Reinstate carbon offset funding in 2022-2023 Mornington Peninsula Shire Council budget

Reinstate carbon offset funding in 2022-2023 Mornington Peninsula Shire Council budget

1 June 2022
Petition to
Councillor Anthony Marsh (Mayor, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council) and
Signatures: 346Next goal: 500
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Why this petition matters

This petition calls for the Mornington Peninsula Shire Council (MPSC) to reinstate $200,000 of funding for carbon offsets in the 2022-2023 budget, until such time as the community can be properly consulted on the council’s Carbon Neutral policy so the proper democratic process is upheld.

The Mornington Peninsula Shire is seen as a leader on climate action. The Council fought hard to achieve Carbon Neutral status and was one of the first local governments to declare a Climate Emergency. We are shocked by the council’s sudden decision to cut $200,000 of funding for carbon credits in the 2022/2033 budget. 

This decision ignores the overwhelming community support for greater climate action and sets a dangerous example for local governments across Australia.

If this amendment is passed, the Mornington Peninsula Shire will become the first Australian government body to lose their carbon neutral status. Despite our loud opposition to this #CarbonNeutralBackflip, the community has been denied the opportunity to be heard.

After committing to Carbon Neutral status in 2016, Councillor Hugh Fraser pledged to “carry that commitment by example and education to the wider peninsula community.” These Carbon Credits are required to maintain the council’s carbon neutrality, which is the foundation of their climate change strategy. 

This decision will set a dangerous example to Councils across Australia - that local governments are free to roll back on their climate commitments.

We are therefore calling on the Mornington Shire to reinstate carbon offset funding in the 2022-2033 council budget.

Join us in opposing this #CarbonNeutralBackflip. Because local governments are on the front lines of climate change.

This petition has been organised by Save Westernport, MP LEAN, Extinction Rebellion MP, Mornington Peninsula Climate Action Network (mpCAN) and Voices of Mornington Peninsula.


The Council achieved their 2016 goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2021 and has been seen as a leader on climate action, winning numerous awards, and extending their climate action through their Climate Emergency declaration and plan.

On 24 March 2022, the council discussed their Carbon Neutral policy, as they do every year, and accepted it - no issues were raised by councillors at that time.

Then on 10 May 2022 at a budget meeting, Cr Steve Holland circulated an amendment to remove the funding allocation of $200,000 for the purchase of carbon credits from the 2022-2023 budget.

These carbon credits are currently required to maintain the council’s carbon neutral accreditation through Climate Active. Maintaining this accreditation is the foundation of MPSC's climate change strategy. 

This amendment effectively defunded this long-accepted policy, undermining MPSC's climate strategy and previous decisions. This was done without regard for the years of consultation and overwhelming community support for greater climate action, and without giving the community the opportunity to be heard.

For more information, follow the links below:
Youtube link to Council decision: 
MPSC Carbon Neutral Policy: 
MPSC Climate Emergency Plan:
MPSC's Carbon Neutrality media release: 
MPSC's 2021 Climate Active Disclosure Statement (includes MPSC's previous emissions and which carbon credits were purchased): 
Climate Active Organisational Standard (details on emissions reduction and offset requirements):
Clean Energy Regulator's explainer on carbon markets (offset types, sources, and users):

Please note that if you make a donation through this petition, you are donating to and not to one of the local Peninsula-based groups that have organised this petition.

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Signatures: 346Next goal: 500
Support now