Climate adaptation

Climate adaptation

Getting ready for climate change

Our climate adaptation strategy outlines a plan of actions to safeguard Sydney against the threat of soaring temperatures, worsening storms and rising sea levels. The plan has been developed in collaboration with major science organisations, top businesses and the community, with an independent citizen’s panel offering community input and rating climate action priorities.

Please note: Our climate adaptation strategy is a supporting document to our Environmental Action 2016–2021 strategy and action plan, which is the City's most up-to-date set of environmental targets and actions.

The most popular climate change actions from the community include:

  • 92% – trees and plants for shade, cooling and shelter
  • 88% – open space and infrastructure for changing rainfall
  • 87% – buildings, streets and open space to withstand extreme heat
  • 86% – factoring climate change into all future City decisions
  • 84% – lobbying for design and building codes that plan for climate change.

The biggest challenge with climate change for the City remains moving fast enough to cut carbon emissions, with average temperatures already jumping 0.9C. Priority actions recommended in the strategy include:

  • developing a heatwave response plan
  • raising awareness about climate-related events such as air pollution, bushfires and heatwaves
  • developing a sea level rise adaptation action plan
  • working with energy companies to assess trigger points and potential vulnerability of the city’s power supply
  • calling for changes to engineering and building standards and codes to address climate change.

The City’s climate adaptation plan is part of a series of environmental strategies, including renewable energy, energy efficiency, advanced waste treatment and decentralised water management. 

Paris climate change talks

The 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change met in Paris from 30 November to 11 December 2015.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore was invited to participate, including:

  • Resilience Day – 100 Resilient Cities together with UN Habitat and the World Bank showcased mayors, especially those who have released or will soon release their climate change strategies.
  • C40 Awards Ceremony – the City of Sydney was nominated for our residential apartments sustainability plan.
  • Climate Summit for Local Leaders – C40 forum with sessions highlighting the successes of inter-city collaboration, how city leaders are driving market place change and the need for more financial support to ensure future low carbon cities.

The City has welcomed the breakthrough climate deal achieved in Paris. Global leaders from nearly 200 nations have joined together in a bid to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees.

Last updated: Monday, 24 July 2017