WA regional governments invited to take part in collaborative climate change program

By Shannon Jenkins

Tuesday May 11, 2021

Perth Western Australia
Perth. (Getty Images)

The Western Australian government has called on regional local governments to submit their proposals for a collaborative program that aims to address and prevent climate change.

Through the alliance program, which is part of WA’s climate policy, non-metropolitan local governments are encouraged to team up with other governments to tackle climate change.

The state government has committed half a million dollars to establish two Regional Climate Alliances this year.

Local government minister John Carey said regional local governments can have a ‘real and lasting’ impact in their community when it comes to addressing the challenges of climate change.

“A key aspect to this initiative is for smaller local governments to share knowledge and expertise so they achieve outcomes they might not have been able to otherwise,” he said.

“I hope it also encourages local governments to think strategically about how climate change impacts their regions.”

An expressions-of-interest period has opened this week, and will close on June 21. A minimum of three local governments are required to form an alliance.

The two successful alliances will receive funding to employ regional climate alliance coordinators and to deliver climate change adaptation and mitigation projects.

READ MORE: WA sets net zero emissions target for government agencies

The state government said examples of potential projects include adding solar panels to local government facilities; delivering behaviour change programs to reduce energy use; and increasing tree canopies in town centres to improve urban cooling.

Alliances will be able to access up to $200,000 over two years to deliver their program, with the program to be considered for possible expansion in mid-2023.

Climate action minister Amber-Jade Sanderson said the McGowan government was looking for strong and effective emissions reduction and climate change adaptation projects.

“Every level of government needs to do their bit to address climate change and many local governments are stepping up to the challenge,” she said.

“Our goal is to see how we can use this model to build capability and increase knowledge sharing across local governments to address climate change on a regional scale.”

The Department of Water and Environmental Regulation and the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries will oversee the initiative. The Western Australian Local Government Association will help administer the program by providing advice and support.

READ MORE: Urban forests: how trees can fight heatwaves and poor health


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