Thursday, June 30, 2011

Environmentality 29 June 2011

Dear Environmentality listeners.

We had two guests on the show today. As the next edition of the Alternative Technology Associations magazine ReNew has just come off the press we caught up with the magazine’s editor Jacinta Cleary. We first spoke to Jacinta on the 20th of April.

Jacinta reminded us of how the ATA began following the first major oil crisis in the 1970’s. ATA has an emphasis on technology for sustainable homes and a greener environment. ATA produces two magazines; ReNew which has a focus on technology and Sanctuary which deals with sustainable homes.

This edition of ReNew magazine has a range of articles about technology and sustainability issues for the home. Some of the feature article’s we asked Jacinta about were; Fielding’s passing shot-the wind farm enquiry, 2020 tech: what’s coming next to lead the way in a low carbon world, a home insulation buyers guide, an update on the competition for ideas about recycling you CRT TV, and the mud brick circle house built using passive solar design principles.
All up this edition of ReNew has 11 feature articles plus a home hydronic heating special covering 12 pages. The regular features and advertising also provide a wealth of sustainable technology information.

Our second guest was Elliot Fishman from the Institute for Sensible Transport. The Institute grew out the hike in oil prices following Hurricane Katrina. The organisation hopes to stimulate a better debate about transport options and solutions to reduce the need for us to get in our cars.

One project Elliot told us about was working with local councils about dealing with increased costs associated with oil depletion. Councils can reduce the oil intensity of services delivered to the community such as waste collection and disposal, meals on wheels and transport. Some councils now purchase 4 cylinder cars over 6 and 8 cylinder ones.
Another project we spoke to Elliot about is public bike schemes. A key finding has been that users of the schemes tend to be people who are walking rather than car users. The incentive needs to be there to encourage use by car users. And it is politically difficult for government to encourage bike use over car use.
Elliot also provided some insights into Melbourne’s transport system including the idea for a train service to the airport.
As Smokey was not able to be at the show today Jaime looked after the music selection with another great selection from his jazz collection.
You got to hear:

  1. Bird Land by Weather Report
  2. My Song by Keith Jarrett
  3. Pianola Roll by Dave Graney
  4. Stay, Please Stay by Oh Mercy

Another very informative show. Find more information about today’s guests and their organisations by clicking on the links in the above text.
Listen to the show!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Environmentality 22 June 2011

Dear Environmentality listeners.

We had another interesting show today. Prior to interviewing today's guest Smokey told us about some of his thoughts about his recent trip to Bali from an environmental perspective.

We also took the opportunity before our guest rang the studio to interview two students from the Craigieburn Secondary School who happened to be visiting the studio. We spoke to Ben Leavey and Ben Chambers and after introducing themselves they answered a few questions about environmental sustainability. From their answers to these questions we felt the students had a very informed view of environmental issues and knowledge of possible solutions.

Our principal guest for today was Travis Scicchitano who is the Woodlands Project Officer from Conservation Volunteers Australia.

Woodlands Historical Park is in Greenvale near Tullamarine Airport and Travis explained how he has been restoring the park in preparation for the re-introduction of the Eastern-Barred Bandicoot to the park.

By 1991 the bandicoot was on the brink of extinction through habitat loss (for agriculture and development) and predation by introduced foxes and cats. In preparation for the release of 50 Bandicoots from a breeding program into Woodlands, Conservation Volunteers and Hume City Council have been removing weeds, replanting natives and fencing the Woodlands site.

Anyone wishing to volunteer to assist with the program can do so by attending Woodlands on a Thursday. Contact the West Melbourne office at 162 Aderley St, WEST MELBOURNE VIC 3003, Phone 03 9326 8250 or email for details.

Travis also told us about another project he has been involved with at Conservation Volunteers; Green Gym. The Green Gym Project is based on the idea that volunteering for activities in Parks is a great form of exercise and also is a social activity and an opportunity to learn new skills and knowledge about the natural environment. As Travis mentioned we use three times more energy standing up than sitting down.

