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Supporting the community toward emissions reductions

More electric vehicles and more community education – they’re two key messages from a workshop to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change.

Eurobodalla Council held the workshop on Thursday 21 November, with representatives from the NSW Government and community and stakeholder groups. Council’s manager of environmental services Deb Lenson said 23 people attended with 80 possible actions suggested.

“Council’s Emissions Reduction Plan sets a goal of 80 percent emissions reduction by 2030 and 100 percent of its electricity sourced from renewables by the same date,” she said.

“This workshop focussed more on how Council can support the community in reducing emissions and developing resilience in the face of climate change.”

Ms Lenson said, in addition to increasing the number of electric vehicles in its fleet and a stronger focus on community education, attendees prioritised several other actions for Council:

· Support and funding for shared pathways, pedestrian access and road crossings to encourage ‘active transport’ like walking and cycling

· Planting more trees, and protecting and enhancing native vegetation to store carbon

· Recycling food and garden organics.

She said the feedback, ideas and presentations would be presented to Councillors during their 3 December briefing. Councillors had already voted to advocate for increased certainty and leadership on energy and emissions policies by the NSW and Australian Governments at the 24 September meeting.

“Some of the actions are already being implemented or progressed, either by Council, the NSW Government or community groups. Council will also look at the suggestions in light of environmental, social and financial benefits. This helps prioritise suitable actions and delivery,” Ms Lenson said.

Workshop attendees included representatives from NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, South East Local Land Services, Eurobodalla Shire Council, Clr Pat McGinlay (observer), Eurobodalla Landcare Network, Country Women’s Association,, and Southcoast Health and Sustainability Alliance.

Above: Workshop attendees looking for practical actions to reduce the shire’s greenhouse gas emissions want Council to increase the number of electric vehicles in its fleet.

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