Zero Net Emissions by 2025

Weekly News Digest, Friday 21st November 2008

Posted on 21 November 2008 by e-news

Key dates -summary
Saturday 22nd November – Low energy Solar Display Home Open Day
Sunday 23rd November – Low Energy Solar Display home open to public
Friday 5th December – International Volunteers Day
Wednesday 17th December – MASG Xmas Party for members and volunteers

MASG News and Events


Saturday 22nd November at 2 pm
19 Main Road, Campbells Creek. (near Moscript Street)
Please come and help to celebrate the opening of the low energy solar home. Why not share transport to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to assist with parking. Further Information: Fran 0407 822 723 or MASG 5470 6978
The house will be open to the public on weekends from 23 November.

The Low Energy Solar Display Home will be open to members of the public on Sunday 23rd November, 11am until 3pm. After that, the house will be open between 10am and 4pm on Saturdays and from 11am until 3pm on Sundays until Sunday 22nd December and will reopen on Saturday 17th January. If you want to book a private house tour contact Fran on 5470 6978 or email: Phil Hansen – who provided the concept plan for the landscaping – will be running a workshop in mid December. Stay tuned for further details!

MASG believe that Local Government has an important role to play in how our communities will address the challenges arising from climate change and councilors have a pivotal role in setting the policies that will guide those responses. MASG distributed a questionnaire produced by Environment Victoria to all the candidates in the election. The questionnaire enabled the candidates to indicate what likely policies and actions around climate change that they would support if elected. The responses from the candidates were collated and you can see the results by visiting the website.

CRAG Groups – an exciting way of pledging to live low carbon lives: becoming part of a Carbon Rationing Action Group could be one of the most important steps you take to help reduce carbon emissions, your own and across the shire. We are inviting the whole community to start taking their personal steps toward sustainability. The CRAG project will include an introductory information session, sociable workshops to build skills and knowledge in measuring, monitoring, reducing and offsetting your carbon footprints. Click here for further information. You can contact Deanna Neville, Project Coordinator, on 5470 6978 Tuesday or Wednesday; or 0428 751 090; or email

International Volunteers Day. This year, the volunteer organisations in Mt Alexander Shire are inviting all their volunteers to see a free screening of “Australia” on Friday 5th December at the Theatre Royal. Arrive at 9:30am. As one of the largest volunteer based groups in the shire, our Chair, Jim Norris, says this is a great chance to catch up with volunteers who work with other organisations. The film will be followed by a light lunch, down at Victory Park. We really appreciate all the work done by our volunteers so make sure you RSVP for the movie and lunch by phoning 5470 6978 or emailing

Globe Recycling: MASG is piloting a light globe recycling initiative to encourage households to recycle compact fluorescent light globes (CFLs) rather than disposing of them in general waste. This service is not provided by council or any other local service but is an important part of taking responsibility for end-use of CFLs.
It is requested that a gold coin donation be made for the recycling of each of the globes recycled – the cost of recycling is about $2 per globe. A box for this recycling will be in the MASG front office from this week. Please let others know of this service. For further information call Gordon: 5470 6007.

Workshop and Training: Sas is a member of MASG and currently studying Certificate 4 in both Permaculture and ‘Training and Assessment’. As part of one of her assignments she is facilitating a free workshop on Sunday 14th December from 2-5pm on: Food for the soil: compost, weed tea and worms. If interested email Sas at or call on 5472 2340.

Lismore Sustainability Group: Tony Smark, former member of our Board, was in New South Wales last week addressing about 50 people from the recently formed Lismore Sustainability Group. He spoke to the very enthusiastic group about MASG’s experiences over the past three years and alerted them to what worked brilliantly for us and also what could have been done better. The Lismore Group are hugely impressed by what MASG has achieved and referred to us {often} as “legendary” and our members as “legends “and “saints”. It’s nice to be acknowledged from so far afield and to know we are inspiring others. It’s also nice to count our “blessings”.

Xmas Party on Wednesday 17th December at 5:30 PM. Put this date in your diary now as we’re hoping to see you all there! Plenty of time to have something to eat and drink, catch up and then go down to Carols in the Park at 8:30pm. Further details in coming weeks.

