Climate change

The City of Onkaparinga has been responding to concerns about climate change since 1998 and our Community Plan 2035 further strengthens our commitment.  Our goal is that by 2028 more than 50% of the City’s energy supply will come from renewable sources.

Great news! We have become the first SA council to join the Climate Council’s Cities Power Partnership - a network of Australian councils committed to tackling climate change.

This program aims to highlight the work that councils are doing to reduce their emissions, switch to cleaner energy and build greener, efficient and more resilient communities. 

In the next six months we will pledge to carry out work within the themes of renewable energy, efficiency, transport and advocacy. We will be keen to showcase the work already underway to change our streetlights to LEDs and to increase the efficiency of our community buildings and clubs through the Green Buildings Program.  

Cities Power Partnership logo

Community survey - knowledge, attitudes and behaviours relating to climate change

In late 2017, we developed a public survey to understand community attitudes, knowledge and behaviours relating to climate change so that we can deliver services aligned with community needs.

Survey questions were adapted from the CSIRO Attitudes to Climate Change Survey conducted annually for five years between 2010 and 2014. This allows us to benchmark results against national averages and to track changes within southern Adelaide over time.

Over 630 people responded!

PDF icon png Find out what they told us (1.4Mb)


Our ongoing carbon reduction program is to reduce our corporate emissions through our Green Buildings Initiative, reduce waste going to landfill, improve the efficiency of our fleet and plant and to purchase 100% Green Power for all of our large buildings. Projects such as cliff stability works are addressing the impacts of climate change by  limiting the effects of coastal erosion.


  • Our Resilient South project responds to the impacts of climate change and its compounding impacts on natural hazards such as heat waves, sea level rise, bushfires, storms and flooding. In partnership with the state government and the Cities of Holdfast Bay, Marion and Mitcham we have developed a Climate Change Adaptation Plan for southern Adelaide to strengthen the region for changes in our climate.  We are keen to develop new partnerships to implement the plan. 

    One of the key effects of climate change in the south is the increased frequency and intensity of heatwaves. As part of our Cool Places foundation project we have used thermal infrared imagery to measure the land surface temperature of our urban area on a day that was 39.5 degrees Celsius at Adelaide airport.  By identifying hot-spots we can better inform our management decisions relating to tree plantings, urban planning and the health and wellbeing our community, particularly vulnerable groups. We will focus on projects in our parks, streetscapes, natural landscapes and sporting hubs where there are opportunities to implement more green infrastructure.

    Click here to view the map full screen

  • The Climate Change Response Fund was established in 2008-09 to fund the implementation of the Climate Change Strategy and its foundation projects. The strategy was the outcome of extensive community engagement and was informed by the expert advice of a specially established Science Panel.

    Initiatives from the strategy that received funding from the fund addressed some or all of the following three categories:
    • Adaptation: initiatives that help ensure that the organisation and our communities are prepared for and well adapted to the impacts of climate change. 
    • Corporate Emissions Reduction: initiatives that deliver emission reduction and carbon offsets by reducing our energy use.
    • Low emissions city: initiatives that support emissions reduction by local communities, businesses and industry. 

Projects included biodiversity modelling of climate impacts and future conservation management options for selected plant and animal species, and assessing the impact of climate change on the region’s coast, and proposing adaptation measures to protect our natural (beaches, cliffs, reefs, floodplains and dunes) and built infrastructure (buildings, jetties and sea walls).

PDF icon png View the Climate Change Response Fund review report (3.5Mb)

  • We have been working in collaboration with Australian Centre for Excellence in Local Government and a number of other Councils around Australia, to develop the guidance manual, Climate Adaptation Manual for Local Government – Embedding resilience to climate change (2.7Mb). The manual is a practical tool for local governments across Australia to facilitate change. We are proud to have played an important role in developing this manual and believe the case studies (4.4Mb) we have provided will allow others to make practical and important changes to protect their own environment and communities.