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South Australian Government Carbon Neutral by 2020

by Staff Writers •
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The SA Government claims to be leading the way in the fight to reduce carbon emissions by announcing plans to become carbon neutral. One of the State’s largest greenhouse gas emitters, the Government hopes that by ramping up its purchase of Green Power, it will encourage demand for renewable energy which should lead to greater installation of sustainable energy generators.

The Government's timetable includes a provision to offset 30 percent of the its greenhouse gas emissions by 2010 by purchasing green energy, or energy produced from renewable resources and through other carbon credits. By 2014 that would need to rise to 50 percent.

The Government aims to be carbon neutral by 2020.

The SA Government has recognised that they have a leadership role to play in combating climate change. It was the first Government in Australia to commit to purchasing 20 per cent accredited Green Power to meet its electricity needs for hospitals, schools and public buildings. This commitment was fulfilled at the beginning of 2008.

The commitment to become carbon neutral is part of the Tackling Climate Change: South Australian Government Greenhouse Strategy 2007-2020.

Other states are also taking a leadership role in the fight to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Queensland Government's Department of Works announced a continuing focus on sustainability in government procurement in its new State Procurement Plan that came into effect on 1 January 2008. The Department of Works states that it "sets out to ensure the State Government’s purchasing power is used to acquire goods that are more environmentally friendly." Further, it claims that the Queensland Government Chief Procurement Office is already leading the way in "green procurement".

The Victorian Government also requires that for all relevant purchases, departments must include environmental considerations in the procurement planning stage, tender specifications and where applicable, in the tender evaluation criteria. Also for purchases of common use goods and services under Whole of Government Contracts and OSOAs, departments must consider options available under those contracts that can reduce the environmental impact of their activities.

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