How Local Governments Can Help the Environment!

This year is a big one for voters starting out with the Local Government Elections on Saturday the 28th March 2020. All local councils in Queensland are having elections on this day as people cast their votes at polling booths. NQCC's region includes ten diverse local government areas from coastal to dry inland regions towards the Northern Territory border.  In Townsville at least, we have started meeting Local Councillors to discuss priority issues for our organisation: 1) the protection of flying foxes, 2) conservation of our precious water resources to prevent the building of new dams and 3) helping Townsville and North Queensland become a carbon-neutral community.

 

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Non-Lethal Shark Mitigation within the Marine Park

Photo credit: AMCS/HSI/N.McLaughlan


The agreement announced on Tuesday 4th February 2020 between the Commonwealth and State governments to re-deploy SMART drum lines trials within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park is welcomed as a non-lethal, evidence-based approach to shark mitigation and public safety.

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Paperbark January 2020

The start of this new decade has brought with it some truly catastrophic weather, which has all of us deeply concerned for the communities, landscapes and wildlife that have been impacted.

We at NQCC are so grateful to all those who have contributed to the rescue and recovery efforts - from donating to the organisations on the front lines to spreading education and awareness around wildlife care or climate change - thank you. 

If the past few weeks have driven you towards becoming more involved in environmental protection and tackling the climate crisis, consider joining us. Our members strengthen the voice that represents North Queensland's environment, and our monthly donors increase our capacity to take on more environmental battles.

Whatever actions you take to help you come to terms with the impacts of the climate crisis, know that we stand with you in the hope of creating a better, safer world for the future, and we won't let climate change-denying politicians get in our way.

If you are looking for a resource to support your personal resilience, take the time to read this collection of ideas from Psychology for a Safe Climate.

In this edition:

  • New Committee Member welcomed
  • Boomerang Bags Coordinator wanted
  • Magnetic Island residents declare a war on waste
  • Zero Waste Workshop
  • Green Drinks is back!
  • Member of the Month
  • Religious leaders come out against climate change
  • Wildlife carer grants now available
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Magnetic Islanders Tackle Waste

Zero Waste Stall at the Horseshoe Bay markets

Rose Gordon on the Zero Waste Stall at the Horseshoe Bay markets before Christmas

We just want to talk rubbish! In a nutshell this is what it comes down to. This all started when some passionate residents decided that we just have too much waste and we need to do something about it. This is how the group formed Zero Waste on Magnetic Island. We aim to transform the island’s waste into useful resources, by making it easy, appealing and fun to recycle, reduce and reuse and we want the community to get involved!

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Paperbark December 2019

With 2019 almost at an end, we'd like to take this opportunity to thank you so much for being a part of our movement to protect our environment here in North Queensland!

This year, thanks to your support, we've achieved some rather remarkable things! Here is a quick look back at NQCC's activities and achievements in 2019:

  • We've made submissions on the following:
    • The Mineral Resources (Galillee Basin) Amendment Bill
    • The EPBC Referral - Flying Fox deterrent
    • The Queensland Environmental Offsets Framework
    • Mackay Tourism's Wallaby Sunrise Tours at Cape Hillsborough Beach
    • The North Queensland Country Club Resort and Equestrian Centre at Toolakea Beach
    • The North Queensland Regional Plan
  • We've been vocal about climate change, supporting the Strikes for Climate and hosting a Climate Concert as part of Queensland's Climate Week, as well as advocating for better climate change engagement in our region from policy-makers
  • We've grown our campaign to #SaveOurNationalParks with demonstrations, media events, market stalls, petitions and postcards
  • We've worked hard to keep our environment at the forefront of peoples' minds, with attendance at a wide range of community events

In this edition:

  • Boomerang Bags volunteer opportunity
  • Ministerial Environment Roundtable 
  • Let Queensland's Tourism Minister know what you want for Christmas
  • Cranky Curlews have your last-minute Christmas shopping sorted!
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North Queensland Regional Plan Submissions

The first Regional Plan for North Queensland has been drafted by the Queensland Government following the consultation process back in 2017.  There was a long delay between these two phases for some unknown reason.  NQCC took the time to provide feedback on the draft with the valuable input of its members.

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The EPBC Act Review

Analysis: The EPBC Act review – a once-in-a-decade opportunity

This post is written by Rachel Walmsley, Director of Law Reform and Policy in Sydney from the Environmental Defenders Office. The article originally appears on the EDO website.

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Paperbark November 2019

The unprecedented bushfires experienced in Queensland and NSW this month have well and truly sparked political fervour around climate change. All around the country, firefighters, farmers, bushfire victims and regional mayors have come out in support of climate change action to protect human property and lives, but also our shared natural environment.

This has shifted the climate change conversation: no longer is it between the conservation movement and the rest of the population - it's between those who are linking the science with reality and political inaction, and those who choose to believe some wild conspiracy theories instead. (Speaking of conspiracy theories, did you know Greta Thunberg is a time traveller? No joke.)

Frustrated by a lack of policy action, local convenor of LEAN (Labor Environment Action Network) and longtime NQCC supporter David Cassells has lodged a petition calling on the Government to convene a Hawke-like National Summit to listen to scientists, fire management specialists and First Nation knowledge holders to craft a bipartisan national response to both the bushfire emergency and the wider climate emergency. Please sign the petition here and share among your networks!

If you've been having some tense conversations with family members and colleagues about the role of environmentalists in the bushfire emergency, we have some tips below to help guide such conversations. We also recommend you take five minutes to enjoy this interesting little video by the ABC featuring Craig Reucassel and about thirteen minutes to listen to this fascinating interview with former fire chief Greg Mullins.

In this edition:

  • Did "Greenie" policies contribute to this bushfire season?
  • NQCC's submission to the NQ Regional Plan
  • Wilderness Matters - remembering Hinchinbrook protests with a lively event
  • Flying foxes threatened by dispersal methods
  • Sharks still at risk of culling
  • Proposed Vanadium project
  • Hells Gates Dam update
  • Introducing Arcadia Coastcare's new beaut website
  • Queensland's Container Deposit Scheme celebrates 12 months
  • Member of the Month!
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Hells Gates Dam: Feasible? We Think Not

There is no need for the Hells Gates Dam and it makes no sense! When Townsville faced a water crisis several years ago, all sorts of suggestions were made about the best way to secure a water supply for Townsville. The Hells Gates Dam was suggested by many as the way to guarantee water supply for Townsville, but we disagree.

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Sharks still under threat

Photo credit: AMCS/HSI/N.McLaughlan

Help North Queensland Conservation Council and the Australian Marine Conservation Society (AMCS) to urge Queensland's Fisheries Minister Mark Furner to abandon shark culls within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and to instead move to non-lethal methods. Sign this petition to help reach 10,000 signatures! *Warning: graphic image below*

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