Darebin the latest council to aim to become carbon neutral

Darebin City Council is the latest Victorian council to set strict targets to reduce its greenhouse emissions in order to become “carbon neutral”.
A new climate change action plan adopted by Darebin City Council has set a target for its organisation to become carbon neutral by 2020. Under the plan, the metropolitan Melbourne council expects to achieve by 2009 its goal to reduce its greenhouse emissions by 20% from 1995 levels.
The City of Port Phillip and the Shire of Yarra Ranges recently adopted their own highly stringent targets to reduce greenhouse emissions.
As part of its plan, Darebin expects to use green power to supply electricity to all the council’s facilities by 2008/2009. The council also plans to design any new municipal buildings to be carbon neutral.
Darebin City Council Mayor, Marlene Kairouz, says council buildings’ energy use, street lighting, vehicles and waste management are the four key areas where the council can cut its greenhouse emissions.
The council has identified the replacement of current mercury vapour streetlights with more energy-efficient T5 street lights, as well as the incorporation of more environmentally friendly vehicles in the council’s car fleet, as future actions Darebin could take to reduce its greenhouse emissions.
The climate change action plan defines the priorities for Darebin’s energy use. The first priority is to only use the amount of electricity necessary to conduct council operations; the second is to use available technology to make the council’s operations more energy efficient; and the third is to purchase GreenPower-accredited renewable electricity.
The council will also seek to offset greenhouse gas emissions through measures such as investing in tree planting programs or other energy efficiency technology. To contact Darebin City Council phone (03) 8470 8888.