Climate Summit for Local Government

Sept 6-8, 2023 | Melbourne

Blue Mountains Gazette

Blue Mountains mayor Mark Greenhill will call for the state and federal governments to declare a Climate Change Emergency at the next council meeting.

Earlier this year Blue Mountains City Council became only the third council in NSW to declare a Climate Change Emergency. Since then, council has lodged successful motions at the Australian Local Government Association and the Local Government NSW Annual Conferences, calling for similar actions from state and federal governments.


Mayor Greenhill will take another mayoral minute to the next council meeting about revisiting the provision of food and garden organic bins to residents, noting that it will reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and also assist with reducing greenhouse gas.


“Australia is one of the most vulnerable developed countries in the world to the impacts of climate change. We must protect our communities, and the environment, from these impacts,” said Cr Greenhill.


“We urgently need leadership from all levels of government on this issue. The state and federal governments declaring a Climate Emergency will send a clear message to all, that as a society, we need to take meaningful and coordinated action to transition to a low carbon economy.”


Council continues to support and advocate for initiatives that address climate change, including adopting a target of becoming carbon neutral by the end of 2025.


Ward 1 Councillor Don McGregor said in developing a Carbon Abatement Action Plan (CAAP), council had developed a strategic and coordinated approach to improving its carbon performance in a cost effective manner.


“Council has already reduced the carbon emissions from operations by 22 per cent, under the Carbon Abatement Action Plan adopted in 2016. Council is constantly looking for opportunities to improve operations and make sure sustainability is part of everything we do.”


After consultation in 2015, council resolved to introduce the current waste service with a green bin for garden organics only.


Now council will be asked to update the business case for a food and garden organic waste service, presenting a variety of options and identifying benefits, risks and potential barriers, including cost implications for each option.


Investigating ways to increase organic waste diversion from households, is an action in Council’s Waste Avoidance and Resource Recovery Strategy 2017-2021.


“We need to do everything we can, to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill,” said Cr Greenhill.