Council unveils ambitious strategy to cut emissions

The City of Melbourne is leading the way on tackling climate change, with an ambitious new plan to cut the organisation’s carbon emissions.

The Emissions Reduction Plan for Council Operations 2021-26  was endorsed by councillors at Tuesday night’s Future Melbourne Committee meeting.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said cutting carbon emissions is a priority for the Council, with $3.63 million earmarked in the plan to fund new initiatives over the next five years.

“Since declaring a climate and biodiversity emergency, we’ve worked tirelessly to transition our city to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly place,” the Lord Mayor said.

“Over the past decade, we’ve managed to cut our own carbon emissions by 76 per cent, but we know there is more we can do, including reducing energy use in our Council buildings by converting from gas to electric, and using more sustainable materials in major infrastructure projects.

“By cutting our own emissions, we can focus on achieving our target of Net Zero by 2040 across the municipality – leading the way for other businesses to tackle climate change.”

The Emissions Reduction Plan for 2021-26 includes major carbon cutting initiatives, including:

  • The conversion of all City of Melbourne buildings from gas to electric, including recreation centres, libraries and community hubs
  • A transition to a 100 per cent electric vehicle fleet
  • The use of lower emissions construction materials for major city projects
  • A requirement for City of Melbourne events to be certified carbon neutral by 2022, including Moomba and the Docklands Firelight Festival.

Environment portfolio lead Councillor Rohan Leppert said the City of Melbourne must continue to be bold to combat climate change.

“It’s never been more important for us to urgently tackle climate change and reduce our emissions,” Cr Leppert said.

“Melbourne is not immune to the effects of climate change, with our unique environment and biodiversity at significant risk from rising temperatures and unstable weather.

“The Emissions Reduction Plan refresh is an ambitious strategy to not only accelerate our own initiatives, but to show how it can be done. We need to work closely with our businesses to ensure we’re all taking the vital steps needed to tackle climate change as quickly as possible.”

The Emissions Reduction Plan also includes the development of a business model for other businesses to follow so they can effectively and efficiently cut their emissions.

The Emissions Reduction Plan for Council Operations 2021-26 is available on the City of Melbourne website.

/Public Release. View in full here.