President's June Report

MD 2023CoB 2023/24 DRAFT BUDGET

BREAZE Inc. was well represented in submissions to the City of Ballarat’s 2023/24 Draft Budget and at the Unscheduled Council meeting on 7 June, when those who made submissions were invited to address Council about their submissions. Board members Sally Missing and Sue Broadway made personal submissions along with myself as president, representing the Board and BREAZE Inc. membership. The BREAZE submission – available as a downloadable pdf on the website – urges Council to allocate more funding to climate action and to implement Actions in the Ballarat Zero Emissions (BZE) Plan. We offered a number of practical suggestions we hope Council will take on board as ways of both helping to cut community GHGs and householders’ energy bills – addressing both the climate emergency and the cost of living crisis simultaneously:

  • Collaboration on a community wide Home Electrification Program – promoting bulk buys for rooftop solar, hot water heat pumps, home batteries and reverse cycle air conditioning 
  • Collaboration with the BZE Alliance on a pilot workshop program to assist low income households with energy efficiency retrofitting 
  • A BZE/Sustainability Awards Program that would make awards on a sector-by-sector basis (neighbourhoods, schools, not-for-profits, commerce, industry) in collaboration with community groups to raise public awareness of the BZE 2030 target and Plan
  • Collaboration on a community-wide communications program informing citizens of  the full range of rebates and subsidies available for homeowners and renters to make homes more energy efficient and cut GHG emissions
  • Additional Council staff to assist vulnerable residents and low income households access low interest loans to finance energy efficient resources

BZE Check in
On 8 June the City of Ballarat’s Sustainable Environment team held an event at the Ballarat Soccer Centre for the community to share their work to date on cutting GHGs and driving the aspirational 2030 net zero target – endorsed by the City in 2021 and mapped in the BZE 2030 Plan endorsed in October 2022.

The diverse range of presenters at the Check-In included: BREAZE inc., Laminex, McCain, Smart Living Ballarat, Committee for Ballarat, Community Bank Buninyong, Ballarat Dark Sky Community, Schneider Electric, Trunorth Projects, Ballarat Tool Library, Sustainability Victoria, and Ballarat Grammar.


Members of the newly formed Ballarat Zero Emissions Alliance BZEA copyattended the Check-In event.

The Alliance is working towards a pilot for a series of energy efficiency workshops to assist local residents cut their energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions.

Member groups are: BREAZE Inc, Extinction Rebellion Ballarat, Ballarat Tool Library, Ballarat Repair Café, Ballarat Permaculture Group and Hidden Orchard. Any other groups that wish to join should get in touch.



Over 120 grade 5&6 students from across greater Ballarat entered the BREAZE Inc. Children’s Writing Competition this year. Addressing the 2023 World Environment Day theme –Solutions to Plastic Pollution – their writing demonstrated their concerns for the environment. Some pondered what favourite wild places might be like for their grandchildren, while most noted the importance of the 3x Rs – refuse, reuse and recycle and endorsed a host of sustainable practices that are becoming a part of their lives. 

BREAZE Inc. thanks those teachers who took up the opportunity to make the environment a class conversation and we congratulate all children who were awarded. See our article online for a full list of winners.2023 Writing Comp

BREAZE also participated in another primary school event, ‘Sustainability in Schools Pilot program’, organised by Inga Hamilton of Sustainability Victoria and Natalie Gero, City of Ballarat and held at St James Primary School on I June. Alongside City of Ballarat staff, Daniel Siemensma and Quentin Gay I presented for BREAZE Inc. on the need for a clean energy transition and on the benefits of renewable energy. The presentation was followed by a general discussion in which the children asked questions they had prepared in class beforehand.  Great to see collaborations like this to assist children to become more informed and hopefully more resilient in the face of climate change.




My All Electric Home: the third and final forum in the Building Better Homes for the Future series will be held on 2 July, 2-3:30pm at Mercure Ballarat Hotel and Convention Centre, 613 Main Rd, Golden Point. Screen Shot 2023-06-16 at 15.01.32.png

In this free forum, guest speaker, Lloyd Heathfield of Yarra Energy Foundation will discuss how to build or transition to an all-electric home – the costs, savings and comfort benefits. 

To register:              Or contact: 

20 July: Ballarat Green Drinks – Ronnie Reissenweber, Building Designer, Environ Design

6:30-8:00pm, Bunch of Grapes Hotel, 401 Pleasant St, South, Ballarat - Join us for drinks/dinner and great talks and conversation.

Screen Shot 2023 06 16 at 15.56.53Sustainable and energy efficient housing design, are topics we hear a lot nowadays. Not only to save the environment, but also for more comfort in the home, and lower energy bills. Almost everybody is aspiring to achieve it at some level.

Building Designer, Ronnie Reissenweber, from environ design, will try, by using examples and his
experience over 30 years, to explain some of the principles, behind the concepts of environmental conscious design in new build and renovations .

Free book via

May 24: Smart Living Ballarat Zero Plastics Ballarat Adam Slater from Zero Plastics Australia

Venue: BRMC "Welcome Room" at Barkly Square 12:30-1:30 pm

Screen Shot 2023 06 16 at 15.59.50Get inspired for Plastic Free July! Ellen Burns will be speaking with Adam Slater from Zero Plastics Australia about the inventive uses they have found for plastic that can't otherwise be recycled. This session will be interactive, engaging and educational, looking at the impact of plastic waste on our planet and the importance of sustainability and a circular economy. Every attendee to the in-person session will receive a free keyring made from recycled bottle lids! Join in person at the Welcome Room in BRMC at Barkly Square or join the session on line here:

This session will also be streamed live to the Smart Living Ballarat Facebook page and will then be posted and available to watch, rewatch and share. Smart Living Ballarat Facebook page

Smart Living Ballarat is a program of free monthly workshops, a collaboration between BREAZE Inc. and the City of Ballarat.


Our next Board meeting will be held on 17 July at 5:30 pm at the Function Room at the Royal Mail Hotel , 290 Albert St,  Sebastopol. Prior to the monthly meeting we will be holding a Special General Meeting to consider and vote on a Special Resolution to introduce a new class of BREAZE membership - BREAZE Business Membership. All BREAZE Inc. members are invited to attend. You will also receive a separate notice about this via our e-newsletter.

BREAZE Inc. Board meetings are held on the third Monday of the month and alternate between Zoom and face to face meetings over dinner at the Royal Mail Hotel in Sebastopol. If you are a paid up member of BREAZE Inc. you are welcome to join us. If you would like to volunteer with us we would love to hear from you. Please email and I will forward you link/details. 

All the best,


Dr Mary Debrett
President, June 2023