Council’s electricity needs met by renewable energy before 2030
Carbon neutrality for Council operations achieved before 2030
greenhouse gas reduction of 1996 community emissions levels before 2030
For more than 20 years, North Sydney Council has been a leader in sustainable technology and initiatives, including renewable energy solutions. We reduced the carbon footprint of our council chambers more than 15 years ago and have since extended that initiative to all Council properties, installing solar panels and committing to buying 50 per cent green power for our largest energy consuming sites.
Yet, this is still not enough. Sustainability must be woven into every decision that we make – as individuals and organisations. The Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability, which opened in 2011, not only models sustainable practices but serves as a hub where our community can go to learn new sustainable living skills and stay up to date with the latest options.
In 2019, Council declared a climate emergency and acknowledged that climate change poses a threat to the future of our cities. In doing so we renewed and strengthened our commitment to sustainability. Taking part in the Climate Council’s Cities Power Partnership program, is another way we are demonstrating this commitment to protect our environment for the next generation and find more ways to lower our carbon emissions.
Council has chosen the following pledges
Power council operations by renewable energy, and set targets to increase the level of renewable power for council operations over time.
Roll out energy efficient lighting across the municipality.
Provide fast-charging infrastructure throughout the city at key locations for electric vehicles.
Encourage sustainable transport use such as public transport, walking and cycling through council transport planning and design.
Develop education and behaviour-change programs to support local residents and businesses to tackle climate change through clean energy, energy efficiency and sustainable transport
What council has achieved in the past in energy efficiency, renewable energy or broader sustainability:
North Sydney Council has been active in the area of energy conservation and climate action for many years. In the late 1990s, we set ambitious greenhouse gas reduction targets to reduce our 1996 greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2020. We are well on track to achieving this target, thanks to initiatives such as installing solar panels on Council buildings, monitoring and upgrading our assets and appliances to meet our energy conservation objectives, and purchasing 50% GreenPower® for our 10 largest energy consuming sites.
What council hopes to achieve in the future in energy efficiency, renewable energy or broader sustainability:
As well as working towards our own greenhouse gas reduction target, Council is also focussed on helping our community reduce their emissions through a variety of initiatives and programs, such as the My Green Apartment program and the CitySwitch initiative, as well as running climate change and environmental awareness campaigns, including EarthHour and Plastic Free July. In 2003, Council secured a former coal loading station in Waverton and has since transformed this site into the Coal Loader Centre for Sustainability where Council staff run regular, free workshops for the community which encourage sustainable living initiatives, as well as a community nursery. Urban Harvest plots will soon be available as part of the new Coal Loader Green Roof project, which is nearing completion and will be powered by solar panels. We are also collaborating with other Councils across our region to increase locally produced renewable energy.
Why council joined the Cities Power Partnership:
The Cities Power Partnership program will complement the work Council is already undertaking to help meet its corporate and community greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. The CPP will also help Council form better connection and partnerships with councils across the country who are working on similar projects, help generate new sustainability ideas and initiatives, as well as providing access to the Climate Council’s research.