What is a climate emergency?

    A Climate Emergency is a resolution for immediate and urgent action to reverse global warming.  The emergency recognises that we have limited time to act to prevent a climate crisis, and that we are already experiencing the impacts. It is an unequivocal statement that it is the responsibility of every level of government, every community and business, and every person to:

    • Reduce emissions and mitigate the effects of climate change

    Plan to adapt to the changes that cannot be avoided

    Why is this classed as an emergency?

    Thousands of scientists, local government authorities and organisations worldwide are recognising that we are indeed facing a climate emergency, with over 1,000 jurisdictions and local government authorities declaring a climate emergency. It has been recognised that immediate and sustained action must be taken to avoid climate change impacts.

    In 2018, a report published by the United Nations Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) stated that without concerted effort to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, global warming is likely to reach 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels between 2030 and 2052 if it continues to increase at the current rate. The IPCC also stated that as a global community, we could have just 12 years left to limit a climate change catastrophe.

    The IPCC report recently stated that inaction will likely result in sea level rise of 1.1 metres by 2100 and five metres higher by 2300. The IPCC report warns that already stressed coastlines face bigger waves and storm surges as oceans warm and ice melts. On the peninsula we have already seen the impacts of climate change, through the increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events. The CSIRO predicts that in the future our region will experience:

    • increased temperatures
    • more frequent and intense downpours
    • rising sea level
    • warmer and more acidic seas
    • more hot days and warm spells
    • less rainfall in winter and spring
    • harsher fire weather, longer fire seasons
    • increased frequency and height of
    • extreme sea levels.

    What happens now a climate emergency has been declared?

    Declaring a climate emergency is more than just words. As key part of the declaration, the Town will develop a Climate Emergency Plan to guide the climate emergency response. The draft plan will be prepared for Council review by November 2020 and is expected to be available for public comment in November/December 2020. This plan will include a range of climate change actions to direct all Town operations as well as advocating to State and Federal Government and supporting community actions.

    Where do the Town of Victoria Park's community emissions come from?

    Based on the information we have available, the boundary for the Town of Victoria Park’s direct carbon emissions includes: 

    • Town buildings and facilities (including all provided with Synergy invoice and the facilities services by the Landfill Gas & Power Purchase Agreement) 
    • Waste based on the annual tonnes of landfill waste provided by the Town. 
    • Street lighting based on Synergy invoices and Synergy tariffs 
    • Transport for the fleet included diesel, petrol, major plant and other assets. 

    What are greenhouse gases (GHG) / greenhouse gas emissions

    Greenhouse gases (GHG) / greenhouse gas emissions are carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and other gases that contribute to climate change.

    Can some of the financial costings included within the draft plan be supplemented?

    Further investigations will need to take place, however some of the financial costs can be supplemented through various funding programs, such as the Better Bins Program for transitioning to a FOGO system.

    How were the community involved in the development of the plan?

    The Town sought community input through a survey, online forums, workshop and submission process (currently open for public comment)