Photo on 19 1 20 at 2.20 pm 2For many of us the eerie image of families huddled on the beach under an orange sky at Mallacoota, sheltering from the fires, will remain the indelible memory that ushered in 2020. Despite Canberra’s shenanigans and climate policy vacuum, as Australia’s biggest bushfire crisis continues to unfold, the public response, both locally and internationally, has been remarkable with fund raising efforts for bushfire relief breaking records. Not that there is any silver lining to be found here. The forecast effects of climate change are happening as climate scientists have predicted for several decades, and the costs, recounted daily in the media, have been devastating: for the natural environment, for our unique and diverse native wildlife, for those whose homes and livelihoods have been lost, for public health, food security and water security, and for the families of those 28 individuals who have died in the fires. As many international media reports have noted, Australia is now at the forefront of climate change – but tragically not at the forefront of fighting it. A testing time for people power.

Read more: President's Report 19 January 2020

nsw rural fire serviceMary Debrett, Opinion page - The Ballarat Courier

With catastrophic bushfires continuing to rage across NSW, Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia, recent statements by politicians implying it's offensive to talk about climate change in the face of bushfire victims' suffering, have prompted considerable backlash-from the nation's former fire chiefs, from the general public, and from bushfire victims themselves.

For politicians who have failed to develop policies to effectively mitigate the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions driving anthropogenic climate change, the current drought and wild fires are obviously embarrassing, since they reflect what climate scientists have been warning for over three decades.

In Australia the climate has now warmed by 1.4C. It is predicted that globally, unless more radical action is taken, we are on a path to reach 4-5C warming by the end of the century-a scenario leading to a hostile, severely diminished environment. With the COP25 meeting in Madrid concluding, we know that those talks have failed to secure commitment to cut emissions to the requisite level.

Read more: Why we must talk about climate change

callistemon 3360610 640Its Christmas time at BREAZE.   To help us celebrate the year and plan next year, we have organised our events with a celebratory theme.

At GREEN drinks, we will be providing nibbles and pizzas.    We are inviting people from a range of environmental groups around Ballarat.   So come and celebrate and socialise with people with a like mind.   You can also let us know what topics you are interested in 2020.

Our SLB talk this month will be a two short films.   We will also let you know what BREAZE has done this year.   We are also interested in knowing what we (with your help)  should doing next year.  So come along to help us finish off the year.

If you don't know what to give as a present this year, think about $1 for 1 Watt.   This tax deductible gift will not only help the environment but also help our socially disadvantaged.

For your new years resolution think about climate change.   What are you going to do in 2020?  What can you do personally, in your local community and on the larger scale.

We are still looking for more board members and volunteers.   At the next meeting it is likely that Mary Debrett will be confirmed as the new President.    The secretarial role will be shared among the current board.   If you can help in any way give Paul a call on 0432 390492.

BREAZE wishes all its volunteers, members and friends a happy and fulfilling time for the holiday season, and wishes you all the best in 2020.

2019 breaze AGM boardThe new BREAZE board - Mary Debrett - President (to be confirmed), Peter Reid - Treasurer, Ordinary Members- Paul Duggan, Joe Natoli, Emily Lee, Pat Hockey, Therese Footner, Simon Reid

Not in picture, Barry Sullivan, Barbara Whitfield, Jeremy Hunt.

Positions vacant- Secretary, Vice President

Read more: BREAZE 2019 AGM - New Board

Climate Reality LogoOur climate is changing – rapidly. We see extreme heat waves and weather events around the world and at home. How are these affecting us?   How do we adapt to an environment which is hotter, drier and creates far more challenging weather conditions?

In 2019 -20 BREAZE is hosting a series of Climate Change adaptation forums. We want these forums to give the regional Ballarat community an opportunity to understand the challenges we face with global warming and a determination to take action as a community.

We have already completed an Adaption Discussion / Promotion regarding these events. 

We look forward to your support.


Invitation to participate in Forum.pdf


AUGUST 22 2019Courier masthead mainRochelle Kirkham


Veteran Ballarat backyard gardener John Ditchburn shared his knowledge on growing vegetables in Ballarat to a crowd of keen gardeners on Wednesday as part the monthly Smart Living Ballarat talks. 

GROWING VEGETABLES: Veteran Ballarat backyard gardener John Ditchburn spoke as part of Smart Living Ballarat on vegetable planting success. Picture: Lachlan Bence

Read more: Gardening tips from Ballarat's veteran backyard grower John Ditchburn