Enviro News

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Plastic Free July

We have all heard and seen the effects of plastic pollution that is occurring throughout the world.

The aim of Plastic Free July is to raise awareness of single use plastics and encourage people to make positive changes by replacing single use with reusable products.

It can be as simple as giving up the “big 4”:

  • Disposable coffee cups
  • Water bottles
  • Plastic straws
  • Plastic bags

By taking your own reusable coffee cup, water bottle or shopping bag and saying no to straws when buying a drink. 

A Plastic Free July talk was recently held at Bunjil Place Library to hear presentations from Casey Waste staff and a resident of Casey who has taken up the Plastic Free July challenge for the last three years. We learnt about how we can look to reducing the amount of plastic when shopping, eating out, and during celebrations.

It is not expected that people eliminate all plastics overnight, change takes time and needs to be sustainable to accommodate your family and lifestyle. Small manageable and realistic changes are far more effective.

We invite you to look at the Plastic Free July Website and register.

This website is full of helpful information and links to help you with the challenge.

Let your friends, family and workmates know what you are doing and encourage them to sign up too. Plus, a great way to get involved and promote the challenge is by hosting a Plastic Free July Morning tea. There are posters, activities and recipe ideas all on the website in the toolbox. 


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Winter Green Events

Check out the list of green events being held around Casey. From keeping chooks, kids craft sessions, an assortment of gardening, composting and planting sessions, along with an Op Shop and Follow Your Waste Tours there is something for everyone!

Did you receive a 2018 Green Events Calendar?

We are seeking feedback for next year’s calendar. What did you like or dislike about this calendar?

Please send your thoughts to eduwaste@casey.vic.gov.au.



Biodiversity in Casey

The City of Casey recognises the social, economic and environmental benefits of biodiversity and is committed to providing a sustainable and healthy natural environment. The City of Casey’s new Biodiversity Strategy has recently been adopted by Council. The strategy sets a vision of “a green and sustainable natural environment where biodiversity is healthy and resilient, actively cared for, valued and used by the community”.

The strategy guides the planning, protection, engagement and connection and restoration of biodiversity for the benefit of current and future generations.

Check out the new Biodiversity Strategy.

Hybrid truck joins the City of Casey crew

The very first Hybrid truck has joined the City of Casey fleet, with it allocated to the Landscape Services team within City Presentation.
This truck significantly reduces exhaust emissions when compared to a conventional diesel-engine truck along with reduced running costs through improved fuel economy. The aim is to replace other trucks in the fleet with more Hybrid trucks as required.

Keep an eye out for it around town.

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Indigenous plants

Indigenous plants are those that occur naturally in an area having evolved there over thousands of years.  There are lots of great reasons for growing indigenous plants in your garden, including that they provide food for native birds, they are culturally significant, and they are hardy.

Indigenous plants have evolved with the local conditions and can be used in informal and formal garden settings to provide diverse colours and textures.

The Shire of Cardinia and the City of Casey have jointly developed an indigenous plant guide. The guide highlights a selection of plants that grew in the area before European settlement.  This guide aims to highlight the importance of protecting areas of remnant vegetation in Cardinia and Casey and encourage residents to grow in their gardens and on farms. To download the guide, click here City of Casey Indigenous Plant Guide (2mb).

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Getting your veggie patch ready for summer

Looking out the window you’d think that the joys of picking those juicy summer tomatoes from your veggie patch would be too far away to comprehend. But once we’ve past the shortest day, the sun will begin to hang around for a bit longer and then it’s time to get the veggie patch ready.

Great summer crops come from great soil, improved over the winter months by adding compost, manures or by growing green manures. The greater the organic matter you can add to your veggie patch; the better it will be at retaining moisture and nutrients.

But what is green manure? Green manure is created by growing a crop with the sole intent on digging it back into the soil. It can then decompose prior to the Spring Summer growing season, adding valuable nutrients and humus ready for your seedlings to thrive in.

Green manure can be created by using any available seed on hand, just ensure they are dug in prior to forming their own seed. Ensure you don’t end up with a veggie patch full of undesirables.

