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Last week I had a wonderful experience. I was invited for afternoon tea & to see a Jacaranda tree living in a Dulwich Hill back garden. I expected to see a beautiful tree & I did, except it was ten times more beautiful that I imagined it would be. I literally held my breath for a moment when I first set eyes on it.
It stood, two separate trunks of the one tree towards the back left of the around 200-square-metre back garden. Thick undulating boughs spread to cover almost all of the garden area – a rolling mountainous wave of lacy vibrant green.
In springtime it is covered in blue-purple coloured flowers & when they drop they form a carpet on the lawn. I can’t wait to see that & the good thing is, they will let me visit again so I can post an update photo or two.
The tree is 130-years-old, so it would have been planted around 1882-1883. That is quite something if you think about it, especially as European settlement only happened in 1788.
The tree lives in what was once the Gelding Estate. The Dictionary of Sydney says – “Until the early years of the twentieth century, Dulwich Hill was mainly an area of orchards, market gardens & nurseries. Gelding’s Victoria Nursery on Old Canterbury Road was one of the largest until it was subdivided in the 1890s for housing.” See - http://www.dictionaryofsydney.org/entry/dulwich_hill
Nothing is known about the tree, except for its age, though it doesn’t take too much to assume that this tree was originally part of Gelding’s Victoria Nursery & retained when housing was built.
The tree has had only two owners before the current ones since the area became housing & the last owner lived here for 90-years. Longevity of ownership certainly helps keep trees.
I have never seen such a beautiful tree outside of a Botanical Garden or somewhere like Centennial Park. It was certainly not the kind of tree I expected to see in an Inner West property. Incredibly, the Jacaranda is not visible from the street & it would be quite a pleasant shock if you walked out their back door not expecting to see such an amazing tree.
The owners are enormously fortunate & they know it, which is wonderful & heart-warming to a tree-lover like myself. I heard not a single complaint about their tree. The owners love their tree & want to do everything possible to keep it well & healthy. Already they have employed an Arborist to assess the tree’s health & current needs & intend to do such health checkups in the future.
Fortunately their neighbours also love & appreciate the tree. It could have been very different as a couple of branches cascade over their fence shading part of their back garden. Many would not tolerate this & would have quietly dealt with the situation by poisoning the tree or forcing them to the Land & Environment Court seeking its removal. What a tragedy that would be.
Apart from the tree’s astounding beauty & age, there were a couple of things that struck me about living with a tree whose canopy covers more than three-quarters of the garden.
1. You can grow vegetables. They have a vegetable garden situated near the tree at the back of the property. Initially there was some concern that they would not be able to grow herbs & vegetables because of the shade, but this has proven not to be a problem. Their vegetables & herbs looked great, but I was told this is the beginning of a new crop & the plot can look far more lush & leafy. I have used a photo taken at the end of last seasons growing.
In fact, their vegetable garden is growing better than my neighbour’s garden, which receives full sun. My neighbour was growing 95% of her vegetables & herbs for the past 45-years, but over the last three years is having trouble. She says the heat & weather changes are burning her plants, especially the young seedlings & limiting what she can grow. The plants also require more water & daily to remain alive. So perhaps climate change is having an impact on the way we grow vegetables & dappled shade is no longer an obstacle.
2. Like the vegetable garden, the lawn is not suffering at all either & we know lawns can be highly temperamental.
Seeing this tree had me wondering – how many other old & significant trees do we have growing in private gardens across the eleven suburbs that make up Marrickville municipality? I have no idea, but I would love to find out.
If you have a significant tree, can you send me an email - email@example.com - & let me know. I’d love to see it.
Barcelona in Spain has delivered an amazing 8-storey green wall outside an already standing building, proving that green walls do not need to be the domain of new developments.
As the world heats up, this kind of initiative will need to become more commonplace. We cannot continue to create urban environments that are essentially a mix of hard surfaces on different levels – from streets to walls & roofs on high-rise buildings. We will bake unless we make changes to the way we build.
