Archive for April, 2008

Event – Voices from Bangladesh Speaking Tour – 23 May

Posted in Events by Ferne Edwards on April 30th, 2008

The event advertised below is being held by Friends of the Earth Melbourne.

The people and ecosystems of Bangladesh face many of the most devastating consequences of climate change and sea level rise – at the same time as international financial institutions such as the Asian Development Bank continue to finance projects such as the Phulbari Coal project that directly contribute to climate change and threaten the environmental health human rights of developing communities.

This national speaking tour aims to raise awareness of the unequal impacts of climate change and to voice the urgent need for Australia to support development projects that are socially and environmentally just, rather than destructive.

Prof Anu Muhammad is a Professor in the Department of Economics at Jahangirnagar University in Dhaka and has been integral in leading the civil society campaign against the Phulbari mine.
And local Phulbari residents

International development projects financed through institutions like the ADB can, and have played a significant role in exacerbating climate change and locking Majority World countries into unsustainable, fossil-fuel intensive paths of development. Urgent action is required to direct development efforts away from projects such as the Phulbari Coal project that have potentially devastating social and environmental impacts, and offer no real benefit to affected communities.

The Phulbari Coal Project is currently under consideration for funding by the Asian Development Bank (ADB), yet would require the forced relocation of between 50,000-150,000 people and further affect between 100,000 and 2 million people through increased regional pollution and dewatering of the Barind tract. The mine’s current owners, Asia Energy, have already generated controversy after five protesters were killed and 200 injured when authorities opened fire on 50,000 demonstrators opposing the mine in August 2006.

The tour will visit Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Katoomba and the Hunter Valley.
The tour is hosted by AidWatch, and supported by Friends of the Earth, Oxfam Australia and Amnesty International Australia.

Public meeting: Friday May 23, 6.30 – 8.30pm
Northcote High School, St Georges Road, Northcote, 3070 (just north of Merri creek). Take tram line 112 towards West Preston, stop 27 (full details on tram timetables at: )
For details on Melbourne event, please contact Cam Walker: cam.walker

For full details on the tour, including events in other cities, please see

Voices from Bangladesh Speaking Tour

Event – Environmental Careers Workshop – Wednesday 14 May 2008

Posted in Events, Research by Ferne Edwards on April 29th, 2008

Ever wondered how to get a foot in the door of the environmental industry? What qualities and qualifications employers are looking for? Where to go for this kind of advice???

Environmental Jobs Network (EJN,, Square Peg Careers <> & Principal Consulting <> have teamed up to bring you the answers to all your questions in a series of Environmental Careers Workshops! These informative workshops are jam-packed with advice to get you started in the environmental industry!

Join us for an hour of presentations, group discussion, and Q&A time with recruitment and career professionals from the environmental sector.

Date: Wednesday 14 May 2008
Time: 6:15pm-8pm
Where: R&I RESEARCH LOUNGE, RMIT Building 28, Level 5 (opposite Library)
Public transport: Melbourne Central, Trains and Swanston Street Trams.
Cost: $44 inclusive of GST
Bookings & Queries: teresa

Resource – Energy Transformed: Sustainable Energy Solutions for Climate Change Mitigation

Posted in Models, Research by Ferne Edwards on April 28th, 2008

Recently promoted on the Greenleap list, the “Energy Transformed: Sustainable Energy Solutions for Climate Change Mitigation” developed by The Natural Edge Project, Griffith University and ANU and was funded by the CSIRO Energy Transformed Flagship and the National Framework for Energy Efficiency may also appeal to Sustainable Melbourne readers.

Energy Transformed: Sustainable Energy Solutions for Climate Change Mitigation

This 600+ page Online Textbook provides FREE access to a comprehensive education and training package that brings together the knowledge of how countries, specifically Australia can achieve deep cuts. See

This training package provides industry, governments, business and households with knowledge to enable them to realise at least 30 percent energy efficiency savings in the short term while providing a strong basis for further improvement. The package is presented as 3 modules each with 10 lectures. Each lecture is structured to enable you to find quickly what you need. Each lecture has a clear topic heading, aim, executive summary (key learning points), detailed 15 page essay and then further online resources.

Module 1 overviews the business case for rapid action on climate change and then covers the main areas of energy efficiency opportunity – by technology. Module 2 firstly highlights how through good demand management peak and base load electricity demand can be reduced.

Module 2 then considers energy efficiency opportunities – by Sector. Modules 1 and 2 are designed this way to align with the UK Carbon Trusts extensive free online resources on these topics. (See Energy Efficiency Savings by Technology – ) (See Energy Efficiency Savings by Sector – )

Module 3 provides an updated overview of advances in low carbon technologies, renewable energy and sustainable transport, climate neutral buildings and carbon offsets to help achieve a low carbon sustainable energy future. Whist this education and training package has an Australian focus, it outlines sustainable energy strategies and provide links to numerous online reports which will assist climate change mitigation efforts globally.

