Brimbank City Council signed its first environmental upgrade agreement (EUA) on 2 November – with Langdon Ingredients, located in Derrimut. The EUA provides finance for the business to undertake environmental improvements which will include a 430 kilowatt solar installation with a value of $770,000. This will be the largest EUA-funded solar project in Victoria so far.
Brimbank’s EUA program was launched in March this year, when the council joined other Victorian councils – including WAGA members, the Cities of Greater Geelong, Hobsons Bay, Maribyrnong and Wyndham – in offering local businesses this opportunity to access funding for environmental improvements to their premises. The councils’ programs are undertaken in partnership with the Sustainable Melbourne Fund as a program administrator.
In launching Brimbank’s first EUA, the Mayor, Cr John Hedditch, said, ‘The initiative allows businesses to access loans administered through the council rate system. This removes the need for upfront capital, whilst competitive interest rates and low-cost financing make these arrangements a cost effective way to reduce the risks associated with rising energy costs. The environmental agreements provide businesses an opportunity to replace old and inefficient equipment with newer more efficient technologies and reap the benefits of operating a more sustainable and efficient building. Council is actively working to assist its community, including businesses to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce their utility expenses and to improve energy security.’
The agreement with Langdon Ingredients is the seventh EUA signed in the WAGA region. A total of more than 1,300 kilowatts of solar installations have now been facilitated through these agreements, for a value of $2.5 million, with associated financial and greenhouse gas savings to the businesses. EUAs are proving to be an effective mechanism for the WAGA councils to facilitate emissions reductions and help businesses in line with the Low Carbon West strategy.