Care, connect, collaborate and contribute

The Sustainable Hour no. 464 | Podcast notes

Our guests in The Sustainable Hour on ‘Show Your Stripes Day‘, 21 June 2023, are Millie Rooney from Australia ReMADE [at 12:00] and Matt Bray from Art Disrupt [at 34:00].

Dr Millie Rooney is co-director of Australia ReMADE, where they talk about ‘hope as a strategy’. They are an independent body that is listening to what ordinary Australians want for our future. They are on a mission to support ambitious, collaborative and transformative changemakers to reMAKE more of the world we want to see.

→ For those who want to know more about their work, go to

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Matt Bray is founder of Art Disrupt and creative director of Comms Declare. He gives an update on his many projects and some learnings from three years in climate communications – three years of creating, connecting, collaborating with his community and campaigning for a liveable planet. He is establishing himself as available to help climate activist organisations with their communication and marketing.

→ To find out more of Matt’s work, go to, and

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We open the Hour with a quote from UN Chief on Climate Antonio Guterres speaking at a UN Press Conference on 15 June 2023: “It’s time to wake up and step up.”

English filmmaker Rick Felgate said – when he was interviewed by Simon Moore in London for the Climactic podcast, published on 30 May 2023 – that what the fossil fuel companies are doing with their continued construction of new infrastructure that kills people is “murder mediated through the atmosphere”. So what do people do to stop murder?

Average global warming temperatures have now passed the 1.5 degrees mark which the world’s nations agreed upon was not to be passed. Sea ice melt breaks new records, so does sea temperatures. Emissions keep rising, and United Nations’ emissions negotiations are at a standstill. This can be difficult to take in. We are failing. How should we respond?

In Australia, some climate activists respond by shutting down coal lines and roads, as 9News reported in breaking news on Monday morning on 19 June 2023, where an activist had blocked a key train bridge leading to the Port of Newcastle. At 34:13 we play an excerpt from climate activist Brad Homewood‘s truth-telling speech while he was perched atop a nine metre monopole to block access to the port in Naarm (Melbourne).

The songs we play are first Formidable Vegetable & Spoonbill‘s ‘Climate Movement’ (at 26:36), Peter Gabriel‘s new ‘Road to Joy’ (at 32:20) and then Baba Brinkman‘s ‘Insulate It’ (at 50:13).

At 52:56 we play a Greenpeace ad about Woodside’s plan to seismic bomb our ocean in search for more fossil fuels. “Underwater sound is everything.” Support this campaign here.

The music for The Sustainable Hour’s signature music was composed and produced by Mik Aidt, Torsten Myhre Jensen and Alex Aidt.

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Colin Mockett OAM‘s Global Outlook begins this week in New York where the United Nations’ Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was speaking about last week’s COP lead-in conference at Bonn, which had failed to reach a positive conclusion.

The delegates in Bonn had spent eight of their nine days arguing about what will be on the agenda when they meet at COP 28 in the United Arab Emirates in October. And the fallout of the failure of that Bonn meeting dominates this roundup.

In his typically blunt manner, Antonio Guterres was scathing about the lack of resolve shown at the pre-conference. “I see a lack of ambition, a lack of trust, a lack of support, a lack of cooperation and an abundance of problems around clarity and credibility,” he said. “Countries are far off track in meeting climate promises and commitments. The climate agenda is being undermined. At a time when we should be accelerating action, there is backtracking. At a time when we should be filling gaps, those gaps are growing.”

And if the secretary-general was scathing, the Pakistani co-chair at the talks, Nabeel Munir, was doubly so. He voiced his disgust towards the end of a two hour open session, when he told negotiators they were like “a class of primary school children”, and noted that 33 million Pakistanis had been hit by floods last year and were still affected.

“A third of my country is underwater and I have to go back and tell my people that we were fighting over an agenda for two weeks. Come on, is it worth it?” he said, to applause from a majority of the 8,000 delegates.

As the Bonn talks stalled, wildfires attributed to climate change still burned in Canada, shrouding much of North America in smoke while the news came from Europe that new high temperature records were being set across the northern hemisphere and record low sea ice coverage was recorded in the Antarctic.