With Smokey back on deck today Jaime only got to play one more Jazz track from his Jazz collection.

You got to hear;

Round Midnight from the George Russell Sextet

Sensitive by The Field Mice

Children of The Revolution by T-Rex

From the Flagstones by the Cocteau Twins

I walk the Line by Johnny Cash.

Listen to the show!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Environmentality 15 June 2011

Dear Environmentality listeners.

Today we spoke to Cate Lawrence from Green Renters. Cate and her partner started the organisation some years ago after finding there was little information available to assist people in rented accommodation live more sustainably.

The organisation delivers workshops, runs projects and the website is full of tips, tutorials, product reviews and inspiring stories, all specifically geared to renters.

Some upcoming workshops include Living Sustainably in Rental Accommodation (June 29), a Green Renting Workshop (June 30) and DIY Natural Cleaning (October 22).

In 2007 Cate also launched Polka Dot Rabbit which represents Cate's creative side where she reclaims once loved items, recreating them to be loved all over again.

As we waited for Cate to arrive at the studio Jaime began the show by mentioning the opening of the Hume Eco Living Centre at Banksia Gardens Community Centre last Wednesday which is why we did not have a show last week.

The Centre has been built using environmentally sustainable principles including passive solar design and has transformed the facilities at Banksia. The following photos show how the centre has been transformed.



Jaime at opening ceremony

Uncle Stan performing traditional opening.

Some external and internal views of the centre.

As Smokey is away in Bali Jaime did a great job looking after the music for today’s show. We got to hear a track from Kat Lavers the guest on our previous show two weeks ago and also one from Cate our guest today along with some great jazz from Jaime's collection.

You got to hear;

  1. Six Seasons Rap by Ilan Abrahams (Selected by Kat Lavers our previous guest)
  2. Meet B.B. by Count Basie and his orchestra
  3. So What by Miles Davis
  4. Golden Brown by The Stranglers (Selected by Cate)
  5. My favourite things by John Coltrane
Another great show providing some great information from an organisation dedicated to sustainable green renting. Listen to the show!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Environmentaility 1 June 2011

Dear Environmentality listeners.

Today we spoke to Kat Lavers from Transition Darebin which is part of the worldwide Transition Network.

The organisations vision is a relocalised and resilient Darebin that is liveable for current and future generations. Key drivers for the initiative is peak oil and dealing with climate change.

Kat highlighted the negative media scenarios which have been presented about climate change and peak oil. However by imagining the type of future we desire the Transition Network can assist planning for the transition to a sustainable future. Darebin has produced an excellent document “Climate Change and Peak Oil Adaptation Plan” about these issues and an adaptation strategy.

The organisation is run by volunteers and has a doing and fun attitude to building resilience and adaption in the community to these pressing environmental issues. They are trying to localise food production which relies heavily on oil inputs and have a local food directory and community supported agriculture scheme.

An interesting transport initiative was the shifting of a home’s furniture and contents using bicycle transport raising the question that if bikes can be used to shift a house is an SVU required to get the milk?

A key them to the Transition initiative is Permaculture which is about sustainable design; reducing resource use, reducing waste production and observing natural cycles.

On Saturday June 4 Transition Darebin has organised the “Darebin Urban Harvest Fruit and Vegie Swap”, 10am – 12pm at the Northcote Uniting Church.

We heard an interesting selection of music from Jaime, Smokey and Kat. You got to hear;

  1. Sweet Disposition by The Temper Trap.
  2. Shuck by You Am I.
  3. Cinnamon Girl by Diesel.
  4. Happy Guy by Stephen Cummings
  5. A track from Kats disk by the artist Tim Scanlon.
  6. Someone to Watch Over Me by The Conglomerates, compliments of Kat.
  7. Days Like These by Diesel.

An upbeat and entertaining show showing how Darebin is tackling environmental sustainability.

And a great effort by Kat to get to the show using public tranport and her bike!

Listen to the show!

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