Monash Zero Net Carbon Action Plan exceeds emission reduction targets

Published on 22 February 2023

Using electricity image

Monash Council’s Zero Net Carbon Action Plan exceeds GHG emission reduction targets and slashes energy costs.

In August 2020, Monash Council set the ambitious goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2025.

This included an intermediate target to reduce Council greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by at least 60% in the first two years.

By July 2022, Monash Council had reported a 78% reduction, exceeding targets, and slashing energy costs.

The achievement was made possible thanks to several initiatives outlined in Council’s Zero Net Carbon Action Plan which identifies the top 5 sources of Council GHG emissions and recommended actions to reduce or avoid these.

A key action was the commitment to purchasing 100% renewable electricity in partnership with 51 other Victorian councils under the Victorian Energy Collaboration (VECO).

Collectively the partnership has saved 172,000 tonnes of emissions, which is the equivalent of taking 66,000 cars off the road, or equal to the generation of emissions from 35,000 homes.

In addition to this commitment to 100% renewable electricity, Council has saved $611,000 in the first year of the contract.

In the next few months, Monash Council will continue reducing GHG emissions as it undertakes the upgrade of its major roads street lighting to more energy efficient LED and the replacement of nearly 500 streetlights with lighting that is approximately 80% more energy efficient. Over 2,800 residential streetlights across our reserves, open spaces and roads will also be upgraded.

To help reduce public GHG emissions, 4 new public electric vehicle (EV) charging bays have been installed across Monash (Mount Waverley Library, Mount Waverley Community Centre, Euneva Car Park and Glen Waverley Library), which are also powered by 100% renewable electricity thanks to the VECO partnership.

This work was supported by a $25,000 Destination Charging Victoria Grant from the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) and to date has seen over 430 charges.

A new Environmentally Sustainable Design (ESD) Policy has also been adopted for all new Council buildings and infrastructure, which aligns with the requirement to incorporate ESD into new developments under the Monash Planning Scheme.

ESD includes passive design principles like external shading, orientation, cross ventilation, good thermal mass, reducing gas use and better insulation in buildings.

Quotes attributable to Monash Mayor, Cr Tina Samardzija:

“We know how important the environment and living sustainably are to Monash residents which is why we are working hard to meet our ambitious goal to become carbon neutral by 2025.”

“Our zero net carbon initiatives have delivered above our expectations in reducing Council energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions.”

“We are proud to be delivering on a range of important initiatives to make our community more sustainable and help address climate change.”

“This work isn’t just reducing our carbon emissions, it is saving Council money and allowing us to direct these funds elsewhere in our community.”

Read our Zero Net Carbon Acton Plan(PDF, 7MB) and subscribe to our monthly Sustainable Monash email newsletter to keep up-to-date.

Tagged as: