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Office of the Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment

Fact Sheets and Other Papers

Ten New Fact sheets for teachers and students

To assist teachers and students in developing Green papers for the Parliament of Youth on Sustainability to be held at Parliament House Canberra in October 2013. The Office has produced a set of ten fact sheets for participating schools based on information contained in the 2011 ACT State of the Environment Report and associated publications. The event is part of See-Change’s Centenary 2020 Vision project.

The fact sheets have been developed in line with the Youth Parliament Green Paper topics and cover the following areas:

  1. Carbon Emissions (pdf, 570kb)
  2. Community Engagement (pdf, 819kb)
  3. Ecological Footprint (pdf, 620kb)
  4. Food Choices (pdf, 911kb)
  5. Protecting Biodiversity (pdf, 725kb)
  6. Renewable Energy (pdf, 512kb)
  7. Transport (pdf, 579kb)
  8. Urban Planning (pdf, 479kb)
  9. Waste (pdf, 635kb)
  10. Water in the ACT (pdf, 839kb)

Expert papers commissioned to inform the 2011 ACTSOER

Ecological Footprint for the ACT: Our Challenge

Canberrans impact on our earth is getting worse.

The 2008-2009 Ecological Footprint for the ACT (pdf, 1.2Mb) which was prepared by Dr Chris Dey of the University of Sydney’s Integrated Sustainability Analysis research group, on behalf of the OCSE, reveals a steady increase in the amount of natural resources required to meet the lifestyle needs of Canberrans.

The Ecological Footprint, expressed in global hectares, measures the amount of land required to support a communitys’ demand for goods and services, shelter, transport, food and energy. It also takes into account the area needed to absorb our waste (including greenhouse gasses).

A summary of the key findings of the ACT 2008-09 ecological footprint (pdf, 369Kb).

Steps than Canberrans can take to ease the pressure on our earth include:

  • Repair, reuse or borrow where possible instead of buying new things. 
  • Before tossing something in the bin, see if there is another use for it. 
  • Buy quality goods that are efficient and will last a long time. 
  • Invest in an activity as an alternative to purchasing goods, e.g Concerts, movies, picnics. 
  • Use renewable energy

The Office of the Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment, will consider the consequences of our increasing footprint in the ACT in the upcoming ACT 2011 State of the Environment Report. We welcome suggestions from the community on ways to reduce our footprint.

Suggestions can be provided to the Office by email,

Retrofitting Buildings to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emission

Retrofitting your house can save money, energy, the environment and provide a more comfortable home. This factsheet, as part of the “What can I do in my home?” campaign, provides information about retrofitting houses to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Fact sheet (pdf) on retrofitting buildings.

Background report (pdf) on retrofitting buildings.

What Can I Do in My Home?

Be more sustainable in your home and help reduce our ecological footprint (1,184 Kb). View the Home Energy Advice Team (HEAT) presentation (Microsoft PowerPoint, 3Mb). Also visit the Sustainable House website and the Department of Environment, Climate Change, Energy and Water website.


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