Dear All

Happy New Year.

My apologies for not getting this to you sooner, as the registrations for the VERY IMPORTANT no-coal summerfest closed yesterday Blame the sunshine (ie the long-neglected garden). And please do still let the organisers know if you are suddenly able to come.
Details of upcoming events, petitions and thought-provoking/useful links
Friday 11 Jan 2013
1.   Sustainable Dunedin City action

Sustainable Dunedin City Society is made up of persons who are interested in the issues of climate change, declining energy security and sustainability, as they affect Dunedin City. The Society is not affiliated with any political party and aims to facilitate a positive, secure and sustainable future for Dunedin City. For more information or to join go to or email

April TBC

Update on all the SDC Big Green Challenge grants projects:

Generation Zero’s Housing Project

Community Education for a Sustainable Future permaculture course

Karitane School: To harness the energy from compost to heat an outdoor shower at the beach.

Presbyterian Support Otago Family Works: To do two fruit tree harvests and hold four workshops on how to make preserves which will be shared among the participants, the tree owners and the food bank.

Permablitz Otago: Groups of keen permaculture gardeners will make edible gardens for community groups or individuals who are unable to make their own gardens.

Bud Law and friends: Making greenhouses and tunnels out of recycled plastic and timber to give to community groups.

St Leonards School Junior Class: to develop an orchard and do some native planting a the school.

Broad Bay School: To install a rainwater catchment system to be able to water the school gardens and the native plants being grown to regenerate the local stream.

La Leche League: To provide training for more volunteers to train as breastfeeding counsellors. Breastfeeding is an unrecognised “green” issue.

Be the Change Otepoti: Christopher Le Breton is a very experienced presenter of a course to motivate people to act on climate change which he will run for Dunedin residents.

Watch out for these projects as they are reported upon by The Star community newspaper!
2.   Other dates

Every Thursday:

Otago Access Radio 105.4FM:

2.30- 3 pm

Eco Living in Action Dunedin’s Sustainable Living weekly radio show. Check out the latest podcasts (includes interview with Northern Irish guest talking about pigs, handspinning, willow weaving and organics. Go to

7 – 8pm

Sustainable Lens Radio, with Sam Mann, Anton Angelo and Shane Gallagher:

17th January: Sean Linton – music and sustainability of ‘Are’are

24th January: Danyl Strype – Permaculture and creative commons

Thursday 10 Jan

Registration for the Coal in the Hole Summerfest closed – but still let them know if you can come now! Do not just turn up.

Wednesday 16 January, 7 pm

How can we defend our land and environment against the growing fossil fuel mining madness? Come and hear someone who did: Rob McCreath, Chair of Friends of Felton and part of Australia’s successful Lock the Gate campaign.

English Language matters, Level 2 Evan Parry House, 43 Princes St (just south of the Octagon)

What can one small community do to defend its land and oceans from industry giants? Sometimes the battle seems too big. They have the PR experts, the sponsorship deals, the friends in high places. We only have each other. But it can be done…

Australian farmer Rob McCreath, chair of Friends of Felton and part of Australia’s successful Lock the Gate campaign, is coming to Dunedin to tell us how he and his community succeeded in stopping a giant open cast coal mine and chemical plant on good quality agricultural land at the headwaters of the Murray-Darling river system.


(Rob is also guest speaker at this year’s Keep the Coal in the Hole Summerfest)

Friday 18 January to Monday 21 January 2013

The 2013 Keep the Coal in the Hole Summerfest will be held from at Dolamore Park, a beautiful camping ground surrounded by bush about 10 minutes by car from Gore, very near the north-western corner of Solid Energy’s landholdings in the Mataura Valley. Register online:

Sunday 27 January 2013

Permaculture course begins (ten sessions over nine weeks), led by Philip Jenkins, looking at knowledge of food production gained from throughout the world, including the perennial Edible Food Forest Garden Design system.  Cost is $60.00 plus approximately another $10.00 for own stationery.

Contact Philip 021 267 6542 (to leave a message) or email

Monday 28 Jan

All pledges for the Blueskin Energy Project wind testing tower need to be in. See info attached and below.

Sustainable Living Courses beginning. These interactive eight-week adult community education courses will

help you:

•         Learn and share planet-friendly practical tips that make a difference.

