Rebecca Huntley (pictured), a Sydney-based social researcher, has written several books and her latest: "How to Talk About Climate Change in a Way That Makes a Difference" was the anchor for this episode on "Climate Conversations".
Conscious that climate activists are wrestling with information overload and while they accept the science of what is happening to Earth, most don't want to read another depressing book full of scientific facts
Huntley's book is an easy read, it is chatty, sometimes funny, inspiring, uplifting and, importantly, timely.
Making a difference is not about lecturing, rather it is about understanding fear and loss, giving people hope and in talking with them about climate change, demonstrating love
Serendipity led me to talk with Karin Stark (pictured with her daughter) about her, and her partner's endeavours to reduce the energy costs of running their Narromine farm in central west New South Wales.
Karin was one of two guests on a recent "Regional Horizons"' webinar staged by Farmers for Climate Action.
Along with her partner, Karin has installed a 500-kilowatt solar-powered pumping system and it was through seminars she had been organizing that she got to know the company ReAqua, which installed the impressive system on her farm and she now works part-time for the South Australian-based group.
Karen's first National Renewables in Agriculture conference last year, it attracted 250 people, was to be followed by another this year until Covid-19 came along and so the next event will be in Dubbo, New South Wales, on May 19, 2021
Professor John Quiggin (pictured) is a professional economist, a self-declared socialist and a fellow who recognises the reality that most of us will never have a huge individual impact on national affairs but urges us to all do what we can to shape the national conversation.
The professor, from the University of Queensland, advocates for a Liveable Income Guarantee, a similar but different version of the Universal Basic Income, both things I am eager to hear about and so if you have a view, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and if I receive sufficient replies, I'll create a new episode as I feel the social justice implicit in these schemes will impact on the climate crisis.
Although uncomfortable with the present economic system, Professor Quiggin says we must work with it as the impacts of the climate crisis will be upon us before we can change the system - yes, we don't have time.
Darren Tinker (pictured) has been appointed to work at the City of Greater Shepparton as its "Climate change resource officer".
Darren, who has a regional Victorian background, but is presently in Melbourne and although he has visited the Northern Victoria city, is caught up in the lock-down brought on by the Covid-19 crisis and so is still in the Victorian capital.
However, he will be virtually in Shepparton on Saturday, July 25, when he joins those who gather Beneath the Wisteria.
Darren's passion for the environment, and his subsequent interest in the climate crisis, has grown organically and his appointment to this new role in Shepparton appears to be a natural next step in his career growth.
Australia's Liberal National Party is proposing it spend nearly $300 billion on machines and processes that equate with death while ignoring, comparatively, the climate crisis that is descending upon Australia, and the world.
Conscious that Prime Minister Scott Morrison would pay little heed to anything I might say, or anyone not of his political stripe, I figured my next best option to raise it with my local member of parliament, Damian Drum, the Member for Nicholls, who is from different party, the National Party, but who is in cahoots with the Liberal Party and so between them win sufficient seats to win government in Australia.
I contacted Mr Drum directly seeking and written reply as to why we should spend such an inordinate amount on death and in doing so virtually ignore those things which help sustain life.
The idea of a column for my local newspaper, the Shepparton News, attracted some push back from the hierarchy, not the editor, and so I turned to my podcast.
Thea Riofrancos (pictured) was one of many speakers at the Socialism 2020 virtual conference and was alarming honest in her discussion about the complications arising from the move to using renewable energy and, of course, the benefits.
She, and others, spoke at a session entitled, "Toward a Green New Future".
The conference was organized the Democratic Socialists of America.
Thea is from the Providence College in Massachusetts, America.
Paul Mahony (pictured) is the man behind the website, "Planetary Vegan" and here he talks about the essential need for humanity to embrace veganism if it is to have any real chance of addressing the climate crisis.
He talked about the importance in relation to the vegan conversation of "Animals Australia" and along with that endorsed "Edgar's Mission" and "Vegan Easy", which he said was a wonderful place to find recipes for those living the life of a vegan.
Wendy Cohen (pictured) has the country life in her DNA, but took something of circuitous route to becoming the chief executive officer of Farmers for Climate Action (FCA).
She was excited about the latest program to comer from and produced by the organization, "Regional Horizons".
Ironically, and fortunately, it was just the day after the chat with Wendy that the former CEO with FAC and now the "Stakeholders relations director", Verity Morgan-Schmidt, was one of two people on a Monash University webinar talking about food and land use and it was then that Verity gave a thorough explanation of the new Regional Horizons program.
La Trobe University's Professor Judith Brett writes about "The Coal Curse" and in conversation about coal-seam gas alludes to those involved with the Lock the Gate Alliance as "heroes".
Her latest piece in the Quarterly Essay helps readers better understand the unusual history of Australia's economy and the "resource curse" that has shaped our politics.
This discussion on Climate Conversations will help you grasp Professor Brett's thinking where she writes in the essay that:
"Politicians have listened to the scientists and ..... put ideology and the protection of vested interests aside and behaved like adults. Can they do they same to commit to fast and effective action to try and save our children's and grandchildren's future, to prevent the catastrophic fires and heatwaves the scientists predict, the species extinction and the famines?"
