Reducing Council's corporate emissions
When it comes to action on climate change, Moreland is leading the charge.
- Certified carbon neutral
- Energy efficiency projects
- Generating renewable energy
- Melbourne Renewable Energy Project
- How are we tracking
Council has fostered ground-breaking partnerships, like the Renewable Hydrogen Fleet project and demonstrates a serious ongoing commitment to working towards a zero carbon future.
The Council Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan 2015-20 (PDF 3Mb) details Council’s priorities and actions to reduce our operational 'corporate' emissions.
To find out more on our strategy for reducing emissions across the community and for tips to improve your energy efficiency, visit reducing the community's emissions.
Council is certified as carbon neutral
Moreland Council was the second Victorian local government and the third in Australia to be certified carbon neutral for its corporate operations, first achieving this in December 2012.
To achieve and maintain this certification, each year Council undertakes a continuous improvement approach to carbon management through the following four steps:
- Measure - Council develops a yearly greenhouse gas inventory to measure the amount of carbon emitted by Council's corporate operations.
- Reduce - Council implements energy saving measures to reduce its consumption of fossil fuels and associated carbon emissions as much as possible.
- Generate - Install renewable energy generation such as solar on Council buildings.
- Offset - To maintain certified carbon neutrality status, Moreland Council purchases accredited local and international carbon offsets from solar power and/or wind energy projects - equivalent to its remaining carbon emissions.
For more information on Council's carbon neutral status and the national carbon offset standard program, download our public disclosure statements:
- Carbon Neutral Program Public Disclosure Summary 2016-17.PDF (PDF 2Mb)
- Carbon Neutral Program Public Disclosure Summary 2015-16 (PDF 717Kb)
- Carbon Neutral Program Public Disclosue Summary 2014-15 (PDF 770Kb)
- Carbon Neutral Program Public Disclosure Summary 2013-14 (PDF 2Mb)
- Carbon Neutral Program Public Disclosure Summary 2012-13 (PDF 2Mb)
- Carbon Neutral Program Public Disclosure Summary 2011-12 (PDF 323Kb)
Energy efficiency projects
Council has carried out significant works to improve energy efficiency at many of our key buildings, including Coburg Civic Centre, Brunswick Town Hall precinct, Moreland's Libraries and Leisure Centres. Visit energy efficiency projects to see what has been achieved and to download our case studies.
Generating renewable energy
In early 2014 Council undertook a comprehensive micro generation feasibility study, including detailed designs for solar PV systems at the 10 most energy hungry Council facilities.
By the 2016-17 financial year, Council had over 20 of its buildings fitted with solar power systems totalling 660kW in capacity.
Council invested $190,000 to install 440 high-quality solar panels at the Coburg Town Hall. We sent in a drone to capture it all on film.
Solar on facilities leased by community groups
Council also works with Moreland Energy Foundation (MEFL) to assist community groups leasing Council facilities to receive the utility bill savings from a solar PV system without the upfront installation costs.
Council installs, owns and operates the solar PV system on the leased building, with the community group tenants repaying the capital costs over 10 years but with the savings produced by the solar. After installation the systems are monitored by MEFL and 20% of the measured savings from the solar goes directly to the community group through their existing retail electricity account. Once the system has been fully repaid, the community groups get the full savings from the solar without ever having to outlay any capital.
There have been 9 installations delivered so far and in 2017 the initiative won a United Nations of Australia Clean Energy Award.
Melbourne Renewable Energy Project (MREP)
In November 2014 Moreland joined the City of Melbourne, City of Port Phillip, City of Yarra and a number of other partners in an effort to increase the uptake of renewable energy and stimulate investment in new renewable energy projects within Australia. The model established was called the Melbourne Renewable Energy Project (MREP).
The MREP marks the first time in Australia that a group of local governments (including Moreland), cultural institutions, universities and corporations have collectively purchased renewable energy from a newly built facility.
MREP will support the construction of a new 39-turbine 80 MW capacity wind farm at Crowlands, twenty kilometres north east of Ararat, in Western Victoria. It will be owned and operated by Melbourne-based clean energy company Pacific Hydro, and the power will be supplied by its retail arm, Tango Energy.
Under this project, members have committed to purchase 88 GWh of electricity per year from the Crowlands Wind Farm under a long-term power purchase agreement. Moreland’s annual purchase will be 8 GWh to supply Council’s entire operational electricity demand. It enables Moreland Council to maintain our NCOS carbon neutrality accreditation by investing in local renewable energy generation rather than buying international carbon offsets to cover emissions from our electricity use.
Along with the City of Melbourne, Moreland believe in the power of coming together. The MREP approach enables cities, corporations and institutions to take an active role in securing renewable electricity supply and taking action on climate change. It provides long-term price certainty, enabling customers to mitigate the risk of increased energy costs in a volatile market.
How are we tracking?
Council actions to reduce our operational carbon emissions over many years are delivering great results. The 2020 goal in the Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan (CCRP) is for emissions to be 30% less than the baseline year of 2011. Implementation of MREP combined with the other energy efficiency and solar PV measures is projected to achieve a sector leading 70% emissions reduction by 2020.
Figure 1: Impact on 2020 greenhouse emissions reduction goal as part of Moreland’s Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan
Council’s carbon abatement programs are consistent with and guided by the 5 key principles that underpinned the development of the Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan (CCRP):
- Leadership – continue to show leadership and innovation on addressing climate change
- Collaboration – collaborate internally and with other organisations to maximise benefits
- Sustainable Action – consider environmental, social and economic benefits/impacts of action
- Future proofing – aim to anticipate and respond to technology change and avoid locked in emissions
- Communication – communicate actions and outcomes so that others can follow.