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6 August 2009

Welcome to the latest edition of our sustainability newsletter. Sustainability is not just about everyday decision-making, but also our life choices. Every year a minimum 9% of every Australian’s income is contributed to superannuation. Did you know some of the Nation’s most environmentally-dubious companies have large percentages of their shares linked to superannuation? Some super companies are signatories to responsible investment principles to ensure they don’t fund environmentally or socially irresponsible ventures such as old-growth logging, armaments or gambling. Could your super be inadvertently contradicting your personal values? To ensure your super is serving you, contact your investment manager or super fund and ask if they have ethical investment protocols. Another option is to invest with a super fund that specialises in sustainable industries.

Let’s find inspiring answers to some of the world’s problems. Read on for more details of what’s happening around Byron Shire.

Friends of Food Production on Public Land

7 September 2009

To ensure that the Shire's first edible street garden around Council Chambers in Mullumbimby blossoms, a 'Friends' group will be formed to assist with regular maintenance. From 10 - 11:30am on the first Monday of each month, we'll meet on-site for a casual garden, swap seeds, share garden tales and local produce harvested straight from the garden! Kids welcome.

The public garden aims to trial the replacement of standard landscaping species with edible plants for the community to enjoy, so will require community support to spread!

PRIZE: As an incentive, the 3rd and 5th person to join Friends of Food Production on Public Land will receive a $50 voucher to spend at a local organic retailer. So join up now!

To join the Friends of Food Production on Public Land group, call Graeme Williams call 6626 7305 or email sustainability@byron.nsw.gov.au


Energy Meters Now on Loan!

Have you ever wondered why your energy bill is so expensive? Now you can find out which of your appliances are costing you the most. Council has purchased 5 energy meters that can be borrowed from local libraries. The new Power Mate Lite energy meters measure the power an appliance uses both when operating and also in standby mode - which can account for 10% of electricity consumption in the average home. The devices can also measure how much an appliance is costing you and also the amount of greenhouse pollution it creates.

The Power Mate Lite Energy Meters can be borrowed from Byron Shire libraries from 10th August, 2009. Due to popularity, there may be a waiting list.


New Sustainable Living Courses

Get an education in sustainable living with ACE Byron Shires' Sustainable Living, Term 3 Workshops. Find out how to maintain your bike, get that neglected compost system cranking or how you can incorporate sustainability in your everyday shopping habits! New and innovative courses are being offered every term.

See the flyer for course options or contact ACE College on 6684 3374 to enrol.


Mullumbimby Community Garden - Memberships Now Open!

Want to help grow your community? Mullumbimby Community Garden is located at the end of Stuart Street and aim to provide social, recreation and education opportunities for the people of the Byron Shire through the organic growing of fruit, vegetables and flowers and sustainability focused projects. The group meets from 10am every Wednesday and Saturday at the Garden site so feel free to head down and get your hands dirty!

New members and plot rentals are now open. Call Garden Coordinator, Jeannette Martin on 0412 322 255 or download a membership form below:


Wilsons Creek Public School - New School Garden

Thanks to an enthusiastic team of teachers, a curious bunch of students and a little help from Byron Shire Council, Wilsons Creek Public School became the site of the Shire's newest School Garden. After a fun-filled day the school now boasts a new worm farm, a no-dig veggie garden, a revitalised compost bin and a greater understanding of recycling. The day was part of Byron Shire Council's Footsteps to Sustainability program. The program is a holistic approach to environmental education and has been piloted in schools around the Shire.

For more information, Contact Council's Environmental Education Officer, Jude Mason on 02 6626 7077.


Free Sustainable Retailing Course

Customers increasingly want to know more about what they are buying and seek greener, locally sourced products. But how do you reduce your environmental impact, yet keep jobs and profitability? Keeping ahead of the trends is a path to success in retailing. Come along to ACE Byron College's free sustainable retailing course and be a part of the new story. This is a great opportunity for those working in retail to learn new skills or for those seeking employment in retail.

Topics include: Sustainability thinking, Eco Product Sourcing, Waste Management, Green Marketing and Customer Service & Education.

The course will be held over 4 Saturdays from 15th August to 12th September in Mullumbimby. For enquires contact Richard Vinycomb or Katrina Shields on 02 6684 3374 or email: director@acebyron.org.au

Got a community-based sustainability initiative you'd like to share? Email sustainability@byron.nsw.gov.au by the second Monday of each month.