Council Net Zero Accelerator Course
The Hunter JO’s business case to develop NSW’s first net zero training course specifically for local government has been successful! The Council Net Zero Accelerator Course will combine e-learning with face-to-face online interactive learning to tackle the big questions and challenges that councils are facing in reducing operational emissions in line with the NSW Government’s net zero targets.
The Council Net Zero Accelerator Course will support councils to:
- Save energy and money, reduce emissions, and set a path to net zero.
- Develop net zero pathways and business cases for adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.
- Equip employees with stakeholder engagement skills and communication tools to drive organisational change.
- Build long term capacity and capabilities to help councils progress towards net zero emissions.
The four-month capacity building course will commence in February 2024. Member Councils of the nine Joint Organisations participating in the NSW Government’s Joint Organisation Net Zero Acceleration (JONZA) program are invited to apply, including our own Member Councils, HERE.
Revolving Energy Fund Action Group
The Revolving Energy Fund (REF) Action Group is a joint initiative from Hunter JO, Central NSW JO and Mid North Coast JO. The purpose of the group is to support member councils to design and implement REFs to provide long term financing of emissions reduction and energy saving projects. The group consists of 13 councils who meet monthly to discuss challenges, share knowledge, and capitalise on the resources developed by councils successfully operating these funds.
A REF is a self-sustaining funding mechanism that is commonly used by councils to finance energy efficiency, renewable energy, emissions reduction, and other sustainability projects. A REF typically works by starting with seed funding which is used to invest in projects that generate energy savings. The savings from these projects are then reinvested back into the fund, which allows for new projects to be funded. This process is repeated, creating a continuous cycle of investment and energy savings for council.
Hunter JO, Central NSW JO and Mid North Coast JO are collaboratively developing a ‘Design a REF’ package and ‘How to Guide for Finance Teams’ to support councils to develop and implement a REF at their council.
Regional Net Zero Strategy
The NSW Government’s Office of Energy and Climate Change has provided funding for a consultant to support Hunter JO and its member councils to develop a Regional Net Zero Strategy. The strategy will provide a regional roadmap to reduce council operational emissions in line with NSW Government targets. The project will commence January 2024. A workshop will be held in February 2024 with the Sustainability Managers of each council.
For more information on any of these net zero initiatives contact Lexi Crouch, Net Zero Coordinator on email@example.com