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Anita Marriott - Sustainability Officer, City of Vincent

Anita MarriottAnita Marriott is the Sustainability Officer for the City of Vincent, a local government at the forefront of promoting environmentally sustainable building design in Metropolitan Perth.

Anita’s role in relation to the built environment is to guide the incorporation of sustainable design requirements into the City’s planning and building policies and to educate and inspire both community and industry around the benefits and possibilities to be found in sustainable building design.

For Anita, connecting the community and property industry with each other and with the resources they need to achieve sustainable outcomes is the single most important part of her role. “Once people understand the concept of sustainability, they need very little convincing that sustainable design is the way to go. The barriers to action lie in not knowing how to go about it and in the perception that it’s just not that affordable.”

Starting with a small Green-My-Plan workshop in 2011, Anita has developed a series of successful community and industry events to help break down these barriers. “By participating in Sustainable House Day, we allow our community to experience firsthand just how stylish, comfortable and affordable a sustainably designed home can be” she explains. “Our Sustainable Design Expo then provides direct access to the design experts and suppliers who can make it happen.”

For developers and related industry professionals the City of Vincent provides a registered training event designed to demonstrate the value of sustainable design, provide the tools to do it well and the skills to sell it to the wider market.

To further support the growth of sustainable design within the City, recent amendments to planning and building policies by the City of Vincent Council have placed increased importance on the sustainability of developments. This has seen a greater focus by developers on sustainable design and led to some out-of the box thinking that has resulted in a range of innovative design solutions being implemented within the City.

Anita arrived in local government via a circuitous route, starting her career as a veterinarian in 2003, before moving into horticulture and sustainability in 2008. “My interest in sustainability grew from a deep fascination with the natural world and a desire to understand why it seemed we had to destroy it to achieve progress as a society” she explains. “It just didn’t make sense that we should be dismantling the very life support systems that we are dependent upon”. Which is why the role of Sustainability Officer suits her so well. “My job is to ensure that as a City we act sustainably in our operations and to educate and support our community in doing the same. In one way or another, I plan to go on educating and inspiring people to act sustainably for the rest of my life. This is my passion, so I will keep doing it whether I get paid or not.”