We depend on energy for almost everything we do. Most of our energy comes from fossil fuels like coal, which produces greenhouse gases. Brisbane City Council can help you to make a few simple changes to reduce your carbon footprint, save energy and money.
What you can do
To reduce your carbon footprint, you can follow a few simple acts like turning appliances off at the wall, to bigger commitments like installing a solar power system.
Follow these top 12 actions to reduce your emissions:
- Buy accredited renewable energy to power your home through your electricity provider.
- Install a rooftop solar power system or replace your electric hot water system with a solar system or heat pump.
- Change incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) or light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs and use one quarter of the energy.
- Install ceiling insulation and reduce the cost of heating or cooling your home by 20 to 30 per cent.
- Turn off your additional fridge.
- Reduce your showers to four minutes reducing electricity use for heating and water.
- Reduce the use of air conditioners.
- Switch off your appliances at the wall when you go to bed or leave the house and save about 10 per cent of your household energy.
- Wash your clothes in cold water and save 90 per cent of the power used by the washing machine heating the water.
- Set your air conditioner to between 24 and 26 degrees in summer and 18 and 20 degrees in winter. Every extra degree increases your energy consumption by 5 to 10 per cent.
- Limit the use of your clothes dryer and hang your laundry on the line.
- Close curtains or blinds during the day in summer to keep rooms cool.
What Council is doing
Council has a continuous improvement program to identify, assess and deliver projects that reduce its energy use and associated carbon emissions. These projects range from large projects such as installing rooftop solar systems on Council infrastructure and street lighting upgrades to lighting and computer switch-off campaigns in Council offices.
Council was an early adopter of renewable energy, purchasing more than 889,000 megawatt hours of electricity from renewable sources between July 2003 and June 2017 - enough to power over 164,000 households for one year.
A total of 502 kilowatts (kW) of solar power systems have also been installed on Council facilities to date, including two 100 kW systems at the Brisbane Powerhouse, a former coal-fired power plant, and the Toowong bus depot. Council’s solar systems produce an estimated 769,000 kilowatt hours of electricity for on-site consumption each year.