The Hunter region of NSW has committed to collaborating on shared climate goals, entering into a Regional Partnership with Australia’s largest local government climate network, the Cities Power Partnership.
The Hunter Joint Organisation (Hunter JO) has partnered with the Cities Power Partnership to enable collaboration and support on clean energy initiatives in an effort to set the region up for a prosperous future.
The Chair of the Hunter Joint Organisation and Mayor of Singleton Council, Sue Moore, said the collective agreement strengthened the Hunter’s reputation as a region that supported meaningful action on climate change.
“In order to make an impact on climate initiatives, our councils need to be able to support one another and coordinate our efforts to benefit our communities across the region,” Sue said.
“By partnering with Cities Power Partnership, our councils and the Hunter JO are ensuring that we take joint action for our region and our communities.”
“Working collaboratively, we aim to attract more funding, expertise and resources to support region-wide and council-specific projects such as electrifying council fleets where possible and boosting energy efficiency.
“In 2021, the Hunter became the first region in Australia to have all Councils become members of the Cities Power Partnership, so it makes sense that we are also the first region that has committed to a Regional Partnership Agreement.”
Councils taking part in the Cities Power Partnership pledge five actions to tackle climate change locally, from ramping up renewable energy through to planning sustainable transport systems.
The Hunter Joint Organisation is the first joint organisation nationally to partner and make pledges with the Cities Power Partnership, creating a new regional partnership model that can be replicated across the country.
Cities Power Partnership director, Doctor Portia Odell, commended the Hunter Joint Organisation on its leadership towards creating a better future for the region.
“It’s brilliant to see a region of diverse industries sign up to the program and pledge to support its community by working together towards a clean energy future,” Jo said.
“Right now, local governments have an opportunity to get on the front foot of the global shift to clean energy and accelerate projects that will deliver local jobs quickly, drive new investment and tackle long-term challenges like climate change.”
The sustainability and future of the Hunter region has been a focus throughout its Councils’ decades of collaborative history and a key strategic priority of the Hunter JO since its establishment in 2018. They have a range of different projects driving this agenda within the organisation and across its Member Councils, including their Circular Economy and Climate Change Adaptation programs.
Through partnering with the Cities Power Partnership, the Hunter Joint Organisation and its councils are further building the Hunter into one of the most liveable, inclusive, resilient, sustainable and connected regions in Australia.
The councils of the Hunter Region have worked cooperatively for over sixty years to build collective strength and regional voice and to maximise, through shared programs and initiatives, their capacity to deliver relevant, cost effective services to the Hunter’s communities.
2018 has brought with it a major step forward for local government in the region with the formal establishment within the Local Government Act of the Hunter Joint Organisation of Councils.