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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

6 December 2000

New Fund to Help Councils Reduce Greenhouse Gases

Local councils around the nation are poised to take a pivotal role in Australia's efforts to cut greenhouse emissions - with the launch of a new Australian Greenhouse Office funding package.

Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill today launched the new program, which is part of Cities for Climate Protection, at the annual Australian Local Government Association conference in Canberra.

"The new Emission Reduction Incentive Program is linked directly to greenhouse gas abatement and provides successful councils with up to $100,000 in funding to make this happen," Senator Hill said.

"Local government has an important role in cutting Australia's emissions levels.

"Councils have the capacity to influence up to 50 percent of Australia's greenhouse gas emissions and this new program aims to help these councils make a significant impact.

The Emission Reduction Incentive Program will fund Councils involved in the Cities for Climate Protection program, a joint initiative of the Federal Government's Australian Greenhouse Office and the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives. Councils applying for funding under the emission reduction program must have achieved the third milestone of the Cities for Climate Protection Program - the adoption of a local greenhouse action plan.

Senator Hill said there were a range of different actions that could be funded under the emission reduction plan.

"Councils could be capturing methane from landfill sites, cutting energy use from council car fleets, applying energy efficiency measures or running a program to help householders refit their homes to make them more energy efficient," he said.

"This program is yet another important Federal Government program designed to support councils and communities in working together to slash the nation's greenhouse emissions."

Belinda Huppatz (Senator Hill's Office) 0419 258 364
Carol Bartley (Australian Greenhouse Office) 02 6274 1859 or 0412 994 800

Commonwealth of Australia