Happy new year and welcome to the first edition of Paperbark for 2017. We hope you had a refreshing break and are well-rested for the year ahead. We have a few good news stories below as well as some exciting events coming up in the months ahead.
We have big plans for 2017, and are happy to announce a new team member has come on board in making our plans a reality! Welcome to Tyler Peirce who has taken on the role of Community Campaigner.
Several campaigns we are involved in will reach critical points, and it is also very likely that this will be an election year. Momentum with the Adani campaign is ramping up again, with Adani’s CEO set to make a final investment decision in the coming months while our Federal government is considering a $1 billion loan for the project. We’ve just launched a new Ports campaign, and welcome back Wendy Tubman as our lead Ports campaigner. NQCC is involved as a community stakeholder as the NQ Regional Plan is drafted for our region this year. We are also pushing to see a legislated 50% renewable energy target in Queensland and maintaining pressure on the Palaszczuk government to take a strong approach to climate change action, and not open up new mega coal mines!
On Wednesday 25th Jan, Adani had a roadshow tour regional Queensland spruiking jobs. We wanted to be there to ask how many jobs there truly are, what about the impacts of mining boom and busts on isolated communities, and what’s going on with allegations of tax evasion and corruption? We had our tickets cancelled the night before the event. This also happened in Mackay and Rockhampton.
So, we instead went out to the Flinders Mall and spoke to other locals about why we are concerned about Adani doing business in our community. Check out this awesome flier we were handing out. Thanks to the group of 8 volunteers who joined us. We were on ABC NQ local radio and the evening bulletin for 7News and WIN. Watch 7News coverage here.
NQCC has launched a campaign in conjunction with Magnetic Island Nature Care Association about protecting our local marine environment from the Port of Townsville’s unnecessary expansion plans. We have made a Facebook page, a website and are making lots of videos to share within our community. Coming up later this month, NQCC is facilitating a meeting between our local Federal and State MPs and Magnetic Island tourist operators. We will also be holding market stalls – please email me if you are passionate about protecting our local World Heritage Area waters and want to assist with public engagement at stalls.
Queensland Women’s Week
NQCC successfully applied for a grant to run an event for Queensland Women’s Week – Empowering and Inspiring North Queensland Women for the Environment. On Friday 10th – Sunday 12th March, we will be delivering an event bringing together 40 women across North Queensland, from conservation legends that have been here from the start, to young emerging leaders in the environment movement. We will be building our network’s capacity by strengthening relationships, skills sharing and developing leadership. Click here to complete an expression of interest.
NQCC Art Exhibition
Thank you to our wonderful artists within the NQCC community! In total, we have 107 artworks contributed to our art exhibition, now on show at Umbrella Studio. On 3rd March all donated works will be auctioned, with proceeds helping to continue NQCC’s work. We still have some volunteer roles to fill – in particular, running the bar and mixing drinks for our guests. No RSA required.
World Wetlands Day
Thursday 2nd February was World Wetlands Day. NQCC volunteers Chelsea and Stella attended an excursion arranged by NQ Dry Tropics. They were to Reef HQ and AIMS and investigated how the health of wetlands affect the health of the reef. Chelsea wrote a brilliant post for our blog about the trip – “Why healthy wetlands are important for a healthy reef”
Protected area strategy
Consultation has opened for comment on Queensland’s Protected Area Strategy. Our protected areas include our national parks and privately owned nature refuges, and are recognised for their diversity, flora and fauna, and wonderful scenery. The closing date is Friday 24 Feb. Read the strategy and make your comments here.
Mundy Creek Discovery Walk – Sunday 19 Feb
Townsville Wildlife’s February field trip is to the Natureway Regeneration Project at Mundy Creek. Bernadette Boscacci has been working hard leading the Mundy Creek Landcare group and will be guiding attendees through grassland, beside mangroves and across a salt pan before reaching the sea. There should be a variety of birdlife from larger waterbirds, and maybe brolgas, to little grass-loving birds like the golden-headed cisticola. More information about the discovery walk here. More information about how to get involved with the Mundy Creek Project here.
Boomerang Bags Sewing Bee – Wednesday 22 Feb
We are starting our sewing sessions again for 2017, meeting at the NQCC Office from 3:30-5:30 every second and fourth Wednesday. Boomerang Bags are made from donated fabrics and adorned with a “borrow and bring back” pocket, for when you forget your reusable bags at the shops. Once we have made 1000 we will partner with local businesses to reduce single-use plastic in Townsville! No sewing experience necessary, just show up!
Ocean Film Festival – Wednesday 1 March
The carefully curated selection of short films documenting the beauty and power of the ocean and celebrate the divers, surfers, swimmers and oceanographers who live for the sea’s salty spray; who chase the crests of waves and who marvel at the mysteries of the big blue. More info and tickets available here.
NQCC Art Auction Fundraiser – Friday 3 March
We’ve had a whopping 107 artworks donated by our talented and generous members and supporters of NQCC for our exhibition “Coal. Sugar. Reef. Magik” at Umbrella Studio.
Join us for a fun-filled evening of the art being auctioned, with the proceeds going towards NQCC’s campaigns to protect the environment in our North Queensland community.
#StopAdani Roadshow – Monday 27 March
SAVE THE DATE! We are busy planning the Townsville leg of the #StopAdani roadshow, where our local community will gather and be inspired to take action for the next push in the Adani campaign. Featuring a doco launch about what communities are doing so far, exciting guest speakers, and some vibrant performances. You’ll hear MUCH more about this in the coming month.
Maree – NQCC Coordinator