16 May 2013 — Minimum performance standards and assessment methods for energy, water and waste efficiency of buildings are now part of the Melbourne Planning Scheme.

Amendent C187 has been approved and gazetted by Planning Minister Matthew Guy.

The amendment will ensure that, at the planning permit stage, the design, construction and operation of buildings and urban renewal areas will:

  • minimise the production of greenhouse gas emissions and maximise energy efficiency
  • minimise mains potable water use and encourage the use of alternative water sources
  • minimise waste going to landfill, maximise the reuse and recycling of materials and lead to improved waste collection efficiency.

It will apply to new buildings used for office, retail, education/research and most common accommodation purposes.

The Melbourne Planning Scheme says that Melbourne’s policies for becoming an environmentally sustainable city include the Zero Net Emissions by 2020 energy strategy, Total Watermark – City as a catchment water strategy, and the Waste Management Strategy.

“The City’s eco-city goals and targets as set out in Future Melbourne Community Plan 2008 are derived from these policies,” the scheme states.

“The relevant Eco-City goals are:

  • residents reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 35 per cent per capita by 2020 (from 2006 levels)
  • workers reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 59 per cent per capita by 2020 (from 2006 levels)
  • reduce residents’ mains water consumption by 40 per cent by 2020 (from 1999/2000 levels)
  • reduce workers’ mains water consumption by 50 per cent by 2020 (from 1999/2000 levels)
  • reduced household waste in the City of Melbourne
  • reduced commercial waste in the municipality.

“These policy documents underpin the need to consider resource use and efficiency in the assessment of new development under the Melbourne Planning Scheme.”

The amendment is available here.

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