Lord Mayor Kon Vatskalis has declared a climate emergency and called upon the Territory and Commonwealth Governments to join him and take immediate action.
“I am alarmed at the current escalation in climatic issues affecting our City, the Northern Territory, our Nation and the World,” said Lord Mayor Vatskalis.
“In Darwin we have recorded one of the driest wet seasons on record, bores in the rural area are running dry and advice from the Bureau of Meteorology is that the coming months will be hotter and drier than average, with little chance of an early Wet Season”
Severe weather events are being experienced in greater number around the world and the BOM has warned of an increase in the severity of Tropical Cyclones in the Top End.
“Events such as cyclones, floods and fires cause widespread damage – to property, families and our social fabric,” he said “it is critical we take action immediately to address issues we face now and in the future.”
In declaring a state of climate emergency City of Darwin joins nearly 600 jurisdictions worldwide, including 28 Australian councils, in recognising that human induced climate change represents a substantial threat to our community and environment.
“We need to act now and respond collectively to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions through our actions and policies,” said Lord Mayor Vatskalis.
“I have asked Council officers to identify opportunities to reduce our contribution to climate change across all Council’s service areas as a priority.”
“And I encourage the Darwin community to do the same in their homes and in their workplaces.”
“By taking action we can make a real difference.”
Lord Mayor Vatskalis will be inviting community members and key stakeholders to participate in a Lord Mayor hosted Climate Emergency Round Table, scheduled for October.
A report will be prepared for the 2nd Ordinary Council meeting in September, outlining a plan and timeframe to prioritise the development of a whole of Council approach.