President's November Report

 MD2030 Zero Emissions Ballarat Plan

The City of Ballarat Council unanimously endorsed the 2030 Zero Emissions Ballarat Plan at the Council meeting on 26 October. BREAZE made a submission advocating for a public launch for the plan and for an awards competition to drive community awareness and participation. We will continue to urge Council to work with the Ballarat community, particularly via our many volunteer groups dedicated to climate action, living sustainably and conserving the environment. This is a terrific initiative by Council. Given a Zero 2030 target has long been a key part of the BREAZE Inc. mission we are particularly pleased to see this policy endorsed. However, we know that it will require ongoing community advocacy and active engagement to drive the lifestyle changes needed to achieve the necessary emissions reductions. Please let us know if you have any suggestions about how we can advance this very important community goal. The Plan can be found inside the Council Agenda (Item 8.8 on page 312) for the 26 October meeting on the Council website - scroll to the bottom of this page

New Energy Jobs Fund Round 6

BREAZE has been successful in its application for funding from DELWP's New Energy Jobs Fund Round 6 - for a project to install rooftop solar on five properties owned by Woodbine Disability Inc. which is based in Warracknabeal, Yarriambiack. Scroll down this link to see the announcement. Woodbine Disability Inc. was the focus of a feasibility study undertaken through the Ballarat Community Power Hub back in 2019. Capacity issues at that time limited the scope for installation. Fortunately, some of those network capacity issues have since been addressed. Now, with the help of the NEJF6 funding, along with the matched funding from Woodbine Inc. and BREAZE, we can complete the project. 

Candidates Climate Forum

With the state election on 26 November approaching, BREAZE held a forum at the Ballarat Tech School on 13 November, inviting candidates standing in the three electorates of Eureka, Ripon and Wendouree, to come and answer questions from the public on their policies to address the climate emergency. There was a very narrow window between the closing of the Victorian Electoral Commission's register of candidates on 11 November and early voting opening on Monday 14th November. As reported at the Forum, BREAZE invited all candidates, even the very minor party candidates who registered in the last two days. Eleven candidates accepted, with two of these cancelling late, due to unexpected events, and one no-show – Paul Tatchel (Liberal Party) Eureka. Formal apologies were received from: Eureka - Wendy Morrison (Animal Justice Party), Michael Ray (Independent), Nicola Reid (Independent) and Michaela Settle (ALP). Ripon - Martha Haylett (ALP), Earl James (Greens), Bernard Quince (Independent), Louise Staley (Liberal Party. Wendouree: Samantha McIntosh (Liberal Party). Given the many reports of devious campaign activities, such as those of the so-called 'preference whisperer', we recommend voting below the line for the Legislative Council (upper house). You are only required to number your first five preferences – so not as demanding as for the Senate in the Federal election. That way you can ensure your vote goes where you want it to go.

BREAZE thanks those candidates who participated in the Forum. Anyone who missed it and wants a better idea of which candidates have the best climate policies should watch the video on the BREAZE Facebook page. With the IPCC advising that GHG emissions must peak by 2025 we know we have no time to lose.

Smart Living Ballarat

Smart Living Ballarat talks host, Ellen Burns has taken the last two sessions for 2022 back to face to face - for warmer months only. The November workshop on Kombucha and Preserving at Barkly Square was fully booked. Fortunately, Ellen had also arranged Facebook livestreaming so no one missed out with others joining the workshop online. Just in time for Christmas, the 21 December Smart Living Ballarat workshop will be on 'Making your own cleaning and beauty products,' – perfect gifts for sustainability-aware friends and family members. Sign up via the Smart Living Ballarat Facebook page 

Ballarat Green Drinks

The final Green Drinks talk for 2022 was given by Matt Turner of Enduring Domain Architecture. Matt's talk, 'The future of home: sustainable, accessible affordable,' covered many of insights into how to minimise your carbon footprint when building, along with his own philosophy that informs his professional practice as an architect. 

A BREAZE sub-committee will be confirming the program for 2023 shortly. The program will run from February to November on the third Thursday of every month, from 6:30-8:00 pm.


The BREAZE 2022 AGM was held at Lake View Hotel on 14 November with guest speaker, Jane Lean, talking about the recently launched Newstead Solar Farm. Jane is a former BREAZE Board member, former Chair of the BREAZE Public Fund and former member of the Ballarat Community Power Hub's Project Control Group (2017-2020). Jane moved to Newstead in 2019, taking her zest for community renewables with her, and joined the Renewable Newstead Committee, where she has been part of a process that began around 2012, planning a solar farm to off-set the town's emissions. Jane's excellent presentation – which outlines the various stages the Committee passed through in getting to where it is today – is available on the BREAZE website.

The AGM also saw two new members elected to the Board. A very warm welcome to Lydia Mzondo and Peter Morison for stepping up. 

The BREAZE Board for 2022-2023: Dina Jones (Secretary), Lydia Mzondo, Simon Reid, Paul Tant (Treasurer), Sue Broadway, Campbell Mercer (Vice President) Mary Debrett (President), Sally Missing, Peter Morison, Sue Nunn and Catherine Oakley.

The Board will be discussing ideas for BREAZE in 2023 at our final meeting for 2022 on 19 December. If you have any thoughts on what we should be doing please get in touch and I will forward you the zoom link –

Many thanks for your support for the work of our volunteers. 

All the best


Dr Mary Debrett
President, November 2022