Sustainable Futures Committee



Meeting Date:     Thursday, 01 February, 2018

Location:            Jervis Bay Rooms, City Administrative Centre, Bridge Road, Nowra

Time:                   4:00pm




Addendum Agenda



SF18.7......... EcoVillage Initiative Red Head Villages Association (RHVA)........................ 1

SF18.8......... Shoalhaven Biodiversity Strategy 2020-2030................................................ 3

SF18.9......... Review and extension of NSW Regional Forest Agreements....................... 4                           




Addendum Agenda - Sustainable Futures Committee – Thursday 01 February 2018

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SF18.7       EcoVillage Initiative Red Head Villages Association (RHVA)


HPERM Ref:       D18/26110


Submitted by:    Larraine Larri




Recommendation (Item to be determined under delegated authority)

That the Committee receive the report for information.




RHVA Establishes an Ecovillage Working Party:


At the final 2017 meeting of the RHVA local member, Sue Westaway Little Eagless Ripponiewill advise when ready to go e (Conceptual Visual Artist / Conservationist) presented the concept of ‘EcoVillages’ which resulted in unanimous support for the motion, "That a working party be created to investigate an ecovillage concept plan for our 5 villages". Thirty-six community members were present.


A working party was established to discuss these issues and to present a report at the next RHVA general meeting on 27 January 2018. Through exploring the viability of applying the EcoVillage concept to our current villages, we hope to start strategic planning for integration of local sustainability practices related to solar energy, preservation of wildlife, sustainable resource usage, and positive community interaction.


Establishment of the working party has enabled us to connect with the Shoalhaven Transition network and at the January Manyana Arts and Crafts Market, both groups had busy information stalls located with the National Parks and Wildlife Shorebirds staff. This is the first time our markets have featured a ‘sustainability hub’. We hope to do more in the future.


Background to community interest in EcoVillages:


The main points of Sue’s presentation centred on community reaction to two significant developments which have begun in Manyana. Of most concern are the loss of biodiversity through coastal woodland clearing; and rapid population expansion with impacts on community cohesion and ‘village atmosphere’. We have realised that Development Applications and Environmental Impact Statements approved around ten years ago do not take account of changes in the flora and fauna i.e. there are now species that are endangered in the proposed development and we have only a slim chance of protecting them under current legislation. We know that our issues are echoed across the Shoalhaven.


In Sue’s words,


“We live in a beautiful and pristine part of the world. Manyana and surrounding villages is a bio-diverse hotspot, a surfer’s paradise. People come here from all over the world to enjoy our beautiful surroundings, our untouched pristine beaches. We are surrounded by Conjola National Park. Manyana is in serious threat from uncontrolled, unsustainable urban developments. We need to ensure Manyana is protected for future generations and to protect out National Heritage.”


Definition of EcoVillages:


EcoVillages are communities with a strong ecological focus. An ecovillage might be urban, suburban or rural and they can range in size from a few to hundreds. Some ecovillages are attempts to shift existing neighbourhoods or towns toward more sustainable living and more of a sense of community. Others are newly built, often featuring green or natural building techniques. Ecovillages vary a lot in their degree of community connection and their ecological focus. (See and Global Ecovillage Network




Addendum Agenda - Sustainable Futures Committee – Thursday 01 February 2018

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SF18.8       Shoalhaven Biodiversity Strategy 2020-2030


HPERM Ref:       D18/26115


Submitted by:    Oisin Sweeney




Recommendation (Item to be determined under delegated authority)

That Shoalhaven City Council, via the Sustainable Futures Committee, discuss the need for the development of a biodiversity strategy for the Shoalhaven LGA to be completed by 2020 and to cover the period 2020-2030, and investigate the possibility of funding for a strategy through the NSW Environment Trust.




Biodiversity is under unprecedented threat in NSW and elsewhere. The drivers of threats are diverse and include habitat loss (via urban development, agriculture, logging); climate change (and associated sea level rise); non-native species (terrestrial and aquatic) and pollution (e.g. marine plastics).


The Shoalhaven is one of the richest parts of the NSW coast in regards biodiversity values, and this natural wealth is important to the local economy. However, the Shoalhaven is also undergoing rapid change due to in-migration and associated impacts. These changes are set to continue as the population of NSW grows.


The increasing number and severity of threats makes it imperative that Shoalhaven City Council (SCC) effectively plan for the future of its biodiversity assets. There are a number of very positive initiatives occurring across the Shoalhaven through diverse groups, and SCC is forming exciting partnerships with universities and other local government authorities.


A biodiversity strategy is a way in which the diverse initiatives can be drawn together, important species and habitats can be mapped, present and future threats explicitly considered and priority activities and locations identified. This would help guide SCC’s natural resource management activities (e.g. investment, volunteer activities, revegetation, bio-banking, habitat corridor creation and maintenance). A biodiversity strategy would also be an important step in attracting state and commonwealth government funding because priorities would be set and stakeholders identified.




Addendum Agenda - Sustainable Futures Committee – Thursday 01 February 2018

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SF18.9       Review and extension of NSW Regional Forest Agreements


HPERM Ref:       D18/26125


Submitted by:    Oisin Sweeney





That Shoalhaven City Council;

1.    via the Sustainable Futures Committee, make a submission to the NSW Government on the RFA review;

2.    request an extension to the consultation period due to the size of the report and the tight timeframe (February 23rd) given the absence of staff over the holiday season




The Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) are 20-year agreements between the state and federal governments that permit logging of public native forests. There are significant areas of state forests managed under RFAs in the Shoalhaven local government area. Logging has implications for Shoalhaven City Council’s (SCC) sustainability goals, both in the area of biodiversity and climate change. In addition, logging has implications for SCC’s budget due to impacts on road infrastructure in particular. This review is calling for submissions both on the performance of the RFAs to date, as well as consulting on the future of RFAs. Given that any citizen under 30 years old would have been a small child when the RFAs were signed, this is a very important juncture at which to consider whether the RFAs are an appropriate model for forest management and what the ideal future for public forests may be.