Canberra is well known as the ‘Bush Capital’ reflecting the extent and importance of the natural environment to the character and identity of Australia’s national capital. ACT citizens, together with the ACT Government are proud of this legacy, and continue the work of preserving and restoring the natural values that make Canberra one of the most liveable cities in the world.
The ACT State of the Environment Report 2015 provides an assessment of the state and trends of key environmental indicators, pressures on the environment, drivers of those pressures and their impacts. It also examines management initiatives in place to address environmental concerns and the effect of those initiatives. New to this report is an assessment of the resilience or capacity of the environment to continue to provide ecosystems services such as clean water, air, stable and healthy soil, and a diversity of flora and fauna, integral to achieving sustainability in the ACT.
What is the state of the environment report?
Every four years, the ACT Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment prepares a State of the Environment Report for the ACT Minister for the Environment. This ACT State of the Environment Report 2015 covers the period 1 July 2011 to 30 June 2015, and is the seventh report since the Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment legislation was enacted in 1993. This evidence-based report captures and presents key information on the state of the ACT environment and makes recommendations to the ACT Government for action on environmental issues.
What has happened in the last 5 years?
The key messages from the ACT State of the Environment Report 2015 are positive. Overall, the ACT environment is in good condition and is mainly well managed. Good progress has been made on previous Commissioner’s recommendations to the ACT Government, while monitoring, and data collection, adequacy and storage and the need for more use of a broader strategic landscape approach to planning remain areas for further attention. On the defining issue of climate change, the ACT community has supported its Government to act locally and show leadership that can inspire other jurisdictions to commit to action.