Expand the sections below to find out more about climate change, Dubbo Regional Council's contribution to addressing climate change and how community can support their reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
WHAT IS CLIMATE CHANGE
Scientific evidence indicates that “human activities” have been the dominant cause of the observed climate change since the mid-20th century. In particular, burning of fossil fuels and changes in land use have led to increases in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere – leading to an ‘enhanced greenhouse effect’ – resulting in the earth becoming warmer (global warming).
IMPACT OF CLIMATE CHANGE
According to the Bureau of Meteorology Australia’s 2022 State of the Climate Report Australia’s climate has warmed by 1.47 ± 0.24 °C since national records began in 1910. Australia is also experiencing changes to rainfall patterns, increasing fire danger, increased extreme weather events and sea level rise.
NSW and Australian Regional Climate Modelling (NARCliM) projections show that temperatures in the Central West and Orana Region are expected to keep rising, rainfall patterns will change, there will be more hot days and heatwaves, and fire weather will increase.
Learn more about how climate change will impact our Region through AdaptNSW’s Central West and Orana Region Climate Change Snapshot.
ADDRESSING CLIMATE CHANGE
Addressing climate change will require both mitigation, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and adaptation, adapting to the actual or expected future climate. The following outlines the global to local commitments for addressing climate change.
Globally, the United Nations 2015 Paris Agreement commits signatory countries to work to limit global temperature rise to well below 2°C, and given the grave risks, to strive for 1.5°C Celsius. In addition, the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals calls on action from all countries to end poverty and promote prosperity while protecting the planet. Up to date information on climate change science, impacts and global efforts to address climate change can be found in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report (AR6).
At a national, the Federal Government has legislated emissions reduction of 43% by 2030 (from 2005 levels) and is committed to net zero by 2050. At the State level, the NSW Government has legislated a target of 50% emissions reduction by 2030 (from 2005 levels), 70% emissions reduction by 2035 (from 2005 levels) and net zero by 2050.
At a local level, a large number of local governments and their communities, representing more than two thirds of NSW population, are committed to cutting their emissions. Dubbo Regional Council, along with other regional councils including Albury, Bathurst, Tamworth, and Wagga Wagga, have all set targets to achieve net zero emissions within their operations by 2050 at the latest.
WHAT IS COUNCIL DOING?
Dubbo Regional Council has adopted a Net Zero Framework which provides an overarching blueprint for reducing greenhouse gas emissions to net zero within its operations by 2050. It includes a Short Term Target to reduce emissions from Council operations by 35% by Financial Year 2028 (compared to Financial Year 2022) and Medium Term Target to reduce emissions from Council operations by 70% by Financial Year 2035 (aspirational).
- Identifies Council’s current and future greenhouse gas emissions from its operations (Carbon Footprint);
- Outlines priority areas for emission reduction based on Council’s Carbon Footprint;
- Recommends goals (or pathways) to reduce emissions within these areas;
- Models the impact of these goals (when implemented) in reaching net zero emissions; and
- Identifies Council’s Short, Medium and Long Term Targets to reach zero emissions before 2050.
The Net Zero Framework will be delivered through a range of Council environmental strategies and policies, such as the Energy Strategy and Implementation Plan; Waste Strategy and Implementation Plan (currently in development); and Zero Emissions Fleet Strategy and Implementation Plan.
Council's carbon footprint (FY22) & priority areas for emission reduction:
- Waste to landfill 62% of Council's carbon footprint
- Supply chain 18%
- Purchased electricity 14%
- Fuel 4%
- Gas 1%
- Wastewater 1%
While reducing greenhouse gas emissions will help to limit climate change, some level of change will still occur and Council will need to prepare for and adapt to the Central West and Orana’s future climate. Council’s Towards 2040 Community Strategic Plan and associated Delivery Program and Operational Plan highlights actions Council is taking to prepare for and adapt to climate change.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
There are many ways in which a household or a business can move towards reducing their greenhouse gas emissions:
For more information on how to reduce emissions please visit NSW Climate and Energy Action website.
While reducing greenhouse gas emissions will help to limit climate change, some level of change will still occur and residents will need to prepare for, and adapt to, the Region’s future climate. To find out what you can do to prepare for and adapt to climate change visit the Adapt NSW website.
Last Edited: 15 Dec 2023