Posts Tagged ‘business’

Change makers Festival – Australia’s national celebration of social change

Posted in Events by emma.gerard on August 14th, 2013

1 November , 2013 4:00 pmto10 November , 2013 4:00 pm
1 November , 2013 4:00 pmto10 November , 2013 4:00 pm
image from changemakersfestival.org

image from changemakersfestival.org

 

From ‘Be part of it’ buy SIXAUS:
The Changemakers Festival [presented by TACSI] is a celebration of the great work happening in our community, an exploration of the ideas, techniques and technologies that are driving this change, and an invitation for everyone to get involved in creating a better future for their community and our nation. It kicks off in November and works as a ‘distributed festival’, which means that hundreds of Australia’s leading thinkers and organisations will be holding events across every state and territory. There’ll be conferences, meetups, startup weekends, webinars, workshops, and plenty more.

Over the last 10 years, Australia has exploded as a hub of social change. Driven by technology, and inspired by local and international success stories, the social innovation community is starting to tackle some of our toughest social challenges and answer some of our biggest questions. What is the good life? What is Australia’s place in our region and the world? How can we respond to climate change, to refugees, to the changing nature of employment and family? The Changemakers Festival brings these ideas out in the open and encourages strong discussion, cross-sector collaboration, and concrete action to drive social change.

In due course we’ll be sharing the full program with you, but the important question for now is, why not organise and host an event yourself? The Changemakers Festival is a chance to bring people together, to create community, share knowledge, foster collaboration and inspire imagination. If you have an idea for something for your community we’d love to hear it!

To find out more about the festival check out www.changemakersfestival.org and hit the “host an event” button to tell us about your idea.

And if you need to raise some funds to make your idea a reality you’ll be interested in the Changemakers Festival Crowdfunding Challenge on StartSomeGood, which is offering over $5,000 in bonus funds to those running crowdfunding campaigns to fuel Changemakers Festival events. But if you want to take advantage of this opportunity you need to be quick! You’ll need to submit your idea by this Friday and be ready to launch your campaign by August 21 to be part of it. You’ll have help from us and from the StartSomeGood team to make it happen though! (More about the challenge here: http://bit.ly/CMFchallenge)

 

>>>> The Change makers festival kicks off on the 1st – 10th November 2013
>>>> TACSI and SIXAUS who are they?

Premier’s Sustainability Awards 2013

Posted in Seeking by Jessica Bird on June 26th, 2013

house004_BC2_2C_SHOT2_Final_20130201
Cape Paterson Eco Village, winner of the Design category, Premier’s Sustainability Awards, 2012.

From the media release ‘Eco-leaders encouraged to enter Premier’s Sustainability Awards':

Individuals, businesses, community or government groups who have shown commitment to sustainability are encouraged to enter the Premier’s Sustainability Awards as positive role models for all Victorians. Now in their 11th year, the Premier’s Sustainability Awards celebrate efficient use of water, resources and energy, better waste management and recycling practices, the enhancement of the environment and effective, practical community action. The winner of last year’s Premier’s Sustainability Awards, Brightgreen, is urging Victorians who have developed a sustainable product or service to enter this year’s awards program, saying “it is a real thrill to be recognised on a state level… We entered the awards last year because they celebrate sustainable innovation – the whole driving force behind Brightgreen. We’re on a mission not just to make the most efficient or the brightest light but to actually change the way people think about lighting – encouraging them to see it as investment rather than something that’s disposable,” said Brightgreen Co-founder and CEO, David O’Driscoll. “The Premier’s Sustainability Awards align perfectly with everything that we set out to achieve.”

CEO of Sustainability Victoria, Stan Krpan, said that the awards are a great way to recognise and celebrate leadership in sustainability. This year the awards provide even more opportunities for recognition. Entries are open in eight categories: Infrastructure and Buildings, Tourism, Environmental Protection, Education, Innovative Product and Services, Small and Medium Enterprises (SME), Large Business, and Community.

>>> Entries close at 2pm Monday 15 July, 2013.
>>> Visit sustainabilityawards.vic.gov.au for entry criteria and kits, and queries.

PSA_2013_logo_k


Coffee for crops: Cafes joining the swap movement

Posted in Models, Movements by Jessica Bird on January 11th, 2013

Source: Good Food via GreenNationAus

Photo by Joseph Feil (Good Food)
Photo by Joseph Feil (from the Good Food article)

From ‘Swapping herbs for lattes in the new suburban good life‘ by Justine Costigan.