A green wall is not only a living entity; it is also a working entity cleaning up air pollution. Green walls have many benefits. They cool down the building & the local area. They add beauty to the streetscape & have a positive impact on the health & happiness of people who live or work in the building & also those who pass by. They also add to biodiversity. Green walls make sense, especially as the population increases & land becomes scarcer.
What is terrific about this particular green wall in Barcelona is that what was once a large 8-storey blank wall has now been transformed into a living green wall. A scaffold-like structure was built in the air space outside the building. Therefore the plants & the water that is used to keep the plants alive will not impact on the structure of the building, something that concerns many. A staircase & floors have been created between the wall & the building to allow maintenance. The planted boxes are modular & can be removed & replaced. So can plants, making it easy to remove any that may have died.
The designing Architect Juli Capella says they have identified seven species of birds that use this particular green wall as well as flying foxes & geckos. These are shown as an interpretive sign near the green wall to educate the public. The green wall has turned into an attraction with a monocular installed so people can zoom in to have a close look at the plants. Initially the locals were worried about the birds & insects & the ‘evils of nature,’ but now are happy with the wall.
This could be done here in Marrickville municipality if the owners of buildings were willing & if Marrickville Council encouraged it. Green walls like this one would certainly significantly add to the value of their properties as well as provide the community major inspirational beauty to the streetscape & make it a healthier place to live.
If I had my way, all new developments would include green walls in some way because they are so beneficial. In time it will happen, as I believe Architects will not want to be viewed as out of date & out of touch with the community’s desires when other Architects design more people & environmentally friendly office & residential buildings. Until then we can look at what is happening overseas as well as in the City of Sydney Council area, as they are embracing green walls with a passion to make Sydney a very livable city.
You can watch a short video of the green wall in Barcelona here – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1oC_ghwmBV4
In the Council Meeting of 6th December 2011 Clr Macri said the following, “We are running out of suitable places to plant trees. We are scratching our heads where to plant trees. Staff are trying to find places to plant the 500 trees each year. Trees are being planted on top each other.” http://savingourtrees.wordpress.com/2011/12/08/report-from-the-gallery-6th-december-2011-part-1/
I found this information quite disturbing & have noticed that some of Clr Macri’s questions to staff appear to seek information on money wastage as a result of planting street trees. I agree with Clr Macri that far too many new street trees die & that this is a waste of tax-payers money.
Unfortunately, some of the tree deaths are to be expected. Vandalism is hard to control &, if they choose, Council could embark on a long-term educational program from school-age upwards to get the message out to the community that tree vandalism is not acceptable & ultimately has a negative impact on their life, their health, happiness & value of their property. It is important that the message include that vandalism has an equally negative impact on the rest of the community. Devalue your property by poisoning a large tree & you will certainly be devaluing your neighbour’s property. Depending on the length of the street, perhaps this tree loss devalues the whole street or a good section of it.
I don’t know how many new street tree plantings die from vandalism. I don’t think Marrickville Council knows either. What I do know is that Marrickville Council waters new street trees for only 12-weeks, when many Councils water their new trees for 2-years. It’s obvious which management approach will increase the survival of new trees. Unfortunately, changing this has not been raised in Council since I have been attending.
Urban Forestry is a growing industry that has undergone some significant changes in the past decade. Those who have control of the budget have realized that global warming is going to have a massive impact on living conditions in cities & urban areas & that the old paradigm of managing trees will not carry us into the future. A local example I have mentioned before is that the City of Sydney Council is intending to increase their urban forest by 50% to try to mitigate the impacts of global warming. London, New York, Chicago are great examples of cities that are planting huge numbers of public trees to ensure that these cities are decent places to live when the affects of climate change really hit. Cities have been found to be 5 degrees hotter than suburbs & this is rising annually. Street trees are known to lower the urban heat island effect, which in turn lowers power consumption for air-conditioning.
