Zero Net Emissions by 2025

News Digest, Thursday 19th February 2009

Posted on 6 February 2009 by e-news

Key Dates – Summary

* Thursday 19th February – Advocacy working group meeting 12noon at MASG
* Saturday 20th February – Low Solar Energy Display Home open 10am – 3pm, free work shops at 11am and 2pm.
* Sunday 21st February – Low Solar Energy Display Home open 11am-3pm
* Wednesday 25th February – Members Forum – Ray Bradfield room 7-9:30pm.
* Sunday 8th March – MASG Wash against Waste at Taradale Mineral Springs Festival, 10-4pm

MASG News and Events

MASG Members Forum – CPRS, National Climate Summit & MASG strategic focus.
Come along for a quick speil from Dean Bridgfoot on the National Climate Summit, the CPRS (Carbon Pollution Reduction scheme), and put in your ‘2 bobs worth’ on how MASG can respond to the current challenges and opportunities. See website for strategic plan:
When. Wednesday 25th February, from 7-9:30pm in the Ray Bradfield room. Tea, coffee and nibbles provided. Please RSVP to by 3pm Tuesday 24th February.

Low Energy Solar Display Home workshops shine
Last weekend saw the first of the energy, water and waste Sustainable Saturday workshops at the MASG Low Energy Solar Display home. Over 20 people attended the energy workshop presented by ACF GreenHomes champion Paul from Bendigo. Workshops continue every Saturday during February at the home at 11am and 2pm, you don’t need to book and they are free. For further information on the display home and the workshops go to the website.

MASG asks for help on advocacy: IT’S TIME TO SPEAK OUT
Dean has been charged with setting up the MASG advocacy working group, and wants your help. After attending the National Climate Action Summit it has became apparent that climate change is speeding up and our political and business leaders are not able or willing to acknowledge the urgency of the situation and act accordingly. MASG and other groups need to be active politically if we are to see real change. We have done a grand job showing what could be done in our homes, businesses and factories, and now need to be active and ensure that our decision makers support our efforts with serious, practical and urgent action.
The first job for this group will be to moblise people via a “Call to action” one day forum to be held soon in Daylesford. MASG will be working with our other regional sister organisations in Ballarat, Daylesford & Bendigo in hosting the forum. The forum will include information on the latest science, political situation and international, national and state campaigns and how our members and allied organisations can organize, collaborate and take action.
If you wish to help Dean organise this and other advocacy activities please contact him ASAP on 54706978 or

Last year MASG assisted the Castlemaine Library and the Uniting Church to successfully apply to both the state and federal governments for funding for the installation of 2kW solar PV systems. All MASG members are invited to come along and celebrate the launch of the Uniting Church solar PV system at the Uniting Church Hall at 4.00pm on Friday February 20th February and the launch of the Library solar PV system at 5.30pm on Wednesday 25th of February.

Urgent Request for Volunteers for Low Solar Energy House! Why not join our dedicated team of volunteers, update your skills, learn about or share your knowledge about sustainable design, meet the not-so-usual suspects who are coming to the house and learn about what is making people take notice of this house. You also have a tremendous opportunity to be a part of a successful project that is influencing the general public to take up sustainable practices and principles. To sign up now, email:

MASG Members,
You may be aware that John Anthony, the Mt Alexander Shire Council Environment Officer lost his house in the Bendigo fires last week. John has been a strong supporter of MASG and played a major role in formulating the Shire’s Greenhouse Action Plan. He now needs our help. John has asked if anyone knows of a house to rent. Ideally, he is looking for something that is furnished and has a secure yard. He has indicated that his house insurance has adequate provision to cover rent up to 12 months. If you can help, please ring John on: 0428 439 032.

MASG Wash against Waste at the Taradale Mineral Springs Festival
Sunday 8th March, 10am-4pm.
The Wash against Waste crockery from MASG will be used at the festival. The WAW process will help reduce the amount of waste food, packaging and plates/cups going to landfill by providing food stalls with access to reusable crockery. Decreasing waste will ultimately save energy and reduce the carbon output of the festival.
M: 0417 547 270 for more information.

Solar Hot Water purchasing and Membership Cards:Using the sun to heat all or at least part of your hot water requirements helps reduce your carbon footprint and your energy bills. Remember if you are looking at purchasing a solar hot water service the following dealers in Castlemaine support the work of MASG: Terry Robinsons, Solar Direct, Solar & Sustainable Solutions, Printz Plumbing and Auscorp Alternative Energy. You can find out more about this and the offers they have available from our website.
If you are thinking of purchasing a solar hot water service we ask you to collect your membership card and show it to your hot water service provider. Please get your MASG membership card from our office – drop in to 233 Barker St or ring Jill on 5470 6978.

CRAGs – More handy hints and queries from our Craggers GroupITSRs
* Down jackets: We wear these each morning in winter before heading out the door and therefore don’t need to turn the heating on. Also great when sitting still at the computer (with a blankie on the knees!) Rima T
* To reduce rodent invasion of your compost bin, fold 3 layers of 1cm gauge fencing over the base and up the sides, dig the bin base 6 inches into the ground and firmly pack the soil around it, adding bricks to hold wire in place. Graeme
* Make sure your water efficient shower head is set for low water pressure. Graeme
Does anyone have …?
* I would like to set up a basic grey water system at home, using a diverter and hoses from the washing machine and shower but don’t know how to – any tips as to how? Kylie S
* Does anyone have any feedback on community car-sharing with other people? Jo M
* Any recommendations of local green plumbers? I’m building from scratch. Jack J
Please send any further tips or queries to

MASG Publicity – Help Required
We are about to undertake an ‘update’ of our Information Stall and other publicity materials and would really like to build up a bank of digital photos. If you have photographs of any MASG events which you think might be suitable please contact
Peter Sansom at or ring 5474 2403.
Also, if you have, or know of someone who has a 6 x4 trailer that is surplus to requirements, we would like to hear from you – contact Peter Sansom as above.