This free online training program seeks to compliment other initiatives seeking to encourage the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions rapidly through behaviour change, sustainable consumption, and constructive changes in economic incentives and policy.

This package was developed by The Natural Edge Project, Griffith University and ANU and was funded by the CSIRO Energy Transformed Flagship and the National Framework for Energy Efficiency. The package was developed with extensive peer review. The lead peer reviewers for this package were Adjunct Professor Alan Pears and Geoff Andrews.

Carbon Trust

Event – Australian School Gardening Seminar, Brisbane – 13-15 July 2008

Posted in Events, Models, Movements, Visions by Ferne Edwards on April 24th, 2008

Please find a message below from Growing Communities.

Dear all across Australia,
It is time to bring the Australian school gardens community together to celebrate our achievements learn from each others experiences and examine the role of school gardens in bringing about a sustainable future.

Growing Communities would like to invite you all to the 1st Australian School Gardens Network Gathering & Learning in the Garden Seminar, Brisbane, 13th, 14th, & 15th July 2008.

After our suggestion for a National gathering of the school garden community about a month ago, already 10 people from outside Queensland have said they want to come. So, seriously think about booking your flight and registering as if there are lots of people coming, then will need to adjust size of venue, re-think billeting, etc.

For program and registration details visit

All inquires email: litg

Hope to hear from you all soon.
Happy gardening.

Growing Communities

Growing Communities
192 Boundary Street
West End Qld 4101

p: 0423 945 621
f: (07) 3844 7322

Growing Communities is a community based cooperative enterprise working to promote the establishment, development and on-going support of school gardens, community gardens and city farms in South East Queensland and beyond.

Event – Community Information Session, Responding to Sir Rod Eddington’s Transport Report – 12 May

Posted in Events, Seeking, Visions by Ferne Edwards on April 23rd, 2008

The State Government has asked for public comment on Sir Rod Eddingtons Investing in Transport Report. Yarra City Council is holding a Community Information Session to discuss the recommendations in the report, the consultation process, issues affecting Yarra and key transport issues affecting the east-west corridor.

When: 6.45pm (for 7.00pm start) – 9.00pm, Monday 12 May, 2008
Where: Main Hall, Collingwood Town Hall, 140 Hoddle Street, Collingwood
RSVP: Wednesday 7 May, 2008 by calling 9205 5025

The meeting will include information about Sir Rod Eddington’s 20 recommendations, a presentation on transport patterns and needs in the eastern corridor and a round table discussion of the issues.

Council strongly encourages members of the Yarra community to make their own submission on the report to the Department of Infrastructure by mid-July.

For more information on the report and consultation process visit and follow the ‘East-West Link Needs Assessment link.

Seeking suggestions – Composting biodegradable catering ware

Posted in Seeking by Going Green Solutions on April 23rd, 2008

I have been selling 100% biodegradable and compostable catering ware for just under a year, (I thought i should get the commercial interest out of the way straight away) and the market awareness of the product is steadily growing to the point where some festivals will only allow the food vendors on sight if they use this type of product instead of plastic. This is of course great news for a future filled with sustainable events except for one major hurdle. It has become apparent that the composting of the biodegradable catering ware and food scraps is not as easy as first thought. I have documentation from the zero waste program which is aligned with Flinders Uni in S.A proving the catering ware is biodegradable and SITA have been testing it and hopefully are in the process of writing a report, but no body including SITA will take the stuff for a number of reasons. 1. SITA is at or near capacity. 2. Fear of contamination of the compost for on-selling purposes. 3. Seemingly a lack of alternatives to SITA that operate on a much smaller scale. This last reason is probably the biggest hurdle as the amount of compostable fully sorted waste generated from the last Sustainable Living Festival was apparently only one skip full. Surely there is a future for this type of event waste if we are to have a sustainable future. Can any one help?

Yours in frustration.

Sean Flynn

Going Green Solutions

Event – 2nd Annual Green Roofs Australia Conference, Brisbane, Australia – 18 – 20 June 2008

Posted in Events, Models, Movements, Research by Ferne Edwards on April 22nd, 2008

Please find a message below from Ben Nicholson, Green Roofs Australia.

Dear green roofers and green roof enthusiasts,

The second annual Green Roofs Australia conference is taking place from 18 – 20 June 2008 in Brisbane and we are currently calling for anyone interested in presenting at the conference to submit a 500 word abstract of their topic to the committee for consideration.

The annual GRA conference provides an excellent opportunity for presenters to share information and publicise their efforts in forwarding green roof and wall technologies in Australia. This year the conference will aim to cover a wide range of topics, from the trial and error efforts of ‘mum and dad green roofers to the experiences of large extensive commercial practitioners.

