lack of baseline data on the quality of the ACT urban environment be noted, especially in terms of: - consistent and reliable land information data to provide information on building density and land coverage (particularly in residential areas) and changes in single residential block size over time;

  • the relationship between residence and place of employment to produce a clearer idea of patterns of vehicle use, particularly for commuting;
  • annual sales of petrol, diesel oil and LPG;
  • use of open space;
  • impact of feral and domestic animals on the natural environment; and
  • monitoring of traffic noise.

Agree for certain parameters

1995

  

Atmosphere

  

1995.1

An epidemiological study (focussing on respiratory health problems) and a meteorological study (focusing on the lower boundary layer) be conducted in the Tuggeranong airshed and that the methodology and findings of the two studies be coordinated;

Agree in principle

1995.2

The ACT Government consider issuing daily bulletins on radio and in the press from April to September about potential air pollution problems in Canberra and that these bulletins be based on assessment of the meteorological conditions likely to give rise to pollution-trapping;

Agree in principle

1995.3

The ACT Government pursue more vigorously the monitoring of indoor air quality and, where necessary, act to determine the main causes of poor air quality within ACT buildings. It is hoped that appropriate funding be made available for this.

Agree in principle

1995.4

The ACT Government implement initiatives derived from the Commonwealth’s statement ‘Greenhouse 21C’ and the revision of the National Greenhouse Response Strategy;

Agree

1995.5

UV-B monitoring, currently conducted on behalf of the Cancer Council from on top of the National Science and Technology Centre, be continued and that the results be made publicly available; and

Agree

1995.6

The existence of continued carbon monoxide exceedances in Civic be noted and that consideration be given to possible response measures should the number of exceedances increase

Agree

Water

  

1995.1a

The involvement of the community in water management and monitoring projects should be continued and increased if possible:

Agree

1995.1b

systems for quality control, storage, retrieval, management and access to, and analysis and interpretation of, data collected by community groups be established;

Agree

1995.1c

relevant agencies (in coordination) should nominate liaison officers to help with education and with the transfer of data both ways. The nominated officers should interact with all Government agencies and Universities conducting, or who have conducted, relevant research in the ACT; and

Agree in principle

1995.1d

community activities should be coordinated on a catchment basis.

Agree

1995.2

Confirmation testing of faecal coliform counts should be carried out.

Not agreed

1995.3

Consideration should be given to monitoring non-coliform pathogens (protozoa and viruses) in recreational water bodies.

Not agreed

1995.4

Water extracted from the Murrumbidgee River downstream of the ACT, for domestic water supply purposes, should be fully disinfected in order to protect human health.

Agree in principle

1995.5

A groundwater database should be developed and should include:

  • details of the location and depth of water bores in the ACT;
  • the strata and aquifers intersected during drilling;
  • the position of the water table;
  • the hydraulic parameters determined by pump testing;
  • the chemical and bacteriological quality of the groundwater; and
  • the abstraction rate and use that is made of the groundwater.

Agree in principle

1995.6

There is a need for a review of water quality performance of Burrinjuck Reservoir in view of the occasional algal bloom problems still being experienced within the Reservoir.

Agree in principle

1995.7

The processes causing high blue-green algal counts and high levels of phosphorus at Site 104 in Lake Burrinjuck need further investigation.

Agree in principle

1995.8

The potential impact of the Pialligo landfill leachate on the Molonglo River should be investigated.

Agree

1995.9

The effect of bottom release of water from Scrivener Dam on the water quality and ecology of the Molonglo River downstream of Lake Burley Griffin should be addressed.

Agree

Land

  

1995.1

The ACT Government should establish, as a matter of urgency, baseline information relevant to land quality within the ACT, consistent with the needs for management of land and reporting purposes. To do this the Government should:

  • analyse land quality data, that have existed for up to 30 years, with reference to indicators for each land use suggested in this report, or as amended through consultation with the Commissioner, in order to provide a statement on the condition of the land in 1990 as a basis for ongoing assessment of change since that time;
  • ensure that these data are entered into the Environment and Land Bureau’s GIS in order to develop that system as the major body of land condition, measurement of change, land management planning and setting of priorities for degradation management; and
  • make the data available by March 1996 in a form which will allow updating and quantification of the issues contained in the Table on land condition in ACT catchments in the next ACT State of the Environment Report.

Agree in principle

1995.2

In general integrated catchment management planning should be given higher priority.

  • ACT authorities and surrounding Shires should work together on catchment management plans and land development issues.
  • In particular, the highest priority should be afforded the completion, in consultation with all stakeholders, and implementation, of the management plan for the Paddys River catchment, as the model for other catchment management planning.

Agree

1995.3

The ACT Government should ensure that:

  • where land management plans are required, they are based on the principles of ESD and integrated catchment management (ICM), and, for monitoring and reporting purposes, such plans incorporate targets against which effectiveness can be assessed; and
  • rural lease and land management regimes which promote the concept of ESD are implemented as soon as possible.

Agree

1995.4

The ACT Government should ensure that:

  • the Code of Forest Practice for ACT forestry plantations include procedures for monitoring its application and effectiveness in improving sustainable yield while protecting land and water quality, and that the Code is implemented as a matter of urgency after being made available for public comment; and trends in forest productivity and growing stock are reported regularly.

Agree in principle

1995.5

Community groups (e.g. Landcare), and especially those in urban and rural communities, should be encouraged and developed as a community resource, through educational programs and other support, to share the land health monitoring task, within the ambit of the Territory Plan. A landscape function approach to land management should be adopted, and linkages between Landcare groups and researchers fostered, to help identify solutions to problems.

Agree

1995.6

In order to provide baseline data for monitoring changes in the land environment, survey and monitoring commence of:

  • erosion in rural and forestry areas;
  • the soil biota of the ACT in order to assess the utility of soil faunal and floral observations as bio indicators of environmental change;
  • water table levels in rural areas, as an early indication of dryland salinity; and
  • Tree cover in rural and urban zones

Agree in principle

1995.7

The Government should encourage and support:

  • The work of the Contaminated Sites Unit in identifying and investigating contaminated sites; and
  • The monitoring of leachates from urban landfill sites and basic research on the impact of heavy metals and other soil contaminants on the soil flora and fauna.

Agree

1995.8

Land management agencies responsible for conservation and forest areas should:

  • Investigate means of ameliorating the impact of recreational activities in these areas; and
  • Ensure that fire management strategies are in place.

Agree

Plants and Animals

  

1995.1

Adequate resources should be provided for the continuation and development of active programs of public awareness and involvement, in order to maintain the level of support for biological conservation that already exists in the community.

Agree

1995.2

Adequate resources should be provided for:

  • establishing and maintaining an inventory of the flora and fauna of the ACT;
  • determining the distribution and status of the flora and fauna:
  • carrying out initial assessments and subsequent monitoring of the status of ecological communities and individual species of conservation concern; and
  • carrying out or commissioning studies aimed at increasing the understanding of the dynamics of the ecosystems and communities with which species of conservation concern are associated. The Wildlife Research Unit (or relevant unit responsible for carrying out the above) should cooperate with research institutions and volunteer groups in implementing the above recommendations. This unit and any others working in the same area should have sufficient resources (which in many cases means an increase in the current level of resources) to carry out all the above tasks.

Agree

1995.3

High priority should be given to the studies necessary to identify places which are essential for the protection of communities and species of conservation concern; and as a matter of urgency, steps should be taken to secure the identified areas within the reserve system.

 

1995.4

Management objectives for natural areas should be to maintain them in as intact and undisturbed a condition as possible. Where this is not practicable, management should aim to minimise disturbance.

 

1995.5

Adequate resources should be provided: to identify and describe communities and species of conservation concern; and - to plan, implement and monitor their management on a sustainable basis.

Agree

1995.6

Legislation aimed at controlling pest animals and plants should be strengthened both to bind the Commonwealth and the Crown and to ensure that potential pest species can be subject to regulatory control.

Agree

1995.7

Adequate resources should be provided to deal with potential weeds and pest animals rather than waiting until they are well established and significantly more difficult to control. In addition to last year's recommendations, the Reference Group makes the following recommendations:

Agree

1995.8

A survey and review of street trees in the ACT should be conducted.

Agree

1995.9

Proper biological assessment of future development regions should be carried out before detailed planning studies are undertaken. This could save considerable expense and controversy.

 

1995.10'

Particular attention should be paid to identifying the weed potential of willows and poplars.

Agree

1995.11

The Government should prepare a management strategy for domestic cats, based on the findings of the Legislative Assembly's report on feral animals and invasive plants, the results of research undertaken in the ACT and elsewhere and on legislative and other arrangements in place in other states. If necessary, more research on domestic and feral cats should be funded to provide a sound scientific basis for this management strategy. In addition, the owners of domestic cats should be encouraged to take full responsibility for the behaviour of their pets and for the impact their cats can have on native animals.

Agree in principle

1995.12

The Government should introduce legislation comparable to South Australia's Native Vegetation Act, which makes it an offence for any person to clear or damage grasslands on any land without written approval from a statutory body, which must assess the application using ecological principles. Planning laws should also be amended to specifically prohibit development on grasslands.

Agree in principle

Urban Environment

  

1995.1

As a matter of priority, the ACT Government urge the Commonwealth Government to establish, through State/Territory coordination, standard or core urban environmental indicators.

Agree

1995.2

With regard to energy consumption, and subject to issues of social justice and equity, the Government introduce a requirement for mandatory energy-rating of houses, so that when a building is sold, its energy rating has to be declared. The aim of this recommendation is to create an informed market for energy-efficient housing

Agree in principle

1995.3

 

With regard to environmental impacts of new developments and redevelopment the Government is urged to;

  1. require regular reporting on the status of aged infrastructure in the urban area, with particular regard to the environmental effect/impact of continued use. Replacement and/or repair;
  2. ensure that the environmental impacts of runoff are taken into account in approving design and siting of paved areas:
  3. ensure adequate open space and vegetation plantings in all public places to counteract the consequences of smaller residential blocks; and
  4. reinstate and maintain the long-standing policy restricting buildings from hills, ridges and buffers;

Agree / Agree in principle

1995.4

With regard to the environmental impacts of the transport system;

  1. the Government review employment practices/packages that encourage the use of motor vehicles;
  2. the Government investigate the introduction of 'congestion' pricing through cost-effective parking, registrations and/or tollways;
  3. the Government collect, on a continuous basis, data on consumption of all fuels, including disaggregation of leaded and unleaded fuels, and fuel woods, and publish them at least annually; and
  4. progress the findings of the light rail transport study.

Agree in principle

1995.5

The Government continue to reduce the amount of waste to landfill, and in particular to:

  1. review the system for recycling waste products from commercial activities
  2. encourage more social (shared) responsibility both for generation and disposal of waste and litter
  3. consider the introduction of container deposit legislation; and
  4. develop legislation for the collection and disposal of hazardous wastes.

Agree

1995.6

All Government buildings (and those occupied by Government agencies) be subject to environmental audit to cut waste

  1. electricity, water and paper
  2. and to implement incentive schemes for workers to suggest and implement energy-saving and waste-reduction measures.

Agree

1995.7

In addition to the recommendation for a survey and review of street trees in the ACT, it is recommended that:

  1. resources be made available for adequate research for the street tree planting program; and
  2. consideration be given to the introduction of tree protection orders.

Agree in principle / Agree in part

1995.8

In a sub-regional context, and pending the introduction of new industry and vehicle emission guidelines and other regulatory measures to limit the emission of Greenhouse gases:

  1. the Government ensure that sufficient trees are planted in the ACT and the sub-region to ensure that the sub-region moves towards becoming a net absorber of C02; and
  2. consideration be given to the licensing of fuelwood vendors;

Agree

1995.9

with regard to noise, the Government note that increased traffic flows on major roads close to urban dwellings are the cause of concern for residents in some areas and

  1. implement a program for monitoring traffic noise to provide a reference system to evaluate any changes in the level and nature of traffic noise; and
  2. areas of high and growing traffic volumes be the priority places for the initial monitoring.

