Archive for December, 2007

Event – Call to Action for Food Sovereignty – 26 January 2008

Posted in Models, Movements, Visions by fedwards on December 20th, 2007

Find below a “Call to action for Food Sovereignty Day 26 January 2008

Join Via Campesina and other organizations worldwide in demanding Food Sovereignty and an end to the corporate control of our food system by global agribusiness.

On January 26 self-organized groups from all around the world will take creative action in their community. This will manifest in many ways, from nonviolent direct action, civil disobedience, street theater,
convergences, teach-ins and other activities and events. Grassroots movements around the world are making their voices heard and saying “Another World is Possible” in coordination with the World Social Forum.

In solidarity with global farmer’s movement Via Campesina who has called for action on this day, Rainforest Action Network, Rising Tide North America, and the Student Trade Justice Campaign are calling for
individuals and grassroots groups to take action to demand food sovereignty by rejecting the industrialized food system controlled by international institutions and global agribusinesses and promoting the
transition to sustainable, small-scale, decentralized local food systems.

Why are we calling for this? Because people’s lives depend on it. Our globalized food system, and the increasing push for industrial-scale agrofuels are pushing people off their lands around the world and
depriving small farmers, Indigenous communities, and millions of people everywhere from access to land and resources to grow their own food. While this may seem archaic to many people in the US who buy their food at the supermarket, 70% of the world population make a living though producing food.

Transitioning to local food systems is a direct response to fighting climate change, preserving forests, and other ecosystems that are critical to the earth’s carbon cycling capacity as well as standing in
solidarity with farmers, Indigenous communities and landless people worldwide.

'Time for Food Sovereignty' by desfilhesjm

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Sustainable Cities – Update from

Posted in Models by fedwards on December 19th, 2007


On 12/4 at 11AM Kansas Lt. Governor Mark Parkinson and his wife, Stacy, joined several GreenTown board members and other citizens and leaders to witness the handover of the keys to a beautiful compressed natural gas fueled Honda Civic to GreenTown and the City. Along with the car came a fueling station provided by Kansas Gas Co. and installation by Fahnestock Plumbing of Wichita. The gift is a significant one valued at around $35,000. Many thanks to all the donors, especially the folks at Scholfield Honda: General Manager /Owner Roger Schofield and Alternative Fuels Manager, Lee Lindquist. They got the package put together and even delivered the car themselves. Lee is an extraordinary fount of information and spent a lot of time sharing his wisdom and passion for the CNG Honda, making everything about it easy to understand as well as explaining its significance as an alternative fuels vehicle. The folks filming from Eco-Town/Discovery caught a lot of Lee’s “class” on film. Great job, Lee and Roger, for making this dream come true. Look for the car whipping around town in service to the city, and used for tours with visitors and guests of GreenTown and the City. And if you are interested in a natural gas-powered car for yourself, check this car out in Greensburg or buy it in Wichita.
Greensburg thanks you Roger, Lee, (Scholfield Honda), Ron (Kansas Gas), and Scott and Casey (Fahnestock Electric, Plumbing and HVAC).

Sustainable Cities – Update from

Posted in Research by fedwards on December 18th, 2007

Research & Network – The Australia Futures Task Force Report #1, The ARC Research Network

As part of the recent State of Australian Cities Conference held in Adelaide, 28-30 November, the ARC Research Network launched The Australia Futures Task Force Report #1, Challenges and Directions for Australia’s Urban and Regional Future. Please find below an excerpt from their press release. The entire report can also be downloaded from their website at

An excerpt from the media release available at

“A report into the future of Australian society is calling on the newly elected Rudd Government to meet the challenges facing the country’s diverse cities and regions.

The Challenges and Directions for Australia’s Urban and Regional Future: Identifying the Key Issues report is from the Australia Futures Task Force , which is the collective effort of national panel of 18 prominent urban and regional analysts who are members of the Australian Research Council Research Network in Spatially Integrated Social Science (ARCRNSISS).

