Mullumbimby Community Action Newsletters

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Originally published 24Jun2009



Alternative noble prize winning Helena Norberg-Hodge is a gifted and accessible speaker.
In her new film she illustrates how local food production and local community building
can be a counter to many of the negative aspects of globalisation. There will also be a public discussion.

Thursday eve 25 June, 7 pm, Mullumbimby Civic Centre
Enquiries 66858521 or 66853921

WOOLWORTHS MORE CREEPING ACQUISITIONS: Wws take-over of Macro Wholefoods is not opposed by the ACCC. They are going to change these shops to Wws upmarket deli called Thomas Dux. Why does ACCC support Wws so much?
See also

NEW NSW POLICY FOR RETAIL AND COMMERCIAL CENTRES: check out this possible new legislation that may affect livelihoods of small retailers.

http:// and


WOOLWORTHS again: letter to SMH from our Maleny correspondent Graham Earle

So Woolworths NSW is a finalist in the 2009 Banksia Awards in the Large Business Sustainability section. I don"t know whether to laugh or cry. The award is for incorporation of social, financial and environmental responsibility initiatives by a large company, organisation or business.
On environmental aspects, the judges should look at Woolworths" 2008 Corporate Responsibility Report ( and read past the spin. It shows 18 of 34 environmental targets are "in progress", six "not achieved or delayed", and 10 "completed".
The "completed" targets are the easy (cheaper?) ones, such as a staff education program to encourage greater recovery of plastic and cardboard. The company also pats itself on the back for funding a CSIRO study on biodiesel availability.
Ditto for training its buyers "to help them understand issues and types of third party certification required from suppliers, so they can more effectively manage issues around ethical and sustainable sourcing". The Chinese will love that.
Most of the more difficult (expensive?) targets are either "in progress" or "not achieved" - such as greenhouse emissions (CO2e), which increased rather than