Posts Tagged ‘Australia’

Sustainable House Day 2013: September 8

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on September 3rd, 2013

8 September , 2013
10:00 amto4:00 pm

Glen Eira_Sustainable House Day 2013_GreenD
Photo from Inspiring, easy steps to comfort and low cost living

On Sunday 8th September, Sustainable House Day will be celebrating its 12th year. The event will continue to showcase some of Australia’s most sustainable homes to the public as millions of Australians continue to embrace renewable energy, recycling, and other practices suitable to their lifestyles.

150 private houses and display houses featuring a variety of sustainable ideas will open their doors to the public. Homes are open from 10am-4pm and will be showcasing environmentally sustainable design, innovative use of materials, and homes that have invested in renewable energy, recycling and other sustainable living practices. Homes will feature experts in areas of green living and energy-efficient products.

Check out the Sustainable House Day website to find open houses around Australia, or to read more about the different ways that people make their homes more sustainable.


Urban food security, urban resilience and climate change: Australian report

Posted in Models, Research by Kate Archdeacon on August 2nd, 2013

Guerrilla Garden_fullyreclined_BY
Photo by fullyreclined via flickr CC

The National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF) report on urban food and climate change is now available for download.
Abstract:

Food security is increasingly recognised as a problem in developed countries like Australia as well as in developing countries of the global south, and as a problem facing cities and urban populations in these countries. Despite producing more food than is consumed in Australia, certain groups in particular, places are finding it increasingly difficult to access nutritious and healthy food at affordable prices. Moreover, whole urban populations have found their food supply lines severely compromised by major disasters such as floods and cyclones which are expected to have greater impacts as the climate changes.

This changing landscape of food production, distribution and consumption has drawn attention to the nature of contemporary urban food systems in general and to the security and resilience of urban food systems in particular. This has in turn highlighted the extent of urban agriculture and its potential to play a greater role in strengthening the food security of Australian cities and building urban resilience in a changing climate.

This report presents the results of a synthesis and integrative research project that explored these issues through a critical review of relevant literature and case study research in two cities. It had three main aims:

  • to increase our knowledge of the current extent of urban agriculture in Australian cities;
  • to review its capacity to play a more prominent role in enhancing urban food security and urban resilience and;
  • to assess the impacts of climate change on the capacity of urban agriculture to enhance food security and urban resilience.

The research provides much needed up-to-date information on the extent of current urban agricultural practices, a critical review of good practice in Australia and beyond and an analysis of the opportunities and barriers to the expansion of these practices, especially in the face of climate change.

Visit the website to download the full report.

Please cite this report as:
Burton, P, Lyons, K, Richards, C, Amati, M, Rose, N, Desfours, L, Pires, V, Barclay, R, 2013, Urban food security, urban resilience and climate change, National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility, Gold Coast, pp.176.


Elemental: Film Screening & Discussion

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on May 31st, 2013

15 June , 2013
6:30 pmto10:00 pm

ErielDeranger_During_the_TarSands_HealingWalk

Elemental tells the story of three individuals united by their deep connection with nature and driven to confront some of the most pressing ecological challenges of our time.

The film follows Rajendra Singh, an Indian government official gone rogue, on a 40-day pilgrimage down India’s once pristine Ganges river, now polluted and dying. Facing community opposition and personal doubts, Singh works to shut down factories, halt construction of dams, and rouse the Indian public to treat their sacred “Mother Ganga” with respect.

Across the globe in northern Canada, Eriel Deranger mounts her own “David and Goliath” struggle against the world’s largest industrial development, the Tar Sands, an oil deposit larger than the state of Florida. A young mother and native Denè, Deranger struggles with family challenges while campaigning tirelessly against the Tar Sands and its proposed 2,000-mile Keystone XL Pipeline, which are destroying Indigenous communities and threatening an entire continent.

And in Australia, inventor and entrepreneur Jay Harman searches for investors willing to risk millions on his conviction that nature’s own systems hold the key to our world’s ecological problems. Harman finds his inspiration in the natural world’s profound architecture and creates a revolutionary device that he believes can slow down global warming, but will it work?

Separated by continents yet sharing an unwavering commitment to protecting nature, the characters in this story are complex, flawed, postmodern heroes for whom stemming the tide of environmental destruction fades in and out of view – part mirage, part miracle.

Saturday, 15 June 2013 from 6:30 PM to 10:00 PM (EST)

The first Melbourne screening of the amazing environmental film ‘ELEMENTAL’ from the Global Oneness Project will be followed by a panel discussion fueled by audience questions – Panel will be (Adam Bandt Greens MP- confirmed), Prof. Stuart Hill(confirmed), and one other TBC – Economist/Environmentalist.

>> Bookings and further information on the Eventbrite page.