Events organised by other groups

Help the ATA with its advocacy on the Victorian feed-in tariff IF you have installed a PV system between 2.1 and 5kw then please contact the ATA Damien Moyse at the Alternative Technology Association at or on 9631 5417.

Bike Riders to converge on Town Hall
Following a series of accidents to cyclists around the area, a group of people are planning to meet on their bikes in front of the town hall this Friday 20th February at 4pm. They are calling on the Shire Council to put in real bike paths and to get on with the long awaited bike plan and they want you to come and support their call. For further details contact Lucy on 0400 654 242.

Bushfire Fundraiser and Community Event. Raffle, silent auction, loads of fun, 7pm Friday 20th February, at the Theatre Royal in Hargraves St. Tickets;$20.00

Donate tools for bushfire families
Any tools you no longer need? You can donate them to people affected by the fires. Drop off at Statewide Irrigation, 105 Barker St. For further information ring Dean Mclaren 0409 544 063

Baringhup Landcare Group is hosting a Climate Change – CO2 & What we can do – Solutions Workshop on Friday 20th February at the Baringhup Hall in Bourke St with Al Gore trained presenters, Annie Guthrie and David Jones. 7pm to 9.30pm
further information: 5475 1660

Castlemaine Landcare: are meeting at 10am Sunday 22nd February.
For details: 0408 706630 & 5470 6630 or email

Environment Victoria is giving 8 people the chance to share their personal connection to the stunning wetland forests of Gunbower, Koondrook and Perricoota in a ditital storytelling workshop. Entries close 27th February. Further information.

Ma LETS – Mount Alexander Local Exchange Trading System
Exchanging local goods and services without cash. Trading days once a month:
* Castlemaine Community House, 5pm – 7pm. Friday 20th February
* Maldon Minglers, for Maldon & Newstead ring: 5475 1112 or 5475 2891.

Flaws In Australia’s Proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme
Free Forum at the Sustainable Living Festival – this Sunday 22nd Feb at 12 noon – in the Festival’s ‘Think tent’ at Federation Square.

Free Downtown Lecture presented by the Bendigo Chapter of La Trobe University Alumni Association, entitled: “The Politics of Water in Victoria”, by Ian Tulloch, Co-ordinator of the Sociology and Politics Program, Wednesday 25th February, 6pm. RSVP by 20th Feb 1300 737 133 or

BudaFest 09, a festival of presentations, workshops and events around the theme‘Re-thinking Gardening- as a personal response to climate change’ will take place between 11th – 14th September. Their first fundraiser is a Wine-tasting and Winery Tour at the biodynamic Bress Winery at Harcourt. Saturday 21st February, 6.00 – 8.00 pm. Cost: $15 and bookings essential by Wednesday 18th February. For more information: 5472 1032 or email

Eco-Culture for women: a course in sustainable thinking. Saturday 28th February and Sunday 1st March, University of Ballart. Further information: or 0416 172 550

Community Day Mt Cole: Sunday 1st March from 11am. Discuss the ecological values of Mount Cole and the Pyrenees forests, their future conservation and potential for tourism. Further information: 5447 8375or email:

Interesting Information and Links

Climate Change media
In September 2007 the Climate Institute released a major report on fire risk. The report is down loadable.
The report identified that under the influence of climate change a new category of more extreme fire would have to be recognised: catastrophic fire.
Full report:

Victorian briefing:

Considered analysis: For a considered analysis of the role of climate change in the recent heat wave and tragic fires see David Karoly’s article Bushfires and extreme heat in south-east Australia. David Karoly is Professor of Meteorology at the University of Melbourne and the Victorian Government’s climate change advisor.

Eating less meat could cut climate costsCutting back on beefburgers and bacon could wipe $20 trillion off the cost of fighting climate change. That’s the dramatic conclusion of a study that totted up the economic costs of modern meat-heavy diets.
The researchers involved say that reducing our intake of beef and pork would lead to the creation of a huge new carbon sink, as vegetation would thrive on unused farmland. Full story.

Ruined Landscapes, an exhibition depicting the way we alter landscapes to suit our purpose, will be exhibited in the Phee Broadway Theatre foyer from February 26th for a month. Further information: 5470 6867

Story from Scott Elsom : “Recently we had a visitor to our house who asked if we got cold without any heating. I explained that we have portable heating devices which enable us to maintain a constant temperature wherever we are in the house. They are cheap, effective, renewable and made from all natural products. We can regulate them so that if we get hot or cold, a simple movement will change the thermostat. The visitor looked at me quizzically and then I let him in on our secret – a jumper. ”


I was gentle and peaceful, a flower.
But gentleness isn’t a wall that hides misery
and I saw injustice,
and strikes and rebellions by ordinary people
exploded before my astonished eyes.
And instead of absurd pity and sympathetic hypocrisy
my indignation burst forth
and I felt myself united with my sisters and brothers, and every strike hurt me,
and every cry struck me
not only in my head or ears
but in my heart.
My white gentleness fell,
dead at the feet of hunger,
I undressed myself, weeping at its veils and new clothing clung to my flesh.
My arms now in the springtime of struggle, My red-hot blood protesting,
my body olive green
an incendiary passion consumes me … and nevertheless
I keep feeling as before,
a lover of peace,
I want to fight for it—desperately because from the beginning
I have dreamt of peace.


MASG’s E News is compiled by Jill Bryan. If you would like to advertise an event or comment on any items, please send to: or PH: 5470 6978

Comments are closed.

« | »

Our sponsors & supporters