Category Archives: Events

Notices of events past and future

Frackman: What CSG mining does for Australians

UPDATE: The movie Frackman is being screened in GOULBURN 29th May, 6-30 pm at the Soldiers Club, tickets must be bought in advance through

Dayne Pratzky was chasing the great Australian dream when he upped sticks from the city and moved to Tara in south east Queensland. He bought a bush block to build a house and make a home.

One day a gas company man drove down Dayne’s driveway, “He told me we’re gunna sink a well down the back of your place and if you don’t like it, there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Dayne shares his story in a gripping new film that has been five years in the making: Frackman. It’s the real life story of what happened when coal seam gas came to Australia. In Frackman we share Dayne’s trials and triumphs, as he and his neighbours work together to fight back against coal seam gas.
It’s the must-see cinema event of the year and the film that Bob Brown says no Australian should miss.

Click for cinema bookings, other viewing options, and more information

Local (more or less) cinemas coming up:

Wed. Mar 18, 6:30 PM – CAMDEN Civic Centre
Thur. Mar 19, 7:00 PM – CAMPBELLTOWN Event Cinemas
Sat. Mar 21, 7:00 PM – KANGAROO VALLEY Upper Kangaroo River Community Hall – SOLD OUT
Sun. Mar 22, 4:00 PM – WARRAWONG Gala Cinema
Wed. Mar 25, 7:00 PM – NEWTOWN Dendy Newtown

Click for cinema bookings, other viewing options, and more information

Nuclear Energy Forum: 4 April 2015

At its third forum, titled The Radiance of France, CANWin’s nuclear energy forum set itself the task of examining what has made the French so successful in achieving amongst the world’s lowest greenhouse gas emissions.

The attendance continues to grow and this time around we had presentations by 6 of its members with 25 attending. Rob Parker kicked off with a summary of the French system of 58 reactors built over 22 years. While they were built to provide energy self sufficiency, in this age of clean energy and greenhouse gas reductions the French generate electricity with only 71 gr CO2/kwh while across the border in Germany with its 48% renewable capacity they generate nearly 10 times the French emissions with 672 gr CO2/kwh.



The reasons are clear in these two graphs and Germany sets an ominous precedent for Australia if we continue to implement wind and solar while burning coal.

Phillip Walker then outlined the political process under President Pompidou and Prime Minister Messmer. The decisions to proceed with the nuclear programme were unilateral with no public or parliamentary debate.

After the break we were treated to an excellent presentation by Cameron Esslemont. This dealt with both open and closed nuclear fuel cycles and the great potential for recycling of used nuclear fuel. Cameron also touched on the political difficulties of implementing nuclear power and the handling of used fuel. He spoke in detail about the shifting policies of the IPCC and the cost structure of nuclear energy. This excellent presentation really needs an encore with more time to get a better appreciation of all of Cameron’s work.

Paluel Nuclear Power Plant 550x244 Top 10 Nuclear Power Plants

Paluel Nuclear Power Plant 5,528 MWh: France

Mike Thorley spoke about the French political system and outlined how it addressed centralised planning to enable the reactor fleet to be constructed.

Peter Cunningham then presented more details of the French system, its generating costs and comparison with the German performance and Australia’s uranium and thorium reserves.

Lou Flower then completed the afternoon with his observations that the French reactors are reaching maturity and may run into political difficulties with their replacement. The motivation of post war France has changed. The current generation may not be as patriotic or motivated to repeat the successes of the past. This may jeopardise future nuclear decisions.

The forum members show their commitment to the study of nuclear energy through their full participation and involvement in the topics. They are prepared to do work as demonstrated by the range of speakers and the three hours of full involvement. There is not full agreement on the issues we address however with intelligence and good grace the level of debate is greatly improved.

Based on this last meeting the CANWin nuclear forum has an excellent future where some very good work on understanding how we can properly decarbonise our energy production can occur.

How and why of fossil-fuel freedom

Two great events this weekend: Friday’s CANWin speaker forum shows us how to get to fossil-fuel freedom; on Saturday afternoon Robertson CTC showcases the at-risk wonders of icy Antarctica.

Flier for speaker night 27 Feb.

Antarctica: A photographic journey

Glenn Dawson is a freelance photographer specialising in wildlife and nature. He and his cameras have made four trips to the Arctic, Alaska and Canada. Penguins with chicks He has also travelled twice to Africa to work and photograph wildlife and landscape. Robertson is to be treated to a presentation by Glenn, sharing his love and knowledge of the Antarctic, and other lands he has visited with a focus on nature, wildlife and cultures. Suitable for all ages.

Saturday 28th February, 3pm – 5pm; tickets $10. For bookings, contact the CTC, tel. 02 4885 2665.

Climate crisis PLUS financial crisis? No thanks

As the G20 meeting gets into full talk mode, a lot of commentators are pointing out that “climate change is an economic issue”. Dr John Hewson, long-time climate activist and former Leader of the Liberal Party (yep, the same Liberal Party that’s gutting Australia’s emissions reduction programs), will explain how climate change could bring on another Global Financial Crisis.

Flyer for John Hewson's talk on Risk of Climate Change Induced Financial Crisis, 21 Nov 2014, Henrietta Rose Room

See you there.

