Author Archives: Melissa Finlay

Karragarra compost trial launch sows seeds for food waste recycling revolution


Karragarra Island Organics Composting Trial officially opens on April 30, heralding an important trailblazer for more community-based organics recycling schemes.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the collaboration between Council, the University of Queensland’s Centre for Recycling of Organic Waste and Nutrients (CROWN) and three island-based community groups was an important step closer to having a zero organic waste community.

“Karragarra Island produces about 16,000kg of organic food waste a year that goes to landfill,” Cr Williams said.

“It would be fantastic if that amount could be reduced by half.

“With 26 households already signed up, and capacity for a total of about 50 to join the trial, we are well on our way to testing if the community can do that.”

CROWN director Johannes Biala said the Karragarra Island project would be a model and source of information and inspiration for others to follow.

“It has placed Redlands Coast islands ahead of many mainland communities,” Mr Biala said.

“There is no doubt it will continue to thrive well beyond the trial end date in July 2021.”

CROWN has been a key driver in the composting scheme, helping to organise funding through a Goodman Foundation Moreton Bay (Quandamooka) Research Grant, engaging the community and designing the novel, forced-aeration composting system.

“The idea for the solar-powered composting system came from a California-based website,” Mr Biala said.

“Two solar panels are generating power that is stored in lithium batteries.

“This power is then converted to 240V and used to drive a blower, which operates on a time switch.

“Air is supplied via sub-surface pipes to the base of the new compost bays, which is then drawn up into the composted material due to the heat generated by the composting process.”

Division 5 Councillor Mark Edwards urged more island households to sign up to the trial.

“If more organic food waste can be retained for beneficial use within the island communities, it will not only be a great saving to Council but a clever way for islanders to become more self-sufficient as food growers,” Cr Edwards said.

“Taking part in the trial is a simple process, with supplied kitchen caddies and compostable liners available at Karragarra Community Garden.

“People can empty their caddies into 240-litre bins that have been placed at the community garden and near the island jetty.”

From left, Rose Childe of Running Wild Youth Conservation Culture, CROWN director Johannes Biala and Shirley Lindsay of Karragarra Community Garden.

Rose Childe, of Running Wild Youth Conservation Culture, said conservation and land management trainees would help process the compost.

“It’s an exciting opportunity for them to use the innovative technology and we’re pleased to be involved in something that engages with the community and ties in with the environmental focus of our organisation,” Ms Childe said.

Shirley Lindsay, of Karragarra Community Garden, said she was hopeful the trial would convert people to separating and composting food waste.

“I think people will want to be part of a great success story,” she said.

“The community garden would use all the compost generated for vegetable crops and fruit trees.

“As a good gardener, you can never have enough compost and mulch.

Jettie Berkhout, of SMBI Permaculture, said the trial aligned with permaculture principles.

“Permaculture is a way of living ethically, caring for the earth and taking care of people and future generations,” Ms Berkhout said.

“SMBI Permaculture believes this is a wonderful beginning in creating a resilient community on Karragarra Island. We hope this program is successful and it will extend soon to the other islands.”

 

Candle Lighting Vigil to shine a light on domestic violence


This year’s Redlands Coast Candle Lighting Vigil will be held at Raby Bay Harbour Park on Wednesday 5 May, to remember those who have been lost due to domestic and family violence.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the Redlands Coast vigil – presented by Council, Red Rose Foundation, and The Centre for Women and Co. – was a local tradition which was held simultaneously with vigils across the state to mark the beginning of Queensland’s Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month.

“The vigil is an opportunity to show those who have been troubled by some of the most horrific examples of brutality that we stand with them,” Cr Williams said.

“We must let our candles show that we as a community acknowledge the grief, terrible loss and long-term impact felt by the victims’ families and loved ones.

“As we have seen on the news recently, and in reports of domestic violence crime rising since the onset of COVID-19, the scourge of family violence is an ongoing battle.

“We as a community and society must stand as one and say ‘Enough is enough’.

“In Australia, at least one woman is killed every week by an intimate partner.

“Too often children, and sometimes men, are also the victims of these homicides.

“Legislative changes and education programs aimed at creating long-term behaviour changes are part of the wider societal response to addressing this insidious violence.

“At the grass-roots level, the Candle Lighting Vigils are a way for us to continue to say we want it to stop, we stand with those who continue to be troubled by it, and we support those who confront this brutality as members of our frontline services.”

Community members are invited to attend.

