Protecting our environment and leading the transition to a zero emissions future

Protecting our environment and leading the transition to a zero emissions future

The ACT Government is proud to be providing national leadership in action against climate change. We know the only way to create a better future is to act now. With support from many enthusiastic people in the community, we are taking real action to become Australia’s most sustainable city and creating new jobs in green industries in the process.

We are on track to achieve our target of powering the ACT with 100 per cent renewable electricity by 2020 and are working towards achieving net-zero emissions by 2045. The ACT Government’s ambitious targets are delivering tangible local results, with more trees, a new recycling scheme and funding for community-led projects.

Signing up to Under2MoU to limit global warming

The Under2MoU aims to limit global warming to below two degrees Celsius, which the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has indicated is needed to avert harmful climate change.


The ACT Government joined 165 others from 33 countries in signing the Under2MoU in November 2016. In doing so we have committed to avoiding dangerous levels of global warming, meeting the challenges of a changing climate head-on.

Launching a container deposit scheme

Recycling and responsible waste management are part of keeping our suburbs, waterways and parklands clean and tidy. Our new container deposit scheme aims to reward Canberrans who do the right thing when disposing of bottles and beverage cans.


The ACT’s first container deposit scheme started operating in June 2018. More than 7.6 million containers were recycled through the scheme within its first six months. By June 2019 there will be 18 return points operating across Canberra, making it more convenient for everyone to take part.

Tackling local environmental issues

We know that the Canberra community has a big role to play in tackling our environmental challenges. That’s why we committed $800,000 to empower community groups to improve sustainability and better manage the health of local ecosystems across Canberra. We also committed to appointing an energy consumer advocate to support Canberrans as the energy industry transitions and ensure low income households are not left behind.

On track

In partnership with Energy Consumers Australia, we have appointed Canberra’s inaugural energy consumer advocate to give electricity and gas customers a stronger voice.

We also stepped in to keep the Environmental Defenders Office open after the Federal Government cut its funding.

The Community Zero Emissions Grants program is fully funded over four years and in the past two years we have awarded over $285,000 in grants to groups like SEE-Change and the Canberra Environment Centre, which are working with the community on ways to reduce the ACT’s environmental footprint and cut the amount of waste to landfill.


Media Release: Protecting our environment and leading the transition to a zero emissions future