Archive for the ‘Government Relations’ Category

4.4.2013 Waste Less Recycle More   Leave a comment

The NSW Government has announced  a 5-year $465.7 million waste and recycling program aimed at delivering economic, employment and environmental benefits for local communities.

Key areas of the package include:

  1. Waste and recycling infrastructure package – $250 million
  2. Supporting local communities – $137.7 million
  3. Combating illegal dumping – $58 million
  4. Tackling litter – $20 million.

Posted April 2, 2013 by equilibrium in Government Relations

29.11.12 – The challenge of changing behaviour   Leave a comment

On a global scale, environmental and social impacts arise through the actions of billions of actors undertaking trillions of actions, each with varying implications. These actions take place within a general framework of economic and capitalist behaviours, mediated by varying legal codes and social norms.

There’s no single or homogenous audience to talk to about the challenges and opportunities of sustainability and climate change. Instead there are many different actors, be they individuals making consumption choices, governments setting legislation or policy, or corporations making investment and production decisions.

All tend to make choices in isolation, but with cumulative impacts. Ecological and social problems are generally not the result of conscious or deliberate choices but the side effects of all these individual actions and decisions. It’s these unintended consequences that are causing concern: climate change, natural resource depletion, pollution, waste, land degradation, etc, etc. Read the rest of this entry »

15.11.12 – Taking climate change seriously   Leave a comment

Seems there’s a few organisations taking the potential consequences of climate change very seriously: the US military and intelligence establishment!

At the request of the US intelligence community, the National Research Council was commissioned to “to evaluate the evidence on possible connections between climate change and U.S. national security concerns and to identify ways to increase the ability of the intelligence community to take climate change into account in assessing political and social stresses with implications for U.S. national security.”

The resulting report, Climate and Social Stress: implications for security analysis indicates that accelerating climate change will place unparalleled strains on American military and intelligence agencies in coming years by causing ever more disruptive events around the globe.Clusters of apparently unrelated events exacerbated by a warming climate will create more frequent but unpredictable crises in water supplies, food markets, energy supply chains and public health systems, leading to internal instability or international conflicts. Read the rest of this entry »

08.11.12 – The new world   Leave a comment

The US election has been run and won, with Obama winning another four year term. Following well on the heels of the US is the election of a new suite of powerful elites within China’s ruling political class.  By December, two of the world’s most dominant countries will have “fresh beginnings”.

In their short-term appointments, will they be prepared to tackle some of the biggest long-term challenges confronting us?  Obama, to his credit, at least touched on the topic of climate change in his acceptance speech.

We’ve just seen the devastating impacts of “Superstorm Sandy” and while there is reluctance to blame the storm on climate change directly, the consensus among scientists is that such events around the globe will become more frequent.

An article in The Age recently quoted Yvo de Boer, the UN climate chief during the 2009 Copenhagen climate change talks (and now special global advisor on climate change for KPMG) the next UN climate report will “scare the wits out of everyone”. The IPCC’s fifth assessment report is due to be published in late 2013 and early 2014. Read the rest of this entry »

22.06.12 – Have an impact!   Leave a comment

There are mixed stories coming out of Rio+20 this week. Even if governments don’t make great progress, the need for sustainability is not going to evaporate. In the face of many environmental and social challenges, the need to address business footprints and implement responsible practices is only going to increase. Business shouldn’t wait for government.

Embedding sustainability into an organisation’s DNA is a challenge at the best of times. Like exercise and a healthy diet, fostering sustainability is a form of preventative medicine. It’s critical to long-term health and life span. But, just like exercise and a healthy diet, it’s also hard to demonstrate the immediate payoffs. We know it’s ultimately good for us, but can we be bothered working up a sweat today, or choose the bowl of fruit instead of the greasy eggs and bacon on offer? Read the rest of this entry »

18.04.12 – Victorian State of the Environment Report 2013   Leave a comment

Equilibrium Managing Director Nick Harford has been invited to participate in the Expert Reference Group for the Victorian State of the Environment Report 2013.

The Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability Victoria, Professor Kate Auty, invited Nick to the Group and he will participate in the Consumption & Waste Expert Reference Group providing his specialist skills and advice. The Commissioner has flagged that three Foundation Papers on the themes of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Land and Water and the Environment will be released and provide the basis for the 2013 Report.

A range of other consultation and community engagement is planned to inform the report which is due for release in 2013. See

Posted April 18, 2012 by equilibrium in Government Relations

A glimpse of 2050   Leave a comment

Scientists and economists love using models to make future predictions, despite the use of assumptions that tend to make such predictions imperfect. It is impossible to fully know what the future holds. Still, having some idea is better than having no idea and models enable us to visualise what could potentially become the real thing. It allows forward thinking government and business decisions and investments to be made today that will influence where we end up tomorrow.

This month, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released their Environmental Outlook to 2050: The Consequences of Inaction. Assuming “no new policies”, it projects existing socio-economic trends forward fourty years and their implications for four key areas of concern: climate change, biodiversity, water and the health impacts of environmental pollution. Read the rest of this entry »