Castlemaine Climate Rally and Picnic Program: Sunday 29th Nov

18 November: MASG 2015 AGM, Climate Rally and Community Renewables Updates

MASG AGM Reminder and Climate Rally Update

MASG AGM 2015 and Sustainability Drinks: Thursday 19/11

A brief reminder regarding MASG’s 2015 AGM on:

Thursday 19th November 2015
6pm – 7pm

at the Castlemaine Bowling Club
27 Berkeley St, Castlemaine

Followed by

Sustainability Drinks

7pm – 9pm

Taryn Lane and Dean Bridgfoot will be discussing community finance models, working examples and possibilities for the Mount Alexander Shire. Dean will also provide an update for MASG’s proposed Community Solar Project.

There has been a lot of momentum in regional and rural communities, with many years of efforts made to prepare the ground work for community finance of renewable energy projects.

Dean Bridgfoot will also talk about the divestment drive to encourage Mount Alexander Shire Council to take their money out of Fossil Fuel investment and look to supporting renewables.

The Castlemaine Bowling Club will be providing an affordable light meal sourced from local produce, with bar available.

To RSVP please contact:

or call the office on 03 5470 6978

Proxy and Membership forms are available from the MASG website here:

Community Owned Solar for Orgs and Business: A MASG Project

Many of us own or know of private householders who have solar PV on their roofs, generating clean energy, cutting green house emissions and saving the owners  money.Whilst this makes financial and ecological sense for householders the situation is different for businesses and organisations like schools, hospitals etc. For many of these institutions and businesses the decision making on using capital to buy solar for their premises is more complicated.

A recent MASG project is looking at ways to get more energy generation owned by local small shareholders, which can help organisations and businesses take advantage of solar power.

Dean Bridgfoot will be giving an overview of where the project is up to, at Sustainability Drinks on Thursday.

Castlemaine People’s Climate Rally and Picnic, Sunday 29 November

MASG are gearing up to host the Castlemaine Climate Rally and Picnic on Sunday 29th November 10am – 2pm in Victory Park to align with a weekend of national and global climate actions and events, in the lead up to the Paris Climate Summit on Monday 30th November.

Thanks so much to Mark Carter and Jo Kapstein for getting the final flyer organised – Please share widely!

Download the event flyer here

What to expect:

  • With help from students at Winters Flat school and Chewton Primary School we will be hosting a series of CLIMATE GAMES, which will involve a whole lot of fun – with an action focus. Get your team ready! (all ages welcome)
  • Powerful pictures campaign
  • Speakers include:
    Christine Henderson (Mayor Mount Alexander Shire), Susie Burke and Dean Bridgfoot (, Cam Walker (Friends of the Earth), Maree Edwards (ALP), George Ryan (Local Farmer and Mount Alexander Shire LETS).
  • Music, local food, stalls and more…

In the lead up to the event:

Banner Painting and Climate Games Preparation
Wednesday 25th November 4pm – 6pm.

We will be running a HUGE banner painting session in Vic Park on Wednesday 25th November.
Come and make your signs and help with one HUGE banner to be taken to the Melbourne Rally on Friday 27th November and to be on show in Vic Park on Sunday 29th November.

People’s Climate Rally Melbourne: Friday 27th November 5.30pm

For those that can make it, we will be traveling to the Melbourne Rally at the State Library on Friday 27th November – catching the 2.14pm train from Castlemaine Station. Armed with the HUGE banner created with the community, representing our community in the first of a series of actions across the country.

Meet: Castlemaine Station, Friday 27th November, 2.51pm
Wear: ‘Climate’ colours – Yellow, Gold, Orange.
Bring: Water, Signs, Banners, Your Rallying Voices.

Get involved: 

If you would like to find out more about how to help, how to participate, or to have your group represented on the day please contact MASG on:
p: 03 5470 6978
or email:

For more information about national events see:

Thankyou to our event supporters The Hub Foundation and The Australian Conservation Foundation, Winters Flats Primary School,, Friends of the Earth Australia, The Environment Shop.

‘As world leaders meet in Paris for the United Nations climate summit, we, the people, will gather across Australia and march alongside people in hundreds of major cities around the world.’ Australian Conservation Foundation

More MASG News: Waste to Energy presentation to MASC and Community Renewables Updates:

MASG website has a facelift
Updating a website is always a really interested exercise, that is an ongoing project, to try and compile the key activities that the wider MASG community has been involved in since MASG’s inception in 2005, and also showcase some of the projects that are happening now. If you have any feedback or anything to contribute, please contact Mandy Field, Communications Officer at

Waste to Energy Presentation to Mount Alexander Shire Council
MASG Committee of Management Members attended a council meeting a fortnight ago, and given the Council’s vested interest in current waste management issues, there was a very positive response to the three Bio Energy processes being proposed: Biochar, Biodigester, Gas from Landfill.

