An energetic transition
  • Thursday 12 February 2009

Anticipating the peak oil crisis and the move to alternative energy sources, Sunshine Coast Council Regional Strategy and Planning Committee has endorsed a scoping study, the establishment of a project reference group and a community program to reduce energy demand.

The initiatives, supporting the Queensland government’s Oil Vulnerability Mitigation Strategy and Action Plan put council on the front foot preparing for peak oil and will be referred to the full council for consideration at next week’s Ordinary meeting.

Environment Portfolio Councillor, Keryn Jones said oil is used in nearly every sector of the economy and dominates transport and energy production, and that the impacts will be severe if preparations aren’t made in readiness for reduced production.

“Peak oil signals the point when global oil supplies begin to decline and when countries will begin the transition to alternative fuels for the production of food, transport and energy,” Cr Jones explained.

“While this will take time, scientists and social researchers know lead time to study, plan and prepare is irreplaceable if we are to avoid social upheaval and why council also proposes an expert forum to help prepare an energy transition plan for the Coast.”

Cr Jones said peak oil dictates the need for a firm move away from dependency on oil and the imperatives of climate change dictate the need for a firm move away from a dependency on coal.

“Changing the way we do things is always easier when done together so Council is also inviting the community to band together over March turning their air-conditioners down and unnecessary lights off to reduce the above average amount of oil and electricity used on the Sunshine Coast.

“This will get us ready to be part of Earth Hour on 29 March to demonstrate the energy reductions we can make and at the same time, reduce our carbon emissions and save money.”

Crs Jones and Griffin were nominated to the Energy Transition Reference Group and an invitation will be extended to all councillors. The recommendations will now be discussed on Thursday 19 March at the Ordinary meeting to be held at Nambour.