Sustainable Dunedin City

Looking to Dunedin's Future

Browsing Posts published in September, 2016

This newsletter is circulated once every two to three weeks by Sustainable Dunedin City Society to publicise sustainability-related events, consultations, petitions and occasional news items relevant to Dunedin.

Kia ora,
We were pleased with the turn-out of mayoral candidates and audience members for our environmental election forum on 7th September, especially considering the horrible weather that evening. We hope that those who attended found it a useful contribution to the democratic process. Many thanks to Forest & Bird and Wise Response Society for co-hosting the event, to Otago Polytechnic for kindly letting us use the excellent venue and to Mark McGuire for chairing the event so well. Thank you also to those of you who put posters up or circulated details of the event amongst your networks. For people who weren’t able to be there, or who would like to refresh their memory of what the candidates said,  some summary notes of the main points made by the candidates are available as a PDF here: Dunedin-Mayoral-Forum-Notes. There was also coverage in the ODT.

While organising the event I realised that Sustainable Dunedin City’s Facebook page has been rather dormant for the last few months, so I’m planning to post a few more items there from time to time. If you are into Facebook, please like the page and share things that are of interest; if you are not into Facebook, don’t worry – this newsletter will still be our main way of communicating!

Ngā mihi,
Simonne Wood

Surveying interest in an electric car sharing scheme for Dunedin.
We’ve been asked to publicise a survey to test interest in an electric car sharing scheme for Dunedin at:

The Government, through energy efficiency agency EECA, has a low emission vehicles contestable fund, to support the uptake of low emission vehicles. One of the things it is looking for is proposals for car sharing schemes. Car sharing schemes offer the prospect of reducing car numbers, and therefore emissions, particularly if the cars are electric, while supporting active and public transport, and providing a way to address equality of access to a new low emission transport option. Transport emissions are the best part of 20% of New Zealand’s overall CO2 emissions, and one the most easily addressed areas, according to the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment. If you are not familiar with car sharing schemes you might like to watch a couple of short YouTube videos before filling out the survey. This is a good one: And this is one for a Vancouver scheme called Modo: It doesn’t involve an electric car, but describes how such schemes work. Thanks for taking the time. If you have any further inquiries please contact Tom at

Events listing

Now until 18th September
DOC’s Dirty Dozen Competition
Help DOC record the location of invasive weeds across New Zealand using NatureWatchNZ website. See DOC website for more information. Part of Conservation Week.

10th – 18th September
Conservation Week
See the website for events happening locally and around the country.

16th to 25th September
Great Kererū Count
The Great Kererū Count was set up to help us get a better understanding of kererū numbers and distribution across New Zealand. The Great Kererū Count is an annual citizen science project and the more people who participate, the better the understanding we will get on how kererū are doing across the country. Over a number of years, scientists from Victoria University of Wellington and Lincoln University will use data from the Great Kererū Count and build a more accurate picture of kererū numbers, distribution as well as key kererū behaviours. This will help us understand how best to protect kererū. Find out how to participate at

Sunday 18th September, 10am to 1pm
Hereweka Harbour Cone Planting Bee
This is to invite you to the first planting on the Hereweka Harbour Cone Block organised by the Hereweka Harbour Cone Trust (HHCT). Save The Otago Peninsula (STOP) has of course been busy planting on both the Smiths Creek and the Stewarts Creek Catchments for several years, but this is the first Hereweka Harbour Cone Trust planting.
Smiths Creek. Meet at the end of Bacon St, Broad Bay at the beginning of the Bacon St Track or walk along to the second gate on the Track.
BRING: Stout shoes, a spade and gardening gloves if you have them – but they will be supplied.
Paul Pope 027 4668 446
Lala Frazer 027 8756 020

Anyone welcome! Sunday 18th September
Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua – special open day for Conservation Week
Come over to explore the island’s biodiversity, marine and terrestrial!
The boat departs from Back Beach, by the Port Chalmers Yacht Club at 10am and can do a pick up on the Peninsula side by prior arrangement.
$15 return per person. Bookings essential (by Friday 9th September). Return boat at 4pm. Contact or 478 0874
Bring a picnic lunch, warm clothes and sturdy footwear. A koha for the island is always appreciated.
More information about the island, including staying overnight in the Lodge in case you’d like to do this too on the ‘Visit’ page of our website Sunday 18th September, 1 – 5pm
Better soil for better crops – a seminar for beginners
Venue: Community Rooms, North East Valley Normal School, North Road, Dunedin

Although everyone knows that the key to success in growing healthy produce on any scale is to “get the soil right”, it is no easy matter to comprehend the vast amount of information available on the subject.
The purpose of this seminar is to provide a thorough, practical introduction to the theory and practice of soil management in language that can be readily understood.
The seminar will be in three parts:

Know your soil – explaining how to evaluate your soil type and understand its advantages and limitations.
Understand your soil – covering the physics, chemistry and biology of the soil and the connections between them (the “soil food web”).
Manage your soil – surveying the many practices you can employ to make your soil as healthy and productive as possible.

