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Ecologically Sustainable Development and Environmental Performance


Procurement and Acquisition

In 2003-04, consistent with the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines and Best Practice Guidance, Defence updated its procurement policy manual to include references to tool kits and guidance from the draft Environmental Purchasing Guide administered by the Department of Environment and Heritage, to improve environmental purchasing. Defence continued to purchase energy efficient office equipment and appliances consistent with the Commonwealth energy policy. Defence also continued to integrate environmental considerations, such as the requirement to avoid using ozone-depleting substances, into relevant contracts for the construction and maintenance of facilities.

Defence Environment and Heritage Panel

From May 2003 to June 2004, the Defence Environmental Panel completed work to the value of $8.88m.

Table 7.13 Defence Environmental Panel Projects May 2003 - June 2004(1)
Category Number $m
Statutory review 25 0.750
Environmental consultancy 70 2.100
Environmental management system 22 0.660
Assessment 20 0.600
Environmental planning 17 0.510
Monitoring 23 0.690
Audit 15 0.450
Asbestos 23 0.690
Heritage 20 0.600
Environmental works 25 0.750
Works management 22 0.660
Other 14 0.420
Total 296 8.880


  1. Statistics are calculated every three months.

On 6 February 2004, Defence established a new Environment and Heritage Panel to replace the previous Defence Environmental Panel. The new panel recognises the increasing need by Defence to engage industry that specialises in heritage management services to address significant heritage issues in Defence.

The panel will continue to provide support to Defence in areas such as management plans, contaminated site assessments and the preparation of documentation for impact assessment processes under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

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Infrastructure Development and Support

Ecologically Sustainable Development in Defence Infrastructure

Defence completed a draft ecologically sustainable development strategy and a draft 'green buildings' guideline, and has commenced implementation of the interim requirements as part of the Defence infrastructure asset development and approval process. The process ensures ecologically sustainable development principles are taken into account at the earliest stages of asset development and reflected in Defence infrastructure contracts. This allows Defence to seek innovative solutions for long-term sustainable environmental, economic and social outcomes.

During the year, Defence also commenced the implementation of ecologically sustainable development principles into maintenance and garrison support contracts for facilities and infrastructure to ensure contractors implement the principles as a contract deliverable.

Administration of Legislation

With the exception of the Explosives Act 1961, legislation administered by Defence generally relates to internal management and administration of Defence.

Defence considers and applies ecologically sustainable development in the administration of the Explosives Act 1961 through the continued application of the Handling of Explosives Ordnance Manual. The manual includes environmental considerations in relation to the transport, disposal, use and storage of explosives by Defence.

Training and Awareness

Implementation of an environmental awareness program, initiated under the Defence Environmental Education Strategy in 2001-02, continued and was included as part of widespread annual induction training.

A number of specialist environmental training sessions were also carried out, including a professional development program, to support the development and implementation of the Defence environmental management system, the first of three modules in contamination management, and a series of heritage specific courses.


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