When digging in your green manure crop, keep it shallow, let the worms do most of the heavy lifting. As an added benefit it would be a great opportunity to add animal manures over the top, helping the compost process. With this approach you’ll have your veggies jumping out of the ground come November.

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Waste and Recycling


New Waste and Recycling Guide arriving soon.

Keep an eye out for the annual Recycling and Waste Guide, which will be landing in your letterbox in early August.

Full of information about what happens to our waste and recycling, changes to our bins and hard waste service, and alternatives places to dispose of materials; it is worth keeping.  A handy magnet on the back, makes it an easy reference guide throughout the year.

This year, the City of Casey is excited to feature artwork from local Primary School students after some fantastic drawing were submitted from several schools. It made choosing just a couple of entries very difficult!

**Keep an eye out as the Guide arrives with the mid-year edition of City News.

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New officers to protect our local environment

Two part-time officers have joined the City of Casey to help council respond to local pollution and waste issues.

Known as Officers for the Protection of the Local Environment (OPLEs), the new officers will respond to concerns from residents and businesses on lower risk pollution issues such as small to medium scale illegal dumping, litter, noise, dust and odour complaints.

The OPLEs will also conduct inspections of premises and undertake information and education activities to support the prevention of pollution in the municipality.

The City of Casey is one of 13 councils participating in the Officers for the Protection of the Local Environment (OPLE) pilot program which will be run in partnership with Environment Protection Authority Victoria. The pilot will run until December 2018.

The City of Casey looks forward to building on its strong relationship with the EPA and working together to identify and address local pollution problems. For more information on the OPLE pilot program, visit  epa.vic.gov.au/our-work/programs/ople-pilot or contact Council on 9705 5200.

City of Casey residents and businesses are encouraged to report pollution and waste issues to EPA’s pollution hotline on 1300 372 842 (1300 EPA VIC) or alternatively, you can lodge a report directly with Council on 9705 5200.

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Composting rebate for residents

With nearly half of our household garbage bin contents being made up of food, the City of Casey offers a compost rebate in an effort to help minimise food waste going to landfill.

Composting also benefits our gardens when we mix the contents into our garden beds and veggie patches.

The rebate is available to Casey residents who buy the applicable equipment, and submit their receipt and proof of address online, making the process very easy.

To find out more visit www.casey.vic.gov.au/composting

Terms and conditions apply.

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Natural Resources


What makes a Natural resource?

Natural resources are resources that exist without actions of humankind. This includes all valued characteristics such as magnetic, gravitational, electrical properties and forces etc. On earth it includes: sunlight, atmosphere, water, land along with all vegetation, crops and animal life that naturally subsists upon or within the heretofore identified characteristics and substances.

Casey’s Coastlines

The City of Casey has four coastal villages, each with a unique history. The most westerly town is Cannons Creek, which sits on Rutherford Inlet. On the other side of Rutherford Inlet is Warneet. Further east around Chinaman Island, off Gentle Annie Channel, is Blind Bight. To the far east of the municipality is Tooradin. The Tooradin area was part of the Tooradin Run of 16,000 acres taken up in 1840. The Tooradin Township was developed in 1854 and in the 1870s the township grew as a significant port.

While, Warneet and Cannons Creek began as fishing camps with a few holiday shacks in the late 1960s and by early 1970s most of the permanent residents moved in.

Blind Bight began as a farm with two squatting runs, Kilmore and Balla Balla. When they were broken into smaller farms, one of these farms was established as the township of Blind Bight, with the first 80 blocks sold in 1974.

To find out more visit www.casey.vic.gov.au/environment-waste/environment/caseys-natural-environment/casey-coast otherwise, go for a drive with the family to see them for yourselves.