If you are interested in presenting a topic at the 2008 Green Roofs Australia conference, please follow the link below to submit your 500 word abstract – you will be contacted in due course by a member of the committee:

If you are interested in registering to attend the conference, you may do so via the link below:

And if you are interested in sponsoring the conference via one of our sponsorship packages, you are more than encouraged to follow the link below:

Finally, if you would like to catch up on whats been happening in the world of green roofs and walls, check out the Green Roofs Australia website:

I wish you all the best and look forward to seeing you at the GRA conference in June!

Kind Regards,
Ben Nicholson
VIC-TAS Coordinator

Green Roofs Conference

Research on the environmental benefits of wedges

Posted in Research, Visions by Ferne Edwards on April 22nd, 2008

I found this report listed on the Australian Policy Online newsletter and thought it might interest the Sustainable Melbourne audience.

Wedges: understanding the potential to reduce Victoria’s greenhouse gas emissions
The Nous Group / Victorian Government
Posted: 04-04-2008
This report looks at the potential for emissions reductions across the energy, transport, agriculture, land use and forestry and waste and industrial sectors. It provides important guidance on areas for future focus and trade-offs associated with different options.
To read the full text visit

Seeking feedback for VEIL Food Map, Melbourne,

Posted in Events, Policies, Research, Seeking, Visions by Ferne Edwards on April 21st, 2008

As part of our research at the Victorian Eco-Innovation Lab, VEIL , we are currently designing an online, urban food production map of Melbourne. We are asking people involved in the local food / sustainabilty sector to contribute feedback to the design of this project.

We hope that the VEIL food map will:
Record the quantity & variety of urban food production present within Melbourne;
Allow Melbournians to contribute data to this site;
Form a database for people to use to design new products & services towards greater sustainability within Melbourne;
Provide evidence that urban food production currently exists within Melbourne in order to foster greater policy support of this industry.

The type of produce to be recorded on this website is food that is primary produce, ie. fresh & not value-added/ processed . These food examples must be larger than household production. Examples of urban food production models include: community gardens, commercial production and market gardens, shared private gardens (such as extended family/ group of households), & food produced on public space (such as street edge gardening, nature strips & street trees).

To test the site and contribute feedback visit

To move around the map:
Either double-click the cursor to zoom in or use the scale on the top left-hand corner to zoom in or out;
Hold the cursor down to drag the image from side-to-side;
Swap from ‘map to ‘satellite to ‘both views by clicking on the boxes on the top right-hand side.

To submit or edit data:
First, check if the site has already been added. If it hasnt, submit data on
If you would like to edit data on the site please email the details to me at fedwards

Please email all feedback to Ferne Edwards at fedwards

'Separating the food map of London, district by district' by lihayward

Update from eVillage Melbourne about the Future Melbourne project

Posted in Events, Policies, Research, Seeking, Visions by Ferne Edwards on April 21st, 2008

Find below the latest newsletter from eVillage Melbourne. To see more details visit the website at

Hello to all eVillage Melbourne members,

Future Melbourne draft plan
The final stages of the Future Melbourne project are fast approaching, as the City of Melbourne puts the finishing touches to the Future Melbourne draft plan. This document will reflect the contributions of eVillage members and the wider Melbourne community. And these contributions will become even more evident shortly, with the official opening of the Future Melbourne draft plan wiki.

From Saturday, 17 May to Saturday, 14 June, you will be able to log into, read and edit the Future Melbourne draft plan wiki via This is an exciting development for the City of Melbourne and the Future Melbourne project and were sure youll enjoy this final opportunity to help shape Melbournes future.

Archived options and talking points
The Future Melbournes ‘Considering the options phase is now over, and the project is moving into final phases. We have archived all options-related posts, so you can still see and read what was said but you wont be able to reply to any posts. As all discussion and ideas under each ‘talking point have now been absorbed into comprehensive goals and directions within the Future Melbourne draft plan, the talking points have now served their purpose and will be ‘retired.

Key themes for discussion and action
Out of all the discussion about the future of Melbourne on the eVillage, 17 issues and themes have emerged as the most important and pressing for our members. Here are some of these.
– Spending on major events brings people to our doorstep. These people come back, and they are ambassadors for our city when they go home.
– Melbourne should continue to develop its standing as an education-focused and design-oriented city.
– Melbourne should place a far greater emphasis on green spaces and appropriate development.
– Violence on the streets must be reduced, and better liquor licensing laws are needed to help manage the problem.
– Businesses and residents have competing interests.
– The city needs to shift its transport planning from motor traffic to bicycles and feet.
– The city should develop programs that better integrate its constituents into ‘one community (business, residents, students, employees and so on.)

You can view and comment on these and more at Discussion HQ.

Thank you for your continuing contributions and interest, your efforts are making a difference to the future of our city.
The eVillage Melbourne Team.