In 2018 Council acknowledged the climate emergency and the need for urgent action by all levels of government, including local councils.
Action is being taken to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the City of Ballarat’s facilities and operations, and by the Ballarat community. In addition to this, there is an increasing need to consider climate related hazards that are already impacting services, assets and the community noting that these risks will increase in the future.
Ballarat City Council to be Carbon Neutral by 2025 (Corporate Emissions)
The City of Ballarat’s Carbon Neutrality and 100% Renewables Action Plan was adopted by Council in 2019. The Action Plan contains almost 60 actions to reduce the City of Ballarat’s corporate GHG emissions while also providing community support to achieve carbon emission reductions. Key actions delivered to date include the switch to renewable electricity and the installation of energy efficient streetlighting. These projects are estimated to save over 10,000 tonnes of CO2 per year. This is equivalent to taking 3,000 cars off the road each year.
Ballarat Community to be Net Zero Emissions by 2030 (Community Emissions)
The Ballarat Net Zero Emissions Plan was adopted by Council on 26 October 2022. The Plan outlines an aspirational community-wide target of reaching net zero emissions by 2030 and the actions required in order to achieve this target. It comprises of five Net Zero Outcomes on Business, Homes, New Developments, Transport and Waste. Emissions in Ballarat were estimated to total 1.5 million tonnes in 2020.
To reach net zero emissions by 2030 requires a bold and challenging approach. The stakeholders involved in the development of this plan recognise the urgency to act and supported Council’s resolution for an aspirational target of net zero emissions by 2030. It reflects a recognition of what is required to address the climate emergency.
Council’s Adaptation Climate Change
Climate change affects all areas of Council operations – from planning to parks and recreation, to maintaining assets, to carrying out community services. For adaptation efforts to be effective, adaptation will need to be embedded across Council strategies and operations. The City of Ballarat will take a multi-pronged approach to addressing climate change adaptation.