Tuesday, September 15, 2009

climate change art competition for schools

Ballina Byron ‘Fair-Go 350’ Art Competition

As part of the International Day of Action on Climate Change, Ballina Climate Action Network (BCAN) and North Coast Climate Action Group (NCCAG) are planning an event in Ballina - at Missingham Park by the Amphitheatre - and invite students to participate in an Art Competition depicting local sustainable solutions

Art: drawings, paintings or other creations (eg using recycled materials)
When: closing date Fri 16th October. Winner to be announced at the Fair on 24th Oct.
2 Categories: under 12 and 12 to 18 years
Entries mailed or delivered to: address and postal address TBA
Prizes:- 1st $80 voucher and 2nd $40 for both categories. (Vouchers donated by Ballina businesses: Eco-options & Jack Ransom Cycles.)
Enquiries: for Ballina ring Sue on 66860602, for Byron ring Tracey 66871056 or email bcanlist@gmail.com

Studies by NASA’s James Hansen - globally respected climatologist - and his team last year produced studies that show with over 350 ppm Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere:
• we will not have a planet as we know it and,
• to which life on Earth developed – and is adapted.

The present level of CO2 is 390ppm and rising. That is why we are already seeing many adverse effects around the world including: widespread droughts and fires accelerated melting of most glaciers and Arctic Summer ice, and tropical diseases spreading to new areas.

We have one planet and one chance to prevent runaway Climate Change. To do this we need a commitment to immediate and deep cuts, especially from the developed nations, at the Kyoto talks in Copenhagen at the end of this year.

100 countries so far have registered to host at least one event on the 24th of October
While the discredited sceptics are still finding fertile ground many ordinary people around the world, concerned for their children’s future, are uniting to tell their politicians that they want strong action NOW

Ballina Byron ‘Fair-Go 350’ will provide information on sustainable local solutions and highlight initiatives in place by our local councils, businesses, and environmental groups.

Sue Fielder on behalf of BCAN

Rally to STOP Woolworths in Newport, NSW

It’s now been a couple of months since we started the campaign to stop Woolworths from ruining the beautiful village of Newport.
Thank you very much for signing the petition. The numbers have now swelled to a staggering 2,000 plus, both on line and on paper but we do need more people power to beat the likes of Woolworths, so we’re holding a

Public Rally, on Sunday, 27 September at 10.30 am meeting outside the Surf Club.

Please tell everyone – relations, friends, man, woman and child, to come to the rally to make it clear we don’t want this ugly monstrosity in our village.

Now here’s the latest on the progress of the development by Woolworths.

The council has entered into an automatic agreement to sell the carparks to Woolworths if the two carparks are zoned commercial. Then it’s game set and match as Woolworths automatically become owners of the land and push through their DA with minor compromises designed to palm off residents.

Woolworths rezoning application is now with an independent consultant for assessment. With the application are Woolworths “indicative concept drawings” that are the justification for the rezoning of the council’s carparks.

An independent consultant is being used because the council has a financial stake in the rezoning deal and submissions via Pittwater Council to the consultant, SJD need to be made by 9 October 2009 (see details below).

So what are the main points everyone finds so abhorrent about Woolworths’ proposal?

A typical submission might read as follows: (please feel free to use this one if you want to)

“The Woolworths zoning application should be rejected. It will destroy the village of Newport for the following reasons:

1. This is a key site because it is the last off-mainroad opportunity for Newport to develop its village character.- with landscaping local shops and open areas as embodied in the letter and spirit of the Newport Master Plan, endorsed by residents and passed by council.

2. The Woolworths proposal would dominate the site in the crudest possible way. It covers the entire site, is extremely bulky, allows for no community use, is designed to funnel people only into Woolworths supermarket and will therefore be detrimental to local shops.

3. Newport has sufficient supermarket space with the opening of the 1600 sq mtre Coles supermarket.

4. Because of its size and layout, this development would result in excessive traffic congestion, noise and pollution in Foamcrest Ave and surrounding streets.

5. Because the site is bounded by local streets and the escarpment at the rear, a large number of residents would be affected by after hours noise.

6. Many residents look down on the site. Viewed from above, the above ground carparks will be ugly in the extreme. This plan allows for more parking than Newport needs. This type of crude development is no longer acceptable in modern urban planning.

Even if minor modifications were made to the Woolworths plan, the effects as described above would still apply. To rezone council carparks commercial at this stage would result in the broad concept Woolworths have put forward. Therefore this application should be rejected.

At a later time, after this application is rejected, a fresh approach to this site could be undertaken. Other financially viable concepts that embody the spirit of the Master Plan, allow for community access and enhance Newport as a village would be welcome. “

To make your submission, you need to fill out a form asking whether you have looked at the rezoning proposal. The application is on the council website at http://tinyurl.com/ovwtdm.

The form you need to fill out is attached as a PDF which can be easily printed out. It is essential we get our submissions in by 9 October - and the more the better.

It’s great that just about everyone in Newport is pulling together on this. We can beat them! Look forward to seeing you at the rally.

David Catchlove
Newport Versus Woolies Community Group

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Rally to stop Shooters Games, Sydney

Urgent Rally
Keep up the pressure!

- there's no such thing as conservation hunting -
Thursday 10 Sept 12.30 pm
Parliament House Macquarie St Sydney

Keep up the pressure on the Rees Govt:
No Hunting in National Parks
No Blood Sport Reserves
No hunting native animals
No release of exotic birds for hunting


Free Public Meeting
National Parks Under Attack - Help Nature Claim them Back!

Wednesday 9 September, 5.30-8.00pm
Light supper, 5.30pm - Free
Theatrette, Parliament House, Macquarie Street, Sydney

Stop the exploitation of nature and national parks
by blood sports and commercial facilities

Monday, September 7, 2009

Many balloons for Jai

Dear Friends of the Story Tree,

Here in little Mullumbimby, the whole community has been shaken by the tragic death of a teenage boy in a scuffle at school. The pain of that has been compounded by the distorted and sensationalised stories coming out of the media- even sadly our ABC didn’t get to the facts accurately.

The truth is only just emerging and it seems it was more of a freak accident than anything. There was never a vicious brawl or a mob as some media have reported. In Mullumbimby, the whole community has come together to offer support to those affected, not only by the incident itself and Jai's death but by the papparazzi-like press who descended upon our small town.

Two days after Jai's death, his parents urged Jai's friends to embrace peace and forgiveness. A memorial march was held at the school (not a walk out). On Saturday there was a funeral for Jai in our beautiful Heritage Park with hundreds of people attending. It was partly led by his teenage friends who read poems and sang songs for him. The adults and teenagers supported eachother in their grief. Balloons and doves were released at the end.

You may have heard that one of Jai's young friends called for people to tie coloured balloons to their letterboxes to symbolise peace and co-operation to honour Jai, who was a very peacable, beautiful boy and to start a National Day to recognize the need to stand up and say 'No' to bullying in all forms. The message travelled around Australia. Many of the streets of Mullumbimby were lined with balloons on Saturday.

Maybe our loving thought balloons are more ecological but just as powerful.

Peace and harmony to you,

Jenni Cargill-Strong