Two of the City of Parramatta’s innovative environmental sustainability programs have been recognised at this year’s Local Government NSW's Excellence in the Environment Awards.
The City’s ‘Electric Vehicles: Driving a Sustainable Future’ program took out the award for Innovation in Planning, Policies and Decision Making, while its ‘Smart LED Streetlighting Project’ won the Towards Net Zero Emissions category.
City of Parramatta Lord Mayor Cr Donna Davis said the prestigious awards recognise the ambitious goals and actions the City first outlined in its Environmental Sustainability Strategy endorsed in 2017.
“The Environment Sustainability Strategy set the bar high, and committed Council to strong action towards a greener future,” Cr Davis said.
“These awards clearly demonstrate the City of Parramatta’s commitment to implementing our Strategy and the role Council is taking in leading environmental planning and performance in NSW.”
Net-zero commitments are driving a world-wide transition, and the City of Parramatta is fuelling change locally by implementing a range of programs that will make Parramatta and Western Sydney future-ready.
Transport currently makes up around one third (around 5.8m tonnes) of Western Sydney’s total emissions, City of Parramatta’s ‘Electric Vehicles: Driving a Sustainable Future’ program, supported by the Western Sydney Energy Program, sets ambitious targets for transitioning the region to electric transport. It has already delivered changes to reduce emissions, pollution, and created new economic opportunities.
“We have introduced EV controls to ensure essential EV infrastructure is included in new buildings to make sure residents can easily transition to electric vehicles, and we have already introduced EV infrastructure across our City,” Cr Davis said.
Also focussed on reducing emissions, the City of Parramatta’s LED lighting project was the largest smart and LED energy-efficient streetlighting upgrade project ever seen within NSW.
In partnership with Endeavour Energy, and with funding from the Federal Government’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program, the $4m project saw more than 3,300 lights upgraded to high-performance and energy-efficient smart LED streetlights.
“The new LED lights are between 45% - 60% more efficient and have helped Council achieve 74% in energy savings,” Cr Davis said.
“Through this program we’ve been able to reduce Council’s annual street lighting carbon emissions by up to 28%, and we’re closer to achieving our goal of reducing carbon emissions by 60% by 2038 (based on 2015 levels).”
The City of Parramatta has a target to become carbon neutral in 2022 and will receive Carbon Neutral Certification under the Climate Active Standard.
The City of Parramatta’s new four-year Environmental Sustainability Strategy is being prepared. The future action plan will reaffirm Council’s long-term commitment to creating a nature-inspired, efficient and resilient City, with updated targets aligned to the latest government policy and community needs.