The Queensland government and Ipswich City Council have teamed up to bolster the local government’s ambition to become one of the most sustainable cities in Australia.
Between the two tiers of government, they have formed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which will facilitate support, guidance, advice and expertise from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection to assist the council to implement, promote and continuously improve its sustainability strategy.
Queensland Minister for Environment Steven Miles said “this will be a very productive collaboration”.
“It furthers our sustainability initiatives and will enable Ipswich City Council to contribute to them and give council access to my department’s sustainability expertise and resources,” Mr Miles said.
“We know Council is keen to develop new industries with a low carbon footprint that service the future low carbon economy and grow the Ipswich community and economy.”
According to Mr Miles, Ipswich City Council has recently signed an agreement with the Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads, which will see Ipswich be the location of Australia’s largest trial of cooperative intelligent transport systems technologies, including real-world trialling and large-scale deployment of around 500 connected vehicles.
“This demonstrates leading practice in Queensland in the exploration of digital enabled city infrastructure,” Mr Miles said.
Ipswich City Council Mayor Paul Pisasale said Ipswich was experiencing a period of ‘unprecedented growth’.
“Council has developed a sustainability strategy to manage this growth by working together with the community, industry, and other levels of government to protect and enhance Ipswich’s environment and its liveability,” Mr Pisasale said.
“The strategy incorporates aspects of urban ecology, the natural environment, community and industry partnerships and community based education and awareness programs.
“The MoU will enhance our work under the strategy, particularly in terms of Council’s leadership in sustainability through collaboration with other levels of government, the community and the private sector.”
Mr Miles and Mr Pisasale said the MoU focussed on five priority areas of collaboration – biofutures, waste, climate change, sustainable industries and governance.
“This agreement helps us move forward in these five key areas,” Mr Pisasale said.
“For example, in the biofutures sector, which is significantly represented in Ipswich, this collaboration will help us in our search for partnership opportunities and access to applicable grants to support growth in this sector.
“We are also keen to explore how we might develop advanced sustainable industries in the waste sector, from re-cycling to e-waste management and other emerging industries such as waste streams feeding into the biofutures sector.”
Mr Pisasale said council was also seeking ways of incorporating sustainability as a core feature of its organisational governance, in areas such as procurement and infrastructure.