February 27, 2020
Whakatane turns off gas for climate savings
A Whakatane councillor says taking small steps on climate change can lead to quick pay-offs.
The council is considering adopting seven climate change principles, including taking immediate action, caring for and protecting the environment, acknowledging those who are most affected, especially those living in poverty, and building community resilience.
Nandor Tanczos says the area is extremely vulnerable to climate change, and the council felt it needed to show leadership.
He says it has conducted its own energy and carbon audits, which has already identified it can cut emissions by heating the council swimming pool with heat pumps rather than gas boilers.
"And just by a little bit of behaviour change, really simple stuff, we've reduced our carbon emissions by 114,000 tonnes and we've saved $35,000. Getting started, just taking some small steps, you start seeing some pay-offs straight away. It's really encouraging," he says.
Nandor Tanczos says council can't do everything, and it's the individual decisions of households, businesses, marae and other organisations which will determine the future.
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