When Helen Howard drops into Melbourne’s Lady Bower café for a coffee, she’ll sometimes ask for a free bag of coffee beans to take home. No, she’s not being cheeky – Lady Bower co-owner Vanessa Nitsos is happy to oblige. It’s an informal trade for the bunches of herbs Howard drops off to the cafe regularly. A coffee, breakfast, maybe even a three-course dinner, are some of the trades regularly made between local gardeners and savvy café owners with both a desire to source local products and an eye on the bottom-line. After all, what could be better than sourcing fruit from a garden just down the road? Usually harvested the day it’s eaten, trading excess fruit, herbs, vegetables and flowers for a meal, or coffee or a jar of jam, is a deal that seems to work beautifully for both the local gardeners and the restaurants.

James Hird, co-owner of Buzo and Wine Library in the Sydney suburb of Woollahra, keeps an eye on what’s growing in his local neighbourhood. If he knows it’s a good year for lush rosemary, plump backyard lemons or juicy mulberries, he’ll put out the word to his customers that he’d love to have any excess from their gardens. As well as sourcing locally, he also has his own rooftop garden and a beehive. Hird says his garden, plus local backyard produce, can only ever supplement his stockroom needs. But he says the effort to source produce which doesn’t require anyone to get into a car is worth it. “It’s a huge untapped resource. We go through about six market bunches of rosemary a day. To take out the cost of this alone has an effect on the bottom-line.” There’s a benefit for the growers too. Hird always offers something in return, but says there are no hard-and-fast rules to the exchange. “I might offer dinner for the harvest from a whole mulberry tree – that’s three months worth of jam for us – or it might be an offer of coffee or breakfast. It’s pretty fluid.”

In Melbourne, Nitsos alerted locals to her interest in local produce before the café even opened, and by the time it was ready for business in February 2012, she already had a couple of nearby gardening enthusiasts willing to share. When Helen Howard started dropping in bunches of herbs from her garden, Nitsos would always offer a cup of coffee in return. “When I started bringing in stuff, Vanessa would ask me to stay and have a coffee, but as I was usually on my way to work, I couldn’t stop. So I asked them if I could have a 250g bag of coffee every couple of weeks in return. It’s a handy arrangement. I (wouldn’t) do it for money, but it’s good to do a trade.”

Kate van der Drift donates figs and lemons from her garden to Lady Bower and loves to see “Marchant Avenue figs” on descriptions of the café’s jam. “It’s just giving for the pleasure of giving. Plus, I like seeing the things that Lady Bower does with my ingredients – it’s often something I would never have thought of.” Nitsos says that in the hospitality game, every little bit helps. “The local produce helps us to put things on the menu we couldn’t usually afford, such as micro-herbs. And it reinforces our commitment to seasonality. Although, a customer did come in once and asks us why every cake we had was made with orange.” […]

Cafes are only now catching on to a trend that has been quietly flourishing in Australian suburbs for decades. Canberra nurse and blogger Bec Pollock swaps fruit and vegetables with other members of the Urban Homesteading Club. At its monthly meetings a swap table is filled with produce, homemade preserves, seeds and seedlings to share. “We also trade details of potential urban foraging sites, including blackberries, quince and apple trees, and have been wanting to develop a local Food Foraging Map,” she says. […]

>>> You can read the full article and discover cafes already swapping produce on Good Food.

 


Social Traders GOOD gift Guide

Posted in Models by Kate Archdeacon on December 13th, 2012


Photo by Jilligan86 via flickr cc

From the Good Gift Catalogue by Social Traders:

The Good Gift Christmas Catalogue is Social Traders’ initiative to encourage people to support social enterprise by facilitating online Christmas shopping.

The strategic power of purchasing is becoming one of the most effective ways that organisations and individuals can achieve social change.  To harness this collective purchasing power, earlier this year Social traders launched The Social Enterprise Finder – the first online directory of social enterprises in Australia with over 5000 listings.

An extension of The SE Finder, the GOOD Gift Catalogue enables people to browse products and services offered by over 50 Australian social enterprises and to learn about the different purposes of these organisations.  A social enterprise gift gives good to more than just the recipient.  Purchasing these goods supports businesses that exist for a community benefit.

