Planning permit checklist - Environmentally Sustainable Design

We have created a checklist for you to use when submitting a ESD application.

Greater Geelong Planning Scheme 22.71

Under clause 22.71 (ESD) of the Greater Geelong Planning Scheme, residential and non-residential planning permit applications will often need to include the following reports:

  • Published BESS report 
  • Sustainable Design Assessment (SDA) or Sustainable Management Plan (SMP) (depending on council guideline)
  • STORM or MUSIC modelling report for stormwater management
  • Preliminary NatHERS/Section J report (encourage to submit depending on residential and non-residential component)
  • Proposed plan detailing ESD and WSUD features committed to in BESS report.

The design detail shown in a planning application process will often include the following in development plan:

  • Mark-up showing the roof catchment area and connection of rainwater tanks for toilet flushing or irrigation.
  • Note showing the use of native or drought tolerant plant species for landscaped areas.
  • Note showing WELS rating for water fittings/fixtures.
  • Detail showing the commitment to exceeding NatHERS/section J energy efficiency.
  • Detail of maximum illumination power density (W/m2) of the development.
  • Inclusion of lighting sensors for external lighting (motion detectors, timers etc).
  • Inclusion of rooftop Solar PV systems.
  • Provision of secure and undercover bike storage spaces and electric car charging station.
  • Detail of crossflow diagram, double glazing, orientation and shading of windows.

Planning application requirements

It is necessary to obtain 50 percent overall in BESS, as well as ‘pass’ the Water, Energy, Stormwater and Indoor Environment Quality (IEQ) categories. Below is some advice to meet the overall requirements to meet in BESS criteria.

BESS category Recommended criteria for planning application
Water efficiency
  • To use water efficiently and minimise total operating potable water use.
  • To collect and reuse rainwater and stormwater and use alternative water sources appropriately.
Energy efficiency
  • To improve the efficient use of energy, the development must demonstrate design potential for ESD initiatives at the planning stage. A 6.5-star NatHERS commitment is recommended to pass the Energy category in BESS for residential development. If committing to this, the SDA/BESS report showing this will be endorsed to form part of the permit.
  • NCC section J modelling requirement is recommended for commercial component. The City encourages applicant to submit façade calculator in the planning application.
  • To reduce energy peak demand through design measures, an appropriate size of Solar PV for building is recommended, particularly since a ESD report will be triggered for the development. Minimum 2kW per dwelling will be looked upon very favourably for residential development.
Stormwater management
  • To improve the water quality of stormwater runoff, best practice standards for managing stormwater is recommended. The City encourages applicants to provide a STORM report or MUSIC model to demonstrate that the Urban Stormwater – Best Practice Environmental Management Guidelines (BPEM) standards for water quality (CSIRO & Victorian Stormwater Committee 1999) have been met.
  • Appropriate size of the rainwater tank is always recommended for stormwater reuse. For residential dwelling, 2,000L rainwater tanks (minimum) will be required to pass the Water category in BESS. The City recommends 2,500L – 3,000L.
  • The City generally does not accept proprietary products as a means of demonstrating compliance with the BPEM standards. This is because mechanical devices do not “contribute to cooling, local habitat improvements and provision of attractive and enjoyable spaces”, which is an objective of the 53.18 VPP – Stormwater Management in Urban Development. In this circumstance, there is a strong preference for rainwater tanks, swales, and raingardens.
Indoor environmental quality (IEQ)
  • To achieve a healthy indoor environment for building occupants, the City recommends fresh air intake, cross ventilation, and natural daylight with minimal mechanical heating, ventilation, and cooling.
  • The BESS guideline recommends that at least 60 percent of occupied floor area should meet the daylight benchmark of two percent or greater. The City encourages applicants to submit a daylight map based on Green Star hand calculation method or daylight modelling report. The Applicant will need to provide cross flow ventilation diagrams to show that IEQ is applicable.

Page last updated: Wednesday, 2 February 2022