Logan City, Australia

The power of plants and natural ecosystems to deliver benefits

How is the initiative shaped by scientific evidence of the potential for plants and natural ecosystems to deliver benefits?

LCC took the step to include bold environmental and climate change in our Corporate Plan including:

  • A commitment to achieve carbon neutrality/net zero by the end of 2022.
  • Continue to implement sustainability initiatives including increased use of renewable energy, energy efficient technology and carbon reduction projects.
  • Support the community to become more sustainable and conserve and restore private land.

This commitment is reinforced through our strong strategic outcomes through our town planning instruments – the Logan Planning Scheme.  This protects natural environment areas, sustainable farming areas and ecosystem services through zoning. This sets out the following natural environment and climate change strategic outcomes:

  • No net loss of biodiversity and ecological values is achieved by protecting and enhancing flora and fauna species.
  • Ecosystems of waterway corridors, wetlands and their riparian areas are protected and enhanced.
  • Biodiversity and ecological processes of regional terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems are protected and enhanced.
  • Vegetated areas and waterways are protected and enhanced to function as ecological links and corridors.
  • Greenhouse gas emission and the community’s reliance on greenhouse gas emitting energy sources, are reduced.

To achieve these outcomes, the following has been implemented by LCC through our town planning legislative mechanisms:

  • 84.1% of the city has all native trees and wildlife habitat protected.
  • 28,277 ha of environmental and wildlife corridors mapped and protected
  • Area of city that is regional landscape and rural production, rural living, environmentally/recreation/open space zoned or is mapped with environmental corridors =  72.82%
  • Protection of:
    • 2,633 hectares of wetlands
    • 2,177 kilometres of waterways
How has the city exploited the potential of plants and associated ecosystems to deliver more than one benefit?

To monitor and measure these outcomes an innovative scientific based model was developed that recognises the potential for plants and natural ecosystems to deliver multiple benefits.

To recognise this, part of the framework included the development of a city wide Ecological Significance map using multiple values, methodologies and ecological inputs including:

  • Biodiversity Assessment and Mapping Methodology
  • Common Nature Conservation Classification System (CNCCS) and Expert Panel
  • Tract size of ecological significant areas and corridors
  • Relative Ecosystem Size
  • Ecosystem Diversity;
  • Context and connection;
  • Special Biodiversity Areas;
  • Corridor Links, Context and Connection;
  • Urban and Rural land;
  • Land bordering Environmental Parks;
  • Waterway and Wetland buffers.

By using a range of inputs, it allows us to exploit the potential of plants and associated ecosystems to deliver more than one benefit.