RSS Entries ATOM Entries

Posts Tagged ‘mobility’

From Woody Weeds to Biochar: Mobile Biochar Unit

Posted in Models, Research by Jessica Bird on November 13th, 2012

Screen grab from Central West CMA’s YouTube film .

From the Central West Catchment Management Authority media release “New technology for old problems – mobile biochar unit demo in Nyngan” :


[26/10/12] Nyngan district farmers saw first hand technology which turns invasive native scrub (INS, also known as woody weeds) into an agricultural resource at a Central West Catchment Management Authority (CMA) field day on Thursday last week. The mobile biochar plant was on demonstration on ‘Wilgadale’ and transforms woody waste material into biochar without the conventional costs of chipping and transport. This breaking technology has many potential applications in the Nyngan district and other parts of NSW according to Central West CMA Coordinator Michael Longhurst. ‘Woody weeds are a problem in central west and western NSW and their management is a significant cost to landholders,’ said Mike. ‘This machine transforms woody waste left over from INS treatment into biochar in a smoke free environment. This product can be used locally to improve soil health and sequester carbon.’

Biochar is a type of charcoal which improves soil health by storing water and nutrients when applied to the soil. The process, known as pyrolysis, is the high temperature treatment of biomass such as woody waste converted into biochar. ‘The woody material leftover from INS treatment would have been otherwise raked, burnt into the atmosphere and wasted,’ said Mike. ‘A biochar plant means the costs of an INS management program can be partly offset through creating agricultural by-products. ‘This mobile system also means that the woody material can be processed into biochar without chipping and transporting costs traditional associated with biochar production.’

Fourth generation Nyngan landholder Anthony Gibson hosted the CMA field day on his property ‘Wilgadale’. ‘Woody weeds are a headache for landholders for a number of reasons. They are nightmare to muster through; reduce groundcover and biodiversity; and out-compete useful grasses,’ said Anthony. ‘The machine we’ve had a look at today is turning woody weeds into something much more useable – something we can lock carbon up in and ameliorate the soil. I can see quite a few benefits of it spreading around the landscape. ‘The unit makes good use of something that just gets pushed up into a heap and burnt otherwise at great expense. By turning it into something useful it is a real win-win situation.’

The system was originally designed by the company Earth Systems through a North East CMA (Victoria) project to manage willow removal and dispose of the waste material. The Central West CMA worked in partnership with Earth Systems and the North East CMA to demonstrate the system in central west NSW. […]

You can read the full media release or learn more on Central West CMA’s Youtube channel.

Bike Futures Conference 2012

Posted in Events by John Myers on September 18th, 2012

17 October , 2012
18 October , 2012
19 October , 2012

Bike Futures has become Australia’s leading bike conference for national and local leaders, planners, architects, urban designers and builders who use bike transport and recreation to advance their communities.

Keynote speakers include Johan Diepens, CEO and founder of Mobycon, the leading edge Dutch transport and mobility consultancy. Mr Diepens, a trendwatcher and strategist, will discuss different smart mobility solutions that are being introduced around the world.

Now in its fourth year Bike Futures will tackle the issue of ensuring that the growth in bike riding around the country now requires its own transport and planning response.

The preliminary program includes:

  • Public Bikes in the Asia-Pacific region: What we can learn and apply ourselves
  • Three Degrees of Separation
  • ‘Make sure you’re home for tea!’: Supportive environments for active and independent kids
  • Learnings from Australian CBDs
  • How to ensure new suburbs support riding
  • Mitigating Circumstances – How to prevent unwanted behaviour
  • Bike Corrals, OK? Effective decision-making for on-street bike parking: Interactive Workshop
  • On-street Bike Parking & Bike Corrals
  • How to upgrade your intersections
  • The New Inventors: Evaluating the innovations
  • How to make it easier to switch mode
  • The Infrastructure, the Horse and the Water
  • Getting routes right: The right thing in the right place for the right reason
  • Bikes and Public Transport on the road: How we can all thrive together
  • Active Travel: Learnings from Key Behaviour Change Programs
  • How close is Melbourne to a world class cycling city? – Swanston Street and beyond
  • Smart Decisions from Smart technology

Bike Futures Conference 2012
Melbourne Cricket Ground
Wednesday 17 – Friday 19 October 2012

The Recharge Scheme: Improving Mobility Access

Posted in Movements by Kate Archdeacon on September 7th, 2011

The RECHARGE Scheme™ is about encouraging local businesses and organisations to provide a power point so you can recharge the battery on your electric wheelchair or scooter, if required. The Scheme was first developed in the Shire of Nillumbik. It is a Disability Services Community Building Program initiative (Metro, Rural and DeafAccess), supported by the Victorian Department of Human Services, in partnership with Local Government. Thousands of organisations and businesses are also proud program partners.

RECHARGE was developed in response to the increasing number of people in Nillumbik with restricted mobility using electric scooters or wheelchairs as a means of transportation. Negotiating the steep roads and footpaths of the area however means that batteries run low more quickly and deter people from travelling longer distances. Through the MetroAccess initiative, we have been able to respond to these needs and draw on the strengths of Local Government and the Community to ensure people who use an electric scooter or wheelchair have more opportunities to participate in their communities.

