South East Queensland Regional Environment Coordination Network
BREC - SEQ 2021 Regional Plan Short Submission
Draft Regional Plan Feedback
Office of Urban Management
Reply Paid 31
Brisbane Albert Street BC Qld 4002
The SEQ Regional Plan should adopt a preferred urban pattern that best achieves ecologically sustainable development through reviewing the three development scenarios and effectively involving the public in further development of the Plan, Subregional Plans, and Local Growth Management Strategies incorporating best practice public participation in the choice of alternatives, developing a Plan that will:
- Contain and contract the urban boundary and investigation areas so that it contains no more than 20 years supply, with fewer greenfield sites, increased concentration and a smaller urban footprint overall.
- Conserve natural areas of international, national, state and regional significance and provide recreational open space in already cleared or degraded areas both within the urban boundary and in the regional landscape, protecting the values identified in the SEQ Regional Nature Conservation Strategy and Good Quality Agricultural Land, maintaining wetlands and floodplain values and essential ecological services.
- Constrain population growth the Plan over-allocates land for housing by 20% - pull back to protect identified values; charge betterment tax for funding public open space infrastructure; change wording in the plan from "population targets" to "population projections".
- Control infrastructure and major projects and not allow them to override other values including nature conservation and ecological services; invest in regional open space infrastructure projects.
- Continue low-intensity rural production and recreational uses within the urban footprint - have a future for rural land inside the urban footprint.
- Convert unallocated state lands containing Indigenous cultural heritage values to the control of the appropriately mandated Traditional Owners, who can conserve, manage, enjoy and profit from their cultural resources and landscapes.
The SEQ Plan should be improved by:
- Reduction of the amount of land in the urban footprint to 20 years supply, with a permanent maximum extent of urban development in the region, and a continued role for rural open space inside the urban footprint. Currently the plan allocates 20% more than land than needed and an additional 25% in investigation areas. There is enough new land in the urban footprint to accommodate all the projected growth as greenfield developments. This will work against sensible infill policies. This land oversupply could take the population close to 4.5 million or almost double what it is now.
- Investigation areas and the footprints of rural villages should similarly be reduced to protect state and regionally significant vegetation and open space.
- Development of subregional plans similar to that proposed by Northern Subregion Organisation of Councils (NORSROC), and including the Common Nature Conservation Classification n System (developed by the Western Subregion Organisation of Councils (WESROC), and issuing clear guidelines for the development of Local Growth Management Strategies in line with the subregional plans to ensure that valuable features are protected both within and outside the urban footprint.
- Adoption of the principles of Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD) from the National Strategy for Ecologically Sustainable Development (NSESD) including reducing per capita impacts in the region.
- Resolving the conflicts between and within Desired Regional Outcomes and associated principles and strategies by prioritising through formal, transparent institutional arrangements and integration of existing environmental and resource management strategies and programs.
- The plan should include broad intents for the urban footprint that protect state and regionally significant vegetation, biodiversity and open space. The aim should be to eliminate the clearing of remnant vegetation in SEQ. There should be clear guidance on the adequate provision of public open space in areas of increased density, i.e., "No Mean Streets". Local growth plans should detail how natural areas and processes are maintained and link into bioregional corridors. There should still be a role for rural open space (niche agriculture, recreation and landscape and biodiversity) inside the urban footprint.
- Subdivision of state and regionally significant vegetation should be prohibited and the right to prohibit development should be reinstated in local government planning schemes.
- The draft Regulatory Provisions should be amended to deliver legal certainty for protection of state and regionally significant nature conservation areas.
- The draft Regulatory Provisions should be amended to remove ambiguities about residential development outside the Urban Footprint.
- Applications for residential material change of use outside the Urban Footprint and away from rural villages should be deemed refusals to stop developers clogging the courts with speculative applications.
- Undeveloped foreshore areas, wetlands, rocky headlands and esplanades should be excluded from the urban footprint and a climate impacts zone should be designated as not suitable for development.
- A commitment should be made to reduce air, water and land pollution faster than the rate of population growth.
- Support should be given for sustainable urban and rural industry.
- The government should apply stamp duties to the betterment, including acquisition and maintenance, of the regions natural and recreational assets and to mitigate the pollution impacts of ongoing and prior development.
- Significantly increase infrastructure charges for full cost recovery and more equitable contributions for hard, social and green infrastructure. Infrastructure planning should include environmental impact assessment. Public transport, regional open space for recreation, wetland and floodplain rehabilitation, fauna crossings and other "green" infrastructure that creates a viable network of nature conservation areas should be supported by development infrastructure charging.
- Water charging, both urban and rural, should include the cost of maintaining and regenerating healthier dam catchments.
- We need mandated energy & water efficiency standards for new developments and retrofit subsidy solar hot water, shower roses, dual flushing. water tanks, etc. We need a funding program to generate substantial water savings (negalitres) and energy savings (negawatts) to avoid the need for more dams and power stations.
- Interim environmental flow allocations should be set immediately for SEQ catchments, rivers and wetlands before water supply plans are locked in.
- There should be a commitment to substantially reduce air pollution and greenhouse emissions in the region and plans should take into account climate change impacts, diminishing fossil fuel supplies with reduced affordability as well as future energy supply options.
- There should be a commitment to substantially reduce both per capita and total consumption of natural and extractive resources such as sand and gravel.
- Transport planning should support a more compact form of development and not conflict with ESD principles.
- Congestion charging should be used to minimise demand for road infrastructure, at the same time increasing low cost, high quality public transport and provision of T2 and T3 transit lanes on all roads.
- Transport & energy infrastructure and upgrading should avoid areas of state and regionally significant vegetation.
- There should be proper recognition and protection of Traditional Owners cultural resources and intellectual property rights of Traditional Knowledge Holders and appropriate involvement by them in the SEQ Regional Plan.
- State lands on coastal sand masses should be progressively converted to some form of jointly managed conservation reserve and unallocated State land handed back to the Traditional Owners.
- State lands on Stradbroke Island should be progressively converted to some form of jointly managed conservation reserve and unallocated State land handed back to the Traditional Owners Koenpal people.
- The interurban break at the Gold Coast should include some of the Coomera - Yatala vegetation corridor as much of this interurban break has already been developed. The regional conservation corridor between Brisbane and Logan should be enhanced. There should be Interurban breaks between Beenleigh, Beaudesert Shire and Logan City. There should be a State significance regional corridor between Caloundra and Maroochy (Sippy Creek and Mooloolah Range). There should be an interurban break between Brisbane and Ipswich.
- Governments should use measures to slow or moderate interstate migration, limiting the population to that which is sustainable in the long term.
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