10 February, 2012

Sustainable Business Weekly QLD Edition [Procurement, Floods, Oh my Darling]

Sustainable Procurement

In the last few weeks, the Australian Sustainable Business Group (ASBG) in Qld has had a drive on to assist members to embed “sustainability” in supply chains. One good way to encourage supplier industry transformation is through 'forward commitment procurement'.

In theory, one engages with suppliers early (well before the product or service is required) to discuss with them one’s requirements & objectives. This gives suppliers time to properly understand what one wants & allows the market to consider modifications to their products/services/business to provide a more appropriate product/service (that are more likely to win the tender).

For example, one might let the market know that one will favourably consider environmentally labeled products. This would give suppliers time to consider modifying their processes & getting products certified under an appropriate scheme.

The British Standard BS 8903:2010 Principles and Framework for Procuring Sustainably is very useful. The Australian Procurement & Construction Council (APCC) also has some good publications.

This arrangement creates several rewards for both the Supplier & the end-user. In brief...

Advantages for Suppliers:

· Get to spend time marketing the products early, before their production runs commence;

· They may receive some payment early, which helps with cash flow;

· Have an opportunity to get to know the end-users.

Advantages for end users:

· more customisation of products to meet the end users specific needs;

· better integration of manufacturing with installations & commissioning;

· Develop a relationship with the supplier & an understanding of manufacturing processes &/or service delivery.

The Qld Floods Commission

The Qld Floods commission was given an extension to investigate “new evidence” concerning the operation of Wivenhoe Dam releases in Jan 2011.

The Qld Floods Commission of Inquiry has taken public submissions from across Qld & held two rounds of public hearings in affected areas. The Commission has commenced a third round of public hearings commence 2 February 2012.

This week Dam Engineers, Bureaucrats & Politicians have been on trial in the Courts of public opinion. There is a class action being assembled.

Steve Posselt (author of Cry Me a River) pointed out that the fallout from the Qld floods commission is a result of a society that thinks that we can engineer ourselves to be independent of nature...

Clive palmer’s Conspiracy Theories

This week on social media Qld State Treasurer Andrew Fraser tweeted “Lettuce know what you think of page 33 of Courier-mail please Prof Clive Palmer? Doesn't exactly mesh w your conspiracy theory ...”

The “Lettuce” was a reference to Clive Palmer’s blast of the Courier Mail in a recent press conference. There would appear to be a BHP Billiton project proposed in the same (or similar) corridor as Clive Palmer's project. On face value, it appears to mesh quite well with Clive Palmer's conspiracy theory.

The Coordinator-General has prepared draft terms of reference (TOR) for the environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Goonyella to Abbot Point Rail Project.

The draft TOR set out the matters that BHP Billiton MetCoal Holdings Pty Ltd must address when preparing the EIS.

The public and state government advisory agencies are invited to comment on whether the draft TOR adequately cover all the matters the project proponent must address when preparing the EIS.

Comments close at 5pm on Monday 5 March 2012. The project's impacts on matters of national environmental significance are being assessed separately by the Australian Government. Download the draft terms of reference for EIS, read the fact sheet on making a comment & complete the draft TOR comment form.

Send your comments to: goonyella-abbot-rail@deedi.qld.gov.au Read more about commenting on draft TOR.

Questions for the Qld Environment Minister Vicki Darling

Recently, ABC Radio morning show host: Steve Austin spoke to Environment Minister Vicki Darling.

The Member for Sandgate took over the Environment & Resource Management portfolio 7 months ago, when the Kate Jones retired from the Ministry to spend more time re-contesting her seat of Ashgrove. Ms Darling has been involved in implementing some of the reforms that were started by Ms Jones.

Waste Reform has been an area of focus because Qld had the worst rate of rubbish to landfill of any State in Australia.

In her discussions with Steve Austin, Ms Darling defends the Qld Government’s decision to ban sand mining on Stradbroke Island.

Ms Darling is comfortable with the control systems that the Qld Government has put in for Coal seam Gas Development & is more concerned about misinformation.

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