This Christmas, why not give a gift that gives a stuff?

>> View the Good Gift Christmas Catalogue online.


Social Procurement: Buying a Better World

Posted in Events by ECO-Buy on July 30th, 2012

16 August , 2012
8:00 amto10:00 am
How organisations spend their money, who they purchase from, and what they purchase can have profound social impacts. Yet often the social aspect of the triple bottom line is not adequately addressed, partially because organisations don’t understand what is required. Social procurement is a key business strategy both to avoid negative press from poor labour conditions and unethical practices and also to show leadership in developing communities and assisting the disadvantaged.
ECO-Buy is running a Breakfast Forum to help you understand the issues and approaches to addressing social considerations in procurement. We will hear from speakers that are actively working in this space, including:
  • Sarah Law from National Australia Bank
  • Amanda Minniti from Department of Planning and Community Development
  • Mark Daniels from Social Traders
Following these three presentations, we will have a panel discussion to answer your questions. Two additional experts will join the panel and share their perspectives:
  • Jacquelin Saultry from Places Victoria
  • Chris Newman from PMMS
The forum will be held on 16 August 2012 from 8-10am at 60 Leicester St, Carlton VIC, and includes a continental breakfast. Cost to attend is $200 for non-members. One free place is offered for a student; contact ecobuy@ecobuy.org.au for details.
For more information and to register, please visit the event webpage.

Passive Design for Ventilation in Apartments

Posted in Models by Kate Archdeacon on May 16th, 2012

Photo by John Gollings

From Maitiú Ward’s “Lilli Apartments” on Australian Design Review:

[…]

Despite the challenges of working mainly within the tight constraints of high-rise residential development, it is Elenberg Fraser’s stated ambition to introduce one new environmental feature into every building it designs.

As Fraser describes it, to date Lilli is the most successful exploration of the wind-model driven, passive systems approach it has been developing. While aesthetically striking, the distinctive scalloped striations of Lilli’s balconies have actually been carefully designed to draw air into the apartment interiors.

Working with engineering company VIPAC from data on site-specific solar and wind patterns, the facade elements have been modelled to not only provide sunshading, but also emphasise pressure differentials between the balconies off the living rooms and windows in the bedrooms.

In effect, rather than cross ventilation, what this creates is ‘through’ ventilation, as wind is trained across the facade and then sucked laterally through the apartment interior, in one opening and out the other.

Leaving the window to the surprisingly deep balcony open a crack, Fraser pops the casement window in the main bedroom, and sure enough, from my spot in the centre of the living room I feel a distinct breeze begin to play across my skin. It seems like such a small thing – a gentle eddy so subtle that many occupants may not even notice it; enough, perhaps, to keep them just those few degrees shy of reaching for the air conditioner remote – but it has wide implications.

[…]

Read the full article by Maitiú Ward.


Good Brew Company: Melbourne Sustainability Drinks

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on March 7th, 2012

7 March , 2012
6:00 pmto8:00 pm
Our next Sustainability Drinks event is on Wednesday 7th March 2012, 6:00pm – 8:00pm, with special guest speaker Dean O’Callaghan.

Dean O’Callaghan is a creative entrepreneur, brewer extraordinaire and founder of The Good Brew Company. Deano (as he is warmly known in the industry) has considered his place in the world, and the place of sustainability in brewing enterprise.

Known to don a deep green suit and kilt instead of a logo covered uniform, he makes, delivers, consults, and sets the Melbourne brew bar pretty high – all in the name of the planet and a clean green brew. All product is delivered on bikes, trikes or solar powered couches, is brewed with a minimised carbon footprint, locally (within 50kms from Brunswick), by breweries with solar preheat and other innovative environmental measures, and to German purity laws (no sugar or additives of any sort). Goodbrews are unfiltered, meaning they contain vitamin B (B1, B2, B6, biotin, nicotinic acid, folinic acid and pantothenic acid) removing a hangover before it arrives!! Oh and lastly, brews are served in reuseable kegs into reusable glasses/bamboo which can be washed, rinsed and chilled on the spot.