Hamish McDonald (pictured host Q&A on ABC television in Australia) and is one of my favourite interviewers and just recently he interviewed Australia's Education Minister, Dan Tehan, about the doubling of student university fees for courses in the arts and humanities.
This change by the federal government caused something of an uproar generating a deluge of letters to national newspapers and many articles and comment pieces, including one from The Guardian by Ben Eltham, another from the Melbourne newspaper, The Age, one from The New Daily by Cait Kelly, and an article on The Conversation by Peter Hurley.
The head of the Communications Group as Deakin University, Matthew Ricketson (pictured), was one of several speakers at the Lismore webinar organized by Farmers for Climate Action (FCA) .
The Lismore event was one of about four webinars organized by FCA at centres throughout southern New South Wales and northern Victoria.
They concentrated on difficulties for those communities caused by the bushfires, the drought, the Covid-19 crisis and the general demise of rural media.
Denis Ginnivan (pictured) champions community and has great faith in its ability to take control of and change its circumstances.
So much so that his life has been peppered with involvement in the community events and activities
He has his own business, "Events That Matter", he played a key in the creation and success of "Voices for Indi", he is the vice-president of "Totally Renewable Yackandandah", and has been on of several speakers on a series of webinars organized by "Farmers for Climate Action".
Denis celebrates the ongoing success of independents in the Federal seat of Indi, which is is presently held by Helen Haines, but was first won in 2013 by Cathy McGowan.
Professor Andrew Blakers (pictured) from Canberra's Australian National University is an informed advocate of solar power and has written about that on The Conversation in a piece entitled: "Really Australia, it's not that hard: 10 reasons why renewable energy is the future".
In a relatively short story, in which he makes just 10 points, the professor explains how Australia can remove most all its carbon dioxide emissions and totally eliminate fossil fuels from the country's energy agenda.
Self-interest, he explains, is the one issue that is standing between us and a near emissions-free future.
Farmers for Climate Action (FCA) has a small staff of just six and south west New South Wales farmer, Peter Holding (pictured) is one of those, being the Farm Outreach Officer.
Peter is helping organize and oversee a series of webinars organized by FCA designed to help farmers in those areas devastated by recent disasters, such as drought and bush fires, and now the Covid-19 crisis.
Climate Kelpie is not a part of the FAC structure, but Peter was once aligned with the group and was a "Climate Champion" and brings all that knowledge and farming experience to the FCA.
The FCA webinars are open to anyone interested and details can be secured from the group's website.
Tatura's Terry Court is on the board of GV Community Energy, an active member of Tatura Transition Towns, a climate activist and the grandfather of Leon (11) and Jack (9) Findlay, the subjects for this episode of Climate Conversations.
Leon (right) and Jack, like most others of school age, have been in lock-down, home from school and so doing their school work from home and just hanging out for the end of this health crisis.
Many criticize our youth for their behaviour, but anyone with such inclinations should first listen to Leon and Jack before passing judgement.
Zali Steggall (pictured) is the independent Member for Warringah and on May 20 was on webinar organized by The Australia Institute.
She was in conversation with the institute's deputy directory, Ebony Bennett, and the director of the institute's Climate and Energy Program, Richie Merzian, about the economics of the present pandemic.
Zali, who dislodged former Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, from his seat, has been interviewed by Climate Conversations when still just a candidate. She has matured and gained immense poise since then.
You can listen to the near hour-long conversation as recorded by the institute.
Christiana Figueres (pictured) played a key role in pulling together the 2015 Paris climate agreement and was the star of a webinar staged in May 20, 2020, by One Million Women.
Nearly 600 people joined the webinar illustrating what Christiana described as the "democratization of conversation", allowing for an event only made possible by the emergence and use of a technology fully exposed by the Covid-19 crisis.
She pointed out that without the use of the technology, most of those involved simply couldn't have attended the webinar, or if they had, the cost would have been environmentally prohibitive.
Here is the unedited version of the May 20 webinar, known as "Love on Earth".
Tim Hollo (pictured) is the executive director The Green Institute, a body structured to counter the right-wing think tanks and hopefully soften, and maybe in someway change the impact they are having on society.
Using Zoom, Tim will join Shepparton's Beneath the Wisteria on Saturday, June 27, at 11:00 am. An invite to the gathering will be issued shortly and anyone eager to join should contact the convenor, Robert McLean, at email@example.com.
A webinar, held on May 19, focusing on the present Covid-19 crisis organized by The Australia Institute featured Australia's Health Minister Greg Hunt who talked mostly about the health crisis, but did make a few observations how the federal government was addressing the climate crisis and after he left, that prompted a discussion between the deputy director, Ebony Bennett and the institute's chief economist, Dr Richard Denniss.
The recently released "King Review" is aimed a building a robust platform to expand the ways Australia can lower its emissions while supporting the economy, businesses and households.
However, The Australia Institute which has been critical of the review, especially the fact that the so-called "expert panel", chaired by former Business Council of Australia president, Grant King, has been stacked with people from the fossil fuel industry.
Anika Molesworth is a farmer from far western New South Wales, and a dedicated climate activist.
Anika will be a guest, via Zoom, at the Saturday, May 30, of Shepparton's Beneath the Wisteria - here is the invite to that Zoom gathering - https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82326064674.
Those with any questions about the event can phone me, Robert McLean, at 0400 502 199, or contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The event is free and will last for about an hour.