The failure of the Bonn talks reflected a deepening gulf at the centre of world climate negotiations. In simple terms, the developed world, which has largely caused climate change, now well funded by fossil fuel industries, wants to keep the focus on talking about commitments from nations to reduce emissions. While the developing world, which is bearing the brunt of climate change impacts, is demanding action now. They want wealthy nations to not only finance the world’s transition from fossil fuels, but to pay for adaptation to a warmer world and damage repair.

That divide essentially paralysed the Bonn talks, leaving many observers despondent, researchers with the Climate Council reported. Compounding that despondency was the passive role played at the talks by the host of the upcoming COP talks, Sultan Al Jaber, who is both a government minister and chief executive of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. His appointment as COP28 president has prompted widespread protests. A group of 128 United States and European Union representatives signed a letter to US President Joe Biden, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and UN chief Antonio Guterres, voicing their concern that Al Jaber’s role showed the UN had allowed the fossil fuel sector to exert undue influence over climate talks.

Antonio Guterres famously said that the global fossil fuel industry was not part of the climate change problem. He said it was the problem.

And that was reinforced by an article in the Saturday Paper at the weekend which named Australia’s Albanese government as a champion greenwasher. It said that Australia was negotiating to hold a future round of COP talks, while maintaining its role as a major fossil fuel exporter working hand-in-glove with the gas industry.

In his final speech at this year’s pre-COP conference in Bonn, UN Climate Change executive secretary Simon Stiell said that arriving at an agenda was precious little to celebrate from nearly 10 days of negotiations. “It’s time to stop pointing fingers at each other and saying ‘your end of the lifeboat is sinking’,” he said. “If it goes down, we all go down together.”

And that’s a suitable end to a pretty grim global roundup for the week.

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We hope you have gained from this week’s show – that you felt the magic that Millie and Matt helped create today. Both Millie and Matt are on similar journeys, and to hear their commitment to collaborate in their work in the future makes it all worthwhile.

We’ll be back next week with more ideas from people who truly believe that a better world is possible and are prepared to work towards that by listening to people and bringing them along, helping them to find their space and #FindTheirRole in the #ClimateRevolution that gets closer every day. Giddyup! and be the difference.

“Rather than align the country with GDP, economic growth and the fossil fuel industry, what does it look like if we re-align it to a different purpose? We found that people are really keen for the opportunity to care and be cared for, to connect with each other and contribute locally and nationally. I think that piece there – ‘contribute’ – is a really important piece. Asking how do we as individuals, as communities and as the institutions of the state, how do we help people to genuinely contribute to shifting this country to where it needs to go?”
~ Millie Rooney, Australia ReMADE, in The Sustainable Hour no. 464

→ You can find ‘Show Your Stripes background information on World Meteorological Organization’s website and on

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“The future will be circular, the future will be green – or there will be no future.”
~ Janez Potočnik, Co-Chair, International Resource Panel

We at The Sustainable Hour would like to pay our respect to the traditional custodians of the land on which we
are broadcasting, the Wathaurong People, and pay our respect to their elders, past, present and future.

The traditional owners lived in harmony with the land. They nurtured it and thrived in often harsh conditions for millennia before they were invaded. Their land was then stolen from them – it wasn’t ceded. It is becoming more and more obvious that, if we are to survive the climate emergency we are facing, we have much to learn from their land management practices.

Our battle for climate justice won’t be won until our First Nations brothers and sisters have their true justice. When we talk about the future, it means extending our respect to those children not yet born, the generations of the future – remembering the old saying that, “We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors. We borrow it from our children.”
The decisions currently being made around Australia to ignore the climate emergency are being made by those who won’t be around by the time the worst effects hit home. How disrespectful and unfair is that?

→ Climate Council – May 2023:
It’s time to #CallTime on fossil fuel sponsorships in Australia
“From flooded music festivals and concerts cancelled by bushfire threats, to extreme heat disrupting play at the cricket, climate change – driven by the burning of coal, oil and gas, is putting the sports, arts and events we love at risk.”

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→ The Guardian – 19 June 2023:
Climate protesters block coal shipments in three states as Minns warns against ‘dangerous’ situations
“Blockade Australia’s coordinated action targets ports in Newcastle, Brisbane and Melbourne.”