PLEASE NOTE – OUR WEBSITE IS UNDER ATTACK BY BOTS, MAJOR GLITCH IN THE MATRIX

——————————–NO NEED TO RSVP THIS MONTH————————-

Wednesday March 7, 6-8pm

Slate Bar & Restaurant
Mezzanine, 9 Goldsbrough Lane
Melbourne VIC 3000


Cost-Effective Distributed Energy Systems in Australia

Posted in Opinion, Research by Kate Archdeacon on December 15th, 2011

Source: Climate Spectator


Photo by twicepix via flickr CC

From It’s time for a smarter grid by Giles Parkinson:

Imagine for a moment that you are the head of a large group of network operators, faced with a decision about what to do about rising peak electricity demand. And you are presented with a choice: invest $2.6 billion over five years on upgrading your network – the route you would normally take; or spend a comparable amount on solar power and energy storage, distributed throughout the network.  This was the question posed by Professor John Bell, of the Queensland University of Technology, and Warwick Johnston, a leading solar analyst with Sunwiz, when they sought to find out if there was a better way than the traditional response of building more poles and wires to cope with rising peak demand.

Using Queensland network operator Energex as an example, and its forecast peak demand growth of 1.25GW over the five years to 2014/15, the study analysed the existing approach of spending $2.6 billion augmenting the grid, or investing a comparable amount in either 25GWh of storage, or 1.25GW of solar PV and 10GWh of storage.  The study concluded that a combination of battery and solar PV produced a far better outcome, because of the ability to generate revenue from the energy produced, and the use of battery storage to resell energy. Over a five year period, the net present value (NPV) of the poles and wires solution was negative $2 billion, while the NPV of the solar/storage solution was negative $750 million. But because these could produce revenue over a 20-year period, the solar/storage had a positive NPV of $2 billion over a 20 year period.

Bell and Johnston say the main take-home messages from this are that the integration of distributed PV and battery storage into the existing energy system has the potential to be cost effective now, and it underpins the case for reform of the National Electricity Market, to ensure that distributed generation is fairly treated and that network providers are encouraged to opt for the solutions that have greater market benefit, rather than simply being least upfront cost.

[…]

>>Read the full article by Giles Parkinson on Climate Spectator.

>>Read about VEIL’s work on Distributed Systems.


The Yes Men Fix the World: The Big Picture

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on November 28th, 2011

6 December , 2011
6:00 pmto8:00 pm

Next screening, THE YES MEN FIX THE WORLD, on Tuesday 6 December 2011 at 6pm at Ross House, 247 Flinders Lane, Melbourne.

THE YES MEN FIX THE WORLD is a screwball true story about two gonzo political activists who, posing as top executives of giant corporations, lie their way into big business conferences and pull off the world’s most outrageous pranks. From New Orleans to India to New York City, armed with little more than cheap thrift-store suits, the Yes Men squeeze raucous comedy out of all the ways that corporate greed is destroying the planet.

Read more on the Ross House website.


Drinking Water: New service models in Melbourne

Posted in Movements by Kate Archdeacon on October 13th, 2011


Photo by Harry Troedel

Article by Kate Archdeacon:

Last week the Southbank Campus of the Victorian College of the Arts stopped selling bottled water through its vending machines, bars and cafés, with the support of staff, students, commercial tenants and Sharyn Lowe from Do Something! Water is now available through public water fountains (Aquabubblers) across the campus, as well as in the ReSauce café on site.  Harry Troedel, Sustainability Manager, Implementation, at the University of Melbourne, explained that including the café tenants in discussions about the move away from bottled water allowed them to make decisions about the services they could offer instead.  As a result, ReSauce now owns and operates a Freshie water vending machine.  Patrons can refill their bottles from the machine, with prices varying depending on what type of water they buy.  The choices range from chilled, filtered, sparkling, and flavoured water, with prices coming out at considerably less than a single-use bottle.  The water from the Aquabubblers is the same quality and temperature as tap water, so the café has an opportunity to provide a point of difference.

As part of the initiative launch, Vestal Water gave away some of their stainless steel water bottles.  Vestal Water are developing new services around water supply – they have a V.I.P. card which allows the bearer to refill their water bottle for free at participating outlets (cafes, service stations etc) on purchase of a hot drink, and they are developing a refill station map to support this promotion.  Mr. Troedel says that Hairy Little Sista, the bar at Council House 2 (CH2) has replaced their bottled water with a Vestal Water system.

Shifting water consumption away from throwaway packaging while still providing quality products has been proposed as a great product-service-system in many student designs we’ve seen at VEIL.  It’s great to see some real-world examples emerging in Melbourne.