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EcoUpdate: July 2022

We are a not-for-profit, volunteer-run organisation and have been working in partnership with local community groups, government agencies and businesses for nearly 30 years.

Dear members, friends and supporters,

Our thoughts are with everyone throughout the Hunter Region, and beyond, who have yet again been impacted by extreme weather especially flooding. It is heartening to see the community spirit that prevails through such devastating events, but we know there is a long road to recovery.

This edition of EcoUpdate is taking you on a journey towards our very first Sustainable Futures Festival with the main event on 11 September at St Philip’s Christian College, Salamander Bay. At EcoNetwork we are all very excited that it’s getting closer and we hope you will be inspired to come and enjoy one or more events in our program.

We are pleased to see so many volunteers right across Port Stephens working together in different ways to make a positive improvement to the ways we use and share the precious resources provided by nature.

Thank you to all of you!

Editor, EcoUpdate

Here are previous editions of EcoUpdate, most of the content is still current. Please forward this edition to anyone you like (or don’t like) and they can sign up to receive it HERE.

Sustainable Futures Festival Program

June – September 2022, various locations.

From movie nights to wildflower walks and an aRRRRRt competition for the whole family, there’s something for everyone in our expanded Festival program.

View Program

Movie screening of River on Thursday 28 July at 6.30pm. A cinematic and musical odyssey that explores the remarkable relationship between humans and rivers. More information & bookings

Tomaree National Park boasts a wonderland of winter wildflowers, especially along its sandy heathland areas. The Friends of Tomaree National Park will take us on guided walks on August 13, 14 and 16. Book Now

Open to all ages and abilities, the aRRRRRt Awards are open until 5 August. What an opportunity for you to create something arty and eye-catching – from wearable art and jewellery to photography and multi-media. Sustainability is the theme – let’s see your creativity run wild! Read More and Enter

Professor Veena Sahajwalla to speak at Sustainable Futures Festival

The 2022 NSW Australian of the Year is one of the world’s leading innovators in the field of sustainable materials use. At our Festival, Veena will share some of her ideas on how together we can reimagine our waste and shape circular economies in our own communities. Read more

Mark 11 September 2022 in your diary and join Veena and many special guests at the Sustainable Futures Festival at St Philip’s Christian College, Salamander Bay, Port Stephens.

Is yours a healthy home?

Did you know that we spend 69 years of our life indoors and 54 of those years are spent inside our homes? Do you know how our homes can make us unhealthy?

Nadine Samwell is an interior designer with a focus on the use of sustainable materials and she takes us through some simple ways we can improve the indoor air quality of our homes.

Read More

(Meet Nadine at the Sustainable Futures Festival on 11 September.)

Shorebirds: can we do more to protect them?

In this third and final instalment about the shorebirds of Port Stephens, Neil Fraser outlines some of the legislative framework and international agreements which are intended to protect migratory shorebirds.

See the shorebird display and activities presented by the Hunter Region Landcare Network at the Sustainable Futures Festival.

Read more

The fragile state of the world’s food system

Few issues highlight the importance of sustainability more than the current food crisis afflicting the world. We aren’t immune even here in Port Stephens.

Rob McCann from Anna Bay shares his opinions on the international situation and how in Australia we have caused the slow death of the local farming market and small cooperatives.

Read More

Benefits of Collaboration

Many people working for volunteer organisations have felt the synergistic vibe that can occur when a group works in a collaborative way to achieve a common goal.

Alison Rogers continues her Get Involved series by sharing research findings about the five key elements that consistently appear in groups that work cooperatively.

Read More

Out and About in Nature – Winter

Winter is one of our favourite seasons out here at Living Strong Nature Journaling. OK, who are we kidding – every season is our favourite to be outdoors enjoying nature!

The sun has lost its piercing rays and is gentle upon the land, the air is cold and frosts are common. In the early hours the first light begins to show and with it a mist rolls in.

Read More

The Humpback Whale

Local Port Stephens group, the Marine Parks Association, has been working hard in preparing a large model of a humpback whale to be used as an exhibit at the Sustainable Futures Festival. Its primary function beyond the Festival will be as an educational tool, informing youngsters and adults around Port Stephens about our local marine environment.

Meet The Whale at the Sustainable Futures Festival on 11 September.

Read more


NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into Speed Limits and Road Safety in Regional NSW.

With a variety of major and minor roads intersecting and fragmenting koala habitat leading to ongoing koala vehicle strikes, Koala Koalition EcoNetwork Port Stephens urges the Inquiry to consider changes in driver behaviour and a reduction in speeds. Which road infrastructure options safely enable rather than limit habitat connectivity in already fragmented habitats?

Plastic Free July – The First things to replace: great tips from Biome.

EcoNetwork’s Sustainable Futures Festival – Why delivering a 5* sustainable festival is our prime objective.

Have Your Say

Have you seen EcoNetwork’s Have Your Say page? Please contact us if there is an issue you’d like to share with our members and supporters through our website.

NSW Parliamentary Petition to end Public Native Forest Logging in NSW – introduced by the Nature Conservation Council

Iconic species like the koala, swift parrot and greater glider are being driven closer towards extinction in NSW. Reports show our state forests can generate far more income through their protection than from logging – through recreation, tourism and carbon abatement. If you are a NSW resident, please join us in supporting this petition asking the Legislative Assembly to end native forest logging and transition to a sustainable plantation-based timber industry.  Read more from the NSW Nature Conservation Council.

What’s on

  • Tuesday 19 July, 6.30pm. Lake Cinema, Boolaroo. Lake Macquarie’s Green Screenings program, highlighting today’s environmental issues, presents The Green Lie. Big corporations tell us we can save the world through our purchasing decisions. The Green Lie documentary exposes green washing and how we can protect ourselves. Book Here.
  • Thursday 28 July, 6.30pm. Nelson Bay Cinema. Movie screening of River, sponsored by Marine Parks Association, Port Stephens. A cinematic and musical odyssey that explores the remarkable relationship between humans and rivers. Book Here.
  • National Tree Day 31 July – How to get involved.

In the News

EcoNetwork Port Stephens

Our Vision: Ecologically sustainable communities existing in harmony with the natural environment.

Our Purpose: To support our members and to educate and advocate on environmental issues that impact Port Stephens communities. : : facebook

Published: 6 Jul 2022