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U City's Net Zero Target by 2035

August 2021

Uniting Communities has  ramped up its commitment to the environment by announcing its intention to become a net zero organisation by 2035. The organisation is leading the way on climate change action and challenges other local companies to follow.
The announcement was made  as they celebrated their 10-year journey towards a sustainable future.

The organisation has led the charge in South Australia as the first organisation certified carbon neutral and the achievement of 6 Star Green Star ratings for their U City development in the Adelaide CBD.

Since 2010, Uniting Communities has reduced their emissions by over 30%, resulting in savings of over $1.5 million, and their sights are set on even greater levels of sustainability.

Uniting Communities recognised this significant milestone and announced their net zero goal at their first certified carbon neutral event – 'Driving a Sustainable Future' held at U City.

The event brought together leaders from government, industry, and the private sector to share their commitment to sustainable practices and advocate for action against climate change.

Uniting Communities' Chief Executive, Simon Schrapel says the event was a chance to highlight the organisation's achievements since becoming carbon neutral in 2015, but more importantly to commit to further action by announcing this historic first for a South Australian company.

“We are committed to addressing the effects of climate change particularly in support of the vulnerable and disadvantaged people and communities we serve, who are least likely to have the resources to respond to its adverse effects,” he says.

“We are proud to be pushing the boundaries when it comes to reducing carbon emissions and our actions have demonstrated what can be achieved locally to address global challenges.

“We urge other organisations to make a pledge to achieve their own carbon reduction targets for the future of our community, our State and our planet.

In light of the UN Panel on Climate Change report released earlier this week, the urgency for us all to act and play our part is becoming increasingly acute. 

Charities and social service agencies like Uniting Communities have a vital part to play too in not only advocating for climate change action – but taking responsibility through our own actions and behaviours. Our sector is a significant contributor to the Australian economy, and it is upon all of us big, small, private or NGO, to take action and to start now.”

Minister for Environment, Hon David Speirs MP, congratulates Uniting Communities for their work towards driving a more sustainable future.

“Work like this supports the State Government's historic Climate Change Action Plan which is an ambitious practical approach to dealing with a changing climate, building a strong green economy and further reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” Minister Speirs says.

“This includes a range of actions to progress towards our state's goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 per cent by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2050.”

City of Adelaide Lord Mayor Sandy Verschoor adds her praise of Uniting Communities' environmental leadership.

“As the Inaugural Ambassador for Carbon Neutral Adelaide (a partnership between the City of Adelaide and the State Government), Uniting Communities is championing our city's vision for climate action.”

The event included key addresses by Minister for Mining & Energy, the Hon. Dan van Holst Pellekaan MP and Tim Jarvis AM, Environmental Scientist, Author and Adventurer. As well as an interactive discussion panel, chaired by Professor Richard Turner of the Premier's Climate Change Council, and featured leaders in sustainability who are driving change and making an impact in South Australia, including:

Elaine Chia, Executive Director, Adelaide Festival
Malcolm Leask, Director, Hither & Yon
Peter Fuller, Managing Director, Fuller Brand Communication
Lee Sauerwald, Executive Manager, Corporate Services, Uniting Communities

Market Quarter congratulates U City on this green initiative.