Details of upcoming events, submissions, petitions and thought-provoking/useful links
Monday 8th December 2014
Kia ora,
You can tell the holidays are upon us by the sudden lack of sustainability events in the next few weeks. However, there is still an interesting public lecture on climate change next Tuesday (16th), by former US Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu.
Apart from the lecture, we also have news of Oxfam Christmas trees for sale, Quarantine Island Christmas activities and the opening of nominations for the Keep Dunedin Beautiful awards. Also, don’t forget to check out the Food for Thought and Fuel for Action section, where we try to pop in a couple of items of news or views that may be of interest.
The next newsletter will be out in early January.
Best wishes for Christmas and the holidays,

1. Sustainable Dunedin City news and events

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

Sustainable Dunedin City runs Big Green Challenge, an annual grant scheme for environmental projects around the city. The ten successful projects for 2014 are listed on our website. They include Generation Zero, for workshops to engage students in climate change issues, Volunteering Otago, for preserving and baking workshops and various community garden schemes.
If you are a Facebook user you can follow the progress of the various projects on Dunedin’s Big Green Challenge Facebook page. There will also be updates on the Sustainable Dunedin City website from time to time.

(Usually meets last Thursday of the month)

GreenDrinks Dunedin
THE BOG – upstairs. Corner of George and London Sts.
No meeting in December
GreenDrinks Dunedin is part of the non-political international movement Green Drinks whose focus is to provide a relaxed space for people interested in sustainability and the environment to meet and get together.
Green Drinks Dunedin is hosted in Dunedin by Sustainable Dunedin City. For more information or to get on the mailing list pleaseemail Maureen Howard, GreenDrinks Dunedin Coordinator on
(Usually meets 3rd Thursday in the month)

GreenDrinks Port Chalmers
The Portsider in Port Chalmers
No meeting in December (next meeting 15th January)

2. Other new events

Saturday and Sunday, 13th and 14th December
(all day)Oxfam Xmas Trees for Sale
Outside the Botanic Gardens, opposite the Gardens New World car park.
Freshly cut, long lasting Xmas trees will be on sale at $15 each. All proceeds go to improving access to safe water and sanitation in the Pacific as part of the Oxfam Water for Survival Programme. Trees cut as thinnings from sustainable forestry.

Tuesday, 16th December
5:30 – 6:30pm
The Energy and Climate Challenge: Public Lecture by Professor Steven Chu
St David Lecture Theatre, University of Otago

“Science and technology advances that led to the industrial and agricultural revolutions have profoundly transformed the world. I will give an “epidemiological” view of climate change, provide a progress report of progress in sustainable energy, and how clean energy can become the low cost energy option.”
Steven Chu is an American physicist and Nobel Laureate who served as the 12th United States Secretary of Energy from 2009 to 2013.

Until 5th February
Nominations for the 2014 Keep Dunedin Beautiful awards
Keep Dunedin Beautiful would like to hear from anyone who has done anything to somehow beautify Dunedin.
This can be from somehow minimizing your waste, planting trees, painting murals, cleaning rubbish, weeding overgrown areas, revitalising untidy areas, education campaigns – whatever.
Send in at least a paragraph of what was done, who did it and as much information as you have including photos if possible. Send to Darlene on by February 5

3. Ongoing activities

Eco Living in Action, Thursdays, 2.30-3pm. On Otago Access Radio 105.4FM. Tune in or check out previous shows on the OAR website at
STOP (Save The Otago Peninsula) Inc Soc regular working bees on Tuesday and Thursday mornings in the Broad Bay area.
One is a freshwater creek enhancement project and the other is in a DOC Scientific Reserve. There is sometimes transport available from town on the Thursday morning. Other working bees are held as required in the evenings in summer and in the weekend. For more details, contact Lala Frazer, phone 478 0339, or text mobile 021 20 999 74, or email
Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua – special Christmas events and activities

Contact Kristen at or on 027 779 5481 about all of these:

1. The ideal Christmas gift….Treat your friends and family to an island retreat or adventure!

Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua is so close (no long tiring drive) and yet so far away from the bustle of life on the mainland. You can relax in beautiful surroundings, or be active- helping with our tree revegetation work or other projects. Beautiful gift vouchers available for return boat transport on the Vivienne J ($10 per person), and/or for overnight accommodation in the lodge ($15 per adult; $12 per student; $10 per child). Vouchers will be posted with a colour brochure about the island. They can be redeemed at Community weekends, usually the last Saturday of the month; or as part of a group organised by the recipient. Valid until Dec 31st 2015. Contact Kristen to discuss redeeming your voucher or check out our website

2. Saturday 13th December is our St Martin Island Community Christmas party on the Island.
We hope you can join us to relax and celebrate! Bring yummy food to share, warm clothes, $10 for the boat and your koha for the Island. Boat from Back Beach, Port Chalmers at 2pm, returning 8.30pm, or stay overnight. Pick up also possible on the peninsula side. Bookings required.

3. Looking for something fun to do after Christmas/in January? We can organise boat transport to the Island for groups of friends and family. Bring a picnic. Help weeding around our native tree seedlings. Relax and explore.
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 go to or contact: Karen Connor at or 03 4770 677.
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.
Wanted – Plastic PET bottles
Sawyers Bay School is wanting to build a glasshouse out of plastic bottles. They need approximately 1500 1.5 litre bottles. Bottles can be left at Sawyers Bay School during school hours or with Darlene Thomson, Keep Dunedin Beautiful Coordinator Dunedin City Council

4. Petitions and consultations

Government consultations ( – no sustainability-related consultations at present.
Dunedin City Council consultations: – no formal sustainability-related consultations at present.

Otago Regional Council consultations: – no sustainability-related consultations at present.

5. Food for thought and (good) fuel for action

Unconverted friends?
Utopia is a six part television series available on DVD from Dunedin Libraries. If you want a riveting way to introduce friends and acquaintances to the possibilities of climate change, there couldn’t be a more interesting way than to encourage them to view Utopia on the basis of it being ‘I need to go to bed but can’t turn it off’ intelligent entertainment. With terrific camera work, script, pace, and ideas to captivate viewers, Utopia’s climate change message is briefly stated towards the end so that non-believers won’t feel ideologically challenged. My only quibble was the loads of violence which I saw as unnecessary for maintaining the fear factor.
Jill Balfour-Smith
Green cleaning
This is an interesting article about local dry-cleaning company, Preens, and their efforts to operate more sustainably:

Simonne Samuelson
Jenny Neilson (SDC’s secretary)
Sustainable Dunedin City Inc.

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