Media Release: Councils Chalk Up 20 Years of Environmental Excellence

17 April 2017
Nominations have opened for the 2017 Local Government NSW Excellence in the Environment Awards, which recognise outstanding environmental achievements by councils.
“This year we are celebrating 20 years of inspiration by the people, programs and projects undertaken by NSW councils to protect and enhance our environment,” LGNSW President Keith Rhoades said.
“As the sphere of government closest to communities, councils have the most direct influence on local environments.
“But what is often forgotten is that local government is one of the biggest sectors in the NSW economy.
“Councils are responsible for maintaining and upgrading $142 billion in infrastructure and land assets, including parks, reserves, roads, community facilities and water and sewerage systems.
“The sector employs more than 50,000 people and injects $11 billion into the state’s economy each year.
“Combine that economic power with a commitment to environmental sustainability and best practice, and you have a sector making a very real contribution to the environment in NSW.”
Clr Rhoades said the awards, which will be announced on 11 October at the University of Technology Sydney, cover projects and programs undertaken during the period from January 2016 to May 2017.
Nominations are invited in 15 categories, including the prestigious Local Sustainability Award for overall council performance and the Louise Petchell Memorial Award for Individual Sustainability, recognising the achievements of an individual.
The prize for overall winner of the Local Sustainability Award is an overseas study tour or a professional development program for staff, valued at $10,000. 
Individual councils, county councils and regional council groupings are all eligible to enter, and compete against similarly sized councils in one of three levels: populations of less than 30,000; between 30,000 and 70,000; and more than 70,000. 
Nomination applications close on 31 May, with further details available on LGNSW's website.
Sponsors of the LGNSW Excellence in the Environment Awards include the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, NSW Environment Protection Authority, NSW Ministry of Health, Water Directorate, Department of Primary Industries, NSW Roadside Environment Committee and Local Government Super. 
Media Enquiries
LGNSW President, Cr Keith Rhoades: 0408 256 405
Media Toni Allan: 0412 774 441