President’s Report May 2022

MDClimate Action and the Federal Election

With the Federal Election looming, BREAZE was quick off the blocks holding its Candidates Climate Forum on Sunday 1 May at Ballarat Tech School in Albert St, Ballarat Central. Four of the eight candidates standing for Ballarat accepted our invitation: the sitting member, Catherine King (ALP); John Barnes (Greens); Alex Graham (Independent) and Sherryn Sedgman (Federation Party). The Forum, which was well attended, was livestreamed on Facebook, and the video is still available there for those who missed it.  BREAZE also produced a Climate Score Card to inform voters about the candidates' climate policies. The scorecard can be found on the BREAZE website and on Facebook.

The Candidates Forum on Sunday 1 May was preceded by a climate rally organised collaboratively by Extinction Rebellion, Ballarat Climate Action Network (BCAN), Ballarat Action Climate Co-op (BCC), Ballarat Community Alliance (BCA), Public Transport Users Group and BREAZE Inc., and supported by Environment Victoria and Ballarat Trades Hall.  The Rally was reported in The Courier:

BREAZE board member Sally Missing told the crowd of about 150 people at Town Hall "national leadership is needed", and launched a "candidate scorecard" on what's been announced so far on climate issues.

"What we've been getting is climate denial, and now a shift to lies and obfuscation," she said.

"I don't want my taxes spent on fossil fuels. I want them spent on a just transition to renewables."

Grampians Community Power Hub (G-CPH)

Victorian Treasurer, Tim Pallas delivered the 2022-23 State budget this month and sadly the news was not good for the Community Power Hub (CPH) program in which BREAZE Inc has been a partner, leading the Grampians hub. The Budget has not allocated any funding to extend the CPH program beyond the current 2021-22 contract term. It's very disappointing news for those of us who worked on the Hub and for Sustainability Victoria, which was tasked with delivering the program.

The Grampians Community Power Hub, one of seven established across the State in 2021, is currently in the final quarter of its contract with Sustainability Victoria. While BREAZE's contract with Sustainability Victoria ends in July, G-CPH Project Manager, Sowmya Nagaraj, will continue in her role, completing desktop feasiblity studies, until her employment contract ends in late September. The G-CPH has identified 40+ potential projects – rooftop solar, community batteries, energy hubs, and energy audits  – across the region. 

If you know of any organisations that might be potential clients for the G-CPH please register your interest via the G-CPH website - or email us at 

Smart Living Ballarat

Last month Ellen Burns returned as Smart Living Ballarat Coordinator, with a terrific session on mushrooming, a pre-recorded video presentation by Milkwood Permaculture, followed by a Q&A with Ellen, who is an experienced forager and home grower. If you missed it, you can still catch it on the Smart Living Ballarat Facebook page

The upcoming SLB Facebook conversation between SLB Host, Ellen Burns  and Colleen Filippa from Fifteen Trees! 🌳 - a Ballarat-based social enterprise which offers carbon offsets via local, and Australia wide, tree planting. This  not only offsets carbon emissions, but strengthens biodiversity, grows canopy coverage and helps to rebuild following bushfires and other natural disasters.

Join the conversation live via Zoom or Facebook to take part in the discussion, or as always you can watch it afterwards as every Smart Living session is recorded and posted to the Smart Living Facebook page."

 

Ballarat Green Drinks

Ballarat Green Drinks will return next month, 16 June at 7pm at Lake View Hotel, with 'Destination Safe Earth' Plan E: A climate-centred security strategy, a presentation by Dr Liz Boulton, an ex-Army Officer, who has re-imagined military theory for the Anthropocene. Liz will introduce the concept, which involves a civilian led, civil mobilization against the hyper-threat of climate and environmental change, to rescue our number 1 ally – nature.

 
Board Meetings

If you have a passion for climate action and ideas about how you can help BREAZE achieve its mission, please note BREAZE members are welcome to attend monthly Board meetings. Any member interested in attending should email me – 

All the best

Mary                                                            

Dr Mary Debrett
President, April 2022