EVENT DETAILS

When: 5.30pm; Wednesday 5 May, 2021

Where: Raby Bay Harbour Park, Shore Street West, Cleveland

Walk the Talk: Join the Zonta Club of Wynnum Redland Inc and Soroptimists International Bayside to walk united to the Candle Lighting Vigil to show your support to eliminate domestic and family violence.

  • 4.45pm – Meet at Kyling Corner (cnr Waterloo and Middle streets, Cleveland)
  • 5.00pm – Walk as a united group to Raby Bay Harbour Park, Cleveland
  • 5.30pm – Attend the Candle Lighting Vigil to remember those who have died because of domestic and family violence

Order a green waste bin during May and be in the running to win one of 100 worm farms


Redlands Coast mainland householders have an opportunity to win a worm farm if they sign up for a green waste bin during the month of May.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the promotion was part of Council’s campaign to secure 500 green waste bin orders over the month, starting on 2 May to coincide with International Compost Awareness Week.

“Council wants to boost the uptake of green waste bins because of the benefits they represent for the environment, and because they are convenient and good value for garden lovers,” Cr Williams said.

“Green waste bins currently do not have an establishment fee and homeowners who order before 31 May 2021 will have the chance to go in the draw for one of the 100 worm farms that Council is giving away, valued at $89.95 each.”

An example of the $89.95 worm farms on offer for residents to win.

Cr Williams said at present the ongoing cost associated with a green waste bin equated to just $1.23 a week, or $16 a quarter.

“For keen gardeners who produce a lot of green waste, the fortnightly collection service for bins is an easy and convenient option when compared to loading up the trailer to take it to a recycling and waste centre,” she said.

“People also have the satisfaction of knowing they’ve helped weed out unnecessary waste going to landfill because green bin contents are turned into new enriching organic products, such as soils, soil enhancers and mulch.

“And winners will also get to test out how well worm farms work for composting food scraps in their own homes, which helps to further reduce overall waste sent to landfill.

“The May promotion is part of the broader Council target for 21,000 green waste bins to be in use by the end of 2021 and 35,000 by 2025.”

Green waste bins can be ordered online from Council’s website or by calling 3829 8999.

Acceptable green bin items are:

  • Garden prunings
  • Grass clippings (do not bag if using a green waste bin)
  • Shrubs
  • Weeds and flowers
  • Leaves and loose bark
  • Sawdust
  • Small branches or soft wood (no larger than 75cm in length or 10cm in diameter)

Further details

  • The promotion is only available to mainland residents and new customers.
  • Customers ordering a second bin will be eligible.
  • Annual fees apply and are subject to change.
  • Council recommends tenants interested in green bins contact Council and register their interest so that when green waste bins are available to tenants we can contact them directly. Alternatively, tenants can contact their landlords to request they order a bin on their behalf.
  • Island residents can register their interest by contacting Council.
  • Council’s draft Waste Reduction and Recycling plan is out for consultation and residents can hear more about the focus on reducing waste and increasing recycling from the kerbside bins and have their say until 28 May.

Connect and restore at IndigiScapes Eco Markets


Celebrate with Redlands IndigiScapes Centre the natural wonders of Redlands Coast at the environmental centre’s series of Eco Markets, kicking off tomorrow (Saturday 1 May, 2021).

Mayor Karen Williams said the May event – the first of four scheduled for this year – would be held in the centre’s beautiful native botanic gardens and include market stalls featuring sustainable products, upcycled fashion, fresh produce and more.

“There will also be live music, local arts and crafts, books and displays, including permaculture and native beekeeping,” she said.

“The IndigiScapes nursery, cafe and gardens will all be open for the community to come along and connect and restore in nature.

“Redlands Coast, from islands to coastal areas and hinterland, boasts a wonderfully diverse natural environment, with 40 per cent protected green space, and so much to see and do.

“Council’s IndigiScapes is one of those great places where people can immerse in nature and discover more about their own naturally wonderful home.

“You will be able to visit the markets, buy native plants from the nursery, enjoy the walking tracks and native botanic gardens, visit the Discovery Centre and gift shop, and choose from a range of delicious food.

“If you like, you can also pack a picnic basket and rug and relax in the gardens while the children enjoy the nature playground and maze.”

Division 7 Councillor Rowanne McKenzie said the Eco Markets in May would be followed by an Environment and Community Fair on Saturday 5 June, to mark World Environment Day.

“This will be a celebration where people can explore more about global conservation movements and how they can contribute to them with action at home,” Cr McKenzie said.

“The year’s theme is Ecosystem Restoration, which can take many forms, such as growing trees, greening cities, rewilding gardens, changing diets, or cleaning up rivers and coasts.

