Pathway to care and protection: reconciliation and respect to country

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As Australia enters its annual Reconciliation Week, we talk with Mel King and Vicky Grosser from Geelong One Fire Reconciliation Group about how and why traditional custodians of the land put culture before coal, while ramping up community-owned renewable energy and the protection of wildlife.

We also talk with film director Jarrod Boord whose 40-minute film ‘Melbourne Down Under’ is screened in Geelong on 5 June 2016. More info below.


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Content of this hour

Links, excerpts and more information about what we talked about in this Sustainable Hour


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Uncle Neville Samson

Uncle Neville Samson is a Gamilaraay traditional custodian. He talks about the Whitehaven coal mine. “It breaks my heart,” he says.



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Uncle Paul Spearim

Uncle Paul Spearim is a Gamilaraay traditional custodian. We played an excerpt of a speech Paul Spearim gave while locked-on to two concrete barrels blocking the main entrance to Whitehaven Coal’s Maules Creek Mine.

“We as First Nation people have to stand up and say: Stop it now, enough is enough. What Whitehaven are doing is absolutely wrong.”
Uncle Paul Spearim

“We are asking Greg Hunt to commence an independent report including oral evidence to make an informed decision. We are asking him to do his job right and protect our Lawler’s Well.”
Dolly Talbott, Gomeroi Traditional Custodian

» Find the full story at frontlineaction.org/gamilaraayprotectcountry

» See also www.gomeroitraditionalcustodians.org/take-action

#GamilMeansNo #Leardblockade



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Adrian Burragubba

Adrian Burragubba is a Wangan and Jagalingou Spokesperson, and a traditional owner.

In The Sustainable Hour, we played the audio track from this youtube-video

» See more on wanganjagalingou.com.au



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Jarrod Boord

Ocean Grove filmmaker Jarrod Boord has captured a startling array of the region’s marine life in a documentary released this week to critical acclaim. ‘Melbourne Down Under’ is a 40-minute film showing never-before-seen footage of feeding behaviours of fish and other marine creatures.

This stunning natural history documentary takes you on an incredible journey of discovery to reveal the city’s best kept secret – What’s going on in the dynamic and vibrant marine environment of Port Phillip Bay. You’ll be truly amazed at the underwater wonderland on our coast.

This is a nine minute interview with Jarrod Boord. The film ‘Melbourne Down Under’ was screened at Geelong Sustainability’s Green Drinks event on 23 March 2016.

» Geelong Advertiser – 25 September 2015:
Port Phillip and Corio bays’ depths revealed in documentary Melbourne Down Under


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World Environment Day

Screening of ‘Melbourne Down Under’ in Geelong on 5 June
 
World Environment Day emphasis this year is on endangered wild animals. We will be concentrating on the endangered flora and wild animals in the Geelong environs.

This will also include environmental weeds, plants from our gardens escaping into the bush and supporting our wildlife by planting indigenous plants
 
The beautiful film ‘Melbourne Down Under’ will be screened at 2:45 and 3:30pm, depicting the wonderful creatures in Port Phillip Bay. The DVDs of this film will also be on sale.
 
Tables and chairs will be provided to sit, relax and enjoy your Fair Trade tea and coffee and taste locally and organically grown food
 
• Kids, young or old, can enjoy making wild animals out of recycled items
 
• Do you know if your eggs are really free range?  Find out with Cluckar!
 
• The Geelong Sustainability Directory will be available on the Sustainable at Home table along with ideas how to make your home more energy efficient
 
• Follow the mind maps on Climate Change – where do you stand?, what kind of world do you want to live in?  Do you know how climate change is affecting the Great Barrier Reef?  Watch the power point presentation
 
Come and enjoy two hours of fun, film and thought provoking ideas and information.

Sunday 5 June at 2.30–4.30pm
St Luke’s Church Hall, Cnr. Barrabool Rd and Scenic Drive, Highton, Geelong



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You Yangs Protection Group

The group wants to stop a proposed 200 acre sand quarry near the You Yangs.

