Council to use renewable energy to power large sites and streetlights

Orange Council

Orange City Council will use 100 per cent renewable energy to power its large sites and streetlights from January 1, 2023.

Through this contract, together with Council’s renewable energy action plan implemented over the last few years, Council will reduce its carbon emissions by 30-40 per cent, which is well on the way to achieving the NSW Government’s target of 50 per cent emissions reductions by 2030.

It will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 7000 tonnes of CO2e annually. equivalent to the emissions from electricity use in 1300 homes in a year.

GREEN POWER: Large sites such as the Orange Aquatic Centre will be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy from January 1.

Orange City Council joined 15 councils across Central NSW and the Riverina to secure a joint contract for the supply of electricity through renewable energy until 2030, coordinated by the Central NSW Joint Organisation.

The supplier is Iberdrola Australia, which owns the Bodangora Wind Farm near Wellington and the Flyers Creek Wind Farm being constructed south of Orange.

Orange Mayor Jason Hamling said a focus on renewable energy was a strong theme that emerged during community consultation to develop the latest Community Strategic Plan (CSP) and tied in with the Council’s Climate Change Policy and Plan, adopted in 2021.

“Council has committed to ensuring the use of renewable energy options for Council and community projects,” Cr Hamling said.

“This contract has enabled us to make a significant investment in the Central West’s renewable energy industry.”

Council’s Environmental Sustainability Policy Committee Chair Cr David Mallard said it was an important step for the Council the community and the environment.

“By reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, we will take significant steps towards our carbon emissions reduction targets, while the contract’s fixed rate price will provide financial protection from the volatility of the energy market in years ahead,” Cr Mallard said.

Iberdrola Australia Managing Director and CEO, Ross Rolfe AO, is delighted to be partnering with Councils in the Central NSW and Riverina regions.

“These councils have supported not only our strategy but also the Australian economy’s green energy transition,” Mr Rolfe said.

“Looking ahead, we see many further opportunities to collaborate with our partners to create shared value for our stakeholders in regional NSW.”

Central NSW Joint Organisation Chair and Cabonne Mayor Kevin Beatty said, the buying power of 16 councils from the Central NSW and Riverina regions was substantial.

“Collectively, the Central NSW region will source around 78 per cent of its electricity for Councils’ large sites and streetlighting from renewable energy under this deal. This is a huge win for the region,” Cr Beatty said.

Orange City Council has 16 large sites, such as the Civic Centre, aquatic centre, airport, water and sewerage treatment plants, which make up about 93 per cent of Council’s electricity usage.

Council staff are working on securing renewable energy contracts to power the remaining smaller sites to use renewable energy across all its operations.

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