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,
If you find your eyes usually skim over the Regular Activities section at the bottom of this newsletter because you think you know them all, have another look this time! There are specific updates for STOP about a series of working bees near Hereweka/Harbour Cone in June and for Maureen Howard’s Eco-Living in Action radio show. I’ve also added details for Sustainable Lens, another excellent programme with a sustainability focus on Otago Access Radio. Having been inspired recently by a talk at the Polytechnic by one of the presenters, Sam Mann, I was reminded what a great resource this show is – either for listening live or whenever convenient through the podcasts.

The regular Green Drinks get-togethers for Dunedin City and Port Chalmers are both on hold at the moment, as there has been a low turn-out at their most recent meetings. Thought is being given to a change of format and we’ll update you here when future plans emerge.
Best wishes,
Events for May
Tuesday 10th May, 8pm
Film screening – The True Cost

Venue: Dunedin School of Art

The True Cost is a documentary film about the darker side of the fashion industry – its abuse of human rights and the environment. This screening is a fund-raiser for Sustainable Projects’ new ethical shopping app – see more information in the Opportunities section below.

Tickets are available from iTICKETS:

Wednesday, 11 May, 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Seminar: Agriculture and the Environment – NZ in 2016
Venue: Centre for Sustainability seminar room, 563 Castle Street

A fourth generation dairy farmer and second generation veterinarian, Alison Dewes is a firm believer that our future food production systems have to be profitable and resilient while protecting and replenishing ecological health. In her seminar “Agriculture and the Environment – NZ in 2016” Alison will discuss the need for a paradigm shift from the current model to greater focus on wellbeing (one world: one health) where increasing production (output) and debt (stress) is replaced by increasing profit and wellbeing (resilience).

Thursday 12th May, 8am
Break Free of Fossil Fuels action

Venue: Octagon (You’ll be able to see the exact address and contact the event host after you RSVP through the website)
Action training and briefing: Wednesday 11th May, 5.30pm Knox Church

Between 4 and 15 May, 2016, people all around the world are participating in mass peaceful resistance against the fossil fuel industry -
“In New Zealand, people in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin will take action to stop one of the biggest financiers and profiteers of climate change in our region.
Join us in Dunedin Thursday 12th May as we peacefully and non-violently shut down one of the major lenders to the fossil fuel industry.”

18th – 20th May
Conservation Inc 2 Conference 2016

Venue: Dunedin – hosted by the Yellow-Eyed Penguin Trust

“Our conference is intended to prepare us for the future and bring us all forward as individuals, community groups and NGOs. Conference themes address issues to do with viability and growth; stability and cohesion; leadership, vision and reach; duties and rights; diversity and co-operation, and much else.” (Late registration fee applies after 5pm, 11th May.) For more information see

Friday, 20 May 2016, 12-1pm
Seminar: Understanding household energy use
Venue: Centre for Sustainability seminar room, 563 Castle Street

Nigel Isaacs, senior lecturer at the School of Architecture, Victoria University, Wellington reviews the Household Energy End-use Project (HEEP) 10 years on from first findings. HEEP was a multi-year, multi-discipline, New Zealand study that monitored all fuel types and the services they provided in 400 New Zealand homes. His talk “Understanding household energy use” will review the HEEP findings and discuss changes over the past decade.
Other opportunities

The Otago Daily Times Community Science Awards – entries close Wednesday 8th June, 5pm. Categories include Otago Science into Action Non-profit Community Group Award and Otago Polytechnic Sustainability Award.

Sustainable Projects – ethical shopping app Bec McMaster writes: “I have my own Dunedin-based business called Sustainable Projects, and we’re in the process of trying to bring Australia’s premier ethical clothing/fashion rating app to New Zealand, called Good On You. The app is informed by trusted third party certifications like the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), Fairtrade, Baptist World Aid Ethical Fashion Report etc. It’s easy to use and will be free, available on iOS and Android platforms. It’s been a huge success in Australia with over 16,700 users in just over 6 months of use. We’ve launched a crowdfunding campaign to support the work we’re doing in bringing the app here
Our target is to raise $12,000. Pledgeme, the crowdfunding platform we’ve launched on is an “all or nothing” platform. Meaning if we don’t make it past $12,000 we will receive zero funding. Which will mean we won’t be able to get the app across the ditch.

We’re also hosting film screenings in Auckland, Christchurch and Dunedin of The True Cost, an eye-opening documentary film about the true cost of the clothes we buy and wear.
These are co-hosted by the Sustainable Business Network too. All proceeds from this fundraising film screening will go directly into the crowdfunding campaign to get the app here.
The film is screening here in Dunedin on 10 May at 8pm at the Dunedin School of Art. Tickets are available from iTICKETS:”

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…
Regular activities

Eco-living in action radio show Otago Access Radio 105.4FM – a radio show about ‘the everyday things that make a difference’. Eco living in Action is aired on Otago Access Radio each Thursday from 2.30-3pm and repeated on Mondays 8.30-9am on 105.4FM. The host, Maureen Howard is travelling from NZ to Northern Ireland by land and sea. Each week she brings a show from her travels or via Skype to the Otago Access Radio studio. Join Maureen and her guests each week. Check out previous podcasts at Some recent shows include Love the Lindsay Creek – with Marty Cancilla, Creating a Sustainable Town in Panama, Learning about Water Issues – with Nika Wood, Make your own recumbent bike – with Andrew Last, Off grid living and sustainable building with Linda Begg, Sustainable Tourism in Nicaragua, and Making Rum sustainably. Eco living in Action is supported by Sustainable Dunedin City.
Coming up:
12/05/2016 Valley Community Workspace updates – Peter McDonald
19/05/2016 Arcosanti – eco arcitecture in Arizona – Laura Banks
26/05/2016 Environmental Education at Orokonui Sanctuary – Tahu Mackenzie
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).

STOP (Save the Otago Peninsula Inc Soc) – STOP has a large planting project at Smiths Creek on the Hereweka Harbour Cone property starting in June, and needs as many helpers as possible. Planting Bees Sunday 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th June 2016. If you have them, bring spade, gardening gloves, and an old knife (that’s for making holes in the jute weed mats), and wear stout shoes. Gathering point will be either at the end of Bacon St or the end of Frances St (both in Broad Bay).
To be notified of which venue, and have your cell phone recorded for cancellations, email Lala or text tree planting to 027 8756 020. (Note that there are no working bees in May.)

Quarantine Island/Kamau Taurua open day – Sat. 28th May. Join us to volunteer, explore and relax. Boat from Back Beach, Port Chalmers at 9.30am, returning at 3.30pm. Pick up on the Peninsula side by prior arrangement. The boat is operated by the Monarch and costs$15 return per person. A koha for the island is always appreciated. Bring some food to share for a potluck lunch. If it’s your first visit to the island check the ‘visit page’ of our website to find out more.

Contact or 4780874 to book a place on the boat.

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: Draft Annual Plan 2016-17. Closing date 6th May (today) at 5pm.

New Zealand Government: Wildlife (Powers) Amendment Bill. The objective of this bill is to reduce offending against wildlife by improving the powers available to effectively detect and investigate offences and apprehend offenders. Rangers would have new powers to prevent or stop offending; stop and question a person; and wider powers to seize materials used in commission of offences.Closing date Thursday 12th May.

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. As well as production of this newsletter, current activities of the the Society include organising the Big Green Challenge and hosting Green Drinks in the city centre and Port Chalmers. For more information or to join the Society go to


Simonne Wood (newsletter editor)

Jenny Neilson (SDC secretary)

Sustainable Dunedin City Inc

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