Zero Net Emissions by 2025

Weekly News Digest – Friday 28th March 2008

Posted on 28 March 2008 by e-news

For more info call 5470 6978

Summary of Coming Events – details in newsletter below
* 28th March, – The History of Oil comedy – from 6.30pm for pizza;
* 3rd April – 7.15pm, V-line community meeting in Castlemaine
* 3rd April, 7pm, – Cuban Permaculturist Roberto Perez, Daylesford
* 12th -13th April – Growing the Harvest, Festival in Castlemaine
* 12 April – Climate Forum Ballarat
* 25th – 27th April – Australian Poetry Centre Regional Festival

MASG Social Events:

Friday 28th March: MASG’s monthly member’s gathering at the Theatre Royal. 6.30 for social and book-your-own-pizza [call 5472 1196]. Movie starts 8pm: The History Of Oil: a hilarious and illuminating movie by Robert Newman. Movie costs $15. Part of ticket price will go to support MASG projects.

Wednesday 2nd April: meet our new Admin Manager Jill Bryan. A lunch to welcome Jill: 12.30 – 1.30pm, at the MASG office or garden. All welcome – BYO plate to share.

MASG News and Events

MASG at Premier’s Climate Change Summit: chair Neil Barrett, has been invited to the Victorian government’s Summit on Climate Change in early April. Neil said: “It’s a feather in the cap of our local community to be invited, given that on a population basis, our Shire would not normally expect to be represented.” If any members wish to suggest ideas to take to the summit, please contact Neil on 5472 3094.

MASG, Climate Change goals and the Shire Budget: our Shire Council is holding budget information sessions early in April. These sessions are an opportunity for MASG members to ask questions about how the spending priorities in the proposed budget align with the Shire’s ambitious goal of reducing the community’s greenhouse gas emissions by 30% (or around 100,000 tonnes of CO2) by 2010. Last year’s budget did not align well at all. For example, while roads received around $2.7 million (apart from federal government contributions), bikes received only $20,000 for a study – and that was only after we protested. Even then, nine months later the money sits there, unused.  Measures to promote and facilitate walking received virtually nothing.  

This year we believe it essential that we express our views more strongly and demand a real change in priorities and commitment to action. We need to make it clear that Council cannot achieve its climate change goals unless it designs and implements a radically different budget from those that have gone before.

The meetings are at: Maldon Community Centre, 7pm, Wednesday April 2nd, and Castlemaine’s Phee Broadway Theatre at 7pm on Wednesday April 9th. Contact Neil on 54 72 3094

V-line community meeting in Castlemaine: Thursday 3rd April, please arrive 7.15pm for 7.30 start. Ray Bradfield Room, next to IGA Victory Park, Castlemaine. Even though the bike ban has been reversed, the same issues are still affecting those who take bikes on board trains. This is your opportunity to let V-line know how you are affected when taking your bike on the train. They are likely to announce that Castlemaine and Bendigo will be 2 of the recommended 5 regional stations to have ‘bike cages’ installed.

V-line has made it clear that the design of the carriages will not be changed in the near or medium future. If you are unable to attend, your issues or suggestions can be forwarded to me or someone else who will be attending. Jillian Gibson 5472 3098, 0409 404 791

Cycling Friendly Cities

Product Reviews: MASG has a new page on our website for product reviews and we want you to share your stories about products that consume less energy and make your life more comfortable. So whether it is a type of paint or light-bulb, insulation or a hot water service, we want to hear about your experiences of purchasing, installing and living with the products and services that help you to step more lightly on the earth. Submit your reviews to . The first two are at:

harvest.jpgGrowing the Harvest, 12-13th April: BOOK NOW for many unusual workshops and performances – program available at MASG office and Enter our produce display for Growing the Harvest. Enter in the following categories (all home made): Jams; Chutney and Relish; Preserves; Vegetables, Fruit, Olives AND the strangest shaped vegetable or fruit. A link to entry form is at website address above, or available from MASG office. “Growing the Harvest” is organised by MASG, in partnership with the Uniting and Anglican Churches. Contact Heather 5472 3094.

Carbon Heroes: MASG has received a grant to seek out the Carbon Heroes in our Shire and to capture their stories in a photographic exhibition. If you know someone who is quietly reducing their carbon footprint or sharing their knowledge with others, have always been energy efficient or you believe them to be a Carbon Hero for any other reason, we would like to hear from you. Contact Deanna on 0428 751 090, email or leave a message for Deanna at MASG on 5470 6978.

MASG Sustainability Raffle: Are you able to sell tickets in your workplace, to family/ friends, or at markets before 12 April? Contact Lorna on 0419 108 847 for tickets or for more information. 5 great prizes:
1. 5000 litre tank courtesy of Kelly Plumbing (value $1395),
2. organic food harvest basket (value $200),
3. 5 bare rooted fruit trees of your choice courtesy of Bold Garden (value $125),
4. Eco-Bokashi bench-top compost bucket courtesy Down to Earth Store (value $100)
5. 2 years’ subs to Digger’s Garden Club & Digger’s fruit and veg book (value $90).
Tickets available at Down to Earth Shop, and Goodfoods (both on Barker St., near MASG office) and Castlemaine Wholefoods (Mostyn St.).