Agree in principle

1997

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1997.1

It is recommended that dates be set for completion of all relevant legislation and actions, as identified in the Government’s Response to the ACT State of the Environment Report 1995 and Implementation during 1996-97, and that those dates be published at the time of the Government’s response to ACTSER 97.

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Agree in principle

1997.2

It is recommended that comprehensive, spatial data be obtained and analysed for the next State of the Environment Report, and thereafter on an appropriately regular basis for state of environment reporting, to ensure availability of data relative to- change in landuse; vegetation cover and vegetation communities (including riparian vegetation and wetlands); area of impervious surface; extent (and type) of weed infestation; soil degradation and degradation hazard for erosion, acidity and salinity; groundwater levels and quality; land capability; soil nutrient status and soil structural condition; channel morphology; protection (fencing) of riparian zone.

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Agree in principle

1997.3

It is recommended that the Chief Minister and all Ministers of the ACT Government be pro-active in their interaction with all other leaders of Governments and of Ministerial portfolios, to achieve a situation whereby information held in the agencies of Governments, when requested for authorised state of environment reporting purposes, is made available promptly, and free of charge, for use in the preparation of such reports.

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Agree

1997.4

It is recommended that the “Integrated Landuse and Transport Study” by PALM be given high priority and specifically consider ways to develop an effective public transport system, which will encourage less private motor vehicle use.

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Agree

1997.5

It is recommended that the Government maintain at least two air quality monitoring stations in Canberra, with a third (in the Belconnen area) being considered subject to resource availability.

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Agree

1997.6

It is recommended that Government address mechanisms for identifying appropriate environmental flows for selected streams, so that water entitlements for the environment under the COAG agreement will be in place by the end of 1998.

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Agree

1997.7

The Government is urged to ensure adequate resourcing for the implementation of the Nature Conservation Strategy, the Flora and Fauna Committee and research and mapping of those ecological communities, invertebrates and non-avian vertebrates for which there are inadequate baseline data.

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Agree in principle

1997.8

It is recommended that the ACT Government should maintain, and where necessary establish, a system of financial incentives for innovations which will lead to improved environmental performances in specific and/or general application, and to improved employment prospects through their wider use.

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Agree

1997.9

The full environmental cost of greenfields developments should be investigated, and any short term economic benefit from such new developments should be analysed against the long term economic costs of maintenance of infrastructure, and ecological cost of modification to natural ecosystems.

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Agree in principle

1997.10'

It is recommended that the Government devise a strategy to reduce wood-burning for cooking and heating in areas susceptible to pollutant trapping.

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Agree in principle

1997.11

It is recommended that the ACT Government continue to seek strategies for CO containment. Such strategies should also address the contribution of domestic wood-burning to CO emissions in Canberra.

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Agree in principle

1997.12

It is recommended that greater coordination and support for community monitoring of land quality be engendered to streamline data collection and transfer to relevant bodies, as well as to improve analysis of data, with a profile/directory of community-based environmental groups and their monitoring activities in ACT catchments accessible on the Environment ACT World-Wide Web page.

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Agree in principle

1997.13

It is recommended that the Government continue to monitor socio-economic trends and maintain its statistical/digital database.

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Agree

1997.14

Strategies should be devised to ensure compliance with the NEPM for CO when the NEPM is finalised.

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Agree

1997.15

It is recommended that the Government consider measurement of PM2.5 in addition to PM10, which may allow the eventual phasing out of TSP measurements.

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Agree in principle

1997.16

It is recommended that the Government continue to negotiate with the Cancer Council on behalf of all ACT residents for UV monitoring data to be made freely available for public health reasons.

bomb

Agree in principle

1997.17

It is recommended that relevant agencies ensure that quarterly returns on actual storage levels for the two storage catchment areas, as well as an explanation of performance, be made available for the Office of the Commissioner for the Environment, commencing in October 1997. Levels recorded during those quarterly returns should be both the lowest level, the median and the 90 and 10 percentiles.

bomb

Agree

1997.18

Draft Management Plans for conservation areas and Action Plans for threatened communities and species should be finalised as quickly as practicable.

bomb

Agree

1997.19

The Government is encouraged to pursue its development of quality of life indicators in consultation with the Office of the Commissioner for the Environment, and to monitor key indicators as a matter of course.

bomb

Agree

2000

  

2000.1

Ensure that appropriate funding is in place to meet the requirements of the National Environment Protection Measures (NEPM), particularly in relation to the measurement of airborne particles (PM10)

Agree

2000.2

In conjunction with the measurement of PM10, estimate the amount of the smaller airborne particles (PM2.5) by the existing surrogate method, pending the outcome of decisions of the national review of the NEPM air particle standard (follows Recommendation 97.15)

Agree

2000.3

Evaluate the effectiveness of actions to reduce the impact of wood-smoke, as an atmospheric pollutant, especially when atmospheric temperature inversions occur (follows Recommendations 97.10 and 97.11)

Agree

2000.4

Report biannually for each sector on progress towards the 2008 targets for reduction in Greenhouse Gases, in accordance with the ACT Greenhouse Strategy

Agree

2000.5

Cooperate with relevant Councils in the Australian Capital Region (ACR) to:

  • verify the extent and condition of native vegetation communities in the ACT and the ACR, in particular those that are indicated as having less than 30% of their original (pre–1750) extent remaining; and
  • identify the threatening processes associated with those vegetation communities; and
  • to apply this knowledge to establish priorities for the conservation management network in the ACT and the ACR.

Agree

2000.6

Maximise efforts to conserve biodiversity in the ACR and the ACT with a particular focus on off-reserve conservation

Agree

2000.7

Maintain efforts to attract private sector enterprises to the ACT, particularly those which build on new technologies, including the information and communication technologies and biotechnologies, to provide increased job opportunities in sustainable industries

Agree

2000.8

Analyse the expertise in the ACT in environmental education and training, and in environmental industries and further promote Canberra and the ACT as an international leader in inland environmental education and management

Agree

2000.9

Implement an incentive scheme to encourage and reward best environmental practice

Agree

2000.10

Collaborate with the Australian Federal Police and others to propose and implement methods to decrease the crime rate, especially for attacks on individuals and their property

Agree

2000.11

Require relevant Government agencies and Government-owned corporations to include in annual management plans the extent to which they expect difficulties in maintaining the condition of major infrastructure assets, in meeting needs for renewal, and their plans for addressing these needs

Agree

2000.12

Note again the recommendations in the Commissioner for the Environment's Report on Progress Towards No Waste by 2010, and the Government's response, and implement actions to reinvigorate community commitment to, and whole of Government involvement in, the No Waste by 2010 Strategy

Agree

2000.13

Investigate the NSW process for reporting on energy consumption, and report on the efficacy of introducing parallel legislation to ensure uniform reporting on energy statistics by all relevant electricity or energy retailers and generators in the ACT

Agree

2000.14

Provide maps and supporting evidence on the extent of, and potential for: soil erosion, soil acidity and dryland salinity (follows Recommendation 97.2)

Agree

2000.15

Fund an independent study to review cost–effective methods to monitor groundwater levels, and to recommend on a systematic monitoring regime of the ACT's groundwater extent and its quality, to provide the necessary data to sustainably manage the ACT's groundwater resource, and phenomena associated with changing groundwater levels (follows Recommendation 97.2)

Not agreed

2000.16

Assess the impact of environmental flows to determine whether the flows are protecting aquatic ecosystems in downstream waters for all waterways in the ACT

Agree

2000.17

Review ACT water quality standards for:

  1. for temperature in relation to recreational use to take account of local climatic conditions
  2. for aquatic ecosystem maintenance, to include total oxidised nitrogen (NOx)

Agree

2000.18

Establish procedures to ensure that all builders comply with sedimentation controls during all phases of construction of dwellings

Agree

2000.19

Continue and expand water reuse and recycling projects, and establish a database on water reuse as part of the ACT's water management system

Agree

2000.20

Establish baseline reference data by measuring current levels of dioxins in soils in areas close to and remote from the Totalcare Industries Limited site at Mitchell where clinical wastes are incinerated

Agree

2003

  

2003.1

Use mobile air quality monitoring to measure and record air quality at busy intersections, near known point sources, and in other parts of Canberra that may be susceptible to high levels of airborne particles and other pollutants

Agree

2003.2

Examine how indoor air quality may be monitored in the ACT

Agree

2003.3

Promote and provide incentives for the use of low-emission vehicles by Government agencies

Agree

2003.4

Immediately develop and resource long-term research and monitoring programs of at least 30 years duration into post-fire recovery of terrestrial and aquatic components of natural and modified Conserving Biodiversity ecosystems as part of a joint program with other research providers in States affected by fire

Agree

2003.5

Seek funding for the long-term research in recommendation 2003.4 from the Commonwealth Government on the basis of the National Research Priority 'an environmentally sustainable Australia', announced in December 2002

Agree

2003.6

Implement an appropriate post-fire works and management program to protect water supply catchment, aquatic habitat and nature conservation values of the upper Cotter River, Murrumbidgee and Molonglo River valleys, and their tributaries

Agree

2003.7

Assess the contributions of existing ACT Government pest plant control programs to achieving pest plant control, biodiversity conservation, and catchment management objectives and, if appropriate, Trial alternative programs

Agree

2003.8

Undertake a catchment-by-catchment hydrological study of groundwater systems to assess water quality and quantity and its connectivity, spatial distribution and temporal variability

Agree

2003.9

Extend existing policy and management plans to include extreme event scenarios

Agree

2003.10

Adopt the six recommendations in the ACT Greenhouse Strategy: 2002 Review of performance and options for the future , released in March 2003

Not agreed

2003.11

Put in place a reliable system for long-term uninterrupted weather monitoring in the ACT’s water supply catchments

Agree

2003.12

Ensure lower income groups have access to appropriate affordable housing

Agree

2003.13

Implement programs aimed at reducing gaps in health outcomes for Aboriginal people

Agree

2003.14

Assist support services and facilities to keep pace with the increasing demands of an ageing population

Agree

2003.15

Increase professional development and employment opportunities for the young and disadvantaged

Agree

2003.16

Improve access to support services and provide dedicated acute care, day and long-stay accommodation for children and adolescents with a mental illness

Agree

2003.17

Implement the Sustainable Transport Plan ‘principles for managing change’ in the Draft Canberra Spatial Plan and manage parking to assist in achieving sustainable transport outcomes

Agree

2003.18

Develop data records for Community Participation and Heritage that meet needs for reporting purposes, including State of the Environment and State of Heritage reports

Agree

2003.19

Ensure that biodiversity conservation is always integral to ACT Government planning and management of landuse changes, post-fire recovery programs, and fire prevention programs such as fuel hazard reduction programs, expansion and management of the fire-trail network, creation of fire protection zones

Agree

2003.20

Provide appropriate resources and support for improving the comprehensive, adequate and representative system of protected lowland woodland and grasslands in the ACT as outlined in the Draft Lowland Woodland Conservation Strategy (as detailed in the priority tasks of Table 6.2 of the Strategy), and for ongoing management of these ecosystems

Agree

2003.21

Stimulate and reward innovations to minimise resource use identified in outcomes in The Draft Canberra Spatial Plan, The Economic White Paper , the ACT Greenhouse Strategy: 2002 Review of performance and options for the future , the No Waste by 2010 Strategy and Think water, act water

Agree

2003.22

Under section 158A of the Environment Protection Act 1997, report on the effectiveness of innovations implemented as a result of recommendation 2003.21

Agree

2003.23

Identify and implement those water use and efficiency initiatives which will yield the greatest environmental, social and economic benefits

Agree

2003.24

Apply the revenue raised through the water abstraction charge directly to catchment management and water efficiency programs

Not agreed

2003.25

Provide sufficient funding to achieve asset management standards for existing infrastructure; and ensure new infrastructure supports sustainable resource use

Agree in principle

2007

  

Climate and greenhouse

  

2007.1

1. Ensure an effective response to climate change by:

  1. Giving a high priority to implementing the ACT Government's Weathering the Change strategy and action plan.
  2. The Commissioner's Office annually assessing the progress made in implementing Weathering the Change, in particular the ACT Government's progress towards carbon neutrality.
  3. The Commissioner, working with the ACT Government and key environmental and business groups, advocating climate change actions and community involvement.
  4. Asking the Australian Government to establish a new weather station in the ACT and ensuring data is adequately correlated with previous data from the weather station at Canberra International Airport.

