Member Councils and their AreasThe Sydney Coastal Councils Group Inc. (SCCG) was established in 1989 to promote co-ordination between Member Councils on environmental issues relating to the sustainable management of the urban coastal environment. The Group consists of 15 Councils adjacent to Sydney marine and estuarine environments and associated waterways, and represents over 1.4 million Sydneysiders.

Making Waves 

The SCCG Monthly Update

POLICY AND LAW REFORM

Hawkesbury Shelf Marine Estate Assessment

The Marine Estate Management Authority (MEMA) is currently seeking feedback from the public on how the marine environment from Newcastle to Shellharbour is valued and used. The feedback will be used in MEMA’s assessment of the Hawkesbury Shelf Marine bioregion to inform improved management activities, with the aim of enhancing marine biodiversity.

The study area extends from Newcastle to Shellharbour and includes coastal waters and numerous important estuaries such as Lake Macquarie, Tuggerah Lakes, Brisbane Water, Hawkesbury River, Sydney Harbour, Broken Bay, Botany Bay, Port Hacking and Lake Illawarra. Following the current information collection and collation phase, a full threat and risk assessment will be done under the guidance of MEMA’s Expert Knowledge Panel. This will inform management options to address the highest priority risks. Submissions close 28 August 2015. For more information, click here.

Review of prices for Sydney Water

The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) is reviewing Sydney Water’s prices for its water, sewerage, stormwater, trade waste and other services. IPART’s review will occur over a period of 12 months, with new prices to apply from 1 July 2016.

Sydney Water submitted its pricing proposal to IPART on 30 June 2015. IPART will release an Issues Paper on 7 September 2015. Submissions in response to Sydney Water’s pricing proposal and IPART’s Issues Paper will be accepted until 5 October 2015. Other opportunities for stakeholders to provide input to the review include participating in the Public Hearing (10 November 2015) and responding to IPART’s Draft Report and Determination (scheduled to be released in March 2016). For more information, click here.

Managing the wastewater system in wet weather

Sydney Water is proposing a new regulation to better manage the wastewater system in wet weather. Input is being sought from customers, councils, community and environmental groups, and scientists on improvements to the system. A series of workshops are being facilitated from June to August and individuals are invited to join an online discussion forum. Based on consultation feedback, Sydney Water will submit a proposal on the new regulation to the EPA for their approval in December this year. For more information, click here.

More information on recent policy and law reforms is available in the latest edition of our quarterly newsletter, Coastal Currents.

SCCG PROJECTS UPDATE

Sydney’s Salty Communities – Turning the Tide on Blue+Green Carbon

Sydney's Salty Communities

Our main grant round projects are now underway. A full list of successful projects is available on our webpage. Congratulations to all our successful applicants and thank you to all those who applied. Some successful collaborations are already underway and we are looking forward to great results.

The supplementary grant round is now open. Visit the project page for full details. All projects in this round must show evidence of:

  1. collaboration across council areas;
  2. demonstrable need;
  3. consideration of climate change, and;
  4. where possible/relevant indigenous involvement.

We have already had an exciting workshop where some initial connections between councils, academics and other experts were forged and common issues were explored. In this round we particularly welcome projects focusing on planning and strategies, saltmarsh, carbon sequestration and community engagement with biodiversity. Application documents are available on our webpage. The application period closes 9 October and applicants will be notified late 2015.

Another key aspect of the program is around Managing Coastal Ecological Communities in the face of rapid change. We are working closely with the CSIRO to assist Councils in incorporating this Climate Readiness into projects and strategies. A workshop series is available to all Member Councils as well as potential grant applicants. These commence late August. Please contact Fiona Shadbolt, Program Manager – Biodiversity Resilience, fiona@sydneycoastalcouncils.com.au or 9288 5974 for details. These workshops will have a focus on ensuring proposals or strategies have considered climate change. Head to the project web page for more information.

Sydney Harbour Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) Scoping Study
 
Sydney Harbour CZMPThis project is now complete and was launched at a workshop on 30 June 2015. The launch workshop presented the process and outcomes of key project stages. Participants also workshopped next steps to advance the preparation and implementation of a Coastal Zone Management Plan for Sydney Harbour. The final Literature Review and Scoping Study will be available shortly. For more information on the project, click here.