Coliban Water have been engaged in recent discussions regarding a second stage process now that the Prefeasibility Study has been completed.  Conversations and meetings are being held with other possible stakeholders and providers of waste to the digester, including Don KR.

Community Renewables: Updates and Reports now available.
For updates to MASG Community Renewable Projects, head over to the Community Renewables Website.

The recently completed reports are now available for download:
Waste to Energy Prefeasibility Study
Baringhup Renewable Energy Study

MASG Community Renewables Projects

Clean Energy News 7 August

SUSTAINABILITY DRINKS 6 August ‘Waste to Energy’

Thanks to everyone that came along to Sustainability Drinks at The Bridge last night, and a huge shout out to Growing Abundance for serving up a delicious dinner to a large group of hungry folk. Thanks also to The Bridge Hotel for letting a good 40 people take over their backroom. We are so grateful for the support of our local community.

Deane Belfield’s presentation insighted an interesting discussion of small, medium and large scale bioenergy examples, that can benefit local business, industry, council’s and the wider community, both reducing waste and emissions and creating jobs and economic opportunities.



  • Produces a clean and renewable energy source.
  • Assists waste reduction, and reduces landfill and sewerage treatment demands.
  • Reduces methane emissions (with 21 times more impact than carbon dioxide)
  • Provides economic benefits, where waste is treated as a resource, for a whole range of different industries, spanning agriculture, forestry, food processing, urban waste management and regulatory authorities.

Feature Video: ‘Harnessing the Wind’ NW Ohio’s economic transformation


Learn how wind energy is transforming a small community in rural north western Ohio.  A renewable energy led economic revival, where recession was beginning to hit a community hard.




Three things Vic Labor should do to kick-start renewable energy construction

Victoria is now back in the hands of a party that has seriously supported the development of renewable energy in Australia. The thing is, they never moved fast, but now they have to do that which is unprecedented to get the industry back on its feet.

Here’s three things the Andrews Labor Government needs to do in order to revive the renewable energy sector in the state and the associated construction jobs that go with them.

Read the full story … 


Almost 90% of Australians support renewable energy target

renewable-energy-solar-wind-300x231Almost 89% of Australians want the renewable energy target increased or kept the same, according to new polling designed to shore up Senate opposition to plans by the government and some crossbench senators to wind back the policy.

The polling found support for the policy – which requires that 41,000 gigawatt hours of electricity be sourced from renewables in 2020 – was even higher in Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania, the home states of crossbench senators Ricky Muir, Nick Xenophon and Jacqui Lambie, who hold deciding votes on any attempt to push RET change through the Senate.

Read the full story …

Australia’s coal and gas exports are being left stranded

image-20141120-4490-fpmjafRecently the US and China announced goals to reduce emissions by 26-28% and cap emissions by 2030 respectively. India also signalled its aim to end coal imports within 2-3 years.

These are telling signs of a move away from fossil fuels by some of the world’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases, including countries that are key importers of Australia’s coal and gas.

Read the full story …

Rooftop solar marches on as large scale renewables stranded

New data from the renewable energy industry highlights just what impact policy certainty – or the lack of it – is having on the small and large scale markets.

Rooftop solar – largely funded by the balance sheets of Australian households and businesses – continues to surge ahead. That’s helped by the fact that federal incentives, which are paid upfront, are locked in by legislation.

 Read the full story … 

Greens target Victoria’s dirtiest coal plants in state election pledge

080508_FeedInTariffsRallyCROPThings have become interesting for Victoria’s renewables industry in the lead-up to this week’s election, with the Greens  pledging to shut down some of the state’s dirtiest coal power plants if they manage to win the balance of power.

The promised scheme – which would see the phasing out of the Hazelwood and Anglesea coal-fired power stations and one of Yallourn’s four units as early as next year – follows a pledge from the state Labor Party to bin the Coalition’s wind farm planning restrictions and develop the state’s first 100 per cent renewable ‘solar town’.

The Victorian Greens’ plan, outlined last Thursday by the party’s Victorian leader Greg Barber, alongside Christine Milne, is that the decommissioned coal power capacity would be replaced by solar, wind and other renewable sources.

Read the full story … 

Solar – the greatest market opportunity world has seen

sunpower-future-590x308CLICK TO SEE THE FULL GRAPH

The head of one of the world’s leading solar PV manufacturers and developers, SunPower’s Tom Werner, predicts that solar will be a $US5 trillion industry within 20 years, and represents one of the greatest ever opportunities in the history of markets.

“We’ve just scratched the surface of this opportunity,” Werner told analysts at the company’s day-long annual briefing in San Jose overnight. “I’ve been doing this for eleven years, and I’ve realised we’re just beginning.”

 Read the full story