Shareable in Australia: Launch

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on November 9th, 2012

14 November , 2012
5:30 pmto7:00 pm

Shareable is launching a brand new Australian channel by convening local leaders of the sharing economy for an evening of connection, conversation and action.  New technology, sharing business models and a new generation’s preference for access to resources instead of ownership, provides an unprecedented opportunity to strive for freedom, prosperity and sustainability through sharing.

Shareable invites you to come and explore the below questions at this special event to coincide with Global Sharing Day:

  • What is the new sharing economy and why is it important to you?
  • How can we strengthen support for entrepreneurs, civic leaders and community groups working in this emerging space?
  • What initiatives are increasing citizen access to resources in Australia?

Join your host Darren Sharp (Editor Australia) on Wednesday 14 November to learn more about the local sharing economy from these inspirational people and projects:

  • Tom Amos – Sidekicker
  • Liisa Vurma – Eat With Me
  • Jodi Jackson – The Lemon Tree Project
  • Will Emmett – MeeMeep
  • Tom LeGrice – PetHomeStay

Please join us for this special launch event. Drinks and nibbles provided. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Wednesday, November 14, 5:30pm – 7pm

Hub Melbourne
673 Bourke Street
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Australia

Big thank you to our sponsor Hub Melbourne for providing the event space.

>> Register on Eventbrite or read more on Shareable.

Edible Weeds in Australia: Guidebook

Posted in Research by Kate Archdeacon on November 2nd, 2012

The Weed Forager’s Handbook: A Guide to Edible and Medicinal Weeds in Australia

Step into the world of our least-admired botanical companions, peel back the layers of prejudice, and discover the finer side of the plants we call weeds. An astonishing number are either edible or medicinal, and have deep and sometimes bizarre connections to human history.

  • But how do you distinguish a tasty sandwich-filler from its dangerous look-alike?
  • Which of these garden familiars is the most nutritious vegetable ever tested by the US Dept of Agriculture?
  • How do you cook with delicious nettles without fear of being stung?

This book reveals all this and more, and will forever change your concept of where to go looking for lunch.

Authors: Adam Grubb and Annie Raser-Rowland (foreword by Costa Georgiadis)

>> eatthatweed.com


Renewables 2012: Positioning Australia in a Global Context

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on August 27th, 2012

20 September , 2012
6:30 pmto7:00 pm

This free public seminar featuring Christine Lins, Executive Secretary of REN21 will provide insight into advances being made in renewable energy business and policy in both developed and developing economies and will position the Australian industry within this global context.

REN21’s Renewables Global Status Report (GSR) is the world’s most frequently referenced report on renewable energy business and policy. The most recent report, released in June this year, found that in 2011:

  • renewable energy sources supplied 16.7% of global final energy consumption
  • 118 countries were implementing renewable energy targets
  • investment in renewables increased to a record $257 billion, and
  • photovoltaic module prices dropped by 50%.

The 2012 GSR highlights the steady growth of renewables in all end-use sectors – power, heating and cooling and transport – and across energy markets, support policies, investment and technology.

Concurrent with these global developments have been significant changes in Australia’s clean energy industry with the introduction of the carbon price, the commencement of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the review of the Renewable Energy Target.

Thursday, 20 September 2012 from 6:30pm to 8:00pm
University of Melbourne, Melbourne Law School
185 Pelham Street
GM-15 Lecture Theatre, Level 1
Carlton Victoria, 3053

>> Please register for this free event.

Ms Lins’ presentation will be introduced by David Green, Chief Executive, Clean Energy Council and followed by a panel discussion, featuring Kane Thornton, Deputy Chief Executive, Clean Energy Council; Malte Meinshausen, Senior Fellow, School of Earth Sciences, University of Melbourne; Tony Wood, Energy Program Director, Grattan Institute; and chaired by Tristan Edis, Editor, Climate Spectator.


The New Resource Game in the Indo-Pacific

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on August 22nd, 2012

23 August , 2012
7:30 pmto8:30 pm

From the history the 17th Century Nutmeg Wars between the British and the Dutch in Indonesia, through the 19th century Opium Wars between the British, French and Chinese, and past the 20th century Oil Wars between the US and the Arabs, the tactics of the New Game players have not changed much because the market imperative forbids it.

In the markets of resources and raw materials, Australia depends for its survival in competition with the interests of Russia, China, India, and several African states. If these market dynamics do not make the level playing field which Australian governments claim they expect and demand from the global trading system; if force, fraud, corruption and subversion are pervasive in deciding who wins, what then are the scenarios for Australia’s future as a resource exporter?

What do Australian policymakers need to know and do to say in the game?

What lessons, what demands do Indian policymakers insist Canberra should learn, or else?

About the speaker:

John Helmer is visiting professor at the University of Melbourne and this semester he is teaching investigative journalism at the Institute of Advanced Journalism. He is the longest continuously serving foreign correspondent in Russia, and the only Western journalist to direct his own bureau independent of single national or commercial ties. Born and educated in Australia, then at Harvard University, he has also been a professor of political science, and an advisor to government heads in Greece, United States, and Asia. He has published several books and anthologies of essays.