» Home page: www.youyangsprotectiongroup.org

» Facebook page: www.facebook.com/youyangsprotectiongroup



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Song by Damian O’keefe: ‘Mungo’

» www.soundcloud.com

Mirrdinjar

“We are caretakers of our planet Earth. We must leave fossil fuels in the ground. Stop this destruction. … The balance of life is in our hands.”



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‘Impact investment’ finances indigenous community solar project

In what is believed to be an Australian first, a 139-panel solar system has been installed at an indigenous community in WA with the help of an ‘impact investment’ loan.

Newsletter posted by ATA on 26 May 2016

The 36-kilowatt system at the Kurrawang Aboriginal Christian Community near Kalgoorlie, mounted on the roof of a workshop and machinery shed, is expected to displace 20% of the community’s electricity use. It is also expected to offset about 60 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year, equivalent to removing about 17 cars from the roads.

The solar system was a joint project of the not-for-profit Alternative Technology Association (ATA) and the Kurrawang board, with $52,500 in finance loaned by the McKinnon Family Foundation and CAGES Foundation. Impact investment is capital used for projects to generate social or environmental outcomes as well financial returns.

Donna Luckman, the ATA’s chief executive, said the solar system was a great achievement for the 120 people of Kurrawang and a win for the environment.

“Since all the buildings in the community are metered as a single entity, every household will benefit,” Ms Luckman said.
“It means the community will save on their electricity bills and the environment benefits as well through reduced emissions. This really shows how you can be innovative with community renewable energy and impact investment. We hope this can serve as a model for other communities.”

Kurrawang board member Rowena Leslie said the Community feels empowered by this move towards self-sufficiency.

“We would like to thank the Lord our God for the lessons learned during development stage and the added benefits to the environment, our budget and the Community spirit in the after effect,” Mrs Leslie said.

John McKinnon, director of the McKinnon Family Foundation, said he hoped in future there would be community solar systems throughout outback Australia.

“This project is a fine example of what impact investment can achieve in supporting both community needs and renewable energy.”

Kylie Charlton, chief investment officer of Australian Impact Investments, who advised CAGES Foundation on their participation in the loan, said they were excited at the potential for replication with other remote communities and the long-term potential to establish a fund of diverse community solar assets.

“We hope that this project is the first of many community solar projects in which investors can participate.”

The Kurrawang solar system and its bill savings were modelled using the ATA’s Sunulator solar calculator.

The community will pay off the simple loan in five years, with bill savings exceeding monthly loan repayments.



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Aboriginal seeds

Australian Aborigines have been labelled as hunters and gatherers for 220 years but pioneers and explorers saw a very different economy. Aborigines were growing and harvesting a huge variety of grains, tubers and fruits as well as building large and complex aquaculture systems. Let’s rediscover the observations of Australian explorers Sturt, Mitchell, Grey, Batey and others.

An indication of how much we can learn is shown in this map. Norman Tindale documented Aboriginal grain harvests over most of the Australian continent but contemporary grain areas make up less than a quarter of that area. What might happen if we explore those traditional grains and how they were grown in areas we now call desert?                                                         

» www.pozible.com



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Lily D’Ambrosio appointmented as the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change in Victoria.

We hope that in your new role you will replace Hazelwood power station with renewable energy, create the Great Forest National Park and protect our natural environment for future generations to enjoy.



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Tim Flannery: Sustainable Population and Climate Change

Open Mind Lecture Series
Tim Flannery has published over thirty books including The Future Eaters,The Weather Makersand his latest release,Atmosphere of Hope. Named Australian Humanist of the Year in 2005 and Australian of the Year in 2007, he co-founded and was Chair of the Copenhagen Climate Council. He became Australia’s Chief Climate Commissioner in 2011 and in 2013 he founded the Australian Climate Council. This fascinating Open Mind Lecture will see Tim Flannery tackle the issue of population, the economic factors driving population growth and its impact on climate.

Thursday 21 July 2016 from 6:30pm to 7:30pm at ‘The High Ground’, Geelong Library and Heritage Centre, Level 5, 51 Little Malop Street, Geelong.

» Tickets: www.eventbrite.com.au



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