Led by Bob Stimson, Professor of Geographical Sciences and Planning at the Institute for Social Science Research at The University of Queensland, and economist Professor Bill Mitchell from the Centre of Full Employment and Equity at the University of Newcastle, the report sets out a comprehensive listing of the pressing issues confronting people, governments and business across the nation’s cities, towns and regions.

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Sustainable Cities – Introducing the Mount Alexander Sustainability Group!

Posted in Uncategorized by fedwards on December 17th, 2007

The Mount Alexander Sustainability Group Inc. (MASG) ,, is a community-based, charity and non-government organisation, based in Castlemaine, central Victoria. MASG has over 500 members taking action to combat climate change. Members include householders and local schools, businesses, and community organisations. MASG staff and dozens of volunteers are working on positive responses to climate change and peak oil; and are seeking ways to get renewable energy systems in place in this region. Castlemaine is close to the centre of Mount Alexander Shire, home to around 18,000 people and 120km north west of Melbourne. Their initial focus is on reducing our carbon emissions through improving energy efficiency and increasing the supply of renewable energy.

For a sample of the MASG weekly newsletter see below. Alternatively visit the MASG website at

Mount Alexander Sustainability Group Weekly News Digest
Thursday, 13th December 2007

MASG NEWS AND EVENTS – For more info see

Excess of fruit and veg? Any surplus this summer can be distributed through local networks. Please let Ian know about any produce after 14 January.

MASG office closed on 24th December and re-opens on January 2nd. All welcome at our MASG barbeque, Friday 21st December from 1-3pm at the Botanical Gardens, Castlemaine.

MASG congratulates Cr. Alan Elliot on his election as Mayor of Mt Alexander Shire Council and thanks outgoing Mayor Cr. Jim Norris for his leadership and support to the community in tackling the climate change crisis.

Carbon Trading Surveys: Apologies if you had trouble opening the carbon trading survey. It seems to it work on some systems and not on others. If you have had a problem, you can either come into MASG to complete it or try another computer. The carbon trading survey is at:
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Last chance to register for early-bird Green Cities ’08!

Posted in Events, Models, Movements, Research by fedwards on December 17th, 2007

Sponsored by Grosvenor, Green Cities 08 will be held at the Sydney Convention centre from 10-13 February 2008. It will be an exciting and enlightening conference and expo, showcasing the property industry’s achievements in sustainability.

World leading sustainability expert and author Professor Dr Michael Braungart from Germany will headline the conference together with a stellar line up of internationally renowned experts in the green building industry including Nick Butler, Dr James Bradfield Moody, Professor Vivian Loftness and Rick Fedrizzi.

Early Bird Registrations for Green Cities 08 close this Friday, December 21. To take advantage of the early bird registration rates for Green Cities 08 please visit the Green Cities website,

Registrations must be received by December 21 to be eligible for the early bird rate – SO ACT NOW!

Green Cities ’08 website:

Green Cities 08

Event – SPIN-Farming workshop, Milwaukee, USA – 28-29 February

Posted in Events, Models by fedwards on December 17th, 2007

Join us for the second annual SPIN-Farming workshop in Milwaukee February 28-29!

TITLE: SPIN Cities: Farming Where We Live
PURPOSE: To equip a new generation of farmers with the know-how to farm commercially without having to own much, if any land, and without having to make a large financial investment
INSTRUCTOR: Wally Satzewich, veteran urban farmer and developer of SPIN will show others how to replicate his success using this unique sub-acre farming system
FOR: Backyard, front lawn or small lot farmers in urban and peri-urban areas
WHEN: February 28, 2008, 9:00am-5:00pm and February 29, 2008, 9:00am-12:00pm
WHERE: The Mitchell Park Pavilion at the Domes, Milwaukee, WI, U.S.A
COST: $200 (includes lunch on February 28) until January 26; $250 thereafter
SPONSORS: Michael Fields Agriculture Institute and the Mitchell Park Domes
TO REGISTER: Contact Roxanne Christensen at 610-505-9189 or rchristensen or register online at

“While the land base and expenses for a sub-acre farm are a fraction of the costs for a conventional multi-acre farm, the bottom lines are similar. A sub-acre farmer can expect to make the same living as a large-scale farmer, but with less stress and overhead, and with more certainty of success from year to year.” –Wally Satzewich

For more information on SPIN-Farming, visit

Sustainable Cities – Update from

Posted in Visions by fedwards on December 14th, 2007

Quick overview of PICNIC 07, where this year Green Challenge was hosted; a 500.000 award for good business ideas. Qurrent – an energy generating & saving system- received the prize from Sir Richard Branson.

