City Council takes action on climate change
July 20, 2006
North Shore City Council takes action on climate change
North Shore City Council was recognised for its commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the Communities for Climate Protection® - New Zealand (CCP®-NZ) Programme, receiving an award last Tuesday (July 18).
The ceremony was hosted by the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives - Australia/New Zealand (ICLEI-A/NZ) and the Ministry for the Environment in Wellington. It gave local leaders from around New Zealand the opportunity to share innovative and practical initiatives to actively reduce greenhouse gas emissions within their communities.
The programme involves monitoring greenhouse gas emissions from both the council's operations and the community as a whole. For North Shore City, these emissions generally come from waste, fuel and electricity generation.
North Shore City Council's chief executive, John Brockies, accepted the award on behalf of the council, saying that it is actively engaged in the protection of the climate.
"This not only has benefits for the environment, but also results in positive impacts on the local quality of life in our community," says Mr Brockies.
"We need to help our community to understand the effects of climate change and the costs. By documenting our own emissions now and looking at ways to reduce these without compromising our levels of services, we can protect our environment and save money," he says.
North Shore City Council has been looking at ways to reduce emissions and energy usage for some time, and has undertaken a number of initiatives. These include the TravelWise to Work programme which promotes sustainable transport to staff, the use of methane to help power its Rosedale wastewater treatment plant and energy audits for council facilities to identify energy savings. In addition to these actions, it has an energy manager whose key responsibilities are to identify and support initiatives to reduce energy usage.
CCP-NZ is a Government initiative delivered by ICLEI-A/NZ and is part of ICLEI's International Cities for Climate Protection® campaign. There are 19 local and regional councils participating in the programme around New Zealand.
Within the CCP-NZ programme councils assess their local climate change impact, set goals to reduce their impact and implement emission reduction projects. North Shore City Council received a Milestone Progress Recognition award at the ceremony from Hon David Parker, Minister responsible for Climate Change Issues, who congratulated the council for demonstrating leadership on climate change issues.
ICLEI-A/NZ's chief executive officer, Wayne Wescott, says participating councils are showing the many benefits of the programme through greenhouse gas emission reduction actions that have had substantial flow-on benefits for communities.
"North Shore City Council has discovered that addressing climate change makes good economic, environmental and political sense," he says.