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Planning for a changing climate

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Urgent amendments to the Victorian planning system are needed to help keep Victorian communities safe and resilient in a changing climate.

The MAV and councils are calling on all parties to commit to amending Victoria’s planning legislation and planning provisions to embed climate change considerations and support the transition to net zero emissions.

Working through the Council Alliance for a Sustainable Built Environment (CASBE) and the Victorian Greenhouse Alliances, councils across the state last year commissioned a review of how Victoria’s planning system addresses climate change.

The review identified a clear disconnect between high level State and local government policy positions on climate change and the day-to-day planning decisions being made. Changes to the Planning and Environment Act and to the Victorian Planning Provisions are needed to address this.

Key recommendations from the review include:

  • Making explicit the need to consider climate change in planning schemes
  • Ensuring planning schemes are updated to include current hazard data
  • Including a much stronger focus on net zero and climate resilience in planning for precincts and for subdivisions

MAV President Cr David Clark said state leadership is essential.

“The State must lead the way to embed climate change as a priority in planning legislation and the Victorian planning provisions to reduce emissions and keep our communities safe,” Cr Clark said.

“Planning decisions made today shape local communities for decades to come. It is critical that the planning system supports councils to require developers to actively address climate change risks in their applications.”

“With the built environment responsible for close to a quarter of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, councils are united in their call to all parties to commit to making the changes needed in the next Parliament.”

The MAV Climate Change State Election asks:

  • A commitment to embed climate change as a priority consideration in land use planning legislation and the Victorian Planning Provisions in the life of the next Parliament
  • Schedule 1 of the Climate Change Act amended to include decisions under planning, transport, agriculture, and energy legislation
  • Establishment of a new strategic partnership between state and local government to accelerate the transition to net zero and to strengthen community resilience, with funding support for councils to reduce and manage climate risks
  • Funding support for the implementation of priority urban greening projects
  • A commitment to provide councils with the powers and capability to manage public drainage and stormwater assets to withstand more intense storm events and to achieve better use of stormwater and continued innovation in integrated water management