•         Meet others who are interested in community resilience and sustainable living.

•         Gain support for introducing lifestyle changes you want to make.

Facilitated by Dr Maureen Howard. To register, please contact Maureen on 473 9967 or email

Registration is essential. Donation of $30 welcome.

Tuesday 17th Feb 7-9pm

Sustainable Living Course starting in Port Chalmers, at Port Chalmers School.

Wednesday 18th Feb 10-12 noon.
Sustainable Living Course begins at Church of Christ Community Church, corner Filleul and St Andrew Sts

Wed 27 – Thus 28 February

Joel Salatin of PolyFace Farms is a world-leading example of how a small family farm can become an extremely diverse and profitable Local Food producer, and how the benefits of Local Food Systems can create resilience, stability and abundance for both local farmers and the wider community.Workshop in Glendhu Station Wanaka,

More details on the workshop, go to: and

March 9-11

Permaculture in NZ Annual Hui in Taranaki. See
3.   Petitions, consultations and submissions



The ORC are considering investing in irrigation plans – Tarras Water Limited plans to build an irrigation scheme for the Tarras District, at an estimated cost of $39.2 million.  It has asked the ORC to make an initial investment of up to $3.5 million in the scheme, through the purchase of redeemable preference shares.  It has also asked the ORC to contribute approximately $2 million to fixed charges over a period of five years starting around September 2014, when the scheme is expected to be operational.  Future sales or redemption of those shares is expected cover the initial purchase price and fixed cost contributions, along with an interest return on the investment.

A proposed amendment to the 2012/22 Long Term Plan has been prepared which provides details of the proposed investment, a risk analysis of investing in the scheme, and the financial implications of doing so.

Council would like to hear your views on the proposed amendment to the Long Term Plan.–22-Long-Term-Plan—-Proposal-to-invest-in-a-new-Tarras-irrigation-scheme-/

Central Govt:

25 Jan: Crown Minerals (Permitting and Crown Land) Bill
14 Feb: Subantarctic Islands Marine Reserves Bill
28 Feb: Conservation (Natural Heritage Protection) Bill
28 Feb: Resource Management Reform Bill
4.   Food for thought and (good) fuel for action

•         Blueskin Project update on campaign to raise the 30 metre wind testing tower on Porteous Hill, from Scott Willis (on 5th Jan). More info also attached.

Firstly, a big thank you to all who have made pledges to help us raise the 30 metre tower. By the New Year we were half way to our target! Now, with 23 days of the campaign left, we only have just over $3000 to raise. It really is amazing how quickly $5 or $50 pledges add up.

What I’m also excited about in this campaign – a first for BRCT – is the amount of non-cash support offered by talented members of our community. These are the rewards offered for people making pledges and we have everything from Uni-cycle lessons to Home-kill thanks to the generosity of some very talented Blueskin donors. I think this is also an indication of a different form of economy (sometimes callled the ‘gift and barter’ economy) emerging – or at least a demonstration of what is possible.

Please spread the word this New Year about the Blueskin Energy Project PledgeMe campaign – this is the first time we’ve attempted to crowd source funding to enable a project to move forward and it is exciting to see so many people willing to get involved – much more exciting than writing funding applications that may – or may not – be successful. The way this works I’m told, is for the message to get out widely and for it also to be passed around by word of mouth, even if eventually you do need a credit card and a computer to make a pledge.

•         Foodweb ( is a local food resiliency network for Otago. We are always keen to hear from anyone interested in sustainable food production at any scale, from the backyard to the farm. If you are interested sign up to our email list on the ‘Contact Us’ page at

•         Spring Seed List from Otepoti Urban Organics – our local seed savers and sharing scheme. Growing from local seeds, saving seed and sharing seeds is so important for local food resilience. Contact or check out the website at

Otepoti Urban Organics is also looking for people to ‘adopt a crop’, ie raise a certain type of vegetable crop, and later, collect the seeds for the seed exchange. They particularly need people to grow a particular variety of pumpkin seeds….

•         Join the Dunedin People’s Panel –  have your say on this email-based panel:

•         Planning a biodiversity project? The DCC can help you. See

•         From the Guardian:


Tēnā koutou katoa,

Nicky Chapman (SDC’s newsletter compiler)

Vivienne Bryner (SDC’s secretary)