Check the live update of the event
Read the post from Bruno Guissani’s Lunch over IP
More videos at

Related Posts: video – – sustainability – events

Resource – Model Sustainable Cities website,

Posted in Models, Research, Visions by fedwards on December 14th, 2007

See the message below about the Model Sustainable City blogsite from founder, Daniel Miller.

Welcome to Model Sustainable Cities. I hope that this site will become a meeting point, a networking hub for people interested in developing model sustainable cities. Topics will include but not be limited to sustainability, city planning, the hydrogen economy, and renewable resources such as wind, solar, biomass, and geothermal energies.

Macomb, Illinois: An Ideal Location to Develop a Model Sustainable City
Now, I propose that Macomb would be an ideal location to develop a model sustainable city. Perhaps this is also a stretch. But let me build the beginnings of my case.

What does such a city look like? Let me briefly describe a few techniques that could be integrated into a sustainable city. Buildings could be built or retrofitted to become hyper-efficient, using energy from their surroundings for heating and cooling and sometimes even lighting and electricity. Buildings so designed often return energy to the electrical grid. Hydrogen could serve as the premier energy carrier. It could be used as a fuel for transportation in fuel cells or hydrogen internal combustion engines (H2ICE’s). Hydrogen might also heat homes by combustion or by fuel cells producing electricity for heating and other household applications. The hydrogen will be produced from renewable resources such as biomass conversion or from the electrolysis of water using wind or solar energy. Before all our fossil fuels are consumed, they can be reformed to produce hydrogen as a steppingstone toward fully renewable sources of hydrogen.

Visit the website at

Sustainable Cities – Update from

Posted in Events, Models, Research by fedwards on December 13th, 2007

Review & Call for bids – The State of Australian Cities conference 2007

Below is a notice from Professor Steve Hamnett, Chair of the recent State of the Australian Cities conference held in Adelaide last week. I attended this conference and thoroughly enjoyed it – it was wonderful to experience the breadth and depth of issues that face our cities in addition to meeting the people involved in the research. The website for the State of the Australian Cities conference is

State of Australian Cities Conference 2007

The 2007 State of Australian Cities Conference was held in Adelaide from 28-30 November and seems to have been regarded as a great success by the 300 or so academics, researchers, students and policymakers who attended.

The conference attracted over 120 excellent research papers on the current state of research relating to Australian Cities and current urban policy challenges. Submitted papers and the four keynote addresses by Brendan Gleeson, Pauline McGuirk, Steve Dovers and Ruth Fincher will be made available on the conference website in the near future (

SOAC 2007 also saw the launch of the ‘Australia Futures Task Force’ report by Professor Bob Stimson. For details and a downloadable copy of this, go to

The Australian Sustainable Cities and Regions Network


An outline of the purposes of the SOAC Conference and of the Selection Principles and Process can be obtained from the website (

On behalf of the Conference Organising Committee, I should like to express my sincere thanks to the authors, speakers, delegates, panel chairs, track chairs, referees, keynote speakers, sponsors, host universities, student guides, support staff and the many other contributors who helped make SOAC 2007 a success. The State of Australian Cities Conference is now firmly established on the Australian academic calendar and we look forward to another outstanding conference in 2009.

Steve Hamnett

Chair, SOAC 2007

Professor of Urban and Regional Planning
University of South Australia
Tel: +61 8 8302 2297; Mobile: 0407 728 339
Email: steve.hamnett

Video Review Green Challenge PICNIC07

Posted in Events by Rob Eales on December 13th, 2007

For more information please visit