Zero Net Emissions by 2025

News Friday 22nd July 2011

Posted on 22 July 2011 by e-news

Exasperation, Anger and Action….

Rupert Murdoch. Owns 70% of all newspapers in Australia

Many people may be feeling exasperated, despairing or even angry with the nature of the discussion on climate change and putting a price on pollution in the media at the moment. This is to be expected given how the powerful Murdoch press and some of the old polluting industries have come out and invested millions in a campaign of misinformation to sway public opinon against putting a price on pollution to protect their interests. But don’t just sit there and fume….get active. Contact Dean on 0448 327 791 or or come to the Member’s gathering next Friday.

Pricing pollution: Carbon tax briefing & next steps

Member’s Gathering: Friday 29th July – 5 to 6pm at the Hub.  Briefing and discussion: what is good, what can be improved & most importantly what you can do at this crucial moment to support action on climate change. For more info contact Dean on 0448 327791 or email

Comfy Homes local services guide to building materials

Last week we alerted you to the link to our extensive list of local builders, architects, designers etc. You will also find a growing list of where to find building materials, such as environmentally friendly bricks, strawbale information, sustainable timber and recycled glass, window frames, etc. There are 20 similar listings of advice on products and services so have a look and if you don’t find what you need let us know or tell your local tradie or retail outlet to get it in for you then let us know so we can list it! Go to the list here or contact us at 

Business support for MASG

Alison and Jason from Tonks, one of several hardware stores in the Shire and on our Services list

Our recent membership drive prompted many of you to renew your memberships. Thank you! We’d like to also call on local businesses and community groups to contact us to check their membership status. If you’re overdue or you’d like to start a new one, let us know! MASG is doing a lot of good work supporting a wide range of groups and local businesses, just as they support us, so we encourage this to continue.

The Hub Plot Fruit Tree Pruning Demonstration

This great workshop will be starting at 11 a.m., Saturday 23rd of July at “ The Hub Plot” , MASG’s food garden at the rear of 233 Barker St, Castlemaine.
 Entry by donation of $5 Enquiries: or 0409 327791

Volunteering !: Help out on Thursday’s in August for a few hours

Our admin manager is taking a break for a few weeks during August and we need volunteers to fill in for a few hours on  Thursdays whilst she is gone.  If this sounds like you please call Kerry on 5470 6978 or email

Goldfields Solar Hub

Next round open: Information on new prices available now: smaller systems have gone up due to the reduction in the REC multiplier, and prices start at $4,690 for a 1.6kW system (up $2000)  but larger systems are about the same price or cheaper, 5kW starting at  $16,990 (down $3000) . Read more here…..

Sunny Solar Information Session: Saturday August 6th 2pm-4pm @ Anglican Church Hall.  Come to the Sunny Info Session to:
1.  discuss the next round pricing and details
2. find out what you need to do once your PV system is installed. What you need to do to sign up for the Victorian Premium Feed in Tariff, what about REC’s ?, what about the Standard Feed in Tariff? Find out more about these issues and and other information.

TV’s Recycling and reuse

That TV mountain at Castlemaine: Janet Phillips photo

MASG member Joyce Sanders has the following suggestion.
    . The Mail described the Environment Minister’s program for July only for recycling analogue and unwanted televisions in regional Victoria.
    . BUT, there are only 11 recycle sites in Victoria, so when I rang the program, they said each person in Castlemaine had to drive their television up to Bendigo.
    . I suggested that it might be a good idea to park a truck at each rural tip, which then could make the trip to Bendigo when it was full.  They replied that they would not do this.
    . I also suggested that there were still people in Castlemaine who had no t.v. now, and who could use some of these televisions if they could take a set-top box.
    . They replied that, no, the televisions could not be re-used, they can only be recycled.
    . I would like to conduct a program locally for people who have now been left out of televison viewing (people who aren’t full pensioners, who are the working poor, etc.) with recycled t.v.s,
    . But, although I know that there are some people in this situation, many are embarrassed to come forward as they feel like it is somehow their own fault that they don’t have the money for a different t.v. and new aerial.
    . I would like to put the word out there, if anyone knows of anyone now left without t.v., to get in contact with me by email or in the shop.
    Joyce Sanders:     Soldier & Scholar Bookshop

Vital Signs Workshop series for community groups

Practical and invaluable training in communication and groups skills for anyone involved in a community group.  Run by skilled facilitators in the MASG area.   Vital Signs will support community workers and volunteers by increasing their communication and interpersonal skills and providing mentoring and support to assist them in their work within the community. Vital Signs Workshop Series: 

  • Communication Skills series – This is a series of 4 sessions to learn, practice and develop good communication skills. Starts Saturday 23rd July, 10am-12.30pm, Anglican Church Hall, then every following Saturday.
  • Group skills – facilitation – Thursday 18th August, 7.00-9.00pm The Forge
  • Group skills – Consensus decision making – Thursday 25th August, 7.00-9.00pm The Forge

Bookings:; 5470 6978.  Cost per workshop: $20; $10 for MASG members and concession.  Discounts for multiple workshops.  

