What we're doing about climate change

Find out where our greenhouse gas emissions come from and how we’re reducing them to zero by 2050.

Zero carbon goal and climate emergency

  • net zero means that any greenhouse gas emissions released into the atmosphere are balanced by removing an equivalent amount from the atmosphere e.g. forests soaking up carbon dioxide.
  • in June 2018, we set a goal of reducing emissions to zero by 2050. The goal applies to Hutt City Council and Council-Controlled Organisations.
  • in June 2019, we declared a climate emergency to raise awareness about climate change and prioritise the need to reduce emissions to net zero.
  • we've signed up to Race to Zero.

Hutt City’s carbon emissions

Most of our city’s emissions come from transport and stationary energy (power and heating), so reducing emissions from energy and transport is the most important place to start.

In response to this, we've established a Climate Change and Sustainability Committee to oversee the Council’s environment and climate change response:

  • implementation of strategies to achieve carbon zero
  • decarbonisation of our assets
  • developing and implementing environmental policies
  • overseeing the city’s new residential and rubbish and recycling service which will be in place for all residents by 1 July 2021.

Switching to electric transport, increasing the use of public and active transport, and reducing the amount of fossil fuels used to heat homes (eg natural gas) will help us move to carbon zero by 2050.

Lower Hutt Greenhouse Gas Inventory (PDF 1.7 MB)

Council’s carbon emissions

We've produced a plan that sets out the actions Council intends to take to reduce carbon emissions. We are working towards net zero emissions by no later than 2050.

Interim Carbon Reduction and Climate Resilience Plan 2021-2031

What we're doing over the next 10 years

Here are some of the things we’re doing to reduce emissions at the Council over the next 10 years:

Our facilities

We have a plan in place to reduce carbon emissions from the energy used at our facilities by 30% by 2024, and 50% by 2030. The biggest savings in this area will come from changing natural gas heating to lower-carbon options, such as at our pools.

Council vehicles

We’re improving the efficiency of our vehicle fleet, and we are switching to Electric Vehicles (EVs). As at 11 June 2021, our vehicle fleet is over 31% electric. We expect 50% of our fleet to be electric vehicles in 2025 and 100% electric vehicles by 2030.

Climate Change & Sustainability Committee

We've created a specific committee to deal with matters related to climate change and sustainability.

Investment decisions

All reports presented to the Council on key purchase and investment decisions must prepare have a Climate Change Impact Assessment for consideration.

Urban Plus Limited

All of UPL's new dwellings consented after 1 July 2021 will be built to the New Zealand Green Building Council Homestar 6 Rating, or similar equivalent.

New Zealand Green Building Council

New commercial builds

We’re looking at using the New Zealand GreenStar Building Rating (5 out of 6), for new commercial building projects including the Naenae Pool rebuild. The goal is that all energy will come from either electricity or alternative low-carbon energy sources.

Silverstream Landfill

We have a methane collection system in place that is used to generate energy. We also have a supplementary flare in place to improve methane destruction efficiency.