Events organised by other groups

Hepburn Wind Farm offer extended. Copies of the Hepburn Wind Share Offer document and the extension can be obtained by calling 03 9429 5629, or by direct download.

Transition Towns: there will be a series of 3 bring-your-own-sandwich sessions on Friday 21st and 28th November, then 5th December from 12:15 until 1:45pm at the Uniting Church Hall via Mostyn or Lyttleton Streets, Castlemaine. Hot and cold drinks provided. The first session will be about taking action locally – what are the opportunities in the Greenhouse Action Plan and MAP2020 community plan? Gold coin donation towards hire of hall. The theme for 28th November is complimentary water systems, to secure a viable water future for the Shire.

Trentham Sustainability Group will be holding Sustainability Day in the town square on Saturday 22nd November from 9am to 1pm. For more information email: or call 0433 822 281.

Sheltermaker Dreaming: Peter Cowman, director of the Living Architecture Centre, will be making a presentation on Saturday 22nd November at 2pm in the Castlemaine Community Centre. Cost: $2.00. For further information ring: 9005 5833

Victorian Community Climate Action Groups will come together on Saturday 22nd November to discuss and develop core campaign goals we want to contribute to the national grassroots climate campaign. If you have any questions about the Victorian planning day, or Australia’s Climate Action Summit in Canberra, contact Louise Morris at:

Castlemaine Landcare Group will be having its final working bee of the year on Sunday 23rd November in the relative shade of Forest Creek behind Best Motors on Forest Street, tackling weed infestations since last working there. For further information ring: 0408 706630 and 5470 6630 or email:

The MAP2020 Community Plan Steering Committee would like to invite interested community members to attend its next meeting on Thursday 27th November from 7.00- 8.30pm at the Campbells Creek Community Centre, Elizabeth Street, Campbells Creek. A light supper will be served following the meeting. For further information please contact Deb Simpson in Council’s Community Planning Branch on: 5471 1711

Environment Victoria: free community workshop on how you can influence the future of the Campaspe River, on Thursday 27th November at Bendigo Trades Hall, from 5pm until 7:30pm. RSVP by 25th November to Kate Stephens on 9341 8116

EconoSpace Framing: Building a small and green sustainable mini- shelter. Hands on learning, first time presented in Australia by Peter Cowman. Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th December from 10am – 5pm. Click here for further information or phone 9005 5833.

Interesting Information and Links

The Guide to Ethical Supermarket Shopping is now available! The booklet also has general information on Fairtrade products, factory farming, organics, GM and a boycott call page which lists which companies have had an international boycott call and why. Click here for more information.

New Weekend Bus Service: Maldon and Castlemaine four times on Saturday and three times on Sunday. The route includes a Wesley Hill market and Chewton service on Saturdays. Other local services also expanded. Full timetables can be obtained from the Town Hall or downloaded from the Mt Alexander Shire Council website.

Environment Victoria released a major piece of work this week, showing how Victoria’s emissions could be more than halved by 2020. The research, completed by the Nous group, builds on previous work undertaken by the State government. The good news is its possible to achieve 54% cuts by 2020 (on 1990 levels- equivalent to 60% cuts on today’s levels), though it won’t be easy and needs action across all sectors. The report and a fact sheet can be downloaded here. Of course, if Victoria can do it most other states probably can too, which means we could be adopting an ambitious national target!

Green tip:
Having indoor plants will help to naturally filter the air in your home or workplace, by absorbing carbon dioxide and giving back oxygen – as well looking good.

Quote of the Week

“My presidency will mark a new chapter in America’s leadership on climate change that will strengthen our security and create millions of new jobs in the process,” said Obama. Speaking by video to a climate conference in Los Angeles, [he] repeated his campaign vow to reduce climate-altering carbon dioxide emissions by 80 percent by 2050, and invest $150 billion in new energy-saving technologies.
– ‘Obama Affirms Climate Change Goals’, New York Times, 18th Nov 2008

MASG’s E News is currently compiled by Jill Bryan. If you would like to advertise an event or comment on any items, please send Closing time for copy Wednesday 3pm. For further information ring 5470 6978

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