Moreland Council capital expenditure on climate projects and the Neighbourwoods Program

October 30, 2019 at 2:14 am Leave a comment

Solar PV installed on Fawkner Library

Perusing the Governance report in the Council agenda for the October 2019 Council meeting there was an item for capital works climate change expenditure of $990,000 but no detail what this expenditure was actually for.

At the Council Meeting Climate Action Moreland Convenor John Englart asked the following question during public question time:

“In the capital works expenditure climate change listed at 12th in the top 20 list at $990,000 – what were these works for? Can Council outline a list of these works that exemplify the cost to Council already from climate change?”

The question was taken on notice.

A staff member has since been in contact and provided this information:

“Please see below the four capital works projects that were categorised as Climate Change projects and associated highlights from those projects.

  • Carbon Management Strategy : Various $462,964
  • Implementation of Water Building Efficiency – Municipal Wide $49,784
  • Sportsfield Stormwater Reuse : Municipal Wide $98,517
  • Hydrogen Fleet Fuel Project $378,835

The following highlights were achieved as part of the above projects:

  • Five additional EV charging bays installed for Council vehicle charging and an upgrade to the Coburg Civic Centre Fast Charge station;
  • Ten new (zero emissions) electric vehicles (bringing the total to 14);
  • A new public EV fast charge station installed in North Coburg with electricity supplied through Council’s contract with Pacific Hydro (Crowland’s Wind Farm);
  • Additional funding to support the construction of the Jones Park wetland project;
  • Detailed design works for the City Oval Stormwater harvesting project;
  • Installed solar photovoltaic systems at the West Coburg Bowling Club (20kW), Fawkner Bowling Club (18kW), Lake Park Kindergarten (5.5kW), Dawson Street Child Care Centre (14.5kW) and the Denzil Don Kindergarten (9kW) through the Solar on Leased Facilities program;
  • Expand the solar PV system at Oxygen Youth Centre by 20kW;
  • Installed rainwater tanks at Council’s Walter St Depot; and
  • 22kW solar PV system installed at Fawkner Library.

Council expenditure to mitigate flash flooding occuring more often due to climate change

At the September Council meeting approval was given for $1.6 million project to address flash flooding to address 1 in 100 year flood events at Saxon st & Michael St Brunswick due to torrential rain events, by installation of underground stormwater tanks for slow release into the stormwater drainage system.

Increases in torrential rain is one of the impacts of climate change. This item will appear as capital expenditure in a future governance report.

It highlights the need for expenditure by Moreland council on urban climate adaptation. Local Council’s around the state are already bearing the cost of climate impacts.

A second public question was asked regarding the NeighborWoods Trial program in the update report DCI18/19 Moreland Urban Forest Strategy 2017-2027

“Did the ‘Trial a neighborWoods program’ (7.5.9) eventuate and what was the result?” asked John Englart.

Council’s written response outlined the details of the initial trial of a Neighbourwoods Program. This “focuses on utilising private frontages of properties in locations where Council cannot plant trees in the road reserve and where a tree provides public realm benefits.”

The trial has been supported at an initial three locations in Albion street, Donald Street and Albert Street all in Brunswick. Council will continue to conduct the trial over the next 12 months to determine the ongoing feasibility of the program.

Most of Moreland’s present reduction in tree canopy cover comes from urban consolidation and development. The Neighbourwoods Program seeks to address this reduction of Moreland private realm canopy in a small way, to complement the expansion of public realm tree canopy in parks and street reserves.

The Update report on Moreland Urban Forest Strategy 2017-2027 highlighted that:

  • Council is meeting tree planting target of 5,000 new trees annually across the municipality.
  • Chain of Ponds Collaboration/Creek greening with Moonee Valley Council proceeding
  • ‘Greening the North’ initiative. An initial meeting was held on 30 April 2019. This partnership is anticipated to be able to deliver additional funding for initiatives in the northern suburbs, to grow the urban forest even more
  • Trial a neighborWoods program (7.5.9) is continuing

Further Information:
See our news report from August 2017 when this strategy was adopted.

Entry filed under: climate change info, Moreland Council, news, renewable energy, solar power. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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