Fire and Emergency is now formally tracking its carbon emissions and has recently been certified under the Toitū Carbon reduction programme.

Toitū Envirocare awards certification to both public and private organisations which pledge to track and reduce their carbon emissions.

The first year of emissions measured was the 2019-2020 financial year.

Deputy Chief Executive, Organisational Strategy and Capability Development Russell Wood says in our first year Fire and Emergency recorded 12,408.38 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent .

“Diesel accounted for nearly half our carbon emissions,” he says.

“Other big contributors were air travel, electricity, and other fuel uses such as petrol vehicles and helicopters.”

After reviewing the initial audit Fire and Emergency developed an emissions management plan with reduction targets.

“Our first target is to reduce our gross emissions by 10% by 30 June 2025,” he says.

“Already, with the changes to how we operate because of COVID-19 and the implementation of the Travel Office, we have seen a reduction in the amount of travelling we do as an organisation.

“This has already helped us reduce our emissions,” Russell says.

While the red fleet accounts for most of our diesel emissions, we found 16% of our total emissions came from our fleet of utes, cars and SUVs.

“We are considering what role our fleet and fuels (diesel, petrol, LPG and propane) might have in reducing our carbon emissions. We currently have 13 electric (EV or PHEV) and hybrid vehicles in our fleet and five electric vehicle charging stations at fire stations across the country, with the installation of four more under way.”

“It’s important we consider what our fleet looks like from a carbon neutral perspective in the future,” Russell says.

Fire and Emergency is committed to reducing its carbon footprint right across the organisation and will be calling on everyone to look at ways they can help.

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