Based on the community need and subsequent success of the Scheme, many other Victorian councils are joining forces to encourage local businesses and organisations in their area to participate. In November 2010, the RECHARGE Scheme™ received a Commendation by The Australian Centre for Social Innovation (TACSI), as part of its ‘Bold Ideas, Better Lives Challenge’ for a proposed national roll out plan. This is the first significant step towards securing an appropriate Sponsor to fund the national roll out. Pending funding, the Scheme would rolled out Australiawide from 2012.

RECHARGE stickers are displayed on the windows of participating businesses so you can easily find them. There are also RECHARGE stickers placed above or near power points so you can quickly ascertain which power point has been designated for your use.  The RECHARGE website also maintains a list of accessibility resources, and the RECHARGE finder lists recharge points in greater Melbourne.

Employment, Mobility and Living in a Growing City: Melbourne Conversations

Posted in Events, Opinion by Kate Archdeacon on March 29th, 2011

30 March , 2011
6:00 pmto7:30 pm

Image: Hammarby Sjostad by La Citta Vita via flickr CC

Melbourne is expanding to the inner north and west and the notion and dominance of a CBD is changing. What type and proportions of living, working and playing places should be provided, and how will mobility in these renewed areas be facilitated? How do comparable cities cope and thrive? Join the conversation about jobs, dwellings, services, planning, and improved public transport, walking and cycling.

6.00pm to 7.30pm, entry from 5.30pm Wednesday 30 March 2011
BMW Edge, Federation Square, Corner Swanston and Flinders Streets, Melbourne

More details:


  • Professor Graham Currie – Chair in Public Transport, Monash University
  • Halvard Dalheim – Director State Strategy, Department of Planning & Community Development, Melbourne
  • Professor Moura Quayle – UBC Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Dr Marcus Spiller – Director SGS Economics, Melbourne

Moderator: Peter Mares – Journalist and Presenter ABC Radio National.
Discussant: Dr Ruth Fincher – Professor of Geography University of Melbourne

Environmentally, Socially and Economically Sustainable Mobility: Seminar

Posted in Research by Tahl.Kestin on June 3rd, 2010

You are invited to hear Dr Janet Stanley present some of the preliminary findings from Monash-led research that looks at the links between transport, social inclusion and sustainability. The findings touch on issues such as the value of mobility, the role of mobility in facilitating social inclusion and improving wellbeing, how people adjust when they have poor mobility options, and policy needed to reduce the transport emissions footprint. The research, which has been mostly funded under an ARC project, has brought together a multi-disciplinary team of researchers from transport planning, economics, geography, social policy and psychology, as well as researchers at two levels of government.

About the speaker

Janet Stanley is a Chief Research Officer at the Monash Sustainability Institute. Prior to her current role, Janet was Senior Manager, Research and Policy at the Brotherhood of St. Laurence. Janet’s current research interests are in relation to social policy, transport, equity and policy on climate change, bushfire arson, social exclusion, social capital and community development, and project evaluation. Janet is a member on the Ministerial Advisory Council for the Victorian Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Innovation. Janet has many publications and speaks widely in Australia and internationally. Books include: Currie, G., Stanley, J., Stanley, J., (eds) (2007) No Way to Go: Transport and Social Disadvantage in Australian Communities.

For further information see the MSI Seminars & Events webpage.

Date: Thursday, 10th June, 2010
Time: 1:00–2:00 pm
Venue: Monash Sustainability Institute, Building 74, Clayton

Have you heard of walking meetings?

Posted in Movements by Kate Archdeacon on April 14th, 2010

Source: Victoria Walks

Have you heard of walking meetings?” from Victoria Walks:

Philip Moran is the CEO of Merri Community Health Services (MCHS). As CEO of a large community health service, Philip traditionally spent much of his time sitting in his office, sitting in various meetings, and sitting in traffic getting to and from meetings. Like many people working in an office environment, it was common for him to spend more than 8 hours a day being mostly sedentary. 6 years ago, Philip decided to become healthier and more physically active in his daily life. He changed his diet and started exercising more. He wore a pedometer and walked 10,000 steps a day. He then decided to combine walking with some of his meetings as well. Noticing that he could become more physically active at work, Philip began to take other managers and staff for a wander during supervision meetings and catch-up discussions.

Read the rest of this entry »

Grid, Corridor & Field: Exhibition of proposals for a sustainable Melbourne

Posted in Events by Kate Archdeacon on June 22nd, 2009

Snapshot 2009-06-22 14-17-07

Ninety percent of the infrastructure that will exist in 2020 is already built. As measures to combat global warming are debated in parliaments around the world, three Masters of Architecture design studios from the University of Melbourne have interrogated what roles our existing cities and buildings may play in a low-carbon future.

Opening Night – Tuesday 23 June 2009 @ 6pm

Two leaders in the fields of Architecture and Urban Design will open the exhibition; Prof. Rob Adams, Director of Design and Urban Environment at the City of Melbourne and Prof. Tom Kvan, Dean of the Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning at the University of Melbourne.


Read the rest of this entry »