7:30pm 23 August 2012

Institute of Postcolonial Studies

78-80 Curzon Street North Melbourne 3051

Charges: Waged: $5, Unwaged:$3, Members free


Koalas in the Otways: Research volunteers

Posted in Movements, Seeking by EarthwatchAustralia on December 21st, 2011

A new research project Conserving Koala Country has been established by Earthwatch Australia to look into the deteriorating habitat and tree condition in the Otway Ranges, Victoria.

Dr Desley Whisson a Wildlife and Conservation Biologist from Deakin University says, “so far we’ve been tracking the movement of 15 koalas (8 females/7 males) at Cape Otway and observed a high density of koalas in the area of up to 16 koalas per hectare”.  In many parts of Australia Koala’s are in decline and at risk of extinction due to disease, land clearing and drought, however the high density of Koalas is posing a potential issue in The Otways.  During the recent research trip during mating season the research team made up of Earthwatch volunteers recorded vocalisation of the koalas using a songmeter; a device set to record bellows for 5 minutes every hour. Volunteers recorded the number of bellows and whether it’s a male or female.

“We found a high number of koalas with young so it looks like a successful breeding year. The koalas are occupying very small home ranges where trees are still in good condition. They obviously don’t need to move far to find food or mates. A 3 legged female adult koala was also found, something very unusual to see and particularly for her to have survived to adulthood, ” says Dr Whisson. Volunteers also ventured out at night with a spotlight to search for possums that could also be causing defoliation of trees. They saw lots of koalas but only found possums in one blue gum site. Richard Gilmore Earthwatch Executive Director says “It’s great to be able to be able to support research aimed at protecting the habitat of the iconic koala, and at the same time involve the general public in such a hands-on and interesting way.”

The next team of Earthwatch volunteers will be heading out to do further research on the 18 April.

For more information or to sign up for an Earthwatch expedition call 03 9682 6828, email earth@earthwatch.org.au or visit http://www.earthwatch.org/australia/exped/whisson_booking.html


On The Edge: A forum on food and sustainability around Australian cities

Posted in Events, Movements, Research by Kate Archdeacon on September 22nd, 2011

25 October , 2011
8:30 amto5:30 pm

Whichever way you look at it, food production forms the basis for physical, environmental, economic, social and cultural health. How we preserve, manage and develop our agricultural resources close to where a majority of people now live worldwide- in cities- will determine the future health, sustainability and conviviality of our communities. Our peri-urban agriculture is a key component of what makes Melbourne the most liveable city in the world, and it’s worth protecting, now.

Key discussions on the day:

  • Setting the scene for peri-urban agriculture in Australia- where are we at? What are the key challenges and opportunities? – Trevor Budge & Michael Buxton
  • British Columbia Agricultural Land Reserve and Strengthening Farming Program (Vancouver, Canada) – Dave Sands
  • Parc Agrari del Baix Llobregat, an instrument for preserving, developing and managing a peri-urban agricultural area (Barcelona, Spain) – Sonia Callau-Berenguer
  • Feeding Milano; energy for change (Milan, Italy) – Anna Meroni
  • The expansion of the Urban Growth Boundary in Melbourne’s outer South East and its impact on jobs, food security and the Bunyip Foodbelt – David Wilkinson
  • Promotion, protection and enhancement of food production on the Mornington Peninsula – Kevin Wyatt and Gillian Stewart
  • CERES Fair Food- connecting local producers and local eaters – Chris Ennis
  • Peri-urban areas and zoning options – Michael Tudball
  • Keeping commercial farming viable in peri-urban areas – Susan Finger
  • Farmlands trusts; an innovative vehicle for securing land for sustainable agricultural use on the urban fringe – Robert Pekin
8:30 – 5:30pm, Tuesday 25 October, 2011

Hume Global Learning Centre 1093 Pascoe Vale Road Broadmeadows (Melways 6, 8H)

Early Bird until 25 September $495 Full Fee $660

Click here for the full program and registration.


The Housing We’d Choose: Grattan Report Launch

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on June 20th, 2011

27 June , 2011
5:45 pmto7:00 pm


Image: monkeyc.net via flickr CC

Ask Australians what kind of home they want, and odds are they will say a detached house on a big block. The new report from the Grattan Cities Program, The Housing We’d Choose, shows that when residents are asked to make real-world trade-offs between housing and location, the picture is far more varied. The report examines both what Australians say they want from housing in their cities, and the incentives that make it difficult for new construction to meet this demand. Come and hear Grattan Cities Program Director Jane-Frances Kelly in conversation with John Daley on the challenges to Australian cities and governments presented by The Housing We’d Choose.

Monday 27 June 2011

Registration at 5:45 pm Seminar 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm

The Wheeler Centre 176 Little Lonsdale Street Melbourne VIC 3000

For further information please telephone 03 8344 3637 or visit our website at www.grattan.edu.au