The creation of fire - A Melbourne Kulin Story

“A long time passed but there were no fires. The population was extremely cold and ate raw food, all were very uncomfortable. One day the bagrook (females) of the clan, with their kannan (digging sticks) were digging ant eggs, when several snakes came out of the ground. The bagrook, becoming frightened and began beating the snakes, but the reptiles would not die. Karakarook appeared with two Kulin (men), Tourt and Tarrer, and for a long time both bagrook and kulin fought the snakes. Suddenly in the midst of battle Karakarook’s kannan splintered and smoke and sparks erupted from its tip. It was fire! That very instant, Waa – the crow – noting his opportunity, swooped down and stole the flame. Tourt and Tarrer flew off in pursuit and after an epic journey the precious fire was regained. Waa was burnt black by the stolen fire. Bunjil, the great Creator was so pleased with the two heroes, that he bestowed a sacred honour on both, turning them into two stars (Pollux and Castor) which shine fiercely like fire in the night sky.

Karakarook showed the bagrook the fire-sticks and taught them so they would never be without fire again. The people with the use of fire were now marnumuk “comfortable”, and the population grew and prospered”.

Story adapted by Uncle Robert Mate-Mate ‘Still Here 1996’ Living Museum of the West.

Home of the Boyds - Art Exhibition

In 1948, the 28-year-old artist Arthur Boyd, who would soon become recognised as one of Australia’s most important artists, was invited to live and work at The Grange, the à Beckett /Boyd family property at Harkaway/Narre Warren North. This elegant Australian homestead was designed by a local architect, and built in the 1860s by his great grandparents, William Arthur Callendar à Beckett, the son of Victoria’s first Chief Justice and his wife, Emma Mills, daughter of a notorious convict made good. The Grange remained in family hands until 1955, and was the scene of many family celebrations, tragedies and of course, some great art.

When novelist Martin Boyd returned to Australia from London in 1948, he commissioned Arthur to paint murals based on biblical themes in the dining room walls of The Grange. These wall paintings or frescoes incorporated local Harkaway scenery and are widely recognised as a high point in Australian art at the time.

Martin Boyd’s desire to continue the Boyd dynasty at Harkaway fell away. He returned to Europe in the late 1950s and after the house was sold it fell into disrepair which weighed heavily on Arthur Boyd and his family. On the impending threat of demolition, at Arthur’s request art patron John Reed became directly involved through his capacity as director of the Museum of Modern Art. Reed advised that the National Trust, expressed an interest in the mural and in the preservation of the whole of The Grange property, with a view to maintaining the house, and of course, the mural, intact. Consideration was given at the time to the idea to turn The Grange into an art museum with several prominent artists offering their work for exhibition in the old home.

Unfortunately, none of these plans were to eventuate. The family worked to have the building classified and preserved through the National Trust of Australia. A register number was assigned – F404 – and ‘Preserve Notable’ dated 20 October 1966, but nothing came of it. In a final desperate bid to retain the mural before the house was to be demolished by a quarry, Arthur Boyd enlisted the aid of the Melbourne art dealer Joseph Brown. Brown was able to safely extract four substantial portions of the mural, along with some smaller fragments, and negotiate their relocation to the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra.

Fragments of the mural can be seen as part of the Bunjil Place Gallery exhibition Home of the Boyds: Harkaway and the Grange until 29 July.

Dates: 13 May –29 July 2018
Time: 10:00am – 5:00pm, Tuesday to Sunday
Venue: Bunjil Place Gallery, Patrick Northeast Drive, Narre Warren

To find out more visit the Bunjil Place website.

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Community Groups and Schools


Turn your used toothbrushes into a vibrant community garden

Australian students have the chance to win a recycled community garden set by diverting tens of thousands of oral care products from landfill, thanks to a recycling competition run by Colgate, Chemist Warehouse and TerraCycle.

Between 23 March and 31 October 2018, the Colgate Community Garden Challenge invites pre-, primary and secondary schools nationwide to collect all brands of oral care waste and send it to TerraCycle, who will give the waste a second life by creating new products.

Five recycled community garden sets will be awarded to the five winning schools: three winners will be the schools that recycle the most oral care waste and earn the most online votes from the community; two winners will be drawn at random. Each set includes garden beds, two custom-made benches, one rubbish bin and one sign, plus a $500 gardening voucher to buy seeds and plants. Besides showing how recycled materials can be used as a sustainable alternative to virgin plastic, it is hoped the sets will promote gardening and healthy eating among schools.

