Zero Net Emissions by 2025

Weekly News Digest Thursday, 24th January 2008

Posted on 24 January 2008 by e-news

MASG News and Events

For more info call 5470 6978

Job at MASG – closes 31 Jan – Admin Manager: go to web page;

Community Solar Project – as a result of MASG assistance with applications to Federal and State Governments and Mt Alexander Shire Council, 2 kilowatts of solar panels have now been installed on both the Newstead Kindergarten and Castlemaine Secondary School. We are still looking for interest from representatives of community buildings to submit applications for a solar system in the next round of government funding. Register your interest with Jayson on 5470 6978.

Wash Against Waste Trailer
: MASG has received a welcome $4000 from Council’s Community Grants Scheme. This will pay for the items of crockery, cutlery, urns, tea towels, basins etc. However we will need to raise more money for construction of the actual trailer – which will include solar hot water heating and solar lighting. This equipment will be lent/hired to community groups to help them reduce the amount of waste food, packaging and plates/cups going to landfill. MASG successfully trialed the use of a Wash Against Waste trailer at the state festival last year. Anyone willing to help on this project please contact: Rex Odgers at MASG on Thursdays, or

Maine’s Power CSIRO/MASG major new project: launch and call for volunteers.
On Friday 15th February, the “Maine’s Power” project will be officially launched. This innovative project is researching how local industry can reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2010 whilst increasing the security of energy supply to our region and maintaining productivity. Significant media and community interest is expected. More details next week. Meanwhile we need volunteers to assist with the following jobs at this prestigious and important event:
• Coordination of RSVP list
• Media and communications support
• Preparation of promotional pack highlighting our work for participants
• Preparation of participants name badges etc.
• Assistance on the day of the launch
please contact Dean on 5470 6978 or

Kelly Stoltz plays Castlemaine – volunteers also needed to be front-of-house at a big gig at the Theatre Royal on Sunday 10 Feb. Stoltz, from San Francisco, set an industry first: his “Below the Branches” CD was the first record in history to make an on-package claim about renewable energy use with the Green-e logo. Stoltz tracked his electricity use offset the all the electricity used to make his record with green tags from the Bonneville Environmental Foundation. All you need to know here.

MASG will ask patrons to audit their energy use through a carbon footprint program. In return, you’ll get to see Kelly Stoltz play for free. To help contact Sam Johnson on 5470 5985.

MASG Competition – Your chance to take part in “a competition with no prize”! “If you had to describe what MASG stands for in about five words … what would those words be?” Either drop your suggestions into the office or email to

MASG Advisory Panel Membership: The Communication and Publicity Sub-Committee wants to establish an Advisory Panel of members with particular skills, especially graphic design and copywriting. If you would like to put your name forward, either drop a note labelled ‘Advisory Panel’ into the office, or email the information to

MASG Committee Changes: In December, Deb Wardle joined the MASG Committee. Deb has extensive experience in business management, HR and fundraising and we look forward to her input on the Committee. Terry White will resign from the Committee at the end of January to start work as the Executive Officer of the Western Suburbs Greenhouse Alliance. Terry has provided valuable expertise in strategies to reduce greenhouse gases and the Committee will miss his contributions. A big thank you is extended to Terry for his work on the Committee over the last 7 months.

FRUIT – surpluses required. MASG volunteers will collect and process fruit and veg over the next few months. Some will be bottled/canned for future use in events like harvest festival (12-13 April) and/or used as a fundraiser for MASG. MASG office can be used as a drop off point, but call Ian first on 5470 6978. If you’d like to help collect and/or process fresh produce, call Grace on 5472 1128.

“Bikes on trains now”: A large crowd travelled from Castlemaine to Bendigo on Wednesday as part of a demonstration against a proposal to ban bikes on peak-hour V-line and metropolitan trains. The rally began at the Castlemaine train station this with at least 50 protesters who caught the train to Bendigo, and stood on the platform chanting “bikes on trains now.” Many of the passengers took their bikes on the train or carried cardboard cut-outs of bikes with messages about climate change. The ban on bikes was due to start on February 1, but due to public outcry, the Victorian Minister for public transport, Lynne Kosky, recently announced a review of the ban. Great coverage in the Castlemaine Mail on 25 Jan., Bendigo Advertiser 24 Jan., and excellent pics and audio at ABC .

Next Bikes ON Trains meeting: Monday 28th 6.30pm at MASG, which will be important to assess, debrief and to discuss our next steps. More info from Jill on Contact or 5472 3098

Open House – at Wendy French and Barry Murfett’s home at 7 Boundary Rd, Maldon Sat 2nd and Sun 3rd Feb from 11am – 6pm. Over the past 2 years we’ve made a concerted effort to see just how much we could reduce our energy consumption. Through behavior and ‘retrofitting’, the results have been quite dramatic. The reason for opening the house is for people to get ideas for reducing energy consumption that might translate to their own nest.