Agree

Air quality

  

2007.2

1. Make outdoor air quality data and information available to the public through an annual air quality report prepared by the Environment Protection Agency.

Agree

2007.3

2. Gain a better understanding of indoor air quality to inform building design, maintenance and use by:

  1. Monitoring selected public and private buildings with the results being made public and used to inform management of the buildings.
  2. Providing information to the community on the importance of regularly introducing fresh air into buildings.
  3. Advising occupants of new or renovated buildings and those with new furniture and fittings (such as carpet and underlay) to air the house as much as possible in the first few days following installation.

Agree

Conserving biodiversity

  

2007.4

1. Strengthen the nature conservation estate by:

  1. Completing the Territory's nature conservation estate by protecting the few remaining areas of high conservation value including natural temperate grasslands (in the Majura and Jerrabomberra valleys), Yellow Box-Red Gum Grassy Woodlands (at Kinlyside, Kama–Molonglo Valley) and the Snow Gum–Candlebark Tableland Woodland. This must include full assessment and recording of the location and condition of remaining examples of Snow Gum–Candlebark Tableland Woodland.
  2. Protecting lands identified for nature conservation under the Territory Plan in a timely manner. Priority should be given to Jerrabomberra East native grassland nature reserves.
  3. Considering Goorooyarroo and Mulligans Flat nature reserves (Yellow Box–Red Gum Grassy Woodlands) for designation as a national park. It may be that Goorooyarroo–Mulligans Flat should be part of a network of areas considered for designation as a national park or be given additional protection and recognition by some other overarching designation.

Agree in principle

2007.5

2. Strengthen partnerships by:

  1. ACT Government agencies working with qualified community groups (such as the Canberra Ornithologists Group) to ensure data collected are made available for use in planning and managing the Territory's natural resources.
  2. ACT Government and Australian Government agencies, and private landholders responsible for managing native grasslands cooperating with the scientific community and community groups in developing management actions that will ensure survival of threatened grassland communities and the species they support.

Agree

2007.6

3. Achieve effective nature conservation management by:

  1. Finalising, implementing and monitoring management plans, with all stakeholders participating and progress being publicly reported, particularly for:
    1. Jerrabomberra Wetlands Nature Reserve Management Plan,
    2. Lower Cotter Catchment,
    3. Namadgi National Park,
    4. Googong Foreshores.
    5. Finalising, implementing and monitoring the ACT Weeds Strategy.
    6. Maintaining and enhancing connectivity between core nature conservation areas. This needs to be given a high priority in planning greenfield and urban renewal developments and major infrastructure projects.
    7. Developing and implementing an interim policy to allow for limited commercial seed collection on selected unleased sites, pending completion of the review of the Nature Conservation Act.
    8. Assessing and implementing mitigation actions on the potential impact of illegal fishing on the remnant population of the threatened Macquarie Perch (Macquaria australasica) in the Cotter Reservoir and the Cotter River between the reservoir and Pierces Creek junction.
    9. Finalising, implementing and monitoring the kangaroo management plan for the whole Territory. Consultation with the community is to occur at the planning stage.

Agree

2007.7

4. Improve the scientific knowledge of managers and custodians of the ACT nature conservation estate by:

  1. Continuing existing research, monitoring and evaluation programs.
  2. Ensuring threatened species and communities, and river biodiversity are the subject of research and monitoring programs, with results from these informing management actions.
  3. Monitoring and evaluating fire fuel management effectiveness and its effects on ecological and catchment conditions. A central and uniform source of information on all ACT fuel reduction activities, research, monitoring and evaluations should be created.

Agree

2007.8

5. Effectively control pest plants and animals to minimise adverse affects on nature conservation by:

  1. Continuing existing programs to manage known pest animals (foxes, dingoes/wild dogs, pigs, rabbits, feral horses) and plants (Serrated Tussock, St John's Wort, Chilean Needlegrass, African Lovegrass). Given the significant increase in rabbits, existing rabbit control programs may need to be enhanced.
  2. Monitoring and controlling emerging pests, such as European wasps and deer. Given that European wasps affect humans as well as biodiversity there is a need to give priority to this species.
  3. Evaluating the effectiveness of pest animal and weed control programs in achieving pest control, biodiversity conservation and catchment management objectives. This information should be used in the ongoing management of such programs, and be made public.

Agree

Catchment quality

  

2007.9

1. Improve catchment management by:

  1. Developing an ACT integrated water supply catchment management policy and strategy to guide, among other things, coordination of:
    1. scientific research,
    2. data collection,
    3. monitoring and reporting (including public information).
  2. Monitoring the effects of urbanisation on the ACT region's water catchment and using the information in developing and implementing strategies in response to specific issues (for example, development of greenfield sites).
  3. Monitoring the effectiveness of the Gross Pollutant Trap network (including its supporting maintenance program) to identify ways to improve its overall effectiveness in protecting surface water quality.
  4. Determining the sources and loads of salts entering the wastewater treatment networks and using the information to develop strategies to reduce salt discharges to the Molonglo and Murrumbidgee Rivers.
  5. Ensuring the key indicators in the State of the Environment Report, Natural Resource Management Plan and other relevant ACT Government reports are reviewed and aligned.

Agree

2007.10

2. Further progress restoration efforts in the Lower Cotter Catchment by:

  1. Continuing the science-based approach to management with an emphasis given to monitoring and publicly reporting on recovery of this catchment.
  2. Further reducing water turbidity in streams through targeting areas of greatest vulnerability that have high rehabilitation potential.
  3. Clearly defining recreational activities, with protection of water being the highest priority.

Agree

Resource use

  

2007.11

1. Use resources more wisely by:

  1. Developing and implementing a sustainability community awareness program(s) on:
    1. waste minimisation and/or avoidance that emphasises this as the fundamental first step (before re-use, recycling or disposal) in effective waste management,
    2. prudent and smart use of water and energy,
    3. better building design, particularly for energy and water efficiency,
    4. the relationship between i., ii. and iii, climate change and sustainability (including the effect on the natural environment).
  2. Requiring all ACT Government agencies to report annually on their use of water, energy consumption, waste generation, and actions they propose undertaking to use resources more efficiently.
  3. Ensuring sustainability criteria are used to guide the assessment, planning and management of new uses for buildings no longer needed for school purposes (as per the Towards 2020: Renewing Our Schools program) and any other buildings disposed of as surplus to Government requirements.

Agree

2007.12

2. Progress sustainable transport by:

  1. Continuing to implement and support the Territory's Sustainable Transport Plan by:
    1. finalising and implementing a Territory parking strategy (with supporting actions) for ACT lands and those in the parliamentary triangle (it will be important to ensure that the Australian Government supports this strategy),
    2. developing a pedestrian action plan, in consultation with the community, to foster walking, particularly for commuter trips.
  2. Amending the Territory's Sustainable Transport Plan to include greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency and/or carbon neutrality targets for the transport sector, and specific efficiency targets, such as energy efficiency per person or persons per kilometer traveled.
  3. Developing and discussing with the community a paper on long-term innovative sustainable transport options for the Territory. Pending the results of this work, update the Territory's Sustainable Transport Plan to include any government-adopted options. An independently chaired, multidiscipline taskforce should be charged with developing the options, consulting the community and reporting to government.
  4. The Commissioner's Office annually assessing the progress made in implementing the Sustainable Transport Plan.
  5. The Commissioner working with the ACT Government and key environmental and business groups to advocate that community travel in a sustainable manner.

Agree

2007.13

3. Manage land effectively by:

  1. Continuing to implement the Canberra Spatial Plan, particularly focusing on achieving higher densities and maintaining ecological corridors.
  2. Undertaking a Territory-wide land degradation assessment of erosion and soil salinity, and mapping the results.
  3. Determining the long-term use of all forestry land burnt in the 2003 bushfire. (Some significant areas have already had their long-term land uses defined.)

Agree

2007.14

4. Further advance waste management by:

  1. Developing and implementing a waste minimisation/avoidance action plan with specific measurable performance measures; No Waste would be an appropriate inspirational goal rather than being used as a target (for example, No Waste by 2010).
  2. Progressing a domestic and business organic waste collection system.
  3. Developing and implementing a Business Waste Reduction Strategy that includes:
    1. reducing waste,
    2. recycling and reusing waste,
    3. collecting and reporting on data,
    4. holding a businesses waste forum to encourage innovative and cost-effective approaches for reducing waste.
  4. Increasing community education and promotion to further reduce recyclables in potential landfill waste.
  5. Providing more facilities for recycling in public places and at major events.
  6. Establishing an ACT e-waste consortium, including Australian and ACT Government agencies, universities and CIT, CSIRO, businesses, industry and other major e-waste generators to:
    1. provide data on e-waste,
    2. raise awareness about e-waste,
    3. develop e-waste minimisation and management strategies.
    4. promoting waste minimisation as a practical way to advance sustainability.

Agree in principle

Community wellbeing

  

2007.15

1. The community is kept informed and engaged in progressing the implementation of key government community strategies including:

  1. Affordable Housing Action Plan
  2. A New Way – Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health and Family Wellbeing Plan 2006–11
  3. Towards 2020: Renewing Our Schools. Associated environmental and social equity implications need to be monitored in the long-term.

Agree

2007.16

2. Community wellbeing and safety is strengthened by:

  1. Encouraging community health programs, particularly those aimed at exercise, healthy eating, mental wellbeing and minimising excessive alcohol consumption.
  2. Implementing an ongoing awareness program aimed at preventing vehicular collisions with kangaroos.

Agree

2007.17

3. Noise management is improved by:

  1. Informing the community, at point of sale, of ways to mitigate the noise impacts from air conditioners with external fans. (Information on energy consumption should also be supplied at point of sale.)
  2. Ensuring entertainment venues provide appropriate noise attenuation. In so doing they will need to meet planning and environmental conditions. The effectiveness of conditions that the Planning and Environmental Protection agencies impose should be monitored.

Agree

2007.18

4. The Territory's heritage be better protected by:

  1. Asking the Australian Government to take account of the need for adequate heritage protection in the ACT when making changes to National Capital Authority responsibilities, including requiring the Authority to observe and comply with ACT heritage legislation.
  2. Asking the Australian Government to ensure heritage places affected by changes to federal legislation (due to take effect in 2012) are given the appropriate level of protection (for example, the Yarralumla Woolshed).

Agree

2011

  

2011.1

Establish cross-boundary management of the ACT’s water resources including:

  1. developing catchment policy and an integrated water supply catchment management strategy, as recommended in previous State of Environment Reports; and
  2. strengthening integrated management action by facilitating improved exchange and use of information, such as spatial information, between government agencies, Natural Resource Management groups and Catchment Management Authorities, and by promoting sustainable catchment management with landholders and the community.