Much research has been done in recent years about the urban forest & some of this I have posted here. The following is just one of the benefits of the urban forest in terms of the economy. I will post more about the economic benefits of trees & about the other benefits – social, environment & ecological in later posts.
ATTRACTING THE SHOPPER’S DOLLAR – It’s well known that a leafy green shopping strip attracts shoppers. They tend to linger because the environment is nice & as a consequence spend around 11% more.
I’m surprised the shop owners along our shopping strips are not lobbying Council to plant more leafy trees & make their areas look more appealing. Tiles on the footpath don’t really make much of an impact & they cost an extraordinary amount of money. I wonder whether planting leafy street trees, putting planter boxes at regular intervals along the footpath & hanging baskets from the awnings would have more of an impact & perhaps cost less than tiling the footpath.
Drivers cannot see floor tiles on the footpath so are not able to see the beautification effects, whereas they can see trees, planter boxes & hanging baskets of flowers. The City of Sydney Council have done this in many of their shopping strips. Big, vibrant hanging balls containing flaming-red Begonias hang from awnings every 5-metres. They remove half a car space to plant leafy trees, not columnar trees, rather trees that have a broad, cascading canopy. The streetscape attracts shoppers & if there is a café near a tree of this type, it’s usually booming with business. Good coffee is important. Combine good coffee with a great streetscape & this is a business that will work.
Our shopping strips are all signs, windows, different & often clashing or glaring paint colours & footpaths covered with globs of chewing gum. The areas designated as rest areas or green space such as the ‘I have a Dream’ square in Newtown & Alex Trevallion Plaza in Marrickville are used by people because this is all that is available, but they are not beautiful spaces & they are not inviting.
The closest Marrickville Council has come to what I am talking about is the shopping strip in Audley Street Petersham. This area has street trees, art & plants. It looks good & it certainly has benefited the business as outside dining is now quite pleasant. However, go around the corner into Old Canterbury Road & it’s back to the familiar streetscape of signs, windows & footpaths covered with globs of chewing gum.
Leichhardt Council has capitalized on the tourism draw-card of Norton Street by making much of the street a green & leafy place to visit. People like this & many ask me if I have been to Norton Street, before starting to talk about the trees & the streetscape.
We have a number of areas in Marrickville LGA that attract tourists. We are well know for the alternative, artistic culture of King Street & Enmore Road, the food of Marrickville & Illawarra Roads, the Portugese influence of Petersham shopping streets & Parramatta Road has an ever-changing range of pop-up shops. These places already do good business, but they could be much, much better if they were made nicer looking & more people-friendly & this would translate into dollars for the businesses. What makes our LGA so fantastic is the artisans, the diversity of shopping, the great cafes & restaurants & these are here despite the ugliness of certain areas. More later.
The Conversation – “an independent source of information, analysis & commentary from the university & research sector” has published yet another fabulous article, this time about trees. The article was written by Gregory Moore – Doctor of Botany, University of Melbourne & published 30th January 2012.
“Greg Moore Senior Research Associate of Burnley College, University of Melbourne was Principal of Burnley from 1988 to 2007, & Head of the School of Resource Management at the University from 2002 to 2007. With a general interest in horticultural plant science, revegetation & ecology, Greg is particularly interested in arboriculture. He was inaugural president of the International Society of Arboriculture, Australian Chapter, & has been a member of the National Trust’s Register of Significant Trees since 1988 & chair since 1996. He has served the Board of Greening Australia (Victoria) since 1988 & chaired Treenet since 2005. He is on the board of Sustainable Gardening Australia & is a trustee of the Trust for Nature. He has written two books, contributed to three others & has published over 120 scientific papers & articles.”
‘The Conversation’ allows this article to be republished so here it is in full. The use of bold is my emphasis.