PS You might like to check out Dr Hewson’s work with the Asset Owners’ Disclosure Project,

More than one way…

There’s more than one way to transform Australia’s energy. Find out what communities are doing around Australia and the world to bring about a no-carbon, clean energy future.
Programme for Community Energy Presentation, 4th November 2014, 4.30-6.00pm, Henrietta Rose Room

See you there.

More info about the speakers…

CANWin sustainable house visits, 7 September

A message from David Tranter

Following the fantastic visit to the off-grid house of Larry and Penny Osterhaus two months ago, arranged by Gordon Markwart, I am pleased to announce a second outing for CANWin members and friends on Sunday morning, September 7th.

This time there are three sustainable houses to visit in Mittagong, each one different from the others.

The program for the day is as follows:
9.30am: Assemble immediately in front of Mittagong Railway Station to pool cars
9.45am: Directions
9.55am (SHARP) Move off to the first site (Lemann “Greeny Flat”)
10am: Lemann Greeny Flat Inspection
10.45am: Depart for the second site (Leenders House)
11am: Leenders House Inspection
11.45am:Leave for the third site (Podger House)
12 noon: Podger House Inspection (outdoors)
12 45: Return to parked cars at Mittagong Railway Station
1pm (Optional): Leave for the Home and Garden Show at the Bong Bong Racecourse, to see the CANWin exhibits and check out the show.

If you and/or your friends are interested in joining the CANWin party, would you please email David Tranter (email hidden; JavaScript is required) or phone (4885-1394) to make a booking.

Best regards,
David Tranter

This Friday, must hear speaker Martijn Wilder

Martijn WilderMartijn Wilder is a Board Member of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and WWF (Australia), Chair of the NSW Climate Change Council, an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Australian National University, and head of Baker & McKenzie’s Global Environmental Markets practice.

We reckon that makes him a fair dinkum climate policy wonk. You can read some other opinions here, and here.

Martijn’s talk will give an overview of Australia’s policy framework on climate change, its history, success and failings and where to next (Wow!). He will also discuss how other countries are addressing climate change and the role that new technologies and global financial institutions are playing.

Friday 22nd August 2014, 7pm
Henrietta Rose Room, Bowral Library
Very light refreshments from 6.30pm
Admission: $5, Pensioners: $2

Everyone and your friends are welcome.

Too wet to picnic: National Day of Climate Action, Highlands style

A version of this article appeared in the Southern Highland News, 20 November 2013. More articles from the CANWin column.

Photo Denis Wilson

Picknickers for Climate Action Photo Denis Wilson

Why did 60,000 Australians in more than 130 towns and cities join in rallies last Sunday to demand climate action? Why did some 250 people come to a National Day of Climate Action Picnic in Bowral on a day better suited to hot soup and a good movie?

Couple with bright beach umbrella

Heatwave colours brightened a decidedly cool day Photo Denis Wilson

Because they understand that the world must stop burning fossil fuels – coal, oil and gas – for energy. Because they realise that destroying the climate won’t save the economy. Because they get that “There is No Planet B.”

And because they know they know that the good life doesn’t need fossil fuels. We can still build a better future, but to do it governments must get energy policy right and speed up the switch to renewable energy.

People arriving at the park entrance

Early arrivals on a damp, dark day Photo Angela Towndrow

The people who came to the damp picnic in Bowral are undaunted by the challenge of climate change, so it’s not surprising that they adapted easily to the unpicnic-like conditions.

Bob McInnes

Master of Ceremonies and master fiddler Bob McInnes Photo Denis Wilson

Musicians set up in the CWA hall instead of the rotunda and performed for a constantly moving crowd. MC Bob McInness managed to make himself heard by both the indoor crowd and those outside in the gardens.

Picnickers stood and talked instead of sitting and eating. One unscheduled speaker started a parade up Bong Bong Street. Another stressed that science follows all the evidence, even when it leads to conclusions we don’t like.

Anthony Ackroyd, in a heatwave hat

Anthony Ackroyd, in a heatwave hat

Special guest Anthony Ackroyd told some tales of his career as an impersonator of politicians. Meeting his subjects, he learnt that politicians are mostly charming people who want to do what’s right for the country. Those who doubt, or even deny, the science of climate change are probably not evil. “They’re just misguided,” Anthony said.

Good to know. Thanks Anthony.

About $200 was donated for Citizen’s Own Renewable Energy Network Australia Inc. (CORENA). CORENA uses donations from the public to fund practical renewable energy projects for community organisations. The loans are repaid from savings on electricity bills, and the repayments finance future projects so that the donated money is recycled. It’s people power powering people, far into the future.

Marchers gathering near the mall

Marshalling the marchers… maybe Photo Angela Towndrow

When the new government abolished the Climate Commission, thousands of people let their donations do the talking: within a week the Climate Commission returned as the crowd-funded Climate Council.

Last Sunday thousands of people rallied in support of strong climate action. They represent the majority: two out of three Australians believe that climate change is occurring. In the words of the 2013 Climate Institute report on Australian attitudes to climate change (PDF 2.4Mb):

Strong majorities recognise that doing nothing on climate change will increase the risks and that there are economic opportunities in acting in areas like renewable energy. Significantly, appreciation of the economic benefits and jobs associated with a strong renewable energy industry is not contingent on acceptance of climate change, or even that humans are responsible for it.