Contributed by Ugly
It’s fantastic tosee that there are regional communities in Australia doing their part to combat the threat of climate change, taking on renewables and using the opportunity to take ownership of economic opportunities.
A good example is the Hepburn Shire in Victoria, know as the nation’s spa capital – thanks to its mineral springs. Last Thursday (4 April 2019), a new clean energy plan was released there, incorporating an ambitious target to achieve total renewable energy by 2030 and Zero gas emissions by 2021. By 2030 a massive 260,000 tons of harmful greenhouse gas pollution will have been prevented. This is the equivalent of taking 60,000 fossil fueled card of the road.
Best known is the community owned wind farm. Two turbines on it, called Gale and Gusto, already produce energy to cover over 2,000 homes. As well as expanding this, the plan involves adopting carbon free transport, agriculture, manufacturing and stationary energy use. In other words, pertol, diesel, and gas consumption will be eliminated.
By doing this, Hepburn is setting the standard for Australia.
Imagine if all municipalities did the same? Australia’s total carbon footprint would be reduced by a long way. It goes to show that reluctant federal and state governments don’t have to be a block. If they don’t take the initiative to act responsibly over the threat of global warming, others can act and make a huge difference.
There is another aspect to the Hepburn initiative, and that is, reliance on community based action and not the private sector as the road towards a solution. In the case of the windfarm, 2000 members of the local community raised $20 million, to make it happen.
The video below tells the story of the initiative taken by this country community.
Video by the Climate Council
This initiative is supported by the Cities Power Partnership, which is Australia’s largest local government climate network, representing almost 11 million Australians.