Climate emergency declarations

Recognising the threat that the climate crisis poses, Climate Emergencies have been declared by approximately 1,500 jurisdictions covering approximately 800 million people globally. A Climate Emergency Declaration provides an important ‘reset’ that acknowledges the climate crisis and that a new way of doing business is needed. Using this ‘reset’, government agencies can then work with communities to plan appropriate action to build resilience, develop appropriate local mitigation measures and decarbonise their economies.

In the Northern Territory, the City of Darwin declared a Climate Emergency on 31 May 2019. It is currently alone in northern Australia and the only NT local government body to take this important step. At the Territory level, although thousands of climate strikers and the majority of Territory Labor members have called on the Gunner Government to declare a climate emergency, it has refused to do so.

Darwin residents may consider themselves lucky: City of Darwin is taking the climate crisis seriously, creating many exciting opportunities to participate in real change and build community resilience through its response to the Climate Emergency.

The response is expected to have two key points of focus:

  1. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from both the City of Darwin’s own operations and from the wider community.
  2. Adapting to the current and expected impacts of climate change, such as increasing temperatures; longer, more frequent, and more intense droughts and heat waves; and more frequent and intense extreme weather events.

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