The City of Sydney has been carbon neutral since 2007 and within a decade reduced greenhouse emissions by 25 per cent.
This was achieved during a time when the economy grew by 37.5 per cent and the resident population increased 45 per cent.
In 2007 the City of Sydney Mayor, Clover Moore, was adjusting to her first term in office since then she has been a trailblazer for the environment.
“If it was business as usual during that period emissions would have increased 57 per cent,” Moore said.
It is this commitment to the environment that has been at the forefront of her tenure in Sydney’s Town Hall.
These achievements are all part of the Sustainable Sydney Plan 2030 which targeted a 70 per cent reduction in greenhouse emissions by 2030.
“Cities are responsible for 70 per cent of global emissions, so every action we can take at a local level is vitally important in taking on the climate crisis,” she said.
“By 2050 cities must be part of a decarbonized world. We are now working to update our strategic plan with more ambitious targets and a greater sense of urgency.
“Our aim is to have 90 per cent of our current annual total of 65,000 tonnes of residential waste diverted from landfill by 2030.”
Earlier this year Moore announced that the council would be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy.
The winner of the Energy Savings & Sustainability Award said her appreciation for the environment began at a young age.
“I grew up playing in the bush near my home on Sydney’s north shore,” she said. “I created a wonderful garden in my family backyard and enjoyed everything our natural environment had to offer. I have always felt we need to do more to protect our planet.”
One of Moore’s biggest concerns is a lack of climate action by the Federal Government.
“The fact that the federal government does not take climate action seriously puts us all at a great disadvantage,” she said.
“The United Nations has told us that the level of commitment made under the Paris Agreement puts us on track to experience 3.2 degrees of warming. Under 1.1 degrees of heating we have already experienced devastating bushfires and floods.
“The federal government’s target of 26-28 per cent reduction in emissions is pathetic and they are not even on track to meet that. We cannot allow them to preside over a climate disaster.”