“With World Oceans Day falling on 8 June, the Environment and Community Fair will include marine environment groups and highlight the impact of single-use plastics on our ocean and marine life, encouraging reduced reliance on plastics leading into Plastic Free July.

“Redlands Coast is an amazing place to live, work and play, and I encourage everyone to come along and play in nature at these IndigiScapes events.”

EVENT DETAILS

FREE ENTRY

WHEN: 8am to noon – Saturday 1 May 2021; Saturday 5 June 2021; Saturday 4 September 2021; Saturday 4 December 2021

WHERE: 17 Runnymede Road, Capalaba. Additional parking available via the nursery and My Horizon entry

WHAT: Market stalls, live music, upcycled fashion, fresh produce, native nursery, cafe and more

MORE INFORMATION: indigiscapes.redland.qld.gov.au or 3829 8999

The events will operate under a COVID-safe plan

Trailblazing drones trial to beat mozzies and protect environment


In a South-East Queensland first, Redland City Council is trialling drones as a tool for managing mosquitoes in hard-to-reach and environmentally sensitive areas within Moreton Bay Marine Park.

Mayor Karen Williams said the six-month trial had exciting potential for Redlands Coast, where mosquitoes are endemic due to its natural environment.

“We are leading the way as one of the first councils in our region to use drones as part of our Mosquito Management Program,” Cr Williams said.

“Of course, safety is our number one concern. The chemicals used in the drone trial are safe for people and their pets, environmentally friendly and only target mosquito larvae.

“They are the same as those used in Council’s regular ground and helicopter treatments.”

“Treatment via drone has proven successful and now it’s hoped the program can be expanded to protect our sensitive environments as well as the wellbeing of Redlands Coast residents.”

From left, Redland City Mayor Karen Williams, Mozzie Taskforce Chairman and Division 3 Councillor Paul Golle, Proagco Director Brendon Hare and Council Pest Management Team Coordinator Russell Manby.

Due to finish at the end of this mosquito breeding season, the focus of the trial has been on Geoff Skinner Wetlands Reserve at Wellington Point; Point Halloran Conservation Area at Victoria Point; German Church Road wetlands at Mt Cotton; and Rocky Passage Road at Redland Bay.

Cr Williams said agricultural digital solutions provider Proagco supplied two sorts of drones for the trial.

“The smaller drones were equipped with many cameras to pinpoint and map mozzie breeding grounds, with two larger ones used to transport and deliver the chemical directly over mosquito breeding sites,” she said.

“After rain events, our high-density hard-to-reach conservation areas that are lush with mangroves and casuarinas typically contain puddles of water that present prime breeding grounds for mosquito larvae.

“These environmentally sensitive areas are often difficult to access and require officers to travel by foot to apply treatments manually by hand, wearing 25kg backpack blowers.

“Access to other areas might also require the use of the Argo and quad bikes.

“Drones are proving much more versatile, with the ability to travel direct to the breeding site to deliver chemical that is target-specific and only toxic to mosquito larvae.

“This method is increasing the efficacy of treatments while also improving safety for Council officers by reducing manual handling, heat stress and fatigue.”

Regional Mosquito Management Group Chairman Cr Paul Golle said the trial showed drones could be used in treating up to 40 per cent of existing mosquito breeding sites currently treated by hand.

“They also have potential to treat sites presently inaccessible by foot or helicopter,” he said.

“Drone supplier Proagco has collaborated to progressively modify their drones as Council officers discovered how the new technology enables them to better deliver mosquito larvicides effectively.

“Key modifications have enabled the drones to deliver granules, sand and pellets and, with the capacity to fly at up to 30m high.

“Using the drone we are now able to treat two hectares of mosquito breeding sites in about 10 minutes.”

Proagco director Brendon Hare said the $50,000 large drones were originally designed to sow seeds and powdered products in China.

“What we have achieved in working with Redlands’ Mosquito Management Program, developing ways to allow Council to use drones for mosquito control in many different and difficult-to-access settings, is leading-edge technology,” Mr Hare said.

 

Redlands Coast community groups urged to apply for Seniors Month grants


Redlands Coast community groups can now apply for Redland City Council grants under a new age-friendly initiative designed to support events for seniors during Queensland Seniors Month in October.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the Redlands Coast Seniors Month Grants Program was specifically aimed at activities being planned for Seniors Month, an annual state-wide celebration of positive ageing.