For a great return on investment, try trees
Perhaps it is a pity that so many Australians think of our parks, gardens, streetscapes & urban landscapes only in terms of their aesthetics. While green spaces are beautiful & decorative, these attributes can mask the many functions vegetation serves in cities, to the point where its economic, social & environmental benefits are overlooked. Yes, trees are beautiful; but more than that, they save our cities a lot of money.
Cities are biodiversity hot spots because of the variety of habitats available in public & private open space, including front & back yards. Urban landscapes & trees have been wonderful but silent assets in our cities for decades & even centuries.
They are major urban infrastructure assets. I often hear it said that; “There are better things to use water on than plants and gardens”, but I challenge you to name them. What else delivers so many benefits immediately: benefits that last centuries into the future, which prolong healthy lives & make cities both sustainable & livable?
At a time of climate change, it is worrying that both private and public open spaces are threatened by urban renewal & development that puts at risk long-term sustainability. In many of these developments there is insufficient open space – public or private – to plant large trees, & the opportunities for vegetation to ameliorate the heat island effect, lower wind speed, provide shade & reduce energy use are lost. This affects the economic viability of such developments, as well as its long term environmental sustainability. http://www.epa.gov/hiri/
The shade provided by trees drops temperatures by up to 8°C: there is real economic value in that. Shade can reduce air conditioner use by 12-15%, which also decreases carbon emissions from our largely brown-coal-generated electricity.
When 11 million trees were planted in the Los Angeles basin, it saved US$50 million per annum on air conditioning bills. Large trees were removed from school grounds in the name of safety after the Black Saturday fires, without thought of the shade they provided. Consequently, large shade sails had to be provided to protect students from excessive summer sun. http://bit.ly/AwLn4P
It is more difficult to place a value on reduced wind speeds (up to 10%) due to the presence of vegetation, or on protection that trees provide from hail. However, we do know that under climate change winds will be stronger & that severe storms will be more prevalent. Indeed, Victoria has already suffered the effects of several major wind & hail storm events over the past few years. http://bit.ly/sCl4kM
Urban vegetation also removes atmospheric pollutants. It was calculated that the vegetation of New York provided US$10 million of benefit in pollution removal in 1994. http://nrs.fs.fed.us/units/urban/local resources/downloads/Tree_Air_Qual.pdf Sadly there are few similar studies for Australian cities. However in the only study of its kind, economists found that each Adelaide street tree provides a minimum annual benefit of $200 per year & that it was an under-estimate of the real value. http://bit.ly/x5qRKd
Vegetation also holds & absorbs water during more intense rainfall events – unlike concrete & paved surfaces. The economic value of reducing localised flooding could be substantial.
Vegetated landscapes, especially those containing trees, improve human heath, extend life spans, reduce violence & vandalism, and lower blood pressure. http://www.treenet.org/images/stories/symposia/2009PDFs/2009%20people%20and%20trees%20providing%20benefits%20overcoming%20impediments%20dr%20jane%20tarran.pdf
Vegetation humidifies the air, easing breathing & reducing the need for medication in those with respiratory difficulties. In reducing the urban heat island effect, trees can also substantially reduce the excess deaths that occur, predominantly among the elderly, during heat waves. It is often forgotten that the fires of Black Saturday killed 172 people, but the heat wave surrounding it was responsible for 374 deaths. http://bit.ly/zkz1K9
There is ample evidence that treed landscapes foster both active & passive recreation. Green & leafy environments will be one of the vital strategic tools in dealing with children lacking exercise & becoming obese, encouraging an ageing population to exercise & curbing ever-increasing health costs. The human health benefits can save society a truck-load on medical & social infrastructure costs.
Melbourne is one of Victoria’s biodiversity hot spots. The parks, gardens, streets & front and backyards provide a very diverse range of plant species that generate a myriad of habitats & niches for wildlife. High density urban developments & inner city renewal make it virtually impossible to grow trees in places that were once green & leafy. We rarely ever see the real costs of such developments.