Agree

2011.2

Complete assessment of the ACT’s at risk groundwater resources.

Agree in principle

2011.3

Update water management, monitoring and reporting programs to inform:

  1. actions to mitigate impacts of urban development on water quality;
  2. the efficacy of Water Sensitive Urban Design measures;
  3. improvements in sediment and erosion mitigation actions; and
  4. management of ACT lakes.

Agree

2011.4

Improve monitoring to assess the impact of erosion on local land and water resources, and to help to understand the interactions between the ACT's catchment and ecosystem services in particular:

  1. undertake baseline soils mapping for the ACT to facilitate monitoring and assessment of soil condition;
  2. identify indicators of land health including soil heath, vegetation quality and change, and land use changes, and monitor and publicly report on these on a regular basis;
  3. improve limited land health data by including land health assessments in water catchment data to inform soil condition across the ACT; and
  4. improve actions related to sediment and erosion mitigation.

Agree in principle

2011.5

Management of knowledge and the coordination of scientific research, data collection, monitoring and reporting (including public information) is an area of concern across all themes. A specific recommendation to address this is provided under the recommendations section of the Biodiversity Theme paper.

Agree

2011.6

Strengthen research, planning and practical projects to enhance biodiversity conservation in the ACT through:

  1. developing a biodiversity monitoring strategy, building on existing government and non-government skills, capacity and programs, and focused on periodic reporting. This should include, where appropriate, systematic statistical methodologies which support monitoring of trends and changes to biodiversity assets in the ACT;
  2. funding a dedicated senior officer position to facilitate knowledge development and consolidation, across disparate sources, including more strategic integration within and between government, research/academic institutions and community groups and members. To support this role, systems should be developed to provide wide public access to information to guide research, teaching, planning and practical projects to enhance the sustainability of the ACT and Region;
  3. identifying opportunities to integrate multiple environmental assessments. For example, when monitoring nature reserves for vegetation qualities, land-health indicators and grazing impacts should also be monitored at the same sites. Assessing sites in Canberra Nature Park on a rolling 3-year basis over a 10-year period would provide the basic information for monitoring trends in environmental condition;
  4. publicly reporting decisions and activities relating to individual species, populations and ecological communities in the ACT. This should include both qualitative and quantitative information;
  5. reviewing and updating Action Plans where appropriate, and publicly reporting on progress against Action Plan objectives and proposed actions; and
  6. collaborating with NSW Government and regional organisations to contribute to regional and national biodiversity data sets.

Agree in principle

2011.7

Better integrating biodiversity values within urban planning through:

  1. integrating biodiversity corridors and habitat connectivity in the Territory Plan process;
  2. identifying, where possible, appropriate clearance thresholds for ecological communities across the ACT to maintain and improve biodiversity values and guide development decisions. To complement this the draft biodiversity offset policy should be finalised to ensure no net loss in ecosystems; and
  3. developing and implementing an ACT fauna sensitive road design manual.

Supported in part

2011.8

Improve transparency of biodiversity integration into legislative and planning frameworks through:

  1. including objectives for the protection of biodiversity and a definition for ‘biodiversity’ as part of the Nature Conservation (NC) Act 1980 review;
  2. aligning provisions in the Environment Protection Act 1997 and Planning and Development Act with any relevant changes to the NC Act including biodiversity definitions and reviewing the definition of environmental harm to determine whether unauthorised loss of biodiversity should be included as an offence;
  3. assessing the effectiveness of managing threatening processes through Action Plans and determining if management of key threatening processes needs strengthening through listing under the NC Act.

Agree in principle

 

2011.9

To improve knowledge of our indoor air quality, the Chief Health Officer should consider the health impact of indoor air quality in the ACT in the 2014 Chief Health Officer Report.

Agree

2011.10

Improve local air quality outdoors through:

  1. requiring air quality assessments in all new greenfield developments, to identify and manage air emissions, potentially detrimental to human health and the environment;
  2. installing and operating a second performance air monitoring station to ensure that the ACT is compliant with NEPM standards; and
  3. determining the feasibility, including costs, of mobile monitoring of appropriate ambient air quality NEPM standards at locations in and around Canberra.

Supported in part

2011.11

As a priority the ACT Government develop and implement pathways to achieve carbon neutrality in ACT Government buildings and services. These should be implemented through the second Action Plan of Weathering the Change and include monitoring, evaluation of actions and annual public reporting on progress.

Agree in principle

 

2011.12

The ACT Government develop and implement a pathway to achieve the legislated climate change emission reduction and renewable energy targets. This should be implemented through the second Action Plan of Weathering the Change and include:

  1. focus on reducing emissions from transport and our buildings (especially improving energy efficiency of old building stock);
  2. responsive regulatory, governance and investment arrangements for renewable energy;
  3. continued engagement with ACT community; and
  4. regular monitoring, evaluation of actions and public reporting on progress against the targets.

Agree in principle

 

2011.13

Develop a climate change adaptation planning and implementation response through:

  1. building on existing and undertaking additional sector vulnerability risk assessments;
  2. establishing a monitoring, evaluation, reporting and improvement methodology and framework as a consistent guide for Government, to develop, progress and report against adaptation planning; and
  3. integrating adaptation planning outcomes into existing ACT planning and management frameworks.

Agree in principle

 

2011.14

Develop a regional approach to planning for climate change. This needs to be done in partnership with NSW Government, local councils and regional organisations. Key areas of focus should include opportunities for renewable energy development, water security, urban and regional planning, transport management and adaptation of ecosystem services to climate change.

Agree in principle

2011.15

Finalise and implement the draft ACT Planning Strategy to provide an integrated approach to future planning. Particular attention should be paid to:

  1. determining indicators and measures for urban quality in the ACT that includes the benefits provided by green infrastructure and access to open space; and
  2. developing greenfield and infill targets, which take into account both the need for green infrastructure as well as strengthening a sense of community and self containment.

Agree

2011.16

Develop a housing strategy to address the needs of changing population demographics into the future.

Agree

2011.17

Finalise and implement the draft Sustainable Transport Action Plan to provide an integrated approach to transport and urban planning. In doing so:

  1. obtain additional non-work related travel data, similar to the annual Sydney Household Travel Survey, to ensure a more complete understanding of Canberra’s transport habits;
  2. focus on strategies and targets to improve access to sustainable forms of transport outside of transport corridors;
  3. develop targets for;
    1. reducing in greenhouse gas emissions from transport;
    2. increase sustainable transport usage for non-work travel to complement the existing targets for work travel; and
  4. track progress towards Sustainable Transport targets on an annual basis.

Agree

2011.18

Finalise and implement a new ACT Waste Management Strategy with a focus on reducing waste generation, in particular:

  1. examine and implement options for diverting wastes from landfill to higher order beneficial reuse opportunities. These actions should be measured, recorded and reported publicly;
  2. focusing community education on the link between consumption and waste; and
  3. targeting specific programs to reduce waste from the construction and demolition, and commercial and industrial sectors.

Agree

2011.19

Strengthen heritage protection in the ACT by:

  1. developing an action plan for heritage which addresses the backlog of heritage nominations and recognises key future sites for protection;
  2. strengthening audit, compliance and enforcement processes in line with recommendations of the Marshall report;
  3. developing a memorandum of understanding with the Australian Government to protect assets, subject to Australian Government planning approvals, on the ACT Heritage Register; and
  4. promoting ACT heritage values as a part of the Canberra 2013 Centenary celebrations.

Supported in part

2011.20

Align and integrate climate adaptation planning and disaster risk management where appropriate. This should include lessons learned from changes to fire management.

Agree

2011.21

In collaboration with NSW Government and local councils, develop a regional approach to planning and risk management to address future challenges of population and climate change.

Agree

2011.22

Strengthen community engagement in sustainability by:

  1. Undertaking research on attitudes to sustainability and consumption patterns and behaviours. This could be done through regular community surveys similar to the annual NSW ‘Who cares about the environment?’ with the outcomes informing focus areas for community engagement; and
  2. Fostering behaviour change through community engagement to reduce our ecological footprint with a particular focus on sustainable transport; and impacts of consumption.

Agree

Recommendations from investigations

Recommendations: Investigation into the ACT Government's use of chemicals for pest control (Sept 1996 – May 1998)

No.

Recommendations:

Investigation into the ACT Government's use of chemicals for pest control (Sept 1996 – May 1998)

Govt. response

1

That the ACT Government act immediately to establish a co-ordinated approach, across the whole of the ACT Government, to best-practice management of pests, ("any vermin or other troublesome or destructive form of biological entity"), so as to ensure there is a mechanism (or mechanisms) in place to -

 

1.1

provide a central point of liaison between the ACT Government Agencies and the National Registration Authority (NRA.), the Environmental Protection Group (EPG) and Worksafe Australia, on all pest-control issues;

Agree

1.2

implement the requirements of all relevant legislation;

Agree

1.3

provide for the direct point of contact for all asset managers within the ACT Government, its agencies and the ACT Landcare Sub-Committee in authorising the use of specific chemicals for specific pest-control uses under controlled conditions;

Agree

1.4

derive from the ACT Weeds Strategy 1996, in collaboration with the parties identified therein, a draft 10 year Weed Management Plan for ACT Government land and other property under the management of the ACT Government and its agencies, for consideration by the ACT Government; such 10 year plan to be reviewed at 3, 6 and 9 years from 1998, and supplemented with annual action plans/programs;

Agree

1.5

determine the qualifications and other criteria, including training requirements, that will apply to pest-control operators seeking a licence to operate pest-control activities in the ACT and to maintain a list of all such licensed operators;

Agree

1.6

establish and maintain a reference list and a set of comprehensive data sheets of all approved chemicals for pest-control in the ACT, and of the storage locations and conditions of storage for such chemicals, for immediate access for both emergency and routine enquiries;

Agreed in principle

1.7

establish, maintain and circulate (to all relevant asset managers) a comprehensive pest-control manual, modelled on the January 1996 ACT City Operations (Canberra Urban Parks) Pest Management Manual, (and containing all the chapter headings and sections of that document); and on the draft document 'Use and Handling of Herbicides for Rural Lessees and Landcare Groups'; (It is recognised that different functional areas may require specialist portions of such a manual, to meet specific needs).

Agreed in principle

1.8

facilitate liaison with all relevant asset managers and the ACT Landcare Sub-Committee to:

Agree

1.8.1

conduct an inventory of all chemicals for pest-control in ACT Government Stores, with the objective of:

 

1. removing and destroying (by approved methods) all pest-control chemicals no longer approved for use in the ACT, and the containers holding those chemicals; and

Agreed in principle

 

2. investigating if the approved list and range of pest-control chemicals used in the ACT, by the ACT Government, can be reduced;

Agree

1.8.2

coordinate advice and instruction on Integrated Pest Management (IPM), including mechanical, biological, chemical and any other approved control methods, with the objective of progressively minimising the use of pest-control chemicals, and emphasising the role of cultural control methods.

Agree

1.8.3

develop an agreed format and set of criteria for:

 

1. recording the use of different pest-control methods by ACT Government employees and by contractors undertaking pest-control activities for the ACT Government and its agencies; and - determining the sustainable efficiency and any effectiveness of the different pest-control management strategies and practices, in their impacts on target and non-target species;

Agreed in principle

 

2. determining the sustainable efficiency and any effectiveness of the different pest-control management strategies and practices, in their impacts on target and non-target species.

