Hepburn Shire & zero-net energy
Hepburn Wind and local sustainability groups are joining forces, recommending council becomes a renewable energy leader by implementing a zero-net energy target for the whole shire.
Zero-net energy is achieved when emission-free renewable energy produces at least as much energy as is being produced by emission-producing energy sources. A zero-net energy target is a clear statement of intent that demonstrates dedication to renewable energy and in Hepburn Shire would represent real action on climate change.
Hepburn Wind alongside SHARE, Trentham Sustainability Group, Hepburn Re-localisation Network, Transition Creswick and the newly forming Clunes Sustainability Group, all agree a zero-net energy target is a sensible investment in our shire. The target would make our region a leading example in climate mitigation and at the same time securing economic and environmental benefits.
Has it been done before?
While zero-net energy or 100% renewables may sound like a novel idea, regions across the world have already implemented reliable and self-sustaining renewable energy systems.
Hepburn Wind recently entered a partnership with the Danish Samsø Energy Academy. This organisation facilitated the 100% renewable energy transition of Samsø Island. One of the reasons why Samsø Island was so successful was because they worked with communities and initiated an ambitious target early on.
Why Hepburn Shire should act now?
Hepburn Shire has both the natural resources and the community support to implement such a target. Thanks to the current state government, a zero-net energy target would be supported by the Victorian Renewable Energy Target, which will ensure 40% of the state’s electricity comes from renewable sources by 2025. By prioritising economic and regional development, the Victorian target provides communities and the renewable energy sector with the certainty needed to see community energy projects flourish.
Now with genuine political support and our own strong and engaged sustainability movement, Hepburn Shire has the capacity to transition to zero-net energy.