27 August 2013 — It’s official. Moreland is the 2013 Sustainable City of the Year. At least according to the Keep Australia Beautiful Victoria Sustainable Cities Awards which also recognised a host of other organisations (see below).
The city is now in the running for the national KAB awards in November.
According to Mayor Oscar Yildiz the win for Moreland was a collaborative effort, said with the Moreland Energy Foundation and CERES Environment Park playing a huge part.
“It has been a long road but to win such a prestigious award that recognises Moreland as a leader in addressing climate change inspires us to work harder and smarter in this incredibly important area,” he said.
“This award not only highlights the efforts of this council but also the vision of previous councils and the energy of our officers who have passionately driven many of our climate change initiatives.”
Lead by Moreland Energy Foundation, council supports a range of innovative programs such as Zero Carbon Moreland – a behaviour change program with more than 4000 local participants, Positive Charge – a bulk buying scheme for residents to buy affordable solar panels, hot water services and electric bikes, and Communities for Nature – 16,000 native seedlings planted by close to 200 households on their nature strips across Brunswick, creating a nature corridor between Merri Creek and Moonee Ponds Creek.
Another highlight of Moreland’s community is the Centre for Education and Research in Environmental Strategies established in 1982 with a commitment to the local economy, employment, social cohesion, community governance and ecological restoration.
Mr Yildiz said the model of setting up the Moreland Energy Foundation as an independent energy education organisation was being emulated by others.
As well as taking out the top award, council and its partner Moreland Energy Foundation won the Community Government Partnership award for the Moreland Energy Partnership. CERES also won the Cultural Heritage Award for its Indigenous program – living heritage.
Moreland will now compete in the national KAB Awards where it will vie for the title of Australian Sustainable City 2013. The national awards will be held in Perth in November.
Other Victorian awards were:
- Dame Phyllis Frost Award – Linda Bradburn
- Active Schools – Bentleigh Secondary College – Moorooboon Wetland and Urban Forest
- Clean Beach – Bayside City Council – Ricketts Point
- Community Action and Leadership – Friends of the Melton Botanic Garden (Melton City Council) – Growing plants, growing People
- Community Government Partnerships – Moreland City Council – Moreland Energy Partnership – the road map to carbon neutrality
- Cultural Heritage – CERES (Moreland City Council) – Indigenous program – living heritage
- Litter Prevention – City of Monash – Monash Pride Crew
- Pam Keating Award for Environmental Sustainability – City of Yarra – Leading the way in carbon management
- Protection of the Environment – Friends of the Melton Botanic Garden (Melton City Council) – Bio-links, birds and blogging about creekline grassy woodland
- Resource Recovery and Waste Management – City of Yarra – Around the clock recycling
- Young Leaders – Mim Di Napoli, environmental ambassador (City of Yarra)
- Gift Fund Prize – Whittlesea Township Community House and Alliance Group – Collection and genetic rescue of Dianella species.