In the past decade tree populations in many Australian cities have declined, particularly with the loss of private open space. While the costs, damage & nuisance values attributed to trees are widely known, the benefits they provide are often subtle & under-appreciated.
Urban vegetation provides economic & ecological services to society. They are assets which warrant the expenditure of resources such as labour, energy & water. Such expenditure is not wasted: trees & urban landscapes provide far more economically & ecologically than they use. In any comprehensive & fair calculation urban trees & landscapes are worth more than they cost.
* data-tracker http://theconversation.edu.au/content/5050/tracker
This article was originally published at http://theconversation.edu.au Read the original article – http://theconversation.edu.au/for-a-great-return-on-investment-try-trees-5050
Marrickville Council intends to remove a Willow Bottlebrush (Callistemon salignus) outside 54 Durham Street Stanmore.
Council gives the following reasons for removal –
- Excessive & repeated lopping for clearance of electrical supply, creating an uneven canopy with a large amount of wind exposed canopy over dwelling.
- Remedial pruning would cause the tree to have little amenity value &
- Repeated damage to council’s footpath infrastructure by roots of the subject tree.
Council, say they will replace with a Dwarf apple (Angophora hispida), but as usual, don’t say when they will do this.
This tree has multiple trunks (6), some with smaller branches higher up. Two of these grow over the footpath & property mingling with a young Fig tree in the front garden. The tree is lob-sided due to pruning for powerlines. In my neighbourhood, the size of the current 6 trunks is equal to the trunks of 6 individual trees .
I disagree with Council that this tree will have “little amenity value” if it were pruned. The fact is the canopy of thousands of street trees across Marrickville LGA look just like this tree. No they don’t look good, but they are ‘normal’ for this area. If Council believes that this tree should be removed, then the community should be prepared for thousands of other trees across the municipality to be removed.
The 2 offending branches that hang over private property & make the tree lob-sided could be easily removed & there would still be a decent-sized street tree left, even if a little flat on top. If this tree were given time to re-grow its weeping habit, it would look fine. Bottle brush usually bounce back after even the most horrendous prune, though it can take a while.
In regards to Council’s statement, “repeated damage to council’s footpath infrastructure by roots of the subject tree,” we saw that 2 joins in the concrete had been professionally grounded back to remove a trip hazard & this had been done in a number of places further along the footpath. The footpath was almost flat, wheelchair accessible & in far better condition than the footpath outside our home or on many of the streets we walk. There is also the small issue of a young Fig tree in the front garden directly next to the tree. Cracking that appears to be caused by the Fig has already occurred to the fence.
While the replacement Dwarf apple is a nice short tree (7-metres) that produces food for urban wildlife, this street is filled with Callistemon trees, many with multiple trunks like the current tree. I’m undecided about planting a different species when there seems to be a theme of street trees. It can look great. Then again, it can also look hotch-potch & this is something that people often complain about.
The deadline for submissions is 9th November 2011. I don’t believe that this tree needs to be removed. *
However, I won’t be sending in a submission, though I would support the local community if they wanted this tree retained. It does seem like a random loss when, after pruning, it will look like so many other trees across the municipality that happen to be under powerlines. This tree’s bad luck I suppose.
* I have changed my mind. I will be sending a submission to Council against removing this tree for the above reasons.
Like many of the parks in Marrickville LGA, the trees of Camperdown Memorial Park in Newtown are growing mostly around the perimeter.
Two weekends ago on Sunday 18th September, a large crowd gathered to participate in the No Coal Seam Gas Mining Rally. I watched with interest as the people chose to crowd together in the available shade under a few trees leaving large expanses of grass empty, except for people walking through. It was 11am, just 2 weeks into spring with the summer heat ahead of us.
