Agenda Item No: Report No:

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Agenda Item No:


Report No:


Report Title:

Amendments to Environmental Policy

Report To:

Cabinet

Date: 16 February 2005


Lead Councillor:

Cllr Collict

Ward(s) Affected:

All

Report By:

Director of Planning & Environmental S
ervi
ces

Contact Officer(s):

Ian Kedge, Head of Environmental Health

Kia Colbeck, Environment Officer


Purpose of Report:


To present the proposed changes to Lewes District Council’s
Environmental Policy

Officers Recommendation(s):

1

To approve the
proposed changes


Reasons for Recommendations

1

To ensure compliance with ISO 14001 and the Eco
-
Management and Audit
Scheme (EMAS) and continuous improvement in Environmental Performance

Information

2

Background

2.1

Lewes District Council developed an Enviro
nmental Policy in 1997 in line
with the requirements of the Eco
-
Management and Audit Scheme
(EMAS) and ISO 14001: the international standard for Environmental
Management.

2.2

The Environmental Policy is a statement by the Council of its intentions
and principl
es in relation to its overall environmental performance, which
provides a framework for action and for the setting of its environmental
objectives and targets. It is the driver for implementing and improving the
environmental management system and ensuring

continual improvement
in environmental performance. The existing Policy is attached in the
Appendix H.

2.3

Each year the Policy is reviewed by the Environmental Steering Group
as part of the EMAS management review.

2.4

The last management review took place on 9

December 2004 and
modifications to the Policy were proposed. These take into account
changes to the structure and function of the council, its environmental
performance, legislative changes, audit results and other information.
This is to ensure it’s cont
inuing suitability, adequacy and effectiveness.
This year only minor changes were proposed to the policy. These are as
follows:

5. Land Use Planning

We will:


Develop Policies in the Local Development Frame
work

to protect and
enhance the built and natural environment of the District.


7. Accidents and Planning Ahead

We will:

Use Risk Management
to cut the risk of environmental accidents and put
plans in place to deal with them.


Implementation:

We will
:

Use the ecoBUDGET

methodology

as a means of improving our existing
Environmental Management System



2.5

These changes now need approval by the Council.

Financial Appraisal

3

There are
no financial implications arising from the proposed modifications

Environmental Implications

4

I have completed the Environmental Implications Questionnaire and recorded
positive significant effects in terms of improving our environmental performance.

Risk M
anagement Implications

5

I have completed a risk assessment in accordance with the Council’s Risk
Management methodology and if we do not keep the environmental policy up to
date and reflective of the Council’s functions and aspirations we may risk
jeopardiz
ing our EMAS and ISO 140001 certification.

Background Papers

6

Minutes of the Lewes District Council Environment Steering Group AGM , 5
December 2004.

7

Regulation (EC) No 761/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council of
19 March 2001 allowing volunta
ry participation by organizations in a Community
Eco
-
Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS)

Appendices

8

Copy of Lewes District Council’s Environmental Policy 2004


Appendix


Our Environmental Policy


We play a role in helping people improve the quality of life
in their community. As part of this
we aim to continually improve our environmental performance. By taking action locally we will
play our part with others in helping to improve the global environment.


We have adopted the following set of principles to gu
ide what we do. We will consider and
use best practice and technology as resources allow. In carrying out our operations we will
keep within environmental laws.


THE PRINCIPLES


1. Sustainable Development

We will:



Help people improve the quality of life in

local communities.



Consider the social, economic and environmental sustainability of work we do.



Work with local stakeholders to produce a Community Strategy to promote the economic,
social and environmental well being of communities.



Support environmenta
l groups and community action that benefits the environment and
develop partnerships with them.



Work with other public authorities and local businesses to improve the environment.



Provide information on our environmental performance and involve the communi
ty in our
environmental work.



Use ‘From Global to Local: our strategy to promote sustainability’ to ensure that
sustainable development is at the heart of all work that we do.


2.
Pollution

We will:



Monitor levels of pollution.



Use available resources and
legislation to reduce air, land, water and noise pollution.


3.
Energy and Water

We will:



Increase our energy efficiency



Work with local and national organisations to develop a Comprehensive energy strategy,
based on conserving resources and using non
-
poll
uting technology.



Monitor how much water we use and cut our consumption.



Encourage others to conserve energy and water.


4.
Resource Management

We will:



Reduce, reuse and recycle goods and materials in our work.



Cut the use of, and where possible stop usin
g, products that damage the environment in
their production, use or disposal.



Encourage local people to reduce, reuse and recycle goods and materials.



Support the Zero Waste charter, as agreed by Cabinet at its meeting in October 2003,
and will work toward
s reducing and eliminating waste in the District.


5.
Land Use Planning

We will:



Include in the District Wide Local Plan policies to protect and enhance the built and
natural environment of the District.



Promote development that is environmentally and soci
ally sustainable through economic
development and planning.


6.
Transport

We will:



Look at our use of transport at work and cut vehicle use and pollution.



Encourage and support a mixed transport strategy with particular emphasis on cutting car
use and prom
oting public transport, cycling and walking.


7.
Accidents and Planning Ahead

We will:



Work to cut the risk of environmental accidents and put plans in place to deal with them.



Look at the environmental impacts of our new policies, activities and practices

before
they are agreed.


8.
Service Delivery

We will:



Include in all Best Value Service Reviews a sustainability assessment.



Aim to improve our environmental performance when we deliver our services.



Encourage our contractors to have the same environmenta
l standards as ourselves.


IMPLEMENTATION

We will:



Meet all the requirements of the Eco Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS)



Be assessed on our environmental performance by an independent organisation.



Provide the resources needed to make these principles wo
rk.



Train our staff on EMAS and environmental issues.



Use the ecoBudget pilot project as a means of improving our existing Environmental
Management System. Continue to use principles from the ecoBudget methodology.


CHECKS

We will:



Look at our environmenta
l progress against our targets and publicise the results.



Take steps to correct any areas where we fail so that we meet all the conditions above.