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Media Release
The Hon Dr Sharman Stone MP
Federal Member for Murray
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister
for the Environment and Heritage

18 January 1999

MORELAND COUNCIL 'TURNS ON' ENERGY REFORM


Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Environment and Heritage, Sharman Stone MP, has praised Moreland City Council's energy conservation efforts. The launch of the Moreland Energy Foundation 'switches on' a new era of environmentally friendly electricity services.

Speaking at the launch of the Moreland Energy Foundation in Melbourne today, Sharman Stone said the Council had shown great initiative in responding to changes in Victoria's energy industry and in addressing the ongoing problems caused by Greenhouse Gas emissions.

"What's really impressive is the Council's commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Often we think of the environment as someone else's problem, but Moreland City Council have put the community and the environment first. They have made energy conservation a top priority," Sharman Stone said.

"This really is a case of thinking globally and acting locally."

The single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions is the production and consumption of energy. In 1996, emissions from stationary (non-transport) energy accounted for 55% of national net greenhouse gas emissions, an increase of 13% on 1990 levels.

'With Australia working hard to meet the 8% reduction on 1990 levels targeted by the Kyoto Protocol, every effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is nationally significant," Sharman Stone said.

Sharman Stone said Moreland City Council had a lengthy track record as an environmentally friendly Council and were civic leaders in local government efforts to address energy conservation.

"Moreland was one of the first municipalities to sign up for the Federal Government's $13 million Cities for Climate Protection program, with Australian councils now topping the international participation rate," she said.

The Moreland Energy Foundation has been established to enhance the conservation and management of energy services within the municipality, particularly exploring methods and sources of alternative energy. The foundation will provide services, information and assistance to commercial, industrial and domestic users in the Moreland community.

The Foundation has been funded through the sale of the Brunswick and Coburg Councils' Electricity Distribution Companies, with around 10% of the profits or $5.5 million being ploughed back into the Foundation's establishment.

"My congratulations to the Moreland City Council and all those involved in this important initiative," Sharman Stone said.

"I also want to encourage the Moreland community including small and large businesses, manufacturers and mums and dads, to take advantage of the Foundation's services and products and public information campaign."

For further information contact:
Nicole Johnston, Assistant Adviser, 02 6277 2016 or 0419 219 415

Commonwealth of Australia