Additionally, in monthly prize draws, schools will have the chance to win a pack of 60 upcycled pencil cases made from recycled toothpaste tubes.

Schools, get on-board the Colgate Community Garden Challenge by visiting www.terracycle.com.au/colgategarden to join the competition, access posters and resources, and watch your competition ranking on a digital leader board! 

Plus, spread the word and tell the community to vote for your school online every day at www.terracycle.com.au/colgategardenvoting.  

Best of luck in the competition.

Article Courtesy Eco-Schools Australia.

Hallam Gardens Kindergartens joins Melbourne’s Zoo ‘They’re Calling on You’ campaign

The educators and children at Hallam Gardens Kindergarten are passionate about sustainability with educators firmly believing in encouraging our children to consider themselves as global citizens, capable of creating change and influencing our future, particularly when it comes to environmental matters.

As such, Hallam Gardens Kindergarten has partnered with Melbourne Zoo this year and has incorporated the zoo’s ‘They’re Calling on You’ campaign into their program. The campaign aims to recycle old mobiles so that gorilla habitats do not need to be mined for coltan, a mineral used in the production of new mobile phones.

The zoo has visited our kindergarten this term and the children are very excited to explore this sustainable initiative and are hoping to recycle and collect 100 mobile phones this year.

Community involvement is warmly welcomed at our Kindergarten, so we ask that if you have any old mobile phones to please bring them into our Kindergarten and place in our collection basket. Alternatively, you can pop into beautiful Bunjil Place or Cranbourne Customer Service and place your mobile phones in a basket that will be set up there for us to collect.


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Thank you from Pearcedale Primary School

Many thanks and appreciation for the support to the City of Casey Council has given to our school. The additional Recycle bins have been fantastic for diverting recyclables from landfill, while our gardening club are using the garden waste bins when out doing the gardening.  

All the kerbside bins, including the 4 landfill bins, have provided a valuable opportunity for students to understand how much waste we are creating, how to sort our waste and where our waste ends up once it is placed in a bin.   With our Grade 5 students are enjoying the responsibility of putting bins in the yard and out on the nature strip when necessary.

We have set up four waste stations in the playground with a landfill, recycle bin and compost bucket, and our students are familiar with using these now.

We have introduced a Student Sustainability Team this year, where each Grade has 2 representatives. These students attend weekly or fortnightly meetings to work on an issue to create change and improve our sustainable practices at Pearcedale. So far, the team is leading us to reduce the amount of waste produced in our school. They have organised a Nude Food Tuesday Class competition for this term. The focus is on increasing awareness of food packaging, finding alternatives to food wrapped in soft plastic, packing healthy lunches and reducing the amount of waste in lunchboxes.

Since joining the Australian Eco-Schools program we have been impressed with the opportunities this program is providing for our students.

From the Sustainability Leader at Pearcedale PS.

Eco-Schools Australia

Eco-Schools provides frameworks and programs promoting environmental learnings and sustainability for Schools. Visit www.eco-schools.org.au/ to find for your School to take part in, including programs and activities, events, litter campaigns, award possibilities and networks.

Primary School Art Comp

The City of Casey recently held a Primary School Art competition for budding artists to share; what recycling means to them and its importance, with two pieces to be featured in the annual Recycling and Waste Guide. We had many wonderful pieces submitted which made choosing just two very difficult!

The featured artists are Michaela, Grade 6JO, from St Catherine’s Catholic Primary School in Berwick, and Zahra, Grade 4M, from Fountain Primary School. The two Schools will receive a buddy bench made from recycled soft plastics for their efforts.

Thank you to all the students who entered their fantastic drawings, which we have included in this edition of Enviro News.

Keep an eye out for the School and Community video competition coming up for National Recycling Week in November!

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Jersey, Grade 4FB - St Catherine's PS    Larissa, Grade 4D, Fountain Gate PS

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Puneet, Grade 6, Berwick Lodge PS        Rayven, Grade 6S, Fountain Gate PS    Wareesha, Grade 5B, Fountain Gate PS

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Yesandi, Grade 1, Berwick PS                Zoe, Grade 4, St Catherine's PS

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