Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Massive gas price rises sees Sutherland Shire Council considering pool closures

Massive gas price rises sees Sutherland Shire Council considering pool closures
April 18, 2017

Sutherland Shire Council is considering urgent measures to reduce a potential $500,000 rise in the costs of the gas that it consumes, including closing swimming pools in winter, increasing entry fees, lowering water temperatures and cutting subsidies to swimming programs.

The action follows its gas supplier, Origin Energy, raising the price of the gas it supplies the Council by 220%

According to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald, the increase will cost the community an extra $500,000 and will see the cost of heating and powering the council's three major swimming centres rise to $2 million a year, unless savings measures are implemented.

Australia could face a natural gas shortage as early as next year, posing a risk to electricity supplies and security in several states, according to a new report by the Australian Energy Market Operator.

Sutherland Shire Mayor Carmelo Pesce told the Sydney Morning Herald “we don't understand why it's such a big increase. There was no explanation.”

The rise means the Council must consider the operational costs for the Shire's 11 pools and spas in council-run swimming centres at Sutherland, Engadine, and Caringbah, some of which rely on natural gas for heating.

The increase follows six months of tendering negotiations between the council and the state's two energy suppliers, Origin Energy and AGL, for a new energy contract.

The Council was unable to secure quotes from the companies until March, weeks before its existing contract with Origin was due to expire on 31st March, a spokeswoman said.

The Council decided to re-sign with Origin, accepting the 220% increase, as it was the cheapest quote presented to the council, the spokeswoman said.

The price hike comes amid a national debate over Australia's looming gas shortage and spiralling energy costs, and follows a warning last month from the Australian Energy Markets Operator that eastern states would face blackouts unless something was done to secure gas supplies.

In a bid to find savings, the council is now considering immediately hiking the general pool admission by an average of $1.30 across the three centres, reducing the $40,000 heating bill by lowering pool temperatures by one degree, and closing the Engadine swimming pool during the winter months.

The council is also considering charging the Department of Education for its access to its swimming centres to run its learn-to-swim programs for children, bringing it into line with other councils across Sydney.

Currently, the Council provides the Department of Education with free access to its pools, which adds about $40,000 to its gas cost.

Media reports also suggest that Councils in Liverpool and Hornsby are also facing similar gas price rises.

Images of the Sutherland Leisure Centre courtesy of Sutherland Shire Council. 

13th April 2016 - REPORT SUGGESTS NEW TECHNOLOGIES COULD DELIVER SIGNIFICANT ENERGY SAVINGS FOR AQUATIC CENTRES 

1st April 2016 - AQUATICS AND RECREATION VICTORIA RELEASES ENERGY BENCHMARKING STUDY FOR AQUATIC CENTRES

3rd February 2014 - AQUATIC AND RECREATION INSTITUTE GETS NSW GOVERNMENT BACKING FOR ACTIVE OVER 50S PROGRAM 

30th November 2010 - ENERGY SAVING RATHER THAN COST CUTTING AT YMCA CENTRE

9th September 2010 - SUTHERLAND SHIRE AND FITNESS AUSTRALIA LAUNCH OUTDOOR TRAINING POLICY


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

PlayRope

Playrope Aqua-Fun, are the Australian & New Zealand exclusive distributors for Vortex Aquatic Structures International, the world leader in aquatic playgrounds and urban water landscapes.…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Parks / Play / Recreation

 
 

GUNNEBO

Gunnebo is a global provider of security and access control solutions and services with sales companies in 31 countries in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia.…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Security / Ticketing / Venues

 
 

Crystal Pools

Crystal Pools has a solid history of performance on a wide variety of government and commercial projects and is the name behind many of Australia’s most innovative and ambitious aquatic…

read more

Aquatics / Design

 
 

SUNBATHER

Solar Pool Heating & Swimming Pool Covers since 1974. Sunbather offer an Australian made product which undergoes continual development to enable you to trust in the Sunbather brand. We deliver a…

read more

Aquatics / Venues

 
 

LINKS MODULAR SOLUTIONS

Links Modular Solutions are a leading provider of high-quality, innovative software solutions for leisure facilities. Our software suite includes modules such as POS, Classes, Members, Facility…

read more

Access / Billing / Finance / Fitness / Technology

 
 

WATERPLAY Solutions Corp

Whether your goal is increasing your centre's revenues or creating an engaging environment, why not add play to your project? If you're looking for stylish aquatic play features, kid-tested…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Recreation / Waterparks

 
 

CERAMIC SOLUTIONS

Established in 1994, Ceramic Solutions has excelled at the supply and installation of swimming pool tiles and equipment for the pool and leisure industry, with a focus on the needs of end-users. …

read more

Aquatics / Design / Surfaces / Venues

 
 

Mattioli

Mattioli provides award winning painting, flooring and waterproofing services to the aquatics and recreation sector. We’re recognised as the leading contractor in the industry with award-winning…

read more

Aquatics / Recreation / Safety

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business