Presenter Andy Barratt is a certified organic grower. He and his wife live on a small farm outside Karitane where they grow fruit and vegetables.
COST:  $30 (Otago Organics Associates – $25)
To register, email Andy at or phone/text 021 890 048.

Tuesday 20th September, 1.30 – 3.30pm
Film: The Wisdom to Survive
Venue: Dunningham Suite Dunedin Public Library

An hour long film, followed by discussion and a cuppa. The film explores how unlimited growth and greed are destroying the life support system of the planet, the social fabric of the society, and the lives of billions of people. Will we have the wisdom to survive?

Wednesday 21 September
Environment day – Southern Labour Centenary Exhibition
Venue: Dunedin Community Gallery, 20 Princes Street

There will be two documentary screenings throughout the day:
“Thin Ice: The Inside Story of Climate Change” at 11am
“Hot Air: The politics of climate change in New Zealand” at 1pm

Panel discussion on “Labour and Climate Change” at 5.30pm – with panel members Professor Liz Slooten, Emeritus Professor Colin Campbell-Hunt, Labour MP David Parker, and panel chair Jocelyn Harris.
All welcome. This is part of the Southern Labour Centenary Exhibition.

Other opportunities

Valley Community Workspace is a co-working space for sustainable, innovative ventures and skill-sharing at 11 Allen St, North East Valley. Call in to see what’s happening on Saturdays between 10.30am -5pm or check our facebook page or website  We are looking for new people/ventures who are interested in renting part of the space. Currently we have bikes, e-bikes, a welding workshop, Makerspace, and e-car conversions…
Good reading/listening
Report from the recent “Rethinking how we value food” event on 30th August.

WellSouth’s Low Cost Food and Transport Map – Provides information on community gardens, fruit and vegetable coops, community orchards and cycling facilities in Dunedin.

Eco Living in Action

Dunedin’s radio show about living more sustainably. With host Maureen Howard, on Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Aired – every Thursday 2.30-3pm and repeated Mondays 8.30-9am. Podcasts available at, Eco Living in Action website or iTunes.

Eco Living in Action is sponsored by Sustainable Dunedin City

25th August – “Our Endangered Birds” – with guest Sophie Fern, of Dunedin, host of the OAR radio show Natural History Show
1st September – “Creating Living Willow Sculptures” – with guest Clive Lyttle, of Northern Ireland, Basket Maker and Traditional Craftsman
8th September – “Making your own fruit wine organically” – with Heiko Vermeulen, of Northern Ireland, permaculturalist and forager.

Sustainable Lens – radio show on Otago Access Radio. Each week Shane Gallagher and Samuel Mann take a sustainable perspective on current topics in the world around us. Regular features aimed at drawing out connections lead into an extended discussion with invited guests. They are building up a searchable archive of conversations with people from many different fields who are applying their skills to a sustainable future. In their conversations they try to find out what motivates them and what it means to see the world through a sustainable perspective, through their sustainable lens.
Podcast and live on Otago Access Radio (Thursday NZ  7-8pm 105.4FM/1575AM in Dunedin).
Regular listings

Biodiversity monitoring on Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua

When: at our community open days (last Saturday of the month) and to suit visiting groups

COST: $15 pp for boat; $10-$15 if staying overnight in the Lodge. Subsidies sometimes available if there is financial hardship.

We are about to start an exciting project, monitoring biodiversity on the Island using different indicators, linked with a new predator control programme. We’re keen to involve the community, especially young people!

A range of monitoring methods will be used- tracking tunnels, chew cards, and seedling,/moth/bird counts prior to trapping, and then again once the traps are in place. We expect that we will see increases in biodiversity over time.

Get involved on a day visit, or stay overnight to ensure plenty of time to explore other aspects of the Island, including ecological restoration and heritage.Talk to the Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua Community’s Keeper, Phil Perrow, about options.

Phil Perrow;  478 0874  0276683773

Living legends at Waitati Last Sunday of the month. Help with releasing the native plants from rank grass and weeds at the Orokonui Scenic Reserve, an important area for whitebait and wading birds. We aim to transform the low-lying rank pasture into a thriving natural wetland, as it was over 150 years ago. To find out more contact Karen Connor at or 03 4770 677 or visit

Blueskin Community Market – first Sunday of every month. Gallery on Blueskin. Food and coffee, plants and produce, arts and crafts, prints, pakoras, books, toys and more! Free stalls, DCC regulations apply to food stalls.
Phone Nathan on 027 214 8294 or Rudie 027 781 1799 for more information.

Petitions and consultations

Dunedin City Council: No sustainability-related consultations at present.

Otago Regional Council: No sustainability-related consultations at present.

New Zealand Government: International Treaty examination of the Paris Agreement. Closing date 2nd September. I haven’t had time to look at this yet, but I think the National Interest Analysis would be worth a read.

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


Simonne Wood (Chair and newsletter editor)

SDC secretary (Jenny Neilson)

Sustainable Dunedin City Inc

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Candidates Forum 2016 4Candidates Forum 2016 4 Notes from the Mayoral Candidates Forum are available here as a PDF: Dunedin-Mayoral-Forum-Notes



Candidates Forum 2016 5







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