Blue Mountains City Council recognises the crucial role that our community plays in helping us achieve our vision of an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable Blue Mountains, as is outlined in our Community Strategic Plan 2035. 

We believe that by working together as a community and utilising our collective passions and talents, we can realise our goal of achieving social and economic wellbeing for our community, while protecting and enhancing our World Heritage environment.

Header image: Clean Up Australia Day volunteers

How is Council working with the community?

Resilient Blue Mountains is a community-led network that aims to equip our community, infrastructure and environment with the resources needed to tackle the climate crisis and not only survive it, but thrive in the face of it. 

Resilient Blue Mountains is connecting a network of foundation members, working groups and neighbourhood action nodes which it has invited Council to be involved with. 

This collaborative approach has already seen areas of opportunity with council successfully gaining funding from the Australian and New South Wales Government to host a Festival of Resilience in the Blue Mountains.

Council is also looking to develop a sustainability and resilience hub on the Blue Mountains City Council website which would provide a space for sharing ideas, resources and sustainability initiatives.

Image: Regrowth after a bushfire, Bells Line of Road, Bilpin (Photo credit: Robert Walwyn)

Council is also involved in a number of other community sustainability initiatives: 

Environmental volunteers: Working with our community we can achieve outcomes that have enormous benefits to the environment.  Go to bmcc.nsw.gov.au/envirovolunteers for more information.

Blue Mountains Eco Destination: Supporting more sustainable tourism with a lighter footprint on our World Heritage environment, the City of Blue Mountains will join an established global network of like-minded destinations striving for excellence. This program provided an opportunity for local businesses to focus on reducing their footprint and become accredited businesses in the Local Government Area.

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Image: View from Echo Point, Katoomba

Business Energy Advice Program (BEAP): BEAP is a free initiative that assists businesses to save on energy costs and is available to small businesses in Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains. The Program provides industry-specific information on energy saving programs, connects small businesses with government grants and proposes options for small businesses to manage their energy. For more details follow: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/action-on-climate-change/free-business-energyadvice-program-beap.

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Image: Blue Mountains Youth Council

Youth Council: We believe young people should be empowered to gain a deep understanding of citizenship and be involved in positive civic action for change in their communities. To achieve this we have established a Youth Council made up of young people who live, work or study in the Blue Mountains. For more details follow: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/YouthCouncil

Love Local: The Love Local campaign, launched 13 January 2020, and originally aimed to recoup money lost to the local economy after visitors stayed away during bush fires in the upper Blue Mountains. This has since been expanded to support local business in their recovery from COVID-19. For more details follow: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/lovelocal

Zero Food-Waste Leura: Leura Garage, Leura Village Association, Blue Mountains City Council and the Institute for Sustainable Futures have partnered with the Love Food Hate Waste initiative. The Blue Mountains team is working closely with the local business community to reach ‘zero-food waste’ in Leura (and the surrounding areas) through auditing, engagement and communication with local residents, visiting tourists and businesses. 

For more details of the project and how to get involved go to: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/waste-recycling/zero-waste-leura.

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Image: Men's Shed, Katoomba

Reuse shed: Blaxland and Katoomba Resource Recovery and Waste Management Facilities have a reuse shed where residents can drop off reusable furniture and equipment (general waste fees apply). This is then available for other residents to take free of charge.

Subsidised compost bins: Council offers $20 compost bins online with free delivery. This is available for all households and is to encourage and enable organic waste diversion from households. Find out more at: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/waste-recycling/foodwaste-composting

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Image: Moochy Kids Garden

Connecting with nature: Our goal is to inspire the next generation – by connecting them to our special Blue Mountains environment and fostering their natural love of nature. In a learning experience unique to our City within a World Heritage Area, this program offers local students the opportunity to explore their local water catchment, learn why it’s special and take action to protect it. For more details follow: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/environment/connecting-with-nature.

Get Grubby: Provided FREE by Council to all childcare, day care, family day care and primary schools in the Blue Mountains. Led by 50 videos not shown on TV, the program stars Dirtgirl, Scrapboy and Costa the Garden Gnome. This program includes videos, music, outdoor and indoor activities, and encourages kids to explore the big world outside. Find out more at: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/get-grubby

Rooftop Garden at the Cultural Centre: Implement and care for an edible roof top garden. It is hoped the garden will provide fresh, seasonal produce to the Gallery Café and offer learning opportunities for the community. For more details follow:
http://bluemountainsculturalcentre.com.au/be-involved/volunteers/.

Future opportunities for community engagement/consultation:

Planetary health: Planetary Health is an emerging science which links the things we do, with the health of people and the health of the planet. Its aim is to provide a framework for us to reassess and adapt human practices to better support a healthy planet and the quality of all life, including all species, into the future. Council is looking to establish a Planetary Health Leadership Centre in Katoomba to help create future benefits and opportunities for the Blue Mountains community and environment.
Learn more at: https://www.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/WHA/planetary-health

Sustainable living toolkit: Council is committed to developing a sustainable living toolkit that helps to support the community to implement sustainable living activities at the household and local levels. This is an initiative that the Council is currently developing in partnership with Western Sydney University as part of our Planetary Health focus.

Have your say Blue Mountains: is a site that council uses to consult with employees and the community on the development of strategic plans, master plans and other projects prior to Council adoption. This is a great opportunity to provide direct feedback to Council and ensure sustainability and resilience is considered. To review current project open for consultation visit: https://yoursay.bmcc.nsw.gov.au/