People need shade. They need shade in parks, in playgrounds, on the streets & in shopping areas. As our seasons get hotter Council will need to reassess their approach to shade creation in public spaces. It will become harder to grow new trees & retain older trees unless their water needs are met.
Many cities in the US are already changing the species of trees they plant so they can have a decent & functioning urban forest by 2030. They are also changing how & where they plant public trees so as to provide the maximum benefit to both people & infrastructure as well as to ensure survival of their urban forest & the wildlife that relies on the urban forest for food & habitat.
It’s hard to ignore the need for shade when you watch a crowd in a public space on a sunny day.
A few weeks ago we went to the CBD to see a green wall. It is at the new 29 storey, 43,419 square metre Cbus tower at 1 Bligh Street Sydney. The wall was receiving the finishing touches when we visited so I was lucky enough to have aspects of the wall & how it is managed explained to me by the builders. They were very proud of their work & deservedly so.
The living green wall is likely the best & largest that we have in Australia at present. I haven’t seen anything like this before. It is stunning to say the least & once fully-grown will be even better. I predict this green wall will be a tourist attraction at least until green walls become the norm. I hope that time arrives soon because the benefits are great.
The wall itself is 9.7-metres high & 40-metres long. It is watered by black water generated from the Cbus tower & has a system of pumps incorporated into small cupboard rooms hidden as part of the wall. The doors are almost invisible once they are closed. I guess there will be subtle clues as to where the handles & keyholes will be, but unless you knew there are doors here, you wouldn’t know.
The plants are wild tropical water-loving plants. They are planted into boxes made up of geo-textile & filled with exceptionally light potting mix & polystyrene balls. These boxes are fixed to the wall & the plants planted into small cuts into the material. They naturally grow roots inside the potting material & some also on the exterior of the geo-textile itself.
Apart from being very beautiful to look at, the air around the green wall is cool & likely full of negative ions. It has been made into a place where one can get the benefits of being in a park with running water while being in the busy CBD. It’s a great area to eat lunch. I was surprised to see a couple of butterflies flitting around exploring. Somehow insects know.
The 42,000-square metre Cbus tower itself is a fantastic achievement with its sustainability features. It has been built to world’s best practice 6-Star Green Star rating & a 5-Star Australian Building Greenhouse Rating (5 Star NABERS Energy). The designers were German company ‘Ingenhoven Architekten’ & Australian company ‘Architectus.’
The north-facing building has a double-glazed all-glass façade, thereby utilizing natural light. Inside the double skins are adjustable horizontal blinds that work by automatically shading the internal skin & preventing solar heat gain & keep the building cool. The 2.85-metre ceiling height of each level also promotes natural airflow. An artistic aluminum curtain protects the building from the western sun.
All water used in the tower will be recycled for use elsewhere on the property. Recycled black water is used for toilets. If needed, they can tap into the city’s black water supplies. The green wall & other landscaping features are watered by collected rainwater. The building will be heated by a tri-generation system using gas for cooling, heating & electricity as well as solar panels.
The atrium is the tallest in Australia & reaches the full height of the building (29 storeys) bringing fresh air to the upper levels. There is an internal ‘winter garden,’ plus an external 375-square metre terrace. A 700-square metre ‘sky garden’ crowns the building. The sky garden is shielded from the wind by a 10-metre glass wall. There are also numerous living internal landscaping features throughout the building. Apart from the usual underground parking for cars, there is also covered parking for 300 bicycles.
What a building! Hopefully this will become the norm. It is a mighty achievement for sustainability & creating the least possible impact on the environment. It also shows what is possible & how we can change the way we build & manage buildings. I love it & can’t wait until I have an opportunity to go inside.
I made a short video of the living green wall – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yc_c37HtBbk
& the Cbus Building here – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jSIwj70a9E
If you want to know how to make your own green wall, this short YouTube video explains how it is done – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rp8YyQqVTSI&NR=1
Global warming is expected to change the city of Chicago’s climate by making it more humid & creating permanent heat wave conditions. Can you imagine having permanent heat wave conditions in Sydney?
