5.2 What is required

The greenhouse gas and environmental impact of business travel is a growing area of attention for public sector entities.

Fleet Vehicle Selection Policy

The Fleet Vehicle Selection Policy, administered by Finance, states that passenger vehicles must be made in Australia. Where there is no operationally suitable Australian-made option, passenger vehicles that have been imported by an Australian manufacturer with an engine capacity of less than 2.4 litres may be considered and can be selected where there is a demonstrated operational need [145].

The Fleet Monitoring Body (FMB) in Finance administers this policy, which is applicable to all FMA Act agencies. Vehicle leasing and fleet management services are managed under contractual arrangements administered by the FMB. Agencies are requested to provide odometer readings at fuel refill. When selecting vehicles, agencies should also consider the Government's Green Car Challenge, which states that by 2020 half of the Government's fleet of passenger vehicles will be Australian-made, demonstrate value for money and be environmentally friendly [146].

Green Vehicle Guide target

In 2003, the then Department of Environment established a whole-of-government target of 28 per cent of the Australian Government's fleet with a Green Vehicle Guide (GVG) [147] rating of at least 10.5 out of a maximum rating of 20 [148]. The rating system provides a score out of 20 based on the combined greenhouse gas and air pollution emissions performance, which are both scored out of 10. The 28 per cent target was reached in 2007 and, as yet, there has been no revision of the target. Since the target was set in 2003, the average rating of the fleet has improved considerably, and as of February 2011, 59 per cent of the Australian Government fleet (excluding Defence) ranked in the top half of the GVG rating scale.

FMA Act and substantially budget-funded CAC Act entities are required to complete the GVG annual survey of the number of vehicles in each of the pool, executive and commercial categories, and to provide the number of vehicles with GVG scores above 10.5 [149]. These entities are also required to report annually towards two transport categories: passenger vehicles and all other transport. The Government's lease provider, LeasePlan, can provide quarterly reports of mileage and fuel consumption, including E10 [150] and diesel. This data is collected through the Online System Comprehensive Activity Reporting [151].

Whole-of-Australian Government Travel Arrangements

Administered by Finance, the whole-of-government Travel Arrangements [152] for domestic and international travel is supported by three principles: (1) necessity of travel; (2) value for money; and (3) reasonableness. The policy applies to FMA Act agencies and states that air travel should be undertaken only where there is a demonstrated business need and when other communication tools, such as teleconferencing and videoconferencing, are not an appropriate option. Since 1 July 2011, Australian Government agencies have been required to book travel arrangements through a single provider.

[145] Available from: www.finance.gov.au/vehicle-leasing-and-fleet-management/fleet-guidance-and-related-material.html

[146] Green Car Challenge, available from www.finance.gov.au/archive/fmb/other/docs/2010.03-NewVehicleSelectionGuidelines.pdf.

[147] Green Vehicle Guide. Available from: www.greenvehicleguide.gov.au.

[148] The target was agreed to at the Australian Public Service Roundtable, which comprised Secretaries of portfolio departments and large agencies. The policy applies to passenger vehicles and does not apply to non-pooled vehicles, such as those for Senior Executive Service staff.

[149] These categories are defined as follows: Pool-all non-executive passenger vehicles used by one or more staff equal to or less than 3.5 tonnes that have not been included in the other two categories; Executive-all vehicles equal to or less than 3.5 tonnes that are in the Senior Executive Vehicle Scheme or in the Executive Vehicle Scheme; and Commercial-all non-executive 4WDs, minibuses, utilities and vans, equal to or less than 3.5 tonnes which are used for specific operational purposes.

[150] E10 is a blended fuel containing 90 per cent unleaded petrol and 10 per cent ethanol.

[151] OSCAR, available from: www.oscar.gov.au.

[152] 2 The new whole-of-government travel arrangements came into effect on 1 July 2011 to provide domestic and international air services and travel management services. It is mandatory for FMA Act agencies and participating CAC Act entities to purchase air travel through their whole-of-government travel management company. Available at: www.finance.gov.au/procurement/ travel-and-related-services/index.html.