Media Release
New plan to value and grow Sydney’s world renowned natural environment
27 February, 2023

Media contact

Matt Levinson

An action plan has been released today to celebrate and strengthen support for Sydney’s world-renowned rivers, parks, tree lined streets and harbours.

Sam Kernaghan, Resilience Director at the Committee for Sydney, said: “The evidence from research is clear – Sydney’s rivers and parks cool down our sweltering city, clean the air, and boost our health and happiness.

“If we didn’t know it and value it before Covid-19 controls kept us cooped up, we certainly do now.

“But we’re not investing enough in planting trees and shrubs, creating and maintaining parks, and opening up waterbodies across the city.

“We can do a lot more – in our backyards, balconies and nature strips, building facades and rooftops, as well as the parks, waterways and infrastructure corridors.

“We’re only just beginning to learn from First Nations knowledge about connecting with Country, and what that means for what we plant, where and why to support the bees, birds and other animals that rely on diverse and resilient flora across our city.

“This new report sets out a path to better value our living infrastructure, and create the structural changes needed to enable community, business and government to support and benefit from growing our living infrastructure equitably across the city.”

Nature Positive Sydney is a new report from urban policy think tank Committee for Sydney, in partnership with Mott Macdonald, hassell and Government Architect NSW, setting out four key actions:

  • Enable community education and Indigenous knowledge by stepping up education and awareness programs for communities, including establishing a Centre for Urban and Indigenous Ecology
  • Set metropolitan and local targets for living infrastructure, not just trees, and monitor and evaluate progress towards those targets
  • Manage living infrastructure as an asset, at all levels of government, and embed living infrastructure outcomes in public sector procurement systems
  • Drive structural investment in living infrastructure by introducing a ‘green factor’ tool to incentivise new development, establishing a living infrastructure fund, and adopting a framework for valuing living infrastructure in major projects.

Read the full Nature Positive Sydney report here: