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Environment and sustainability

Climate change

What is climate change?

The Victorian Government has identified climate change as one of the biggest threats to the future of the state. Warmer and drier conditions are projected to have negative consequences for health, infrastructure, agriculture, water, biodiversity and alpine and coastal areas.

"It is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean and land. Widespread and rapid changes in the atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere and biosphere have occurred"
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

What does climate change mean for Mitchell Shire?

Climate Change will result in Mitchell Shire experiencing extreme weather events, including heatwaves, flash flooding, storms, drought and bushfires.

Predicted temperature rise

  • 2030s daily maximum temperature to increase by 0.9°C to 1.8°C (since the 1990s).
  • 2050 average maximum temperatures to increase up to 3.1°C.

As warming continues, more heat extremes are expected in the decades to come. The frequency of climate changes such as heat waves, and storms will have widespread impacts including to agriculture, native flora and fauna, infrastructure and our communities.

Read CSIRO and the State Government's climate projections for Victoria.

Mitchell Shire climate action

Mitchell Shire Council’s Environment Policy outlines Council’s commitment to environmental management and sustainability.

Below are some of the key actions that Mitchell Shire Council is undertaking in response to Climate Change.

Energy

  • Installing solar energy on Council facilities
  • Promote opportunities for increased uptake of renewable energy in the broader community
  • Purchase of ‘Greenpower’ for our largest public streetlighting account

Climate Change

  • Continue to plan for and respond to climatic changes and emergencies, including bushfires, floods and storm events
  • Update Council’s Sustainable Resource Management Plan
  • Adoption and application of the Mitchell Shire Council Environmentally Sustainable Design for Council Buildings Policy
  • Climate change embedded into the Council Plan and the Mitchell Shire Health and Wellbeing Plan

Land and Biodiversity

  • Commit to strategic planting of Indigenous species to create wildlife corridors
  • Actively manage Council’s bushland reserves (approx. 225ha) for ecological and social outcomes
  • Implement an annual Grant Program for properties with conservation covenants
  • Provide environmental education materials and extension for biodiversity outcomes on privately owned land.
  • Continue to support Landcare

Water

  • Support and initiate integrated water management in new developments
  • Investigate opportunities to reduce the use of potable water in Council operations.
  • Work in partnership with Water Authorities to gain access to fit for purpose recycled water for Council operations

Urban Ecology

  • Develop the Mitchell Shire Urban Tree Management Strategy
  • Include sustainable transport options in the Mitchell Growth Area Integrated Transport Strategy 2021 – 2051.
  • Advocate for and actively pursue the installation of Electric vehicle chargers for community use in the Shire
  • Continue our participation in the Sustainable Subdivisions Framework trial
  • Actively participate in the Council Alliance for the Sustainable Built Environment project – Elevating ESD Targets Planning Policy Amendment

Resource Use and Waste Management

  • Implement a Food Organics Garden Organics kerbside collection service in 2025 to divert organics from landfills to reduce emissions from waste
  • Update Council’s Waste Management Strategy
  • Develop a Sustainable Events guide to reduce our ecological footprint when running events
  • Host the Southern Goulburn Regional Waste and Resource Recovery Education officer position
  • Support Clean Up Australia Day activities

Download Council's environmental policies

Climate Emergency

In September 2021, Mitchell Shire Council formally acknowledged the Climate Emergency.

Mitchell Shire now joins 106 other local government jurisdictions and organisations around Australia that have recognised the scale of the challenge posed by climate change and have committed to strong and urgent climate action.

What does acknowledging a climate emergency mean?

Council acknowledges that the current levels of global warming and human-induced climate impacts require urgent action. All levels of government need to recognise this action. However, as the closest tier of government to the community, we are well placed to deliver and support climate change mitigation actions.

Next steps

We will develop a Climate Emergency Action Plan with the community. The plan will set a target of net-zero emissions in an emergency timeframe and quantify what Council, State and Federal Government and the community can do to reach the target.

This page was last updated on 22 March 2022.