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Climate Change and Energy

There are challenges worldwide in responding to the impacts of climate change, including warming and drying trends, rising sea levels and an increase in the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events. The major impacts of climate change are felt at the community level and may require changes to planning and development approval process, planning and management of native vegetation and stormwater infrastructure, and emergency responses. Most importantly, as a community we will need to take every opportunity to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and ensure that our natural resources are managed sustainably, coupled with a reduction of our dependency on non-renewable energy sources.
 

Indicator: City-wide and per capita greenhouse gas emissions
City-wide and per capita energy consumption
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Data source: Department of Industry, Innovation and Science
National Greenhouse Accounts Factors
Australian Bureau of Statistics, Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2014-15
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Strategies / Plans: Environment Strategy 2014-19
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Community Plan 2035: Objective 4.1 Valued Natural Resources
Objective 4.2 Green streets, buildings
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City-wide and per capita greenhouse gas emissions

Greenhouse gases trap heat radiated from Earth within the atmosphere creating a greenhouse effect. As concentrations of greenhouse gases increase, more heat is retained and the climate gets warmer. The largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions from human activity are the burning of fossil fuels for electricity, heat and transportation. Therefore, it is important to monitor greenhouse gas emissions produced by our city to ensure that these levels are declining.

Energy consumption data was sourced from the Australian Energy Statistics, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, which is the authoritative and official source of annual energy data for Australia (6). This data was represented as Australian energy consumption, by state, by industry, by fuel and energy units. The most recent data available for analysis was 2013-14. Australian Greenhouse gas estimates were provided by the National Greenhouse Accounts Factors (7). City of Onkaparinga greenhouse gas emissions estimates were calculated using methodology based on the report by Hamilton & Kellett, 2009 (8). Per capita greenhouse gas emissions were determined using Australian Bureau of Statistics Estimated Resident Population by Local Government Area (9).  

Data Analysis

The total amount of greenhouse gas emitted by the City of Onkaparinga in 2013-14 was 2.19 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e) and the total amount of CO2-e emissions per capita for the city was 12.6 tonnes (Figure 1). 

 

Figure 1: Total amount of greenhouse gas emissions produced city-wide and per capita, City of Onkaparinga, 2004-05 to 2013-14

CWM-Climate-Change---Total-amount-of-greenhouse-gas-emissions-produced-city-wide-and-per-capita

Source: Australian Energy Statistics (6) and National Greenhouse Accounts Factors (7)

 

Trend Analysis

CWM climate change and energy trend analysis

The total amount of greenhouse gas emissions produced by the city has remained relatively consistent over the 10 year period between 2004-05 and 2013-14 (Figure 1). In 2013-14 the amount of city-wide CO2-e only increased slightly, by more than 3 per cent, when compared with 2004-05. In contrast, while there was an initial increase in greenhouse gas emissions per capita from 2004-05 to 2006-07 (of just under 4 per cent), since then there has been a steady decline in amount of greenhouse gas emissions per capita. In 2013-14 there was an 8.6 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions per capita when compared with 2004-05.
 

Policy Implications

The reduction in the amount of greenhouse gas emission per capita within the city implies that over the last 10 years reductions in greenhouse gas emissions have been achieved, but this is not evident for city-wide gas emissions. As stated in the Environment Strategy 2014-19, the City of Onkaparinga will continue to increase the uptake of renewable energy and low emission technologies, reduce greenhouse emissions and integrate environmental sustainability considerations into land use planning and urban development including the application of sustainability guidelines, assessment tools and criteria. Moreover, the City of Onkaparinga will continue to work with our communities, state and local government and the private sector with the aim of having 50 per cent of the city’s energy supplied from renewable sources by 2028. The aims of this strategy will continue to achieve the Community Plan Objective 4.1 Valued natural resources and 4.2 Green streets, buildings and city.

City-wide and per capita energy consumption

Energy consumption is defined as the total amount of energy used by humans, or energy that is utilised by human endeavours. This includes energy consumed in relation to use of electricity, and the running of industry, residential, commercial and agricultural activity.

Energy consumption data was sourced from the Australian Energy Statistics, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, which is the authoritative and official source of annual energy data for Australia (6). This data was represented as Australian energy consumption, by state, by industry, by fuel and energy units. The most recent data available for analysis was 2013-14. Per capita energy consumption was determined using Australian Bureau of Statistics Estimated Resident Population by Local Government Area (9).

Data Analysis

In 2013-14 the total amount of energy consumption city-wide was 26.9 petajoules and the total amount of energy consumed per capita within the city was 160. 4 gigajoules (Figure 2).

 

Figure 2: Total amount of energy consumption city-wide and per capita, City of Onkaparinga, 2004-05 to 2013-14

CWM-climate-change-and-energy-Total-amount-of-energy-consumption-city-wide-and-per-capita

Source: Australian Energy Statistics (6)

 

Trend Analysis

CWM climate change and energy - Energy trend analysis

While there was evidence of slight fluctuations in city-wide energy consumption between 2004-05 and 2013-14, it has remained relatively consistent over the last 10 years (Figure 2). When comparing city wide energy consumption in 2013-14 with 2004-05, there has been a slight 1.2 per cent increase. However, there has been a reduction in the energy consumed per capita over the last 10 years, with more than an eight per cent reduction between the years of 2004-05 and 2013-14.
 

Policy Implications

While the amount of city-wide energy consumption has remained relatively stable over the last 10 years, importantly there has been a reduction in the amount of energy consumed per capita within the city. The Environment Strategy 2014-19 aims to improve the efficient use of energy and reduce peak demand. The City of Onkaparinga will continue to work with our communities, state and local government and the private sector with the aim of having 50 per cent of the city’s energy supplied from renewable sources by 2028, which should contribute to reducing city-wide and per capita energy consumption. The aims of this strategy will continue to achieve the Community Plan Objective 4.1 Valued natural resources and 4.2 Green streets, buildings and city.


 

This indicator is linked to other strategies, plans and targets outlined below:

Government of South Australia South Australia’s Strategic Plan Targets: 59. Greenhouse gas emissions reduction: achieve the Kyoto target by limiting the state’s greenhouse gas emissions to 108% of 1990 levels during 2008-12, as a first step towards reducing emissions by 60% (to 40% of 1990 levels) by 2050.
60.Energy efficiency–dwellings: Improve the energy efficiency of dwellings by 15% by 2020.  
62. Climate change adaptation: Develop regional climate change adaptation plans in all State Government regions by 2016
66. Emissions intensity: Limit the carbon intensity of total South Australian electricity generation to 0.5 tonnes of CO2/MWh by 2020.
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Other State Strategies • South Australia’s Climate Change Strategy 2015-50–Towards a low carbon economy
• State target–achieve net zero emissions by 2050
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National Strategies: • Tackling Climate Change: South Australia’s Greenhouse Strategy 2007-20National Strategy on Energy Efficiency
• National Climate Resilience and Adaptation Strategy
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