Agree

1.8.4

develop an agreed format, signage and protocols for advertising pest-control methods prior to, during and after each event

Agree

1.8.5

develop (in association with the NRA) a system - including a free call 24 hour a day telephone number - to record and investigate all complaints of chemical sensitivity by the public; (This system should also involve the commissioning of a consultancy to a medical practitioner to record and maintain a list of symptoms recorded in such reports of chemical sensitivity.) The same free call telephone number should also be advertised as the number for the public to contact with any general comments on the ACT pest-control program

Agreed in principle

1.9

establish formal and regular interaction with Worksafe Australia and with the Committee(s) responsible for OH&S, relevant to the obligations of the ACT Government;

Agree

1.10

minimise possible hazards to the public, arising from ACT Government pest-control activities;

Agree

1.11

represent the interests of ACT Government agencies at national forums and meetings on pest-control management and strategies

Agree

1.12

prepare an annual report to the Minister responsible for the environment on the effectiveness and efficiency of pest-control management within the outer boundaries of the ACT, by the ACT Government and its agencies;

Agreed in principle

2

that with the passage of the Environment Protection Act 1997, the ACT Government move immediately to consider a range of regulatory and non-regulatory options with a view to implementing the most effective and efficient measures to ensure that pest-control companies and operators seeking to operate in the ACT, and their staff or contractors, conduct their operations safely and with minimum adverse impact on the environment (as defined in the Act);

Agree

3

that the ACT Government and its agencies no longer use the term 'pesticide' and replace it with the term 'pest-control substance' or 'pest-control chemical'; (The 'cidal' effect is obviously limited for any species classification, whereas it may, under ideal circumstances, be appropriate for an individual of that species.)

Agreed in principle

4

that a copy of the revised pest-control management manual be available for public access in the office of each asset manager responsible for any pest-control operations; and

Agreed in principle

5

that an entry 'Pest-control Program', and a contact telephone number be inserted in the white pages, '24 Hour Emergency Numbers' to allow the community ready access with relevance to Terms of Reference d) - Public notification of chemical control programs - and e) - The need for transparent processes to ensure community input on ACT chemical control programs - of the investigation. (The same information should be considered for inclusion in the Environment ACT World-Wide Web page.)

Agreed in principle

 

No.

Recommendations:

Investigation into the ACT Government's ‘No Waste by 2010 Strategy’ (March 1999 – November 1999)

Govt. response

1

Clarify and publicise the Government's goals for the strategy.

Agree

2

Ensure that actions identified for the first two years are completed - in particular, identification of full costs of each type of waste, and comprehensive benchmarking.

Agree

3

Develop a strong focus on initiatives to engender community commitment to achieving the goal of no waste by 2010. This requires initiatives under "Information programs and community support" and "Public Recognition". As part of that focus, consider:

  1. a wider distribution of annual progress reports- for example, introduction of household distribution each year (as done in 1997)
  2. ways to encourage and recognise community initiatives in waste management
  3. revitalisation of community interest and participation in achieving the no waste goal through:
    1. a booklet/guide such as was produced when recycling was introduced,
    2. a media campaign (television and radio); and
    3. strengthening the role of schools
    4. continuing participation in events such as Floriade, Recycling Awareness Week, etc.

Agree

4

Ensure that development of infrastructure for Resource Recovery Estates and the National No Waste Education Centre is implemented, and that the Resource Recovery Estates are managed in such a way that they do not replace landfills as repositories for waste

Agree

5

Use an appropriate central structure in Government or one that may cross agency or business unit boundaries to prioritise actions for implementation of the strategy to 2010. Before the end of 2000, an update of the strategy should be initiated to identify action plans to 2010. That update should ensure the inclusion of:

  1. initiatives under the Broad Actions, "Community Commitment" and "Avoidance and Reduction" with commencement of their implementation as an urgent priority, during the current triennium
  2. other priority actions and a clear timeframe for their implementation
  3. a series of short-term targets to reduce specific waste streams based on the waste inventory (eg not less than a 30% reduction of household waste over the next 3 years)
  4. options for legislation to support the desired results
  5. options for economic instruments, particularly incentives for best management practice
  6. introduction of innovative ways to achieve the goal of the strategy, and
  7. at least two reviews of progress/the program between 2000 and 2008.

Agree

6

Use an appropriate central structure in Government, or one that may cross agency or business unit boundaries, to identify and articulate the socio-economic and environmental consequences for the ACT of moving towards no waste to landfill by 2010.

Agree

7

Use an appropriate central structure in Government, or one that may cross agency or business unit boundaries, to ensure adequate and appropriate resources are provided to implement the no waste strategy in accordance with the demands of the operating environment.

Agree

8

Initiate a whole of Government approach to achievement of the No Waste by 2010 strategy, and implement Best Practice Waste Management in all Government agencies/departments.

Agree

9

There is a need to integrate efforts taken in the ACT with regional and national efforts, specifically;

  1. take a leading role in implementation of the National Environment Protection (Used Packaging Materials) Measure as appropriate in the ACT, and in formulating national guidelines and codes of practice;
  2. through appropriate inter-governmental avenues, pursue development of a national rating system, which will provide information on the environmental characteristics of a product, including by-products, energy consumed in production and use, packaging used and the potential for reuse and recycling of the product, by-products and packaging; and
  3. formalise cross-border arrangements regarding waste minimisation.

The structure that is devised to deal with Recommendations 5-8 above should be responsible for overseeing or coordinating such activities.

Agreed in principle

 

No.

Recommendation:

Review of proposed standards for air emissions and other waste products and monitoring requirements for the Totalcare incinerator (Feb 2000 – June 2000)

Govt. response

1

The EMA should include appropriate numerical standards for dioxins/furans, total organic compounds (TOCs), soot and lead (Pb) as a separate entity in Environmental Authorisation 008, in accord with those in the standards proposed by Totalcare.

Agree

2

The standards for gaseous emissions set in Environmental Authorisation 008 should specify parameters measured by dry volume in cubic metres at STP and should be uncorrected except for total solid particles and nitrogen oxides which should be corrected to 7 per cent oxygen.

Agree

3

Environmental Authorisation 008 should include a requirement for both a mass rate as well as concentrations for all gaseous emission parameters.

Agree

4

The condition in Environmental Authorisation 008 relating to the characterisation of the ash should be expressed in terms of the critical parameters that would affect either disposal to landfill or reuse, if reuse were ever practicable.

Agree

5

The monitoring regime in Environmental Authorisation 008 should be revised to include more detailed provisions regarding monitoring of plant operation.

Agree

6

The monitoring regime should, at the appropriate time, include requirements for monitoring the quantity of baghouse residue produced and limits for appropriate parameters.

Agree

7

It is recommended that Environmental Authorisation 008 require Totalcare to negotiate with ACTEW as to standards for the discharge of wastewater from the site, and that the resulting standards be communicated to the EMA.

Agree

8

The EMA should commission some targeted testing of soil and vegetation around the plant for dioxins and heavy metals.

Agreed in principle

9

The EMA should ensure that it has access to the best scientific and technological advice on the implications of the monitoring results, so that the annual review of the licence conditions continues to be effective.

Agree

 

No.

Recommendations:

Inquiry into Lowland Native Grasslands (Nov 2007 – March 2009)

Govt. response

1

Streamline ACT Government planning and nature conservation legislation to ensure all land management matters are covered by the Nature Conservation Act 1980 (ACT) (currently under review).

Noted

2

The Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1991 (Cwlth) should be strengthened so sites and species are more effectively protected and managed.

Matter for the Commonwealth

3

As part of the current review of the Nature Conservation Act 1980 (ACT), ensure that lowland native grassland, in particular Natural Temperate Grassland ecosystems are protected by the Conservator of Flora and Fauna having powers to direct, when necessary, that land management actions be undertaken.

Agreed in principle

4

Resolve the heritage status of lowland native grassland sites, in a timely manner, to assist long-term planning.

Agree. Some aspects are a matter for the Commonwealth

5

As part of the current review of the Nature Conservation Act 1980 (ACT), ensure that lowland native grassland, in particular Natural Temperate Grassland, ecosystems are protected by innovative mechanisms such as conservation leases, voluntary agreements, bio-banking and offsets are investigated and progressed.

Agreed in principle

6

Existing memoranda of understanding between the ACT Government and Department of Defence, the National Capital Authority and CSIRO, with the Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts being a signatory, should be updated and implemented.

Noted

7

Develop memoranda of understanding between the ACT Government and the Department of Finance, Air Services Australia and the Canberra Airport Group, with the Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts being a signatory.

Noted

8

Establish a memorandum of understanding coordination and implementation group with an ACT Government agency being the lead agent.

Noted

9

Amend the Canberra Nature Park Management Plan (1999) to incorporate:

  • Action Plan No. 28, ACT Lowland Native Grassland Conservation Strategy (2005)
  • the new nature reserves of ‘Callum Brae’ (part JE02), Jerrabomberra West Reserve (JE03), Jerrabomberra East Reserve (JE05).

Agreed in principle

10

Develop and implement annual site operation plans for all lowland native grassland sites.

Agree

11

Amend the Belconnen Urban Parks, Sportsgrounds and Lake Ginninderra Plan of Management to include the lowland native grassland site of Lake Ginninderra (BE06).

Agree

12

Simplify administration of agistment licences covering lowland native grassland sites through standardising their conditions, including termination dates; and have one government agency signatory to an agistment lease.

Agree

13

Ensure rural lease processes (including those for land management agreements) are simplified and responsibilities are clarified.

Agreed in principle

14

Review the land management agreements covering Crace Nature Reserve (GU03) and Caswell Drive (BE10).

Agree

15

Immediately enforce the provisions and conditions in the land management agreement, which is a part of the rural lease for ‘Cookanalla’ (JE08).

Agree

16

Foster a strong culture of compliance, monitoring and enforcement within the government department responsible for administering land management agreements.

Agreed in principle

17

Establish a formal monitoring, assessment and auditing process aimed at ensuring conditions in land management agreements achieve the desired ecological results.

Agreed in principle

18

Permit grazing under rural leases and licences, on lowland native grassland sites if it is part of a long-term conservation management strategy.

Agree

19

Undertake experimental ecological burns on selected sites to determine the appropriateness of a wider application for managing lowland native grassland sites in the ACT.

Agree

20

Give priority to weed management and implementing appropriate mowing practices as part of routine work programs.

Agree

21

Improve the ecological condition of sites that are in a critical condition or approaching this state, by reducing current threatening processes of weed invasion, inappropriate mowing and overgrazing by stock, rabbits and kangaroos as a matter of urgency (see the original report for recommendations for each of Majura Valley, Jerrabomberra Valley, and areas in Gungahlin, Belconnen and Canberra Central).

Commissioner identified action as urgent

22

The ACT Government and the Australian Government commit to taking a strategic approach to protecting lowland native grassland, in particular Natural Temperate Grassland, threatened grassland species and fostering sustainable development by:

  • Giving priority to protecting all Category 1: Core Conservation Sites that contain Natural Temperate Grassland and key threatened grassland species, and ensuring that these areas are not affected by development proposals.
  • Placing in a reserve, where appropriate, Natural Temperate Grassland sites in Category 1: Core Conservation Sites. If this is not possible, these grassland areas and associated species should be conserved and managed as if they were in a reserve.
  • Integrating conservation values with development considerations for all Category 2:Complementary Conservation Sites and Category 3: Landscape and Urban Sites and ensuring connectivity is retained or enhanced.
  • Developing an offset policy (that includes identification of offset restoration sites) for loss of lowland native grassland, particularly Natural Temperate Grassland, due to development.

Agree in part. Some aspects are a matter for the Commonwealth

23

Plan a Majura Valley Reserve to protect Natural Temperate Grassland and its supporting species, particularly the Grassland Earless Dragon, by defining the boundaries of this proposed reserve in the near future.

Noted / Matter for the Commonwealth

24

Expand the Mount Ainslie Reserve to include areas of lowland native grassland in Campbell Park (MA05) and Majura West (MA06).

