More time for public comment on SEQ climate change plan

IMG_0575From the Minister for Infrastructure and Planning [Media release]

Friday, September 11, 2009

More time for public comment on SEQ climate change plan

The Queensland Government has extended the period for public consultation on the Draft South East Queensland Climate Change Management Plan by one month, to 9 October 2009.

The plan aims to move the region towards a low-carbon future and help communities become more resilient to the long-term impacts of climate change.

The draft plan describes proposed actions to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions from land management and future urban development in South East Queensland (SEQ).

“This plan will set the climate change policies of the newly released South East Queensland Regional Plan 2009–2031,” Minister for Infrastructure and Planning Stirling Hinchliffe said.

“Toward Q2: Tomorrow’s Queensland sets a state-wide goal of reducing our residential carbon footprint by a third.

“The new climate change plan will help the government work out how much of the state-wide target will be achieved through urban planning in the state’s most populous region.

“As nearly 70 per cent of Queenslanders live in the fast growing south east, smart planning is imperative.

“The Australian Government’s proposed carbon pollution reduction scheme and renewable energy target will be critical national tools for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“However, smart urban and regional planning will also be important, with its potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and ensure communities are resilient to climate change only now being recognised.”

The Draft South East Queensland Climate Change Management Plan identifies 32 potential climate change planning actions for SEQ.

These actions range from improving transport and settlement patterns to planting more trees to store carbon, increasing renewable energy and building community awareness of climate change impacts.

Last month, members of the public, professional organisations and local governments attended eight public information forums on the draft plan in Brisbane, Strathpine, Maroochy, Nerang, Ipswich, Cleveland and Kilcoy.

“People attending these forums have already raised issues that will help the government prepare the final climate change plan,” Mr Hinchliffe said.

Among the issues raised to date are:

·feasible regional emission targets that are tied in with other sustainability indicators and population impacts

·alignment of government policies on sea-level rise and storm surge that affect coastal communities—including natural disaster plans

·identification of implementation timelines and outputs that are useful to local governments

·research and justification of actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and climate change risks

·greater recognition of actions to improve water supply security, rural production and the management of natural resources.

“Climate change is a complex issue and people need time to understand it and put together their comments on this very important draft plan—hence the reason we extended the public consultation period.

“I encourage all residents of SEQ to read this draft plan and have their say on what they believe are the region’s highest-priority climate change actions.

“By working with other levels of government, the development industry, councils and residents of SEQ, we will find practical and cost-effective ways to address the challenges of climate change.”

Responses to the draft plan can be made at

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