“Redlands Coast has plenty of wonderful seniors and ensuring that people of all ages are respected and included in all aspects of community life is a key outcome of Council’s Redlands Coast Age-friendly Action Plan 2021-2026,” Cr Williams said.

“Bringing our older residents together helps them create and maintain new connections in their community, can enhance wellbeing and reduce the risk of illness, loneliness and isolation.

“These grants are a way for Council to encourage groups with a range of different focal points – such as recreation, support, wellbeing and learning – to deliver events and initiatives across the city over the full month.”

Cr Williams said grants of up to $1500 from a total budget of $10,000 would be available.

“Applications will be received online from 30 April to 30 May,” she said.

“We want the grants to support initiatives that are both active and passive in nature, catering to our most mobile seniors, as well as those with limited opportunities to be out into the community.”

Cr Williams said the Redlands Coast Seniors Month Grants Program supported Council’s broader aims for an age-inclusive community.

Have your say on Council’s draft Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan


Redlands Coast residents can now have their say on Redland City Council’s four-year plan to boost recycling and reduce local waste going to landfill.

Council will open its draft Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan 2021-2025 for four weeks of community consultation from 27 April.

Councillors have also endorsed in principle a longer term draft waste management plan developed by the SEQ Council of Mayors to guide a regional approach to waste management, which will be launched in May.

Mayor Karen Williams said all residents had a vested interest in how Council and its local government neighbours met waste reduction and recycling targets necessitated by significant changes in the waste sector in recent years.

“Better management of our waste and the greater uptake of recycling means more than just helping our environment and progressing to a zero-waste future, it is also critical to minimise extra costs to ratepayers,” Cr Williams said.

“In July 2019 the State Government introduced a waste levy in an attempt to reduce waste being sent to landfill.

“While this levy is currently subsidised by the State Government, we are concerned this subsidy may change in the future, making the investment into improved recycling a better use of community funds.

“Council’s draft plan, developed alongside the broader draft South-East Queensland Waste Management Plan, outlines how we can all work together to better use our existing kerbside waste, recycling and green waste services as efficiently as possible.

“Through it we will work to double the number of households with a green-waste bin for garden organics, as well as halve the amount of recyclable material being placed into general waste bins.

“We also want to ensure everyone knows the importance of using the right bin and reduce the contamination in yellow-lid recycling bins that can undermine residents’ recycling efforts.

“Our aim is for 90 per cent of our community to be correctly recycling 90 per cent of their waste, 90 per cent of the time. This is what it will take to reach Queensland’s recycling target of 70 per cent by 2050, together with other industry action.”

Cr Williams said the draft plan relied on residents working with Council to reduce waste and increase recycling.

“The plan outlines a way we can collectively achieve waste reduction and recycling targets set by the Queensland Government,” she said.

“Community involvement is important to the success of the plan and achieving a collective impact on our waste management and a zero waste future for the Redlands Coast.

“Now that the consultation period has started, I encourage everyone to provide feedback on the priorities and initiatives identified in this draft plan.

“I know how passionate our community is about helping to look after our environment and keeping Redlands Coast naturally wonderful.

“So please take this opportunity to tell us what you think.”

Redland City Council’s draft Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan 2021-2025 includes encouraging the improved use of the existing kerbside services such as:

  1. doubling the number of households with a green waste bin for garden organics
  2. halving the amount of recyclable material being placed into general waste bins
  3. reducing contamination (non-recyclable materials) in the yellow-lid recycling
  4. ensuring everyone knows the importance of using the right bin.

Currently almost two-thirds of what goes in Redlands Coast red-lid waste bins could be kept out of landfill, including more than 10,000 tonnes a year of garden organics and 6,000 tonnes of other waste which could be recycled.

Visit Council’s Your Say website https://yoursay.redland.qld.gov.au/  to read all about the draft Waste Reduction and Recycling Plan 2021-2025 and have your say by 28 May 2021. As an added incentive, those who complete the online survey will have the chance to enter a competition draw to win one of 10 x$50 IndigiScapes vouchers (terms and conditions apply).

EOI to steer Weinam Creek car-share scheme at Redland Bay Marina


Plans to establish a long-term car-share scheme at Redland Bay Marina, Weinam Creek, are pushing ahead.

At today’s general meeting, Redland City Council resolved to support an Expression of Interest and subsequent tender process for the scheme.

Mayor Karen Williams said the move followed the conclusion of a car-share trial conducted at the marina from August 2020 to April 2021.

“An existing local car-share operator provided the service and Council officers monitored the progress to determine if a permanent scheme was viable,” Cr Williams said.

