Energetics assists in carbon-neutral election campaign

08 Nov 2006Archived News Energetics in the News

Peter Shmigel, Liberal candidate for the NSW Parliamentary seat of Balmain, last night pledged to run the world's first carbon-neutral election campaign.


The announcement was made in the presence of Peter Debnam, NSW Liberal Leader, at the official launch of the Liberals' campaign for the State seat of Balmain in Sydney's Inner West.

"Climate change is the largest challenge ever faced by humanity. We each need to take responsibility for our own greenhouse gas impacts and this is my small way of doing it during my election campaign for NSW Parliament," Peter Shmigel said.

Peter, who previously worked in the environmental management and sustainability arena for some 13 years, said there were many activities during an election campaign that had greenhouse gas emissions, primarily including:

  • Use of vehicles and other travel;
  • Printing of campaign literature, and;
  • Use of venues.

"The Zero Carbon Campaign for Balmain will seek to minimise my election campaign's greenhouse gas emissions and off-set remaining emissions to get to a neutral point. It's about being very conscientious with the campaign's use of energy and making up for the energy that we do use," Peter said.
The Zero Carbon Campaign for Balmain will be assisted by the international energy and greenhouse consultancy Energetics.

Tony Cooper, Managing Director of Energetics, said that his company will:

  • Audit all campaign activities to determine their potential emissions load;
  • Identify actions that can be taken to reduce and/or offset greenhouse gas emissions;
  • Share information and knowledge with Peter and his team toward improved outcomes;
  • Independently verify actions taken during the campaign, and;
  • Collect, capture and report performance data.

"It's great to see someone in Peter's position walk the walk rather than just talk the talk on climate change. We would encourage candidates from all political parties to take similar action," Mr Cooper said.

Some of the greenhouse-friendly actions that the Zero Carbon Campaign for Balmain looks to undertake are:

  • Using carbon neutral fuel in all campaign vehicles (100% reduction in net emissions);
  • Peter's use of a bicycle for many trips around the electorate;
  • Using green power for Peter's campaign office and at any venues used during the election campaign (100% reduction in net emissions);
  • Printing of all election materials on recycled content papers;
  • Ensuing that recycling bins at available at all polling booths, and;
  • Using recyclable and recycled items whenever possible, including reusable cutlery for any campaign functions.

"People who want to be in public life should adhere to the highest standards. That means our environmental performance as well as our personal performance," Peter concluded.

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