Local community groups, not-for-profits and non-government organisations located in West End, South Brisbane, Highgate Hill and Hill End are being given the opportunity to receive free energy audits over the next 12 months from local group Transition Kurilpa. The project will help participating organisations reduce their electricity bills and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as attain funds to install solar hot water or solar power.
Transition Kurilpa has been awarded $37 000 by Brisbane City Council to run the initial component their exciting new sustainable energy project, Energetic Kurilpa. Businesses and homeowners are sometimes given assistance from Government and other bodies, while the not-for-profit sector misses out. The Energetic Kurilpa project will facilitate our local community and existing non-government organisations to gain the knowledge, tools and resources to reduce their energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, and to understand sustainable energy issues, thereby adapting to the oncoming impacts of climate change and peak oil.
To achieve this, Transition Kurilpa will work collaboratively with existing community organisations and businesses to offer a program of Level 1 or Level 2 energy audits, appropriate retrofits, forums, film screenings and workshops. Participants will also gain training in using audit kits and will be able to loan them during and after the project. Emission reductions will be monitored and quantified.
Contact us if you would like to be involved with Transition Kurilpa or participate in this project on [email protected]
- Reduce participants’ energy demand by 5% in 12 months (quantified through monitoring and measurement), contributing to 50% reduction in community GHG emissions by 2026
- Educate participants and the broader community in sustainable energy, leading to sustainable behaviour change.
- Reduce participants’ contribution to Peak Load.
- Developing the “Green Precint” concept in collaboration with other organisations and projects, including developing a network of Kurilpa organisations working toward sustainability.
- Transition Kurilpa will encourage participants to apply for future BCC Sustainability grants based on the outcomes of the audits completed in the in Energetic Kurilpa project.
What is the need for this project, who will benefit and how will they benefit?
Many organisations would like to be more sustainable, but cannot readily access State and Federal policy and programs, such as the State Government’s Sustainable Business Cluster funding and EcoBiz, due to lack of up front capital and the appropriate education and skills. EcoBiz is also only attracting less than 1% of Queensland businesses. The Climate Smart Home Service only targets households. This project targets the gap with the community sector. Energetic Kurilpa project works toward the goal of a West End “Green Precinct”.
Early stage energy efficiency (low hanging fruit) is often more cost effective than renewable generation in directly reducing CO2 emissions2. Recommendation 11 of the Parliamentary report calls for “expansion of existing public education designed to achieve attitudinal change about energy use and efficiency”. Energetic Kurilpa proposes to address these educational needs. The energy efficiencies and education from the project means that there will be year on year reductions and participants will be able to take behavioural learnings beyond their work places to their homes, friends and families. This can be achieved through learning about energy, energy use, mentoring, engaging and sharing with other organisations and businesses in networking events and generating solutions to the oncoming impacts of peak oil and climate change. We aim to normalise such behaviour.
Significantly, the work of Energetic Kurilpa assists council in attaining their goal of carbon neutrality in the Brisbane community through a 50% reduction in GHG emissions, as well as supporting its citywide outcome of cleaner sustainable energy use. The project also offers follow-up and support, which is often unavailable of expensive in other programs.
For the Community Sector of Kurilpa, Energetic Kurilpa will bring:
- Access to emissions reductions, education and behaviour change that this sector has limited access to.
- Better understanding of how to mitigate climate change and prepare for peak oil;
- Increased preparedness of organisations (risk management), e.g. assisting others to understand their electricity use, and reduce power consumption;
- Stronger links to other community groups and individuals and awareness of other local activities and initiatives.
For other areas of the community not directly targeted by this initiative (indirect benefits):
For local Businesses, Energetic Kurilpa will deliver:
- Encouragement to contribute and support the local community in a way that strengthens the reputation of the business and results in economic gain.
- Opportunities to network with like-minded community organisations and businesses and support these networks and programs;
For the residents of Kurilpa, Energetic Kurilpa will deliver:
- Improved awareness of climate change and peak oil issues and why ‘local resilience’ is important and requires a design process to achieve it;
- Knowledge of State, Federal and Local government opportunities for community participation;
- Greatly improved communications and links between community groups and individuals, as much of the work is in collaboration. For example, the efforts of the many environmentally focused NGOs (e.g. Friends of the Earth and Six Degrees) and linking in the work of other community groups, such as Art and Storytelling at West End Community House (WECH) and Future Proofing Communities (a SPIRAL project);
- A forum through which community groups can be informed of the outcomes of the project and activities of Transition Kurilpa and the broader community;
For Transition Kurilpa members, Energetic Kurilpa will deliver:
- A leading example of how groups can successfully carry out community development and city-wide recognition when sharing our experience with Transition Town initiatives throughout Brisbane City;
- Increased confidence, knowledge, skills and capacity;
- Greater capability to coordinate community gatherings, sharing and learnings across networks;
- A sense of empowerment and accomplishment, through learning how to formulate authentic community based proposals and make inclusive decisions together;
- Successful media and communication strategies.
For the greater Brisbane Community and Brisbane Council Energetic Kurilpa will deliver:
- Audit reports on premises audited, including emission quantification data.
- Attendance and feedback from workshops.
- Participation data, feedback and lessons learnt from the project.
- A leading example for clean air and sustainable energy to be shared throughout Brisbane City, especially through other Transition intiatives;
- Authentic community participation and increased links;
- Active mentoring for other local area Transition Town Initiatives to flourish.
- Lower community GHG emissions and energy demand.
 Following Australian Standard AS/NZS 3598:2000.
 Queensland Parliament’s Environment and Resources Committee, Energy Efficiency: Queensland’s First Energy Resource – Report on the economic and environmental potential provided by energy efficiency improvements for households, communities, industry, and government (2010).