A PEAK body representing the interests of the state's councils has declared a climate emergency.
A motion was passed - 51 to 49 per cent - at this week's annual Local Government NSW (LGNSW) conference, pushing the state government to join more than 900 government agencies taking clear, effective steps to avert a climate crisis
In July, Wagga councillors voted to declare a climate emergency, but the decision was overturned about two weeks later. The council has referred the topic of climate change to its Community Strategic Plan review.
Councillor Vanessa Keenan, who has been an advocate for a climate emergency, applauded the "good move" by LGNSW.
She said the decision reflected many communities across the state that have taken this step.
"Climate change isn't going away because the decision was rescinded. The issue is still there and the impacts will be felt, and continue to be felt in our area and across the world," she said.
Cr Keenan represented the council at the local government conference in Sydney. She said the decision reflected the debate that occurred during the three-day gathering.
"So many motions have been in relation to how we're responding to these issues around waste management and recycling, creating a circular economy and huge amount of discussion about the impact of climate change on local communities around the state," she said.
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However, Cr Paul Funnell has labelled the decision as the "most stupid, idiotic thing" he has ever heard.
"Local government has so many issues and they're worried about issues that have nothing to do with local government. They're wasting billions of dollars," he said.
Cr Funnell had been a key driver behind rescinding Wagga's climate emergency.
He said the "bureaucrats and all councillors who support this nonsense" should be removed and "exposed for their stupidity".
"Local protesters are too busy worrying about freedom of speech - when actually shutting it down - that none of them are actually doing anything in their own backyard," he said.
Climate change activist Trudi Beck was pleased to see LGNSW recognising climate change as a threat to all areas of local government.
With talks occurring across all tiers of government, Dr Beck said the councils would have no option but to follow as decisions were made from higher up.