“Assessment criteria included general community feedback as well as car-share vehicle usage and trial enforcement.

“Over the course of the trial, local community feedback was generally supportive and the operator reported a consistent increase in usage and registrations as a result of having dedicated car parks in close proximity to the ferry terminal. “

Division 5 Councillor Mark Edwards said Council would seek applications that proposed a suitable number of spaces, site location close to Redland Bay Marina and ways to ensure parking compliance at the proposed site.

“One of the issues to emerge during the trial was parking enforcement and ensuring there were enough spaces for car-share vehicles only,” Cr Edwards said.

“As a result, Council will be requesting proposals that include ways to ensure exclusive use of the spaces, and that may be via a lease, licence or permit arrangement.

“It is proposed that the car-share scheme operate for approximately two years.”

Green light to support plan for age-friendly community


A five-year action plan to make the Redlands Coast a truly age-friendly community has been given the green light by Redland City Council.

Mayor Karen Williams said Council had today adopted the Redlands Coast Age-friendly Action Plan 2021-2026.

“Like many other communities, Redlands Coast has an ageing population,” Cr Williams said.

“This plan provides a way forward for Council, the community and government to work together to ensure that ageing on the Redlands Coast can be a positive experience where people of all ages can live active fulfilling lives, participating in all aspects of the community.

“It recognises the potential and the value of our older residents’ ongoing contribution to creating a vibrant community.”

Areas identified for action include:

* Outdoor spaces and buildings
* Transport
* Housing
* Social participation
* Respect and social inclusion
* Civic participation and employment
* Communication and information
* Community support and health services

Cr Williams said the Redlands Coast plan was based on the World Health Organisation’s age-friendly cities model which focused on reducing barriers in the physical and social environments so people could remain active and independent for as long as possible.

“This is a plan for our senior citizens, most importantly with valuable input from local seniors and seniors’ organisations,” she said.

“This has helped shape a path that is a true reflection of the needs of our community.

“For example, one of the focus areas will be options for ageing in place on the Southern Moreton Bay Islands.

“Other areas identified for action include improving community transport solutions, building resilient communities, developing research partnerships and intergenerational programs and establishing an age-friendly ambassadors program.”

The plan can be found on the Your Say website.

Redland City advocates for new Redland Bay precinct


Redland City Council is advocating to the state and federal governments for their continued support of Redland Bay’s Weinam Creek precinct as a coastal village of regional and intergenerational importance.

At its general meeting today, councillors also endorsed the updated Weinam Creek Priority Development Area (PDA) masterplan, which is also being assessed independently by Economic Development Queensland (EDQ).

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council wanted to ensure the revitalised Weinam Creek transport hub was supported with health and other vital services for the Southern Moreton Bay Islands (SMBI) and Redland Bay communities and provided job opportunities for locals.

“The masterplan and Weinam Creek PDA Development Scheme supports the social and economic viability of the project as a coastal community and gateway to Moreton Bay and the SMBIs, stimulating island tourism and economies and enhancing public open space and services for existing and future generations,” Cr Williams said.

“We want to ensure the state and federal governments are part of this and will continue to push for commitments to utilise the precinct for services such as a satellite hospital.”

The Weinam Creek PDA project, which is managed by Redland Investment Corporation (RIC) in consultation with Council, covers about 20ha of land-based works across the existing site that will improve civic open spaces and include new retail, commercial, marine, health and public services.

“The project is now transitioning from the first stage of construction of the public carpark and residential precinct on the southern side of Weinam Creek to detailed master planning of the northern side of the Weinam Creek transport and ferry terminal,” Cr Williams said.

“As the masterplan has evolved from the conceptual to construction stages, minor changes have been made to refine the access and boundaries of the carpark to improve amenity for residents in the area. There are also slight refinements to the siting of the pedestrian bridge, boat ramp and residential zone.

“The result is a masterplan that will make a significant contribution to the community through the revitalisation of the waterfront precinct and the provision of a range of public and community infrastructure.”

Division 5 Councillor Mark Edwards said the proposed development would deliver a high-quality mixed-use development and improved public realm for shopping, working and socialising.

“This will create an appealing, safe and vibrant hub for the mainland and Southern Moreton Bay Island communities,” he said.

“Southern Moreton Bay Island residents and commuters using the Redland Bay Marina ferry terminal will benefit from improved access to services without the need for additional transport.

“This will also fill a gap which currently exists for Redland Bay and surrounding suburbs, while creating a significant number of new jobs, especially for the area’s younger residents.”