NEWS IN brief

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					    International Journal of Government Auditing–July 2009

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    Australia                                      example, costs for lighting upgrades
                                                   or enhanced metering), the resultant
                                                                                                             The agencies surveyed reported
                                                                                                             their aggregate internal use at over
                                                   savings from such measures will be                        6,500 tons per year. Agencies
    Audit Report on Green Office
                                                   ongoing and assist in offsetting future                   can reduce their internal paper
    Procurement and Sustainable                    cost increases. Measures such as the                      consumption (and simultaneously
    Office Management                              automated shutdown of office monitors                     reduce costs) through double-sided
                                                   and computers when not in use would                       printing. Motor vehicles are also
    In March 2009, the Australia National
                                                   involve minimal capital expenditure                       an important part of government
    Audit Office issued a report entitled,
                                                   and provide immediate energy and                          operations. The government fleet,
    Green Office Procurement and
                                                   cost reductions. Data centers use a                       including the Department of Defense
    Sustainable Office Management (No.
                                                   significant amount of energy, typically                   “white vehicle fleet,” has over 13,000
    25 2008-09). The report is available
                                                   accounting for 15 to 40 percent of                        vehicles. The audit highlighted
    online on the ANAO Web site.
                                                   tenancy energy consumption. Through                       tensions between costs, preferences
    The Australian Government has                  better design layouts for the centers                     for Australian made vehicles, and the
    indicated that it is seeking to be at the      and upgrades to infrastructure,                           need to meet the government’s goal
    forefront of environmental purchasing          potential energy savings of up to 33                      of reducing greenhouse gases and
    practices. This report showed that as          percent have been identified.                             other emissions. According to the
    a whole, the Australian Government                                                                       report, large vehicles are 35 percent
                                                   During the audit, agencies provided                       more expensive than small cars—
    public sector has considerable work to
                                                   numerous examples that illustrated                        even taking into account available
    do if it is to achieve this goal and that
                                                   the recovery of capital costs in less                     discounts—when considered on a
    considerable scope remains to reduce
                                                   than 12 months. Recent increases                          whole-of-life-cycle basis.
    the “ecological footprint” of agencies.
                                                   in electricity costs experienced by
    There are many opportunities to
                                                   Australian government agencies will                       The report identified significant
    implement cost-effective measures to
                                                   further reduce payback periods.                           opportunities to improve the quality
    improve sustainability, particularly in
                                                   Overall, the ANAO estimated that the                      of environmental controls and imbed
    energy conservation and office-based
                                                   Australian government could save $75                      environmental considerations into
                                                   million annually from its energy budget                   core business operations within
    According to the report, the Australian        if all agencies met government energy                     the Australian government. Only 56
    Government spends approximately                targets and applied these conservation                    percent of agencies have instructions
    $435 million annually on electricity           m
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