Matter for the Commonwealth

25

Expand Aranda Bushland and Black Mountain Reserve by including areas of lowland native grassland in Caswell Drive (BE10) and Glenloch Interchange (BE11).

Agreed in part

26

Define the long-term land use for lowland native grassland sites, while strategically protecting lowland native grassland, particularly Natural Temperate Grassland, and progressing appropriate developments, specifically:

  • ‘Callum Brae’ (part JE02) – excluding the land swap site. The areas of ecological connectivity need to be defined. Areas of ecological connectivity could be managed under a conservation lease or, depending on location, amalgamated with the adjoining rural lease. If development occurs, an offset should be required.
  • ‘Cookanalla’ (JE08) – a Grassland Earless Dragon survey is needed in conjunction with a survey to identify habitat that would support this species. Given the condition of the site, it may be appropriate to undertake surveys when the site has recovered, at least to some degree, from its current threatening processes. This site appears to lend itself to a land use that integrates conservation values with development. If areas of grassland are developed an offset should be required.
  • AMTECH (JE09) – reassess the site’s ecological values as these may have changed. If this site no longer meets criteria for its current classification as a Category 2:
    Complementary Conservation Site and changes to Category 3: Landscape and Urban Sites, its development potential could be realised. If areas of grassland are developed an offset should be required.
  • Kaleen East Paddocks (BE09) – reassess the site’s ecological values, as they were not obvious at the time of inspection. If these values still exist and development were to occur, given the likelihood that there is only a small area of Natural Temperate Grassland remaining, this may be able to be integrated with any future developments.
  • Lawson Commonwealth – East (BE08(b)) – Given the overall context of this site it appears to lend itself to a land use that integrates conservation values with development. An offset should be required if areas of grassland are developed.
  • Constitution Avenue, Reid (CC02) – If a decision is made to develop the Natural Temperate Grassland area, an offset should be required.

Mostly agreed

27

Publish a map that shows the location of lowland native grassland sites relative to planning zones. This should be readily available through the ACT Planning and Land Authority and the Department of Territory and Municipal Services.

Agree

28

Use adaptive management to guide land management so that sites in good condition (40%) are maintained, and those in a critical condition (20%) or approaching a critical condition (40%) are restored.

Agree

29

Assess the ecological values of Evatt Footbridge; Wells Station Road (GU07); Nicholls (GU08); Novar Street, Yarralumla (CC10); Belconnen Pony Club (GU06), Lawson Commonwealth – East (BE08(b)); and Mitchell (GU05).

Agree

30

Conduct an annual community and stakeholder lowland native grassland forum to, among other things, coordinate research, monitoring and data collection, and raise awareness.

Agreed in principle

31

Establish an accessible central register of information and expertise on lowland native grassland.

Agreed in part

32

Increase community awareness of the importance of lowland native grassland, in particular Natural Temperate Grassland and the endangered grassland species.

Agree. Some aspects are a matter for the Commonwealth

Investigation into the Government’s tree management practices and the renewal of Canberra’ urban forest (Dec 2009 – Mar 2011)

No.

Recommendations:

Investigation into the Government’s tree management practices and the renewal of Canberra’ urban forest (Dec 2009 – Mar 2011)

Govt. response

1

Replace the proposed Urban Forest Renewal Program with comprehensive and integrated urban tree protection and management focused on the care and maintenance of Canberra’s treed landscape.

Agree

2

Strengthen recognition of the treed landscape as part of the city’s green infrastructure in the ministerial Statement of planning intent and the strategic planning framework, which includes:

  • the National capital plan
  • the Territory plan
  • the Canberra plan and its component plans
  • Canberra spatial plan
  • Capital development
  • Canberra social plan
  • Transport for Canberra
  • Weathering the change and its supporting Action Plan.

Agree in principle

3

Improve legal protection of urban trees by:

  1. developing new tree legislation (incorporating provisions in the Tree Protection Act 2005) or amending the Tree Protection Act 2005 to protect urban trees on leased and unleased lands
  2. reviewing existing legislation to ensure common definitions and terms for the consideration and protection of trees, consistency in exemptions, and one definition for ‘built-up area’ in all ACT legislation or different terms used in the various pieces of legislation.

Agree in principle

x

4

Improve decision-making processes and practices for tree protection and management by:

 

4a

establishing an ACT Tree Curator responsible for:

  • the statutory decision-making role of the existing Conservator under the Tree Protection Act 2005. This role should replace the Conservator’s role regarding urban trees. The Conservator would retain all powers under the Nature Conservation Act 1980 and any other legislation related to conservation matters
  • leading TAMS in its management of urban street and park trees
  • coordinating urban tree management practices and work activities across ACT Government and the National Capital Authority, and communication (especially consultation and notification processes)
  • ensuring tree assessments and risk analyses are consistent across all ACT Government agencies
  • reviewing (if requested) proposed non-urgent urban tree removals undertaken by TAMS tree assessors, be it internal staff or contractors, and for all other ACT Government agencies

Agree in principle

4b

expanding ACTPLA’s Major Projects Review Group to include representatives of the Conservator and the proposed ACT Tree Curator when there is the possibility that a decision to be made by the Chief Planning Executive is inconsistent with the Conservator’s or proposed ACT Tree Curator's advice

Agree in principle

4c

developing guidelines that outline the decision-making process and include criteria used by the Chief Planning Executive when making a decision that is inconsistent with the Conservator or proposed ACT Tree Curator’s advice

Agree in principle

4d

proving a statement of reasons for the recommendations and/or decisions made by the Conservator, proposed ACT Tree Curator and the Chief Planning Executive with respect to tree removal, if requested.

Agree

4e

identifying trees worthy of inclusion on the ACT Tree Register in greenfield sites as part of the structure and concept design processes and registering them before any detailed designs are prepared.

Agree in principle

4f

strategically populating the ACT Tree Register and removing the blanket coverage in selected areas

Agreed in part

4g

providing financial assistance or relief to residents on leased lands with registered trees to assist them manage (or remove) a registered tree

Agree in principle

4h

the Conservator and proposed ACT Tree Curator monitoring and auditing compliance with their recommendations and decisions about trees, including the cumulative effects on the treed landscape of the Chief Planning Executive’s decisions

Agree in principle

4l

developing principles for managing a site where a registered or regulated tree has died

Agree in principle

4j

preparing standard tree and risk assessment criteria for ACT government agencies (or their contractors) with provision made for additional criteria to respect an agencies circumstances4K authorising a qualified person to enter private leased land to undertake a tree assessment using standard criteria and, when a tree presents an unacceptable safety risk, the lessee is directed to remove the tree—and if this is not done, it is removed by TAMS with costs recovered from the lessee

Agree in principle

4k

having powers to issue on-the-spot fines to people who knowingly and wilfully damage a tree on public unleased lands.

Not agreed

5

Guide Canberra’s tree management by developing:

  • a National capital—Canberra tree protection and management strategy
  • an ACT Government tree protection and management policies and procedures guide
  • an across-agency Tree Network Committee to provide advice and coordination between agencies on tree management and community communication.

Agree in principle

6

Update existing standards and codes and address emerging issues related to habitat protection, canopy cover, solar access and protection, sustainable reuse of timber, tree irrigation, vehicular parking and information management by:

 

6a

6A reviewing design standards (Design standards for urban infrastructure 4—road verges; Design standards for urban infrastructure 22—softlandscape design; Design standards for urban infrastructure 23—plantspecies for urban landscape projects; Standard specification for urban infrastructure works 09 landscape) to include provisions which:

  • promote large trees in verges
  • guide the location of street tree easements based on road hierarchy
  • specify distances between tree centres, especially for native species
  • provide greater guidance on managing trees and solar access/protection
  • better reflect all benefits of the treed landscape and ensure that green and non-green infrastructure is integrated
  • promote green infrastructure technologies (for example, water sensitive urban design)
  • provide guidance on tree species and promote approved species being made publicly available on a website as a searchable database

Agree in principle

6b

aligning the TAMS Reference document 4—landscape management and protection plans with the standards in the Australian Standard 4970—protection of trees on development sites; defining key terms and methods; and imposing sanctions if mandatory requirements under the Tree Management Plans are not met

Agree in principle

6c

expanding the code of practice between the Department of Territory and Municipal Services and ActewAGL beyond inspection and maintenance activities to cover all aspects of urban tree management

Agree in principle

6d

improving habitat protection by:

  • protecting important (remnant) trees in subdivision designs for greenfield sites based on the following principles:
  • important (remnant) trees with ecological values that form corridors being given priority for retention and protection by being included in a park
  • private leased residential lots for single detached housing not having important (remnant) trees located on them
  • off-sets being used if important (remnant) trees are removed
  • seeds from important (remnant) trees being collected from a greenfield site and used to enhance plantings in this area in accordance with the approved estate design

(Refer to Recommendation 4E regarding the protection of all important (remnant) trees in new subdivisions.)

Agree in principle

6e

consider retaining dead trees on existing verges and in public parks that have habitat value if they can be made safe; consulting abutting residents

Not agreed

6f

increasing urban tree canopy cover by using heat island mapping to strategically guide plantings and setting canopy coverage targets for new urban and existing urban areas

Agree in principle

6g

better managing solar access and protection by developing:

  • a policy based on principles that include:
  • tree shading providing solar protection
  • solar systems being installed to avoid shading from existing trees
  • solar systems that are installed after a tree is planted not having priority; if the systems are relocated, this should be at the expense of the owner
  • solar systems that are installed before a tree is planted having priority; if needed a tree could be pruned or removed at the expense of the tree owner
  • trees on the ACT Tree Register under the Tree Protection Act2005 having priority for retention regardless of solar access issues
  • tree species selection and location respecting solar access and protection
  • applications, based on solar access, to remove a street or park tree being considered by TAMS if adjoining residents are consulted, and if the treed landscape can be effectively managed and the applicant is willing to cover all removal, replanting and establishment costs of a replanting
  • solar energy infrastructure guidelines for installers and the public

Agree in principle

6h

developing a sustainable reuse of timber policy based on principles that include:

  • re-use of material from local urban trees, including for management and community purposes (see Recommendation 10E)
  • improving the ecological condition of nature reserves and other areas of open space
  • minimising carbon footprint
  • maximising long-term use of suitable timber
  • maintaining visual amenity when considering the re-use of urban trees
  • recovering financial cost of tree management where possible.

Agree in principle

6i

developing a tree irrigation policy with the condition, location and importance of a tree determining its priority for watering. Trees on the ACT Tree Register should be given priority

Agreed

6j

better control of parking to protect urban trees by:

  • raising community awareness of the importance of not parking under trees on verges and in parks; and highlighting where parking is permitted
  • targeting priority areas to ensure enforcement using on-the-spot fines
  • legislative changes to issue on-the-spot fines for parking on public open spaces
  • developing a system for all government or government agency staff and contractors to ensure that only vehicles associated with essential maintenance operations park on verges and enter parks; vehicles on a verge or in a park could have an authorisation displayed (see Recommendation 8)

Agree in principle

6k

developing principles to guide the use of IAMS—Integrated Asset Management System for recording and accessing tree data by all ACT Government agencies and corporations.

Agree in principle

7

Develop a policy for guiding the integration of tree removal, replacement and establishment based on principles that include:

  • tree removal, replacement and establishment being an integrated process
  • all tree assessments being undertaken:
  • using the same basic criteria and risk assessment method with allowance for some agencies to use additional criteria
  • by a person with an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)Level 5 or Certificate 5 in Arboriculture or Horticulture, or high level of training with a minimum of five years’ experience
  • independently so that the tree assessor/contractor is not the same person/contractor who performs tree surgery, unless urgent circumstances exist
  • tree removal being avoided wherever possible with all other tree management options considered before a decision to remove is made
  • a replacement tree being planted unless circumstances prohibit it
  • trees being planted under a three-year establishment program with trees being monitored to allow adaptive management according to a tree’s performance and local conditions
  • the community being informed using standard notification procedures before any tree removal, unless it is done under urgent circumstances. A period will be allowed for a community member to seek reconsideration. All reconsiderations should be undertaken by the proposed ACT Tree Curator
  • reasons for tree removals being made public to anyone who requests
  • all tree removals being undertaken in an environmentally responsible manner.

