Sustainability at Council
Inner West Council is working hard to reduce the environmental impact of its operations. You told us you want to build a sustainable community for the future and we are working hard to lead the way.
Reducing our climate impact
Inner West Council is committed to sourcing renewable energy and addressing climate change. Our goals include:
- Become carbon neutral
- Install more solar
- Divest from fossil fuels
I want to know how I can save energy
I want to know how I can get solar
Powering our facilities with solar
Some of our most loved community and recreation buildings generate their own solar power. On-site solar reduces carbon emissions and saves money on electricity bills.
Solar panels are generating power at 31 Council facilities, including pools, libraries, child care centres and offices. We will expand solar power to more facilities over time.
You can see which local facilities are solar-powered below. Some of these facilities send solar data to the web and you can see how much power is being generated under “real time data”.
|Council Facility ||Solar Farm Size || Solar Data |
|Aquatic Centres |
|Annette Kellerman Aquatic Centre ||30kW || Not on web yet |
|Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre Program Pool ||30kW ||Real time data |
|Leichhardt Park Aquatic Centre Gym ||35.5kW ||Real time data |
| Community Buildings |
| Tom Foster Community Centre ||25kW || Real time data |
| Hannaford Centre || 3.15kW || Real time data |
| Jimmy Little Community Centre || 2.7kW || Real time data |
| Annandale Community Centre || 2.42kW || Real time data |
| Rozelle Bay Community Native Nursery || 1.7kW || Real time data |
| Chrissie Cotter Gallery || 1.5kW || Not on web yet |
| Town Halls and Libraries |
| Leichhardt Town Hall || 20.09kW || Real time data |
| Balmain Town Hall and Library || 13kW || Real time data |
| Haberfield library || 10kW || Not on web yet |
| Former Dulwich Hill Library || 2kW || Not on web yet |
| Operational Buildings |
| Petersham Administration Building || 20kW || Real time data |
| Leichhardt Administration Building || 4.965kW || Real time data |
| St Peters Depot || 30kW || Not on web yet |
| Summer Hill Depot || 15.7kW || Not on web yet |
| Balmain Depot || 13kW || Real time data |
| Leichhardt Depot || 7.28kW || Real time data |
| Early Learning Centres |
| Cavendish Early Learning Centre || 5kW || Real time data |
| Steel Park Early Learning Centre (opening date TBA) || 5kW || Not on web yet |
| Tillman Park Early Learning Centre || 4.8kW || Not on web yet |
| Leichhardt Park Children's Centre (opening date TBA) || 4kW || Not on web yet |
| Leichhardt Children's Centre || 3.25kW || Real time data |
| Deborah Little Early Learning Centre || 2kW || Not on web yet |
| John McMahon Child Care Centre || 1.85kW || Real time data |
| Foster Street Family Day Care || 1.21kW || Real time data |
| Parks and Ovals |
| Blackmore Oval || 10.35kW || Real time data |
| Leichhardt Oval #1 || 9.88kW || Real time data |
| Pioneer Park Rotunda || 3.6kW || Not on web yet |
| Leichhardt Park Playground || 1.04kW || Real time data |
Sourcing renewable energy from a NSW solar farm
Inner West Council will soon be supplied with over 4 million kilowatt-hours of renewable power each year from Moree solar farm. This amount will cover almost all of Council’s daytime electricity use, helping to power pools, sportsfields, libraries and many other facilities.
The solar supply begins from 1 July 2019 and will reduce Council's carbon emissions by almost 4,000 tonnes (CO2e) every year. That’s equivalent to taking more than 1000 average NSW cars off the road each year.
The solar agreement offers competitive electricity prices because a large buying group of councils purchased solar power in bulk. This will reduce the pressure on our community facilities to manage rising, volatile electricity prices.
Planning for changes in climate
Climate adaptation means safeguarding the Inner West against the unavoidable effects of climate change, such as hotter weather, worsening storms and rising sea levels. We are currently updating our climate adaptation strategy following amalgamation and will integrate the work of the three former councils.
In the meantime, we are working with the community on projects that will help manage the effects of climate change, for example:
- Greening the Inner West to provide shade through Council’s tree planting programme
- Reducing the carbon impact of Council and the community
- Mapping urban ‘hot spots” so these can be managed
Reducing waste at our facilities
Council is committed to the war on waste. Here are some examples of how we reduce waste in our operations:
Our civil works team store and reuse materials whenever they can. In 2016 we reused:
- 20 tonnes of sandstone
- 16 tonnes of sand
- 50 tonnes of road base
- 100 heritage bricks
Council was the second council in NSW to trial TonerPave. This product is a type of asphalt that uses recycled toner from printer cartridges to close the loop on cartridge recycling.
Our staff send their food scraps and tea bags to compost. This stops organic waste from going to landfill where it forms a powerful greenhouse gas – methane.
As we consolidate after amalgamation, we are careful to find homes for surplus resources.
- Around 3000 pieces of high-vis work wear were distributed to volunteer organisations or upcycled into bags and vests for cyclists.
- Several caddy loads of stationery were given to local community organisations.
Check back soon to see more about our waste initiatives.
I want to know how I can reduce waste
I want to know about waste and recycling in my suburb
Saving water at parks, sports fields and other facilities
We have a program of projects to reduce water use and capture rain and storm water at Council buildings and community facilities.
Water efficient fixtures including taps, toilets and showers have been installed in various community facilities and Council’s operational buildings.
Council uses rainwater tanks at a number of facilities, capturing water to flush toilets and water trees and gardens. We have over 569kL in water storage capacity, reducing our tap water use at pools, offices, child care centres and community nurseries.
Sports fields stormwater harvesting and irrigation
Council harvests and reuses stormwater at a number of parks and sport fields, saving millions of litres of water annually and tens of thousands of dollars. For example, Pratten Park is irrigated using storm water that is captured from an upstream drainage pipe. The water is filtered, stored in underground tanks and disifected using ultra-violet light before watering the sports field. This saves roughly 8 million litres of drinking water (~3 Olympic swimming pools) and $16,000 a year.
Storm water harvesting is also used to water these green spaces:
- Mackey Park
- Birchgrove Oval
- Easton Park
- Leichhardt Oval No 1
- Balmain Rd Playing Field
- Glover St Sports Field
A number of advisory groups, made up of interested or expert residents, provide ongoing advice to Council on how to achieve our sustainability objectives. They include:
- Environmental Advisory Committee
- Bicycle Working Group
- Cooks River Working Group
- Parramatta River Working Group
For more information, including terms of reference and upcoming meeting dates, check out the local democracy groups page.