6 September 2011 – The national energy saving program CitySwitch which helps local businesses cut their energy bills has another NSW member, the City of Ryde.

CitySwitch, run by the City of Sydney, now covers 322 tenancies around the country, and more than 1.6 million square metres of office space.

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said rising electricity prices and the prospect of carbon pricing are encouraging businesses to join the program.

“More than half the energy used in our capital city CBDs comes from office equipment, lighting and

computers – that means there’s huge potential for saving energy and reducing power bills,” she said.

“CitySwitch offers businesses a double benefit of lower energy bills and reductions in greenhouse

gas emissions, which lower their exposure to the proposed carbon price,” said City of Ryde Mayor Artin Etmekdjian.

The program uses NABERS Energy, an industry recognised tool, to help tenants across Australia

benchmark their greenhouse performance.

Ratings go from one to five stars, with five stars representing an exceptionally high level of energy efficiency.

Organisations that become CitySwitch signatories commit to achieving an accredited four stars or

higher NABERS Energy rating.

With the average tenancy performing at 2.5 stars, a four star commitment means the tenant is at

least 20 per cent more efficient than the general tenant market.

If all of Australia’s commercial office tenants were to achieve a NABERS Energy tenancy rating

of four stars or higher, 960,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide could be saved each year, the equivalent of taking 200,000 cars off the road.

CitySwitch began in 2006, as a partnership between the City of Sydney, North Sydney and

Parramatta, and expanded nationally in June 2008.

Ryde joins Sydney, North Sydney, Parramatta, Willoughby, Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne,

Perth, Port Phillip, the ACT Government, the NSW Department of Environment, Climate Change

& Water, and Sustainability Victoria, in the CitySwitch program.