Climate Action


The natural greenhouse effect warms the planet to an optimum temperature for life on Earth. For millions of years, water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases have occurred naturally, heating the atmosphere and making Earth liveable.

However, human activities - mainly from the burning of fossil fuels, intensive agriculture and land clearing - have tipped the balance and are causing greenhouse gas concentrations to rise above natural levels. The enhanced greenhouse effect has resulted in the planet warming beyond optimum conditions.

As global temperatures rise, weather patterns worldwide have changed and will continue to change, affecting the long-term climate. The enhanced greenhouse effect is often called global warming or climate change.

What are the impacts?

The impacts of climate change are already being felt locally and worldwide, and will increase into the future. Much of Victoria, including Hume, has recently experienced drought conditions lasting more than a decade and severe local weather events. Hume is particularly vulnerable to climate change impacts due to the demographic make-up (people on low incomes and from diverse cultures are more at risk of climate impacts), biodiversity values and the large proportion of the municipality that is rural – with agricultural activities already threatened by low rainfall. Due to Hume’s status as a growth area, there are also opportunities to plan and influence new development to be well suited to future climate conditions.

Some of the direct climate change impacts for south eastern Australia will include:

  • Hotter, drier conditions
  • Reduced overall rainfall
  • More extreme weather events including storms, strong winds, hail and heavy downpours
  • Rising sea levels.  

These impacts will give rise to a greater number of and more intense extreme events including:

  • Fires
  • Heat waves
  • Droughts
  • Floods.

There are also secondary impacts of climate change (impacts arising from direct climate impacts) such as:

  • Spread of diseases, e.g. spread of mosquito borne diseases such as Dengue Fever and Ross River virus
  • Health and wellbeing, e.g. heat stress, mental health issues
  • Food and agriculture, e.g. land no longer suitable for agriculture, damage to crops
  • Biological cycles, including a reduction in the fertilisation of food crops
  • Energy cost increases
  • Insurance cost increases and/or difficulty in securing insurance cover
  • Climate refugees - people relocating due to climate impacts in their home countries.

Council action

Climate Action Plan

Our Climate Action Plan is a key to our climate change response. Itaims to enhanceand expand action in response to the urgency and magnitude of the current climate situation.

Climate Action Plan 2023–2028.pdf(PDF, 8MB)

Greenhouse Action Plan 

Council has developed the Greenhouse Action Plan 2018-2022(PDF, 415KB), which focuses on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, primarily in Council operations, but also with the Hume community.
Council has endorsed the Climate Change Pledge via the Letter to the Minister for Energy Environment and Climate Change.

Renewable energy

Council is investing in renewable energy, installing solar PV systems and solar hot water systems on Council buildings. These include leisure centres, pre-schools and community centres.

Council is in the process of moving to 100 per cent GreenPower electricity for all Council buildings and street-lighting. GreenPower is a government accredited program for purchasing greenhouse neutral electricity from renewable sources. Further information is available on the 

Greenhouse Action

Council is a member of the Northern Alliance for Greenhouse Action (NAGA), a network of local councils to share information, coordinate emission reduction and adaptation activities and cooperate on research and development of innovative projects. Eight other local Councils are also members of NAGA: Cities of Banyule, Darebin, Manningham, Melbourne, Moreland, Whittlesea, Yarra and Nillumbik Shire Council.

What can we do?

The things we eat, buy and dispose of as waste can also result in greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change. Some ways to reduce these impacts include:

  • Eating less red meat and dairy foods (cows and sheep produce methane a potent greenhouse gas
  • Choose local foods and those that are less processed  
  • Buy energy-using products with the most stars as possible – they will be cheaper and more efficient to run
  • Buy durable products that will last
  • Compost or worm farm your food scraps or use a Council green waste bin
  • Reduce food waste by planning meals and buying only what you need.

Find out more ways to reduce your consumption and correctly dispose of your waste by visiting the your options for rubbish disposal webpage.