Extinction Rebellion members speak at Katoomba council

Blue Mountains City Councillors will try to convince some "conservative country cousins" to act with them to support a climate emergency motion at the NSW Local Government Annual Conference later this year.

It wasn't a unanimous decision and followed speeches by members of a new global activist group called Extinction Rebellion (XR) which demanded council take the action.

The move follows council's decision in February to declare a climate emergency - one of 30 councils Australia-wide (12 per cent of the population) to make the declaration.

"It is a good first step to tell the truth about the climate and extinction emergency, and we applaud council's declaration of a climate emergency; but we need to do so much more - emergencies don't wait" said Tom Colley, a spokesman for XR Blue Mountains.

"We urge council to move immediately to procure renewably-sourced and low-emission electricity for its operations; divest investments that are primarily fossil fuel based; and advocate for emergency-appropriate climate action from state and federal governments" he added.

Extinction Rebellion was formed in London in 2018, and has spread globally, establishing a presence in Australia this year.

Mr Colley said he was heartened by the support of Labor and Greens councillors.

"We're lucky to have a council that's sufficiently progressive overall to take a motion to the state-wide body ... and endorsing science-based emission reduction timelines and targets."

But he was concerned all four Liberal councillors "voted against such a common-sense proposition because we need everyone on board for the dramatic mobilisation that must happen in the next 18 months".

Liberal Cr Daniel Myles said he was most concerned that the human population was at "plague proportions".

Mr Colley said every day of delay "will impact the lives of our children, grandchildren and all living things".

In June this year Extinction Rebellion protesters held a "die-in" at Civic Place, Katoomba, where they lay down on the pavement surrounded by chalked outlines and messages about climate change.

Taking a stand: Protesters at the Extinction Rebellion 'die-in' in Katoomba.

Taking a stand: Protesters at the Extinction Rebellion 'die-in' in Katoomba.

Greens Cr Kerry Brown said "old fashioned non violent civil disobedience is back in style and it's now an important part of social change".

Fellow Greens Cr Brent Hoare, who has spearheaded the climate emergency campaign of council, said "as leading climate scientists working on the next global assessment report are pointing out, while projected temperature rises are much worse than previously predicted, we still have a narrow window of opportunity to reduce our greenhouse emissions".

"The Arctic is on fire .... individual personal climate action is not going to stop climate emergency ... Blue Mountains will take the motion to some of our conservative country cousins," he added.

Four councillors were chosen as voting delegates at the conference: Labor Crs Romola Hollywood, Darryl Bowling and Mick Fell and Liberal Cr Kevin Schreiber. Three others (Crs Myles, Hoare and Cr Chris Van der Kley) will go at no cost to council.