Australian local councils lead the way in tackling climate change as federal policy stalls

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Thirty-five councils pledge to switch renewable energy, maximise public transport use and develop more climate-resilient communities.

Local councils across Australia are taking climate action into their own hands as climate policy paralysis plagues the federal government.

Thirty-five have pledged to switch to renewable energy, build sustainable transport, and develop greener, efficient and more climate-resilient communities.

The pledges by the councils, which serve three million Australians, were made as part of the Climate Council’s launch of the Cities Power Partnership, which encourages towns and cities via local governments to reduce emissions and increase resilience.

The launch came as the Climate Council released a report showing the unique threats and opportunities climate change poses for Australian towns and cities, and highlighting earlier findings that 70% of the emissions reductions required to keep global warming at 2C can be achieved by making changes at the local level.

“Cities and towns are leading the way in Australia with many putting the federal government to shame,” said the Climate Council chief executive, Amanda McKenzie. “This follows the US example where 250 mayors have committed to the Paris agreement in spite of the Trump withdrawal.”

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