Implementing and Embedding an Emergency Management Health Check for Local Government EMP Project

In July we commenced a state wide project to enhance, implement and embed the emergency management Health Check that we developed in 2013-2014. The project objectives are to:

  1. Develop the Pilot Health Check into a fully functional and easy-to-use tool, enabling strategic assessment of EM in Local Government
  2. Develop and implement a state wide training program to embed the Health Check
  3. Integrate EM-related actions across relevant functional areas of Local Government including, where appropriate, Integrated Planning and Reporting, Asset Management and Business Continuity Plans
  4. Increase the capability of Local Government to adequately plan for emergency management response and engage with stakeholders
  5. Increase Local Government participation in LEMC activities and related education/communication program
  6. Quantify local, regional and state wide EM commitments.

For more information, click here.

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

LGNSW Water Management Conference – 24-26 August 2015

The annual Local Government NSW (LGNSW) Water Management Conference presents a broad range of information from a Local Government perspective on water management, issues associated with water supply and sewerage services provided by water utilities. The 2015 conference will be co-hosted by Wingecarribee Shire Council in Bowral.

For more information, click here.

Fantasea Harbour Hike – 30 August 2015

The annual Fantasea Harbour Hike is a 12 km walk along the harbour foreshore from Kirribilli to Chowder Bay. Raising funds for one of Australia’s pre-eminent marine research centres, the Sydney Institute of Marine Science (SIMS), participants will uncover some of the mysteries that lie beneath the surface of Sydney Harbour with SIMS scientists dotted along the course. The Harbour Hike finishes at the SIMS research facility at Chowder Bay, Mosman, where hikers will be treated to a sneak peak of the brand new SIMS Discovery Centre. For more information, click here.

3rd International Erosion Control Conference and 9th International Water Sensitive Urban Design Conference – 19-23 October 2015

This Conference is being facilitated by Stormwater NSW, the International Erosion Control Association (Australasia) and Engineers Australia at Dockside, Cockle Bay, Sydney. The Conference will explore more effective ways at managing and integrating stormwater, from the concept and design, through to construction and into operation. International practitioners, academics and students across disciplines will integrate in a common forum to engage, collaborate and discuss holistic water management practices. For more information, click here.

24th Annual NSW Coastal Conference – 10-13 November 2015

The NSW Coastal Conference has been held annually for the past 23 years. The three day event is comprised of plenary sessions, concurrent sessions, field trips (addressing some of the local coastal, estuary and marine management issues), networking events and the Annual NSW Coastal Management Awards. The Conference attracts over 220 delegates each year, who are interested in or working within the field of coastal and estuary management research, education, service provision and policy.

Registrations are now open. For more information, click here

GRANT OPPORTUNITIES

Environmental Restoration and Rehabilitation Grants - NSW Environmental Trust

The aim of the Restoration and Rehabilitation program is to facilitate projects run by community organisations and government entities working to prevent or reduce environmental degradation of any kind. Through these projects, we also aim to improve the capacity of communities and organisations to protect, restore and enhance the environment. The next round of grants is expected to open in August. For more information, click here.

AWARD OPPORTUNITIES

NSW ‘Get Ready’ Community Award – Emergency NSW

The NSW 'Get Ready' Community Award will recognise a local community that has taken action and worked together to strengthen their resilience to disasters. The Award is open to local community groups and organisations. Applications close 9 August 2015. For more information, click here.

Resilient Australia Awards – Emergency NSW

The Resilient Australia Awards is a national program to recognise and promote initiatives which strengthen community disaster resilience across the nation. The awards cover all aspects of community safety and resilience with an emergency management focus. The awards are open to everyone including individuals, not for profit organisations, small and large businesses, local and state government, schools, education institutions, research bodies and emergency service agencies. Applications are judged first at the state and territory level and those winners then become finalists for the national judging. Applications close 9 August 2015. For more information, click here.

Check out the SCCG Funding Guide for grant and award opportunities.

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