Agree in principle

8

Provide greater protection for urban trees affected by ACT Government contract procurement processes by amending the Guideline for production of tenders and contracts for construction projects using AS2124–1992 general conditions of contract to include:

  • provisions to control contractors’ parking so that trees on verges and in parks are protected when undertaking work for the ACT Government (see Recommendation 6J)
  • financial penalties if trees are damaged
  • specifying that the contractor undertaking a tree assessment should not undertake tree surgery or removal of any trees they assess
  • as a supporting document, the TAMS reference document 4—landscapemanagement and protection plans (LMPP) and the proposed ACT Government tree protection and management policies and procedures guide (when written).

Agree

9

Strengthen communication and community engagement in relation to the treed landscape by:

 

9a

developing a communication policy which:

  • includes principles to guide all ACT Government agencies and corporations in:
  • undertaking consultations and routine maintenance notifications for trees
  • providing adequate information to the community—for example, assessments involving a potential or actual tree removal should be made available to a resident or member of the community on request
  • includes the recommendations made in the interim tree report for minimal tree removal notification for urban street and park trees managed by TAMS:
  • Tree removal (urgent circumstances)—street tree
    A standard notification letter delivered to the closest three residences on both sides of the street before or soon after the removal—that is, the property adjacent to the verge where the tree will be removed, the two properties either side of this one and the three properties opposite (six properties in total).
  • Tree removal (urgent circumstances)—park tree
    A sign should be erected in the park before or soon after the removal.
  • Tree removal—street tree
    To allow for public inquiries a standard notification letter should be delivered three weeks before the removal date to the closest three residences on both sides of the street—that is, the property adjacent to the verge where the tree will be removed, the two properties either side of this one and the three properties opposite.
    If the street tree (or group of trees) has a high profile (for example, a large tree that makes a major contribution to the landscape) or if there will be a substantial change because of the removal of several trees, a sign should also be placed on a tree (or group of trees), at the same time as the notification letter is sent.
  • Tree removal—park tree
    The sign should be placed on the tree in a position where it will be obvious to park users three weeks before the tree is removed to allow for public inquiries. If several trees are to be removed in a park it might be necessary to place a sign at the entrance as well as at the location where the trees will be removed.
  • guides information in notification letters or on signs for trees removed or to be removed, including:
  • making it obvious that the letter or sign is official
  • stating that the tree assessment was undertaken by a qualified tree assessor
  • giving reasons why the tree will be or was removed
  • stating that there is a re-planting policy unless circumstances prohibit it
  • providing a contact number for further information
  • giving the direct website address outlining the policy and procedures for tree activities.
  • includes a consultation program for preparation of tree-scape designs—civic, town centres and selected local centres, major gateways and avenues (Refer to Recommendation 10A)
  • includes principles for draft guidelines for street and park plantings

Agree in principle

9b

developing a notification procedure for ESA to inform TAMS when emergency service officers undertake works on urban trees on public land (This could be extended to other agencies once developed.)

Agree

9c

developing a community engagement tree program that involves

  • an annual community tree forum
  • the Arboretum being the centre for public tree educational information and programs in Canber
  • a tree care outreach program developed under a partnership between the Arboretum, the proposed ACT Tree Curator, TAMS,NCA, Botanic Gardens, other bodies and the community.

Agree in principle

10

Strategically enhance and celebrate Canberra’s treed landscape by:

 

10a

10A future tree planning being guided by:

  • tree-scape designs for Civic, town centres and selected local centres, major gateways and avenues
  • guidelines for all other streets
  • guidelines for parks

Agree in principle

10b

programmed maintenance work increasing to achieve TAMS’s goal of 65per cent (currently 15 per cent) with the addition of two field crews (or equivalent in contractors): one on an ongoing basis and one for one year to ensure all high priority works are undertaken (funding for this is covered under Recommendation 11B). A time for achieving the 65 per cent target should be specified.

Agree

10c

planting to fill existing ‘gaps’ and replacing existing removed trees

Agree

10d

the Arboretum being a focus for scientific research to inform tree management across Canberra

Agree in principle

10.e

creating a 2013 tree legacy

  • at gateways, on avenues and site plantings
  • through landmark school–community projects
  • using carvings of suitable dead trees, including in situ if appropriate, to reflect an aspect of the tree’s location, to commemorate a person, place or event (see Recommendation 6H).

Agree in principle

11

Fund the protection and management of Canberra’s street and park trees:

  • from dedicated tree management budgets with tree plantings associated with climate change initiatives being funded separately
  • with an additional approximate $4 million per year on an ongoing basis and an additional one-year funding of approximately $1 million to accelerate programmed maintenance for high priority tree maintenance (High Priority).

Agree in principle

12

ActewAGL fully fund all vegetation clearing under its powerlines on unleased lands. The Department of Territory and Municipal Services use the resources currently deployed on this to manage its urban street and park trees. Specifications for pruning of urban trees to be approved by the proposed ACT Tree Curator.

Agree in principle

 

No.

Recommendations:

Canberra Nature Park (nature reserves), Molonglo River Corridor (nature reserves) and Googong Foreshores Investigation (Oct 2009 – July 2011)

Govt. response

1

Strengthen community awareness and involvement by:

 

1.1

Expanding the membership of the Parks, Conservation and Lands Recreational Users Group and reducing the number of consultative groups.

Agreed in part

1.2

Holding a biennial nature reserves forum with representation from all stakeholders that promotes:

  • information exchange;
  • community education and awareness; and
  • planning.

Agreed in principle

1.3

Developing and implementing a community education and awareness program promoting the ecological, health and social values and benefits, and appropriate uses of our nature reserves.

Agreed in principle

1.4

Improving on-nature reserve signage and information.

Agree

1.5

Integrating information on nature reserves into the Australian Sustainable School Initiative and encouraging schools to adopt a nature reserve.

Agree

1.6

Enhancing support for and encouraging the formation of new Park Care groups so that the majority of nature reserves are supported by such a group (currently 32 per cent of nature reserves have a Park Care group).

Agreed in principle

2

Improve the condition and resilience of our nature reserves by:

 

2.1

Taking action now as warned: ...Do not wait for improved climate and impact information before taking further actions that will enhance the resilience of the Nature Reserves.

Agree

2.2

Giving priority to those routine management actions identified in this Investigation for each nature reserve (refer to Table 7)(These actions should be part of the Nature Reserve Operational Plans (Recommendation 3.1). However, implementation of actions should not be delayed pending the development of these plans).

Agree

2.3

Implementing a nature reserve restoration program which would be additional to routine management actions with priority given to:

  • restoring the condition of those nature reserves that are overall approaching critical condition or in critical condition (20 per cent) (refer to Table 5);
  • restoring localised areas that are approaching or in critical condition on nature reserves in an overall satisfactory condition, especially those with high ecological values (refer to Table 5); and
  • protecting and enhancing the ecological values of all nature reserves.

(These actions should be part of the Nature Reserve Operational Plans (Recommendation 3.1). However, implementation of actions should not be delayed pending the development of these plans).

Agreed in part

2.4

Strengthening connectivity between nature reserves with on-ground actions being guided by independent strategic and scientific ecological advice and monitored by one of the existing advisory committees (such as Flora and Fauna Committee, Natural Resource Management Advisory Committee or Natural Resource Management Council).

Agree

3

Better direct and inform the management of nature reserves by:

 

3.1

Preparing a Nature Reserve Operational Plan for each nature reserve which:

  • guides all management actions on a nature reserve
  • presents the nature reserve’s key conservation and other values and its management goals;
  • includes priority management and restoration actions (Recommendations 2.2 and 2.3), fire management actions and infrastructure and urban protection works;
  • has a map of the nature reserve boundaries with recreation areas and tracks shown;
  • has an attachment listing relevant research;
  • has a monitoring program (guided by a comprehensive nature reserve monitoring strategy – Recommendation 3.2); and
  • is prepared and implemented in collaboration with all relevant stakeholders including local groups (especially Park Carers), utility agencies, and if relevant researchers.

Agreed in principle

3.2

Developing and implementing a nature reserve monitoring strategy which includes:

  • condition, ecological values, impacts of threatening processes and recreation use;
  • bench-marking against information collected for this Investigation; and
  • defined monitoring procedures – the Landscape Function Analysis technique used in this Investigation should be included.

Agreed in part

3.3

Enhancing controlled burn monitoring that is part of the Strategic Bushfire Operations Plan from the current approximate 10 per cent to:

  • around 40 per cent or more particularly in high conservation nature reserves over the longer term (5 to 10 years);
  • around 20 per cent or more particularly in high conservation nature reserves in the short to medium term (2 to 5 years); and
  • include indices of specific plants and animals.

Agree

3.4

Categorising nature reserves to:

  • define the goals and objectives for each nature reserve using criteria that include their environmental, recreational, health and cultural values and draw upon the protected area categories adopted by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. These goals and objectives should then be used to inform and guide the priorities in each Nature Reserve Operational Plan (Recommendation 3.1); and
  • guide decisions regarding a northern ACT national park, especially its boundaries.

Agreed in principle

3.5

Advance the consideration of a northern ACT national park via a discussion paper which details areas for inclusion, management structure, costs and funding etc. If Recommendation 3.4 is not pursued this paper should be progressed based on existing information.

Agreed in principle

3.6

Fostering research as a means of informing nature reserve management strategies and practices by:

  • encouraging research partnerships with universities and qualified members of the community with direct funding, in-kind contributions and support for funding proposals;
  • improving opportunities for staff to access research findings and to adopt evidence-based management practices on our nature reserves (Recommendation 3.1);
  • ensuring research priorities are coordinated with relevant strategies and plans, for example the ACT Natural Resource Management Plan (Bush Capital Legacy) and action plans for threatened species and ecological communities; and
  • monitoring being a key part of natural resource management and included in the design and execution of projects in order to encourage land managers to adopt adaptive (or learning) management practices (Recommendations 3.2 and 3.3).

Agree

4

Strengthen the management framework and strategically position our nature reserves by:

 

4.1

Amending the Nature Conservation Act 1980 to:

  • improve enforcement options;
  • increase penalties;
  • include powers to ensure historical encroachments onto nature reserves are removed at an encroacher’s or user’s expense; and
  • include relevant climate change and connectivity matters (including those raised in Impacts of Climate on the Canberra Nature Park: Risks and responses by Dr Bob Webb - Appendix E and Ecological Connectivity for Climate Change in the ACT and surrounding region by Manning et al.).

Agreed in part

4.2

Reviewing the Canberra Nature Park Management Plan 1999 as mandated under the Planning and Development Act 2007 and in so doing include:

  • nature reserves added to the reserve system since 1999;
  • addresses categorising nature reserves (recommendation 3.4);
  • polices to address current issues and those developed since 1999, particularly
    • Action Plan No. 27 - ACT Lowland Woodland Conservation Strategy;
    • Action Plan No. 28 - ACT Lowland Native Grassland Conservation Strategy;
    • Action Plan. No 29 - ACT Aquatic Species and Riparian Zone Conservation Strategy; and
  • consideration of climate change (including Impacts of Climate on the Canberra Nature Park: Risks and responses by Dr Bob Webb - Appendix E) and connectivity (including Ecological Connectivity for Climate Change in the ACT and surrounding region by Manning et al.).

