Tweed's sustainable friendships
TWEED shire residents have reduced their energy and water consumption by as much as 62% as part of the Tweed Shire Council’s Sustainable Streets initiative.
Participating households in Uki, Cabarita Beach and Mullumbimby Creek were given an ecological report card in June last year inspiring them to begin to reduce their energy and water consumption.
Over the following months, workshops on energy, water, composting, local food and a range of other topics were held in each of the four neighbourhoods to give participants information on how to lead a more sustainable lifestyle. And it worked.
Energy consumption has been reduced since by an average of 14% across all participating households. Cabarita participants reduced their energy consumption by an average of 26% and Mullumbimby Creek participants reduced their average water consumption by a staggering 62%.
Cabarita resident Karen Anderson said the extra money in savings on utility bills was a bonus, but what really inspired her was how the participating residents worked together.
“We started out as neighbours, but because of Sustainable Streets we are now friends,” Mrs Anderson said.
“I’m really looking forward to keeping the momentum going and helping to shape the community where I live,” Mrs Anderson said
Tweed Shire Council sustainability officer Dan Walton said the initiative had been a success because of the enthusiasm of the participants.
“Participating households have a lot to be proud of,” Mr Walton said.
“They’ve shown all of us what can be achieved when you put simple environmental solutions into practice.”
The council hopes the program, funded as part of the Tweed Shire Council’s Bush Futures Program, will be run again in the future.
The program was also run in the Byron Shire at South Golden Beach.
Open a window, natural ventilation is the most energy-efficient way to cool your house.
Use trees to shade your home from heat.
Use mulch to minimise garden watering.
Avoid leaving appliances on standby.