The push for increased sustainability requirements for new builds

Published on 25 July 2022

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Maribyrnong City Council has lodged a planning scheme amendment with the State Government seeking to introduce a planning policy that elevates sustainability requirements for new developments and encourages a move towards net zero carbon production.

The amendment seeks to build on current Environmentally Sustainable Development (ESD) requirements for new developments to better protect the natural environment, reduce resource and energy consumption, and support the health and wellbeing of future occupants.

Council has also written to the new Minister for Planning, The Hon. Lizzie Blandthorn, asking for her support of the amendment and an acknowledgement current planning requirements do not reflect the urgency needed to tackle climate change.

Maribyrnong is one of 24 councils, who represent approximately half the Victorian population and planning activity, who are pushing for more sustainable design within planning requirements.

State Government recently implemented Stage 1 of its ESD Roadmap, which created new planning policy objectives.

Mayor, Cr Anthony Tran said Council sees the amendment as the next step in improving ESD requirements with detailed, measurable targets that will deliver meaningful outcomes in practice.

“We are pleased to be joining with councils from across the state on this incredibly important work.

While local government has been taking the lead towards net zero carbon in new builds, we need government across all levels – local, state and federal – to work together if we want to create real change,” Mayor Tran said.

Under the proposed changes, new developments would:

  • Produce net zero carbon emissions.
  • Reduce household bills by making buildings more energy efficient.
  • Provide a healthier and more comfortable environment for building occupants.
  • Better manage water quality, use and collection.
  • Protect and enhance greening and biodiversity.
  • Be more resilient to changing climate impacts

Maribyrnong City Council is a member of the Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment (CASBE). The amendement is also supported by the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV).

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