Agree

4.3

Developing and implementing an ACT Rabbit Pest Management Plan. This plan should address the recommendations in Managing Rabbits in Canberra Nature Park by Dr Kent Williams (Appendix D).

Agree

4.4

Finalising and implementing the Code of Sustainable Land Management and address infrastructure construction and maintenance.

Agreed in principle

4.5

Using the term Environmental Offsets for Development to replace the term Biodiversity Offsets.

Agree

4.6

Guiding Environmental Offsets for Development on nature reserves (and lands affecting nature reserves including areas of connectivity) using the following principles:

  • net environmental gain to the ecological communities or species most affected by the development in the ACT i.e. seeking potential long term overall improvement in the environment;
  • additional actions are undertaken, that is, actions taken are above those normally implemented or funded on a regular basis;
  • timely and certain environmental gains are achieved;
  • monitoring and adaptive management is applicable to all land management actions at all offset sites;
  • independent decision-making in the use of funds;
  • transparency in decision-making; and
  • flexibility to ensure the application of the above principles.

Noted

4.7

Assessing areas identified in this Investigation (Boxes 8, 9 and 10) as having potential for Environmental Offsets for Development.

Agree in principle

4.8

Ensuring that any plantings in nature reserves intended as carbon offsets are carefully considered as to their ecological appropriateness in the development of Action Plan 2 under the ACT Climate Change Strategy ‘Weathering the Change’.

Agree

5

Integrate community health and well-being with nature reserve protection by:

 

5.1

Developing and implementing an ACT Nature Reserve Recreation Strategy which:

  • identifies the appropriate balance and mix of recreational opportunities for each nature reserve;
  • directs recreational activities to appropriate locations and encourages users to respect the environment and each other;
  • incorporates the Centenary Trail where appropriate;
  • specifically addresses track planning and management;
  • guides infrastructure development;
  • is developed in consultation with the community, in particular, reserve user groups and Park Care groups; and
  • aligns with the ACT Government’s Strategic Plan for Sport and Active Recreation in the ACT & Region 2011-2020.

Agree in principle

5.2

Integrate community health and well-being with nature reserve protection by: Improving the provision and management of appropriate recreation infrastructure in nature reserves.

Agree in principle

6

Increase the protection and restoration of our nature reserves by sourcing new funding by:

 

6.1

Establishing the Capital Woodland and Wetland Conservation Trust and monitor its effectiveness in sourcing additional funds.

Agree

6.2

Identifying new sources of funding.

Agree in principle

6.3

Guiding the management of non-government additional funds using the following principles:

  • expenditure must be on specific and defined projects aimed at long term overall improvement in the environment;
  • projects are defined and publicly reported prior to commencement or expenditure;
  • additional actions above those normally funded on a regular basis;
  • independent and transparent allocation of funds;
  • monitoring, assessment and auditing of results and expenditure; and
  • public reporting of result and expenditure.

Agree in principle

 

No.

Recommendations:

Investigation into the state of the water courses and catchments for Lake Burley Griffin (May 2011 – April 2012)

Govt. response

1

To improve the availability of the Lake for recreational use the following is recommended:

The ACT Government (Health Directorate) undertake periodic reviews of the ACT Guidelines for Recreational Water Quality at intervals of not less than five years and include consultation with relevant stakeholders. The reviews should consider:

  1. developments in use of Enterococci bacteria as an indicator of faecal contamination and research on the health risks associated with regrowth pathogens;
  2. improvements in knowledge and technologies to determine whether toxin testing or blue-green algal concentration and algal biovolume testing is most relevant for ACT Lakes; and
  3. the characteristics and regrowth challenges of the lake embayments.

Agree

2

To improve the availability of the Lake for recreational use the following is recommended: The Current guidelines should be amended to recognise:

  1. the potential for Lake or part-Lake closure on a case by case basis, based on unusually extreme levels of blue-green algae; and
  2. closure practices in relation to very high bacteria concentrations.

Agree

3

To improve the availability of the Lake for recreational use the following is recommended: In line with the current Guidelines, the ACT Government and the Queanbeyan City Council, should identify and map sources of faecal contamination entering urban stormwater systems, the significance of the sources, and long-term strategies for reducing loading. In addition, a rigorous and comprehensive procedure for rapid ‘sanitary surveys’ in the event of elevated indicator concentrations should be established.

Agree

4

To improve the availability of the Lake for recreational use the following is recommended: The ACT Government and the National Capital Authority improve communication with Lake user groups and the general public in the following key areas:

  1. during prolonged Lake closures, so that Lake users are aware that the Lake is closed and why;
  2. during closures or restrictions, Lake managers should undertake random checks on Lake use, and where necessary amend public notification methods to ensure lake users are aware of the alerts and management responses; and
  3. when the Lake is reopened.

Agree

5

The National Capital Authority and the ACT Government undertake a feasibility study, including a triple-bottom-line analysis, of macrophyte restoration across the Lake. Priorities for consideration should include:

  1. construction of a wetland in the Lake between Springbank Island and the mouth of Sullivans Creek;
  2. construction of a wetland in the Lake at East Basin; and
  3. restoration of macrophyte beds in Lotus bay, Orana Bay, and at Weston Park East Beach.

Agree in principle

6

The National Capital Authority and the ACT Government jointly explore initiatives for in-lake interventions aiming to control blue-green algae in Lake Burley Griffin and other Canberra lakes. Desktop research, physical trials and cost-benefit analyses could examine (but not be limited to) systems for:

  1. re-aerating sediments
  2. stirring the water column;
  3. adsorbing and removing phosphorus from the water via additions of clay- or chemical-based substances; and/or
  4. treating lake sediments to reduce phosphorus release, including by addition of nitrates or iron chloride to the water.

Agree in principle

7

The ACT Government should develop a strategic approach to WSUD. This should include:

  1. Identifying sites where installing catchment intervention, such as wetlands and pollution control ponds, would improve water quality entering Lake Burley Griffin. This should include:
    1. initial feasibility studies into the construction of pollution control ponds or wetlands on the Yarralumla drainage line and Jerrabomberra Creek should be undertaken. Any installations should be designed to be of an appropriate size to treat the catchment area they service.
    2. identifying WSUD that complement current programs of installing wetlands and water control ponds in both new urban areas and retrofitting in existing suburbs where applicable.
  2. Ensuring that WSUD requirements are enforced in particular;
    1. ensuring that wetlands and ponds are of appropriate sizes to service their catchments; and
    2. undertaking auditing/compliance arrangements to ensure that temporary pollution control ponds for sediment control during the construction phase in new estates are maintained and functioning effectively.
  3. Monitoring the effectiveness of WSUD through improved monitoring following urban developments to determine whether water quality meets WSUD general code targets. Results should be used to inform improvements in WSUD standards.
  4. Comparison of ACT approaches to WSUD with those of other Australian urban areas to help ours remain consistent with developing technology and best practice.
  5. Reviewing the efficacy of existing GPTs. The review should include:
    1. effectiveness in pollutant reduction;
    2. effectiveness of current maintenance of pollution control measures
    3. capital costs;
    4. ongoing maintenance costs to ensure the current drainage infrastructure remains high-standard and is in line with current best practice, protecting downstream environments;
    5. reduction of polluted leachate water; and
    6. the capacity to manage requirements of future urban growth and development.
  6. working with the NCA and NSW Councils in the catchment to coordinate a strategic approach across the catchment.

Agree in principle

8

The ACT Government, Queanbeyan City Council and National Capital Authority work collectively to raise awareness of the impact of organic matter, and other household or commercial materials (e.g. garden and lawn fertilizers) on the Lake Burley Griffin catchment. Information should include the contribution that all sectors of the community can make to improving water quality by appropriately using and disposing of such materials.

Agree in principle

9

The ACT Government and Queanbeyan City Council evaluate their street sweeping practices and schedules to minimise leaf litter and other organic matter from having adverse impacts on Lake Burley Griffin’s water quality.

Agree

10

To more effectively manage rural water pollution the following recommendations are made: That the ACT and NSW governments and the National Capital Authority support planning and implementation of on-ground actions to reduce the potential for soil erosion in the upper Queanbeyan River, upper Molonglo River and Jerrabomberra Creek. In doing so active involvement of Palerang Council, the Molonglo Catchment Management Group, ACTEW and other NRM groups should continue to be strongly encouraged and supported.

Agree in principle

11

To more effectively manage rural water pollution the following recommendations are made: That the ACT Government finalise and implement the Googong Foreshores Draft Plan of Management. The plan should include adequate monitoring, reporting and review, and mechanisms to ensure effective cooperation between ACTEW, NSW and ACT in the management of the Googong Foreshores.

Agree in principle

12

To more effectively manage rural water pollution the following recommendations are made: That the Jerrabomberra Wetlands Board of Management, ACT Government, and NCA investigate management of the Jerrabomberra Wetlands watercourses in improving water quality in Lake Burley Griffin. This should include:

  1. advancing identification and implementation of cattle exclusion zones in the Jerrabomberra wetlands; and
  2. investigating improving the way the Wetlands currently function through alteration of the watercourses. However any changes should not detrimentally impact the environmental, cultural, recreational scientific and educational values of the Wetlands.

Agree

13

To more effectively manage potential pollution from sewerage treatment plants in the catchment, the following recommendations are made:

The ACT Environment Protection Authority review and update the Environmental Authorisation number 0417 for sewage treatment within the Queanbeyan City Council Sewage Treatment Plant to ensure that the treatment process results in discharge quality that matches contemporary best practise for a modern, urban sewerage treatment plant. In line with this, the QCCSTWP should continually review and improve its mitigating practises for inundation and washout events at the treatment plant.

Agree

14

To more effectively manage potential pollution from sewerage treatment plants in the catchment, the following recommendations are made: The ACT Government require ACTEW to report regularly on the condition of the sewer system in urban areas in the Lake Burley Griffin catchment and identify priorities for upgrading to reduce sewer blockages and possible leakages from the system, and reduce the risk of system failures.

Agree

15

The National Capital Authority should investigate the feasibility, costs and benefits of providing water releases, for example increased flow over the summer months as part of Googong Dam’s multi-objective role. This should be undertaken in consultation with the ACT and NSW Government, relevant local government and community stake holders.

Agree in principle

16

To improve understanding of the role of urban Lakes and enable the ACT Government to better manage the urban catchments, recreational lakes and ponds it is recommended that: A comprehensive assessment of the environmental, social and economic value of key lakes in the ACT be undertaken and take into account current and predicted challenges to water quality. This assessment should inform:

  • a) a review and update of Canberra’s Urban Lakes and Ponds Plan of Management involving extensive community consultation and taking into account the long-term challenges to water quality in the urban catchments;
  • the need for government investments in water quality;
  • decisions regarding trials of appropriate in-lake and catchment management measures, with the results assessed from scientific (environmental), social and economic perspectives; and
  • decisions regarding implementation of lake and catchment management options.

Agree in principle

17

The ACT, Australian, NSW and local governments establish a Burley Griffin-Molonglo-Queanbeyan catchment management agreement. Such an agreement should outline:

  1. strategic objectives for the integrated and coordinated management of the Lake and catchments, to encompasses water quality, environmental flows, potable water, land use, wastewater, and future urban and climate change impacts on the catchment;
  2. each party’s responsibilities for water quality in the Lake and its catchments;
  3. a long-term catchment planning framework; and
  4. an evidence-based, adaptive, management workplan.

To avoid past challenges of multi-jurisdictional catchment management co-ordination, such an agreement should include a dedicated governance group with representation from all jurisdictions, a consistent and persistent mechanism to ensure implementation and accountability, and reporting requirements.

The National Capital Authority, as Lake manager, should in the first instance convene a meeting of relevant jurisdictional representatives to guide the above recommendations.

Agree

Types of complaints received

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