What you can do
Reducing Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions is everyone’s responsibility. Simple changes to everyday activities, office buildings and homes can greatly reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions.
- Choose solar energy
- Recycle your spare fridge
- Practical suggestions for everyone
- Join a Climate Action Group
- Find out more
Choose solar energy
Collecting solar energy from the sun is an environmentally sustainable way to heat your home, to heat water and to generate electricity:
- For heating your home, see passive solar design from yourhome.gov.au
- For heating water, check solar water heaters
- For generating electricity, check solar panels from Choice magazine
In Mosman, the installation of solar panels or photovoltaic cells for generating electricity and heating water is classified as ‘Exempt Development’ and in most cases does not require Council approval provided that certain basic requirements are met.
Recycle your spare fridge
Fridge Buyback is a residential energy savings program that actually pays you to help save the environment and reduce your power bills by giving up your old second fridge.
Old fridges are one of the biggest energy users in the home, consuming up to three times the energy of new fridges. Running your second fridge adds an average of $265 a year to your power bills and results in greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere. And, old upright freezers use almost as much power as an old fridge.
Households that have been using two fridges can hand in their old working second fridges by calling 1800 708 401 during business hours to make a booking. The fridges collected are professionally degassed and the metals recycled. There are regular fridge collection runs every few weeks in most built-up areas.
To participate in the program, your fridge must be a working second fridge that has been in regular use, is 200 litres or more in size and built before 1996. Fridge Buyback can also now collect upright freezers that have been in regular use, are 200 litres or more in size and built before 1996.
Fridge Buyback provides residents with free collection by professional removalists and a $35 rebate if the removal of the fridge involves 6 steps or less. The fridge is collected for free if there are between 7 or 20 steps but no rebate is available. A fee will apply only if the property has more than 20 steps.
For more information call 1800 708 401 or visit the Fridge Buyback website at www.fridgebuyback.com.au.
Fridge Buyback is an energy savings program supported by the NSW Government’s Climate Change Fund and Council. The program is independently operated by Next Energy Pty Ltd.
Practical suggestions for everyone
- Remember to switch off lights whenever you leave a room
- Switch off outdoor lights when not in use or install motion sensors &/or timers
- Install a separate light switch for each light fitting so that you only turn on the lights you need
- Install energy efficient lights. CFL’s reduce GHG emissions by 75% and last up to 8 times longer
Heating and Cooling
- Insulate the ceiling, walls and floors to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer
- Choose a reverse cycle cooling/heating system that is more energy efficient, and set a timer to run the system only when needed. See energyrating.gov.au
- Keep curtains or blinds closed in summer and open in winter at windows exposed to the sun
- Landscape your garden to provide shade in summer and access to sunlight in winter
- Wash clothes in cold water – this generates less than 1/3 of a kg of GHG compared to up to 4 kgs when washing in hot water
- Dry clothes on the clothes line or rack instead of using a dryer and save up to 3 kg of GHG
- Only run the dishwasher and washing machine on a full load
- Recycle your second fridge, or only switch it on when needed
- Cook or reheat food in the microwave to reduce GHG emissions
- When appliances need to be replaced, purchase energy and water efficient models
- Switch off appliances such as the TV, DVD, CD player and computer when not in use. Using the standby mode can account for 10% of a households energy use, so switch appliances off at the power point to save more
- Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle (refuse plastic bags at the shops, reduce the amount of packaging and only buy what you need, reuse containers, clothing and other materials, recycle what you can’t refuse, reduce and reuse – Council recycles products numbered 1-7)
- Start a compost or worm farm using green waste and food scraps (end product will provide free, natural fertiliser for the garden)
- Choose organic products, or grow your own organic food
- Exercise and save money whilst helping the environment. Leave the car at home – ride your bike, walk or catch public transport (see 131500.info)
- Car pool with family, friends and/or colleagues rather than driving alone
- Reduce air travel, or offset your emissions through an accredited program
- When purchasing a new car choose a hybrid vehicle or a vehicle that is more fuel efficient. See greenvehicleguide.gov.au
- Switch to Greenpower, and purchase renewable energy from an accredited supplier. Visit www.greenpower.gov.au
- Install a solar hot water system
- Install solar panels on the roof to gain electricity from a renewable source. Rebates are offered by the Australian Government – go to Solar Homes & Communities Plan
- GreenPower - Frequently Asked Questions (PDF 79KB)
Join a Climate Action Group
Find out more
Further information on how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is available from the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Water NSW.