Chicago city planners consulted with the climate experts & decided to make some quite serious changes to the city to enable it to adapt to the effects of climate change over the coming decades. They know that as the temperature rises they will get more frequent, extreme storms. Offering a portent into the future, Chicago has experienced 2 severe storms classified as 100-year events in the past 3-years.
The growing-zone for Chicago has changed over the last 30-years & is expected to change at least once by 2070 because of climate change. Chicago officials expect many of the city’s plants & trees to die as a result of the changes in climate & become more susceptible to tree diseases & insect infestations, such as Emerald Ash Borer.
After consulting with Chicago Botanical Gardens & the Morton Arboretum, the city of Chicago has revised their tree & plant list removing 6 of their most common street trees from their planting list. The Ash, which comprises 17% of Chicago’s canopy & the great shade-producing Norway maple will no longer be planted. Sadly the White oak, their state tree, will also no longer be planted.
It’s quite something to lose your state tree. I imagine that the White oak would have a strong connection in the hearts of the people of Chicago & Illinois as the American people on the whole openly love their trees. I have the impression that many American towns & cities are associated with a dominant species of tree, like Grafton & their Jacaranda trees. Having a changing climate means that the visual outlook in terms of the trees of the town or city will change dramatically as well.
Instead Chicago will plant Swamp oaks, Bald cypress, Sweet gums & other trees that can cope with hotter conditions.
I am pretty sure that Marrickville Council would not be planning their street trees many decades into the future. Amazingly, in Chicago, they plant trees with an expectation that they will live on average for 90-years. Marrickville Council once said to me that they only expect our street trees to last for between 7-15 years. This explains so much as to why we don’t have an increasing canopy, why trees are not maintained by actions such as biannual pruning, watering & fertilizing & why the power companies can just massacre street trees as they please.
From 2001 to 2008, Chicago increased their green canopy from 11% to 17.6% by planting around 2,200 trees annually & they aim to increase their canopy to more than 23% by 2020. Compare this with 471 new trees planted last year across Marrickville LGA.
Chicago clearly sees trees as the frontline of managing climate change & making the city livable for its people & urban wildlife. Importantly, they started making the necessary changes 5 years ago.
I will write about Chicago’s other climate change initiatives in a later post.
Last Monday, ‘The Critical Decade,’ a report on climate change was published by the Australian Climate Commission Secretariat of the Department of Climate Change & Energy Efficiency.
‘The Critical Decade’ is a comprehensive report about global climate change & particularly the significant risks that are associated with a changing climate in Australia. It is easy to read, but nonetheless, very sobering. The following points come from the report as a taste -
- What we can say with certainty is that rainfall patterns will change as a result of climate change & often in unpredictable ways, creating large risks for water availability.
- About 15-20% of net CO2 emissions globally have originated from land ecosystems, primarily from deforestation.
- We know beyond reasonable doubt that the world is warming & that human emissions of greenhouse gases are the primary cause. The impacts of climate change are already being felt in Australia & around the world with less than 1 degree of warming globally. The risks of future climate change – to our economy, society & environment – are serious, & grow rapidly with each degree of further temperature rise.
If you have ever wanted to understand climate change I highly recommend reading this report. The report is 8MB & can be downloaded here – http://climatecommission.govspace.gov.au/files/2011/05/4108-CC-Science-Update-PRINT-CHANGES.pdf
Community group Sydney Residents Against Coal Seam Gas & the Addison Road Community Centre are holding a screening of the film – Gasland by Josh Fox.
- Thursday 5th May 2011
- 6.30pm – 9.30pm
- Addison Road Community Centre – 142 Addison Road Marrickville. Plenty of free parking on site
- Fund-raising sausage-sizzle & drinks for sale
- Free entry – donations welcome
- Film starts at 7pm