Environmental Plans and Policies

Blacktown Shale Quarry Pollution

Pollution Incident Response Management Plan

Our Shale Quarry is located in Schofields Road, Rouse Hill.  The quarry is not operated on a permanent basis. Our staff, with appropriate mobile plant and equipment, visit the quarry from time to time to undertake the extraction of quarry material, and site maintenance activities. 

The Pollution Incident Response Management Plan(PDF, 542KB) provides details of the processes which are in place in the event of a pollution incident at the Blacktown City Council’s Shale Quarry. 

Annual Return

The Annual Return(PDF, 1MB) is a statement of compliance with the licence conditions and reports the pollutant loads generated by the Shale Quarry.

Climate Change Action and Adaptation Plan

In 2011 we adopted the  Blacktown Climate Change Action and Adaptation Plan, which outlines our commitment to addressing climate change for the benefit of current and future generations. It provides a snapshot of our achievements to date and highlights the opportunities to reduce carbon emissions further. The Plan also identifies areas of vulnerability to climate change and recommends actions to assist in adapting to the impacts of climate change in Blacktown City.

We are currently updating the plan to reflect our increased commitment to reducing emissions and being a more sustainable city. The new plan will be available in December 2017. 

Ecological sustainable development

In 1997, a requirement was introduced to the Local Government Act requiring that Councils implement the principles of Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD) into their operations. ESD, as defined in the Local Government Act, requires the effective integration of economic and environmental considerations in decision-making processes. It can be achieved through the implementation of the following principles:

  • the precautionary principle, namely that if there are threats of serious or irreversible environmental damage, lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as a reason for postponing measures to prevent environmental degradation

  • intergenerational equity, namely that the present generation should ensure that the health, diversity and productivity of the environment is maintained or enhanced for the benefit of future generations;

  • conservation of biological diversity and ecological integrity should be a fundamental consideration; and

  • improved valuation, pricing and incentive mechanisms, namely that environmental factors should be included in the valuation of assets and services.

Blacktown City is experiencing sustained growth and the challenge this presents for us has been how to effectively manage the development of the local environment whilst maintaining its ecological integrity. We are addressing this challenge with a shift in management planning to align itself with ESD principles, underpinned by an expanding range of targeted policy and intervention programs identified through the State of the Environment reporting process.

Planning for an environmental future

We work with the community to promote sustainable occupancy of Blacktown City. The key emphasis of our efforts has been through consultation with established environmental groups and by the promotion of ESD through the education of residents, commercial enterprises and industry.

Our environmental education programs have the objective of educating the general community to increase their awareness of environmental issues in relation to an urban environment. This can lead to increased community ownership of the natural environment and development of skills for improved environmental practices.

To ensure sustainable future development in the City our planning instruments comply with the principles of ESD. With our Local Environmental Plan and Development Control Plans promoting sustainable development in the City, developers are guided to develop their land with consideration of the long-term impact upon the natural environment. Opportunities for comment on the application of our planning controls are provided at the Developers Forum we host.

Environmental Sustainability Framework

Our Environmental Sustainability Framework(PDF, 2MB) encompasses the many of the established environmental policies of Council, identifies future emerging environmental issues, and includes partnerships and collaborative approaches.  As a key component in the development of an effective framework, an Environmental Sustainability Policy to provide guidance and support was also developed by Council. 

We were recently awarded the Local Sustainability Award for the Environmental Sustainability Framework (ESF) in recognition for our commitment to embedding environmental sustainability within the core business of Council. 

State of the Environment Reports

What is a State of the Environment Report?

A State of the Environment Report (SoE) provides a summary of the environment within the local government area and the human impacts on that environment. It provides an annual and comparable record of the local activities or responses of local government, industry and community groups in the protection, restoration and enhancement of the local environment. The SoE is therefore is a useful tool in measuring, and a mechanism for reporting on, Council and community progress towards Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD).

Comparing SoE reports from year to year enables Council to gauge improvements in different sectors of the environment and also identify those areas that will need attention in the future.

Council commenced the environmental reporting process in 1993, preparing the first Blacktown State of the Environment Report. The reports prepared are either comprehensive or supplementary, based on a four-year cycle between comprehensive reports. Subsequent reports have built upon the data presented in that initial report, permitting a greater understanding of the local environment and the complex issues that influence its condition.

The report has been prepared based on the themes of land, water, air, biodiversity, noise, waste, Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal Heritage and other programs.

2010 to 2011 State of the Environment Report(PDF, 4MB) 

2011 to 2012 State of the Environment Report(PDF, 7MB)

2012 to 2013 State of the Environment Report(PDF, 2MB)

2013 to 2014 State of the Environment Report(PDF, 571KB)

2014 to 2015 State of the Environment Report(PDF, 1MB)

2015 to 2016 State of the Environment Report(PDF, 527KB)

State of the Waterways Report

The State of the Waterways Management Plan contains information on the current condition and values of the waterways and catchments in the Blacktown City and looks at the potential to improve the condition and values. The plan is broken into several sections, a Summary Report, Methodology Manual and 22 individual waterway chapters.

The objectives of the plan are to:

  • examine current land use and condition of waterways within the Blacktown LGA and recommend actions based on their current condition and attributes.

  • provide a strategic framework for the better management of the natural assets within the City based on their current condition.

  • provide a list of works and recommendations to achieve the target vision by the year 2020 for the 22 individual sub-catchments within the City.

  • link the recommended works with the NSW State Government Strategies.

  • provide meaningful and quantifiable data for reporting on Council's natural asset condition and land use.

  • provide a mechanism for repetition of the waterway assessment in 5 years.

The State of the Waterways Management Plan details targets for the condition of each of the 22 individual waterways and their catchments and provides a list of recommended actions to help achieve the targets by 2020. The Plan includes recommendations for the incorporation of appropriate:

  • planning instruments;

  • improvements of social infrastructure, access,

  • education and recreation;

  • provision and enhancement of environmental values;

  • pollution control; and

  • waterway and vegetation management.

The recommendations are split into two categories, waterway actions and catchment actions and include information on the stakeholder responsible for the action, the indicative cost of the action and the priority of the actions.

For further information on the State of the Waterways Management Plan please contact our Waterways Rehabilitation Officer on 02 9839 6259.