After months of public consultation, the City of Sydney has fast-tracked the adoption of an action plan that will help it achieve net zero emissions by 2050, tackle waste and water usage, and scale up renewable energy use.
On 28 March 2017, the City of Sydney adopted an action plan that its leaders says will help it achieve carbon neutrality and ensure that half of its energy comes from renewable energy by 2050.
The Environmental Action Plan 2016-2021 (EAP) was launched for public consultation in June 2016 and adopted on 28 March by the City of Sydney council, which governs a 25-square kilometre area of downtown Sydney including its central business district and inner city suburbs.
The EAP will see the city invest A$10 million to accelerate the uptake of renewable energy, launch a new water recycling project, and unveil a challenge for businesses to encourage Sydney’s first net-zero emissions building.
Clover Moore, Lord Mayor of the City of Sydney, said in a statement that “the next four years are crucial”, because they will determine if the world meets the Paris climate agreement’s target of capping a global temperature rise at two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
For the building sector, which produces about 80% of the City area’s emissions, the council plans to continue with energy efficiency retrofits in existing, resource-intensive buildings, install more solar panels on buildings, and scale up the use of clean energy.
One example of the latter is trigeneration—a system where natural or renewable gas is burnt to produce electricity and the residual heat is used to produce hot water for heating or powering chillers, to produce low carbon electricity.
The City has a trigeneration plant at its city hall, and plans to install cogeneration systems—a similar technology—on aquatic centres in the city to further reduce emissions.
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