Helping Local Government to go green
The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) has established a new task group to encourage local councils to accelerate the green building agenda.
The Local Government Task Group (LGTG) has been formed to engage with local councils on green building issues, identify opportunities and barriers, and provide guidance on the use of the Green Star rating system for buildings.
According to chief executive of the GBCA, Romilly Madew, many Local Governments – including the Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth city councils – are already fully engaged members of the GBCA.
“Local governments have been promoting and implementing green building programs for a number of years – from developing iconic buildings such as the City of Melbourne’s CH2 through to mandatory local laws to ensure minimum energy efficiency standards.
“The GBCA’s new Local Government Task Group will further this trend by encouraging the uptake of voluntary rating tools, offering practical advice and assistance and educating councils on best practice from similar organisations around the world,” Madew says.
The LGTG will be chaired by Wayne Wescott, sustainability consultant and former chief executive officer of the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) Oceania Secretariat. Task Group members will be appointed for their technical expertise and industry knowledge.
“In the wake of the Copenhagen climate change negotiations, people are looking to make practical changes and green building is one of the most cost-effective and efficient ways to cut carbon emissions and improve sustainability outcomes,” Wescott says.
“The Task Group will integrate Local Governments’ efforts with other sectors – from developers to householders to demonstrate that significant small-scale action across our nation can be aggregated towards major change.
“We aim to see more Local Governments take on the role of ‘green change agents’ and lead the way in the adoption of sustainable building and eco-friendly business practices.
By working at the grass-roots level, we hope that councils around Australia will influence the future direction of green building in Australia,” Wescott concludes.