Coming Events, not endorsed by MASG

Sustainability Training Course: Castlemaine Community House is offering 100 hours of training in sustainable living. The course is a mix of theory, field trips and practical sessions. The course is 10 hours per month over 10 months, starting 6th February. Most sessions will take place on a Thursday morning in Castlemaine, with a once-per-month evening session on a Wednesday. Costs are only $55 for the whole year if you have a health care or pensioner card, and $400 for the year [full fee]. Low cost is thanks to a subsidy by Victorian Government. To register, call the Community House on 5472 4842. For details of course content contact Ian on 04 0006 3137, or

Re-opening of Templeton’s Café: MASG members Sue Turner and Margarita Adler re-opening 26th Jan from 10am. Located at 31 Templeton St, Castlemaine, Templeton’s will offer local seasonal foods wherever possible, and will run on sustainability principles, seeking to minimise its carbon footprint. 5472 5311.

Climate movement convergence: Saturday 9th February. This will be an inspiring day of workshops, open space for discussions, an overview of the latest climate science, ideas on building a strong and vibrant movement, and the opportunity to ponder what opportunities are now present with a change in federal government. The full program . To offer a workshop, please see the website or contact Cam: 9am start – 5pm (registration from 8.45am) Northcote High School, St Georges Road, Northcote, 3070 (just north of Merri creek). Take tram 112 towards West Preston, stop 26: Costs: low income $15/ waged people $25 (no one excluded through lack of funds).

BREAZE BIG EVENT in Ballarat. ‘Home Insulation – for comfort and lower emissions’ 12th February 2008, 7 – 9 pm, Brewery Lecture Theatre, SMB Campus, Lydiard St Sth., Ballarat Gold coin donation. Hear experts on home insulation and other important topics related to keeping your house cool in summer and warm in winter. See displays of insulation materials and ideas for home improvement. Organised by University of Ballarat’s National Centre for Sustainability and BREAZE.
Email for car sharing options

BREAZE EVENT NO. 2 Ballarat Regional Forum on Climate Change
This major public event will focus on “Climate Change: What does it mean for Ballarat communities?” Four eminent scientists will talk and answer questions on climate change topics: Saturday 12th April 2008. 2:30 to 5.00 pm. More info at

Other News Stories and Links

not endorsed by MASG

BUSINESS: An opportunity exists for businesses which are developing sustainable technologies through The Sustainable Technologies Pioneer Program. If you want support for your business so that it uses less energy; or conserves water; or produces greater yields from the same inputs; or generates less greenhouse gases, or involves sustainable agricultural techniques contact LUCY MAYES, Economic Development Project Officer, Mount Alexander Shire 5471 1805

SMALL RURAL LAND OWNERS: The Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has a special program that provides services and information on running a small property, and understanding environmental factors specific to their property. This program is designed to assist new landholders settle into their role of small property managers and developed an understanding of their obligations regarding rural property management, ranging from farm safety, chemical use, animal health, pest management and vegetation management. Further information on DPI website.\new-landholders


1. Solar panels to go in 30% of houses by 2030 –
The government will aim for 30 percent of all households to have solar panels installed by 2030 as part of its efforts to fight global warming, officials said.
2. solar power could end US dependence on foreign oil and slash greenhouse gas emissions – report at
3. Norway says aims to go carbon neutral by 2030. Norway, which last year set what it called the world’s most ambitious target for cutting greenhouse gas emissions, said on Thursday it aimed to go “carbon neutral” in 2030, which is 20 years earlier than its previous target.
4. Trees cover about 20.9 percent of New York City, shrubs cover 6.1 percent of the city and mop up greenhouse gas. Other dominant ground cover types include impervious surfaces (excluding buildings) (e.g., driveways, sidewalks, parking lots) (33.3 percent), herbaceous (e.g., grass, gardens) (30.3 percent), and buildings (20.1 percent). 1 Million trees Program –

Antarctica Thinning: Antarctica lost billions of tonnes of ice over the last decade, contributing to the rising seas around the world, according to Eric Rignot and colleagues, who wrote about the phenomenon in the journal Nature Geoscience. Using satellites to monitor most of Antarctica’s coastline, the scientists estimate that West Antarctica lost 132 billion tonnes of ice in 2006, compared to about 83 billion tonnes in 1996. The Antarctic Peninsula, which stretches toward South America, lost about 60 billion tonnes in 2006. 15 Jan 08

Transcript of a talk delivered by Guy McPherson, 17 August 2007. It was the keynote address for a conference organized by, and for, students in the University of Arizona’s Master of Public Health (MPH) program. It’s a long, stimulating and worthwhile read

In a time of falling stock markets and uncertainty…..
Question: What’s the best thing to invest in at a time of climate change and peak oil? Answer: Families, friends and community”
MASG member Roy Lovell

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