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University celebrates World Environment Day


31 May 2007
World Environment Day will be celebrated at Southern Cross University with a tree give-away and free public seminar highlighting innovation in ecotechnology and the Lismore Climate Change Protection program.

The School of Environmental Science and Management is hosting the public seminar and has 50 rainforest and wetland trees, donated by Humphrey Herington of Eastern Forest Nursery, to give away.

The seminar will include a talk by Dr Leigh Davison on ecotechnology and a presentation by Mr Andrew Hanna, from the Lismore City Council, on the international Cities for Climate Protection program.

Dr Davison said World Environment Day was a day to reflect on the ‘ecosystem services that are provided free by Mother Earth’.

“On the second Sunday of May each year we celebrate Mother’s Day. On this day we acknowledge the importance of our mothers and give thanks for the sacrifices that they make to bring us into existence and to nurture us,” Dr Davison said.

“On June 5 we celebrate World Environment Day. Like our human mothers, the planetary mum puts up with a lot. But when the kids get too far out of control she lets them know. Recently our planetary mum has been sending messages that even the least sensitive of her children have been hearing.”

Dr Davison, who practices what he preaches in his own living environment, will present case studies showing how eco-system devices, such as ponds, wetlands and reed beds, can be used to minimise the impact of human activity on aquatic environments.

“In the last century the amount of bio-available nitrogen in the ecosphere has doubled leading to major pollution problems for marine and aquatic ecosystems globally,” he said.

“While a number of eco-approaches to nitrogen management are relatively ancient there is often resistance to their adoption in our modern, machine-orientated society.

“However Lismore and the Northern Rivers area have proven to be an ideal crucible for the development of a number of useful ecotechnologies which are now spreading to other parts of the country.”

Dr Davison will also examine the use of technologies such as composting toilets.

Mr Andrew Hanna will provide an overview of Lismore’s involvement in the international climate Change Protection Program. One of the major goals of that program is to reduce Lismore City’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent from 2004 to 2012.

The free seminar will be held at the Lismore campus, U231, at 4pm on Tuesday, June 5. Visitors can park in the student parking area near the Military Road entrance.

For information contact the seminar co-ordinator Dr Amanda Reichelt-Brushett on 66203250 or email [email protected]

Photo: Dr Leigh Davison will present case studies of eco-system devices on World Environment Day at the Lismore campus.

Media contact: Brigid Veale Southern Cross University communications manager 02 66593006 or 0439 680 748.