Climate ‘Code Red’ – Petition Reminder. Petition sheets need to be at MASG office by Wednesday 3rd April for delivery to Bob Cameron MP later that week. You can get a copy from MASG or from here:

Coming Events, not endorsed by MASG

Earth Hour – 29th March at 8pm, Castlemaine Fringe supports Earth Hour with a special “lights-off” acoustic set at the Theatre Royal on Saturday from 7.45 pm. Live music performance followed by a selection of outstanding Australian and International short films. Fundraiser for the Fringe 2009 Festival. Details from Jim on 0409 708 627.

All Fools’ Day 1st April: you are invited to an April Fools’ Day breakfast on the lawns of the rectory at the Anglican church on Agitation Hill, Castlemaine from 8 a.m. till 10. Tea, coffee and all sorts of foolish delicacies will be served. An offering for the suffering Christians in Palestine will be received. 5472 1137. Dress for the occasion!

Cuban Permaculturist Roberto Perez Daylesford – Thursday 3rd April at 7pm. Bus transport from Castlemaine for only $5 return. Transport contact Luke: 0407 364 654; . Event info from 5348 3636. Roberto Perez is an inspiring and articulate presenter who works as a permaculture and environmental educator for the Foundation for Nature and Humanity, Cuba’s major environment organization based in Havana. The 2007 Living Planet Report from World Wildlife Fund identified Cuba as the only sustainable country in the world. Australia listed as world’s 6th most unsustainable nation.

A Festival of Creative Arts, April 4 – 6: Continuing the 150th Anniversary celebration at the Anglican Christ Church, Agitation Hill, Castlemaine. Friday 4 April, 6pm Agitation Hill Lecture* – Australian writer of note, CARMEL BIRD, now living in Castlemaine, opens the Festival with the Agitation Hill Lecture. 8 pm Award winning cellist SAM GOBLE performs Bach cello suites.* Saturday 5th and Sunday: Internationally acclaimed percussion creator and specialist teacher, JON MADIN, presents a marimba workshop for children and adults – bookings essential on 5472 1137. Sunday 6 April, 2.30 pm MAINLY GOSPEL SINGERS and THE BLENDERS in concert.* 7pm Choral Evensong – a glorious Anglican Tradition where beautiful music from many centuries transports liturgy to a new heaven. * Asterisked events $8/$5 OR weekend pass to all events $20. Tickets from Fergus Frog, Barker Street Castlemaine or from the Parish Office, bookings on 5472 1137 or
THE CLIMATE FORUM in Ballarat – Saturday 12th April 2008; 12:30 to 5.00 pm. $12.50 adults; concession $10.00, students $5.00. Bookings essential: 5338 0980. Breaze newsletter says: “Apricus have donated a SOLAR HOT WATER SYSTEM (gas or electric boost) for the event as a way of offsetting the emissions associated with the staging the forum which will be raffled off to some lucky sod. The Climate Forum will feature an exhibition of Environmental art and photography. Artists are invited to express their interest in participating in an exhibition of works focusing on environment, sustainability and/or global warming.” Email: Plus: BREAZE AGM: same day as the Climate Forum at 10:30.

National permaculture conference at Easter. Ask Ian for details – 5470 6891. One story in the SMH:

Connecting Country is a unique landscape-scale project which aims to increase, enhance and restore biodiversity across the Mount Alexander Shire area. The project is being run by the community and involves a wide range of groups and agencies. Saturday 12th April, open between 10am until 1pm Ray Bradfield Room, Victory Park, Castlemaine. Morning tea from 10am, BBQ (including vegetarian) from 11.30am.

Introduction To Sustainable House Design & Construction at Castlemaine Community House, Sunday March 30th, 10 am – 4pm, $75; phone 5473 4284 or online at . This course covers the principles and methodologies of Living Architecture which are applicable to new and to existing buildings.

Community Development and Ecology Conference this week at Deakin University, will include three Castlemaine presentations, including a dvd that will be released for a community screening soon; and Jacqueline Semmler’s Food Project; and Mount Alexander Shire Clean Up Action Network’s (MASCAN) community engagement model.

Communicating & Relating Powerfully in Difficult and Conflict Situations. A two-day workshop with Carol Perry: 19th & 20th April 2008, Castlemaine. Build your capacity to actually use the communication skills you have learned. Feel powerful, alive and effective in all aspects of your work and interpersonal communications. For further information please contact: Fran Woodruff, 0407 822 723 or

Ist April: “A day given over to the divine fantasy of holy gaiety… A day of mystical jokes concealing deep mercy. A day when all the mercies of the year gather to manifest themselves. All Fools’ Day should be celebrated everywhere by everyone; some with dancing, some with feasts, some with fasting. A day when all people , the successful, the failures, the Saints, the misfits, the heroes, weaklings, businessmen, artists, poets, are united in the mystical charity of the Fool.” Cecil Collins 20th century British artist.

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