→ 9news – 20 June 2023:
Climate activists launch second day of protests
“An anti-coal activist has blocked the Port of Brisbane by hanging above a major road.”

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The power of purpose

“Activism has a powerful integrating and focusing effect on the human organism. In this respect, the practice is very much akin to vigorous physical movement, otherwise known as exercise. When we act intentionally, particularly in the face of ambiguity and uncertainty, we call on the body-mind-spirit to gather its resources into a single, cohesive effort. This integrating effect can be powerfully health-positive, especially when we operate in the sweet spot of stress. 

In fact, a growing body of evidence confirms the power of purpose and meaning in human health. In 2017, New Scientist magazine summarized the findings this way: 

People with a greater sense of purpose live longer, sleep better and have better sex. Purpose cuts the risk of stroke and depression. It helps people recover from addiction or manage their glucose levels if they are diabetic. If a pharmaceutical company could bottle such a treatment, it would make billions.”

→ Z – 17 June 2023:
Activism Is Medicine
“See the bigger picture. Make a better world. Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable.”

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“Amid the doom-laden exhortations to change our ways, let us remember that we are striving to create a more beautiful world, and not sustain, with growing sacrifice, the current one. We are not just seeking to survive. We are not just facing doom; we are facing a glorious possibility. We are offering people not a world of less, not a world of sacrifice, not a world where you are just going to have to enjoy less and suffer more — no, we are offering a world of more beauty, more joy, more connection, more love, more fulfilment, more exuberance, more leisure, more music, more dancing, and more celebration. The most inspiring glimpses you’ve ever had about what life can be — that is what we are offering.” 
~ Charles Eisenstein, author

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They underestimate the will of our concerned youth

Young people are increasingly seeing a disconnect between how climate risks will disproprtionally impact on their lives and the slow (or lack of) action of reducing the burning of fossil fuels. They are increasingly taking their concerns to the courts.

While some governments and the fossil fuel sector argue that it’s not possible to attribute emissions from individual sources to specific climate change impacts, they ignore the fact that atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations are already at dangerous levels and adding to them excerbates multiple risks to society and the economy.

They also underestimate the evidence accumulating from climate attribution studies that describe the extent that increasing greenhouse gases are making dangerous weather and climate impacts for communities more likely.

Most of all perhaps, they underestimate the will of our concerned youth to fight for their future.
~ Neil Plummer, Director, Out of the Box, in a comment on

Climate emergency self-help book

“Do you ever feel like the world is falling apart, and no one wants to acknowledge and talk about it? The climate emergency causes so many painful feelings — grief, terror, rage, and alienation. These emotions are made even more difficult because we feel alone with them, and helpless to do anything about the crisis.

This book can help. Facing the Climate Emergency: How to Transform Yourself with Climate Truth helps you face the truth, process your feelings, and join the movement to protect humanity. That’s why writer and director Adam McKay said in the foreword: “I hope this book becomes as ubiquitous as Heimlich maneuver posters in restaurants.” Author Jessica Wildfire called it, “The only self-help book you will ever need to read.”

Please let me know what you think, and feel, about Facing the Climate Emergency, if you do get a chance to read it! Not ready to commit? A free chapter is available for download here. All author proceeds to benefit Climate Emergency Fund.

Thanks so much and Onward!

Margaret Klein Salamon, PhD
Founding Principle, Climate Awakening
Executive Director, Climate Emergency Fund

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George Monbiot: “The media has created the social license to operate of the the fossil fuel companies.”

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“Carbon neutrality, ambitious targets and measured progress. That’s Yarra, Australia.”

Councillor Amanda Stone explains why Yarra in Melbourne is at the #DaringCities conference in Bonn, Germany, and what concrete efforts they have been implementing.

Hear Councilor Stone and many other leaders speak about their cities’ daring efforts.

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Events we have talked about in The Sustainable Hour

Events in Victoria

The following is a collation of Victorian climate change events, activities, seminars, exhibitions, meetings and protests. Most are free, many ask for RSVP (which lets the organising group know how many to expect), some ask for donations to cover expenses, and a few require registration and fees. This calendar is provided as a free service by volunteers of the Victorian Climate Action Network. Information is as accurate as possible, but changes may occur.



List of running petitions where we encourage you to add your name

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