Moira Shire Council signs on to VECO

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Moira Shire Council is one of 46 Victorian Councils to sign on to VECO, the Victorian Energy Collaboration, the largest ever emissions reduction project by local government in Australia.

VECO, led by Darebin City Council in Melbourne’s north, will provide 45% of all Victorian Councils’ electricity requirements with 100% renewables, reducing greenhouse emissions by 260,000 tonnes of C02-e every year.

Provided by Red Energy, the 240GWh of clean power is equivalent to powering 48,000 homes with renewables or removing the emissions from 90,000 cars every year.

Initiated by and facilitated with the Victorian Greenhouse Alliances, VECO recognises the benefits of renewable energy for the environment and the economy.

The ground-breaking project will reduce each of the Council’s current energy bills and reduce electricity prices by using clean renewable energy generated right here in Victoria.

VECO is expected to save Moira Shire Council approximately 10% on their electricity bills, which equates to almost $42,000 savings each year.

By joining the project, Moira Shire Council will power 100% of its total energy use with renewables, including all council buildings and community facilities owned by council, street lights, parks and reserves.

Mayor Libro Mustica said Victoria had some of the best renewable energy resources in the world, including wind and solar.

“This landmark collaboration demonstrates the value of local government working together on common issues,” Cr Mustica said.

“This project highlights that large scale co-operation is possible to transition to a renewable energy future and address climate change.

“Moira Shire Council is committed to showing leadership and taking serious action on climate change and by joining this project it has doubled the reduction in our greenhouse gas emissions target by 2021 from 35% to 72%; our overall target is to get to net zero emissions by 2050.”

Darebin Mayor Councillor Lina Messina said the project was proof of what can be achieved with collaboration.

“This is a collective effort formed by staff and councillors from across the state, for the benefit of our communities,” Cr Messina said.

“By powering councils with affordable renewable energy, we’re making ratepayers’ dollars go further. Every dollar we save on energy bills is a dollar we can put towards improving roads, footpaths, libraries or community programs.”

Red Energy will provide 240 GWh of electricity per year to the 46 councils in the VECO purchasing group over a period of 9.5 years, beginning 1 July 2021.

Owned by Snowy Hydro, Red Energy is a 100 per cent Australian owned and operated energy retailer based in Melbourne.

“Given Red Energy is born and bred in Victoria, we are really excited to be a part of a project that is supporting Victorian councils, their ratepayers and two new Victorian wind farms”, said Red Energy CEO Iain Graham.

“Our owner Snowy Hydro has been a leader in renewable generation for decades and Red Energy is delighted to partner with Victorian councils to provide a long-term energy contract that will enable councils to purchase renewable energy at a competitive price”, Mr Graham said.

The renewable energy will be provided by two wind farms in Victoria – Dundonnell wind farm near Mortlake, which started exporting power to the grid in March 2020, and Murra Warra II wind farm near Horsham, which commenced construction September 2020 and will be fully operational by June 2022.

Both wind farms have and will continue to deliver economic benefits to the regions during construction and ongoing operation, and form an important part of state, regional and local economic development.

Participating councils are:

Alpine Shire Council

Golden Plains Shire Council

Mount Alexander Shire

Ararat Rural City Council

Greater Shepparton City Council

Pyrenees Shire Council

Ballarat City Council

Hepburn Shire Council

South Gippsland Shire Council

Banyule City Council

Greater Bendigo City Council

Stonnington City Council

Bass Coast Shire Council

Horsham Rural City Council

Surf Coast Shire Council

Borough of Queenscliffe

Indigo Shire Council

Strathbogie Shire Council

Brimbank City Council

Loddon Shire Council

Swan Hill Rural City Council

Buloke Shire Council

Macedon Ranges Shire Council

Warrnambool City Council

Cardinia Shire Council

Manningham City Council

Wellington Shire Council

Campaspe Shire Council

Maribyrnong City Council

Whitehorse City Council

Central Goldfields Shire Council

Maroondah City Council

Whittlesea City Council

City of Greater Dandenong

Melton City Council

Wodonga City Council

City of Greater Geelong

Mildura Rural City Council

Wyndham City Council

Darebin City Council

Moira Shire Council

Yarra Ranges Shire Council

East Gippsland Shire Council

Monash City Council

Glen Eira City Council

Moonee Valley City Council

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