Community Wind Project Officer

MASG is looking to employ a Project Officer to assist in developing a community wind farm in the Mount Alexander Shire area.  This 4 day per week position is an exciting opportunity for a dynamic and motivated person to make an important contribution to tackling climate change and to work in an innovative community which supports community based renewable energy.  Applications close 29th July.  Further details from Dean Bridgfoot on 0448 327 791 or see our community wind section of the website or email  

CoG meeting= Committee of Management plus staff and working groups

The next CoG meeting for action and decision making for MASG is Thursday the 28th of July from noon to 2pm at The Forge (Barker St, opposite She Sells Seafood)


Pruning & Grafting Workshops

1. Growing Abundance is running a series of fruit tree pruning and grafting workshops with experienced local teachers.  Basic pruning with local permaculturist, Ian Lillington &  Basic grafting workshops with local orchardist from the Mount Alexander Fruit Gardens, Merv Carr.
PRUNING – Wednesday 20th July, 9am-1pm, Sunday 24th July, 9am- 1pm, Sunday 31st July, 9am-1pm;
GRAFTING Tuesday 26th July- 9am-1pm, Tuesday 2nd August, 9am,-1pm
Bookings essential via Sas Allardice at Castlemaine Community House on  or 5472 4842.
2. Pruning Young Fruit Trees demonstration The Hub Garden. Saturday 23rd July, 11am contact MASG – Heather  0409 327791 e:

Growing Abundance Food for thought presents the movie: Food Inc.

Food Inc. is about the corporate food industry and how it tries to ensure that we ignore where food comes from, how it is raised, picked, handled, altered, transported and sold.
Sunday – 24th July 4.30 pm @ Castlemaine Continuing Education; 30 Templeton Street
Stay for delicious soup with CAKE (Castlemaine Abundance Kitchen Enterprise) and join us for a discussion about what we can do locally to purchase and consume food more sustainably.

Solar Heat Pump Display

Reece Castlemaine invites you to come along to learn more about their products and see their Quantum solar heat pump in action. And a free barbecue lunch! When: Friday 29th July, 12 noon, Cnr Wimble & Barker Sts, Castlemaine. T: 5472 2711

Hepburn wind farm gets rate cut

The Hepburn Shire Council has voted to cut the annual rates it charges the Hepburn wind farm by about $30,000.

BudaFest 2011- Gardeners Growing Communities: 26th – 28th August, 2011

One of Central Victoria’s premium gardening festivals, BudaFest  is a weekend of fun, learning how to grow your garden and your community. Budafest has a packed program that will delight all gardeners, with over thirty expert presenters, including some familiar locals: Sas Allardice, David Bannear, Tom Cockram, Maria Coyle, Peter Cuffley, Robin Haylett, Ian Lillington, Mary Park, Peter Perry, Peter Sansom, Dianna Thomson, Sue Turner and Kevin Walsh. Full details at the Budafest Website or contact tel:5410 1060 or e:

Community group wants your input into proposed Shire Aquatic Centre

A small community group has been driving a proposal for the shire to reconsider the preferred location of the proposed aquatic centre in light of architectural master planning progress for the new school construction effort. This effort has initially focussed on the site selection criteria used by council, ensuring a detailed analysis of the Blakeley Road site is performed in comparison to the Western Reserve site. As with any major construction project, sustainability initiatives also have a key role to play. Without strong direction being provided to council on this critical aspect of the proposal, the community is unlikely to obtain a facility of which it can be truly proud.
The group wants your input via a short survey (taking less than a minute). If you wish to provide your email to be kept up to date with the group’s work you can do so at the end of the survey.


3rd Slow Money Gathering

Oct 10-12 2011 in San Francisco– The greenest city in US. 
MASG member Grace is prepared to pay a registration for one person if enough MASG members are keen to go with her. Flights are $1347 return Melb- San Fran if booked by 4th August and registration is $495. Email Grace if you are keen to know more or take up her generous offer: or see the program here…. 

Solar keeps getting cheaper: 50 MW of Solar…no let’s make that 400 MW!

New Hampshire, USA — When officials for San Antonio, Texas, municipal utility CPS Energy started receiving bids for a 50-megawatt project, they saw a good deal and an even bigger opportunity and increased the size of the proposal eight-fold to 400 MW. On the back of this the company has announced a plan to mothball a coal plant in 2018, well ahead of schedule,  & instead pursue renewable energy.

Turnbull defends scientists


Malcolm Turnbull....speaks up for climate science

Malcolm Turnbull has urged people to speak out loudly on behalf of the science of climate change. He said there had been a very effective campaign against climate science by those opposed to cutting emissions, and this had affected the carbon tax debate. He said rejecting the science was ”like ignoring the advice of your doctor to give up smoking on the basis that somebody down the pub told you their uncle Ernie had lived to 95 and smoked like a train all his life”.
Read more:

UN says climate change threatens security

CLIMATE change is generating an “unholy brew” of extreme weather events that threaten global security, the UN chief said.

Coal lobby runs anti-carbon tax ads, yet are making record investments and profits

record bids from Peabody for Macarthur Coal post carbon tax announcement

QUEENSLAND’S coal industry will run TV commercials against the Federal Government’s carbon tax plan…saying one thing in public whilst to shareholders and the stock market they are reporting making record profits and investing record amounts in expanding production…read more in the Age story Coal supercycle fires up Peabody and in the Australian…Watch what miners do, not say, about the carbon tax.

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