A climate emergency has been declared by Indigo Council.
Councillors at Tuesday night's meeting spoke passionately about the steps needed to stop a catastrophe for the planet in the future, for the sake of their children and grandchildren.
But discussion became heated when it came to the issue of costs - mayor Bernard Gaffney said steps such as selling Bulla Gas to focus only on renewable energy would result in rate rises of 10 per cent.
Cr Larry Goldsworthy said the real cost would be to the planet if nothing was done.
"The flooding event in mid-December is a perfect example. It was declared by the Bureau of Meteorology as a one in 200-year event, with the microburst of flooding to the Hume Freeway a one in 2000-year event," he said.
"We are but one cog in the wheel, but we can play a role in moving the wheel just a little bit."
IN OTHER NEWS:
Deputy mayor Barb Murdoch said she supported the climate emergency declaration as a proud grandmother.
"I want them and their children and the children after them to be able to say that we've tried to do something, or we have done something that has mitigated climate change and made the world a better place for them to live in. It's not about us," she said.
Councillors unanimously passed Indigo's climate change policy and environment strategy, which Cr Diane Shepheard said meant climate change implications would be considered in every council decision.
Cr Jenny O'Connor said people in the North East were taking their own steps because of gross inadequacy from federal and state governments.
She said the council had to treat the warnings the same as a health pandemic and that voting for climate action was the most important thing she would do as a councillor.
"The impact of climate change is truly frightening and it's important Indigo Shire has a policy that directs council and assures the community that we are mindful of how significant this is and we are thinking about local implications," she said.
Cr Gaffney and James Trenery would not support the use of the word "emergency".
"I agree that climate change is real and it's here - it's a world crisis," Cr Gaffney said, after vacating the mayor's chair to move a motion.
"We're a very small rural shire. It's great to be symbolic, but to make a real difference? I don't think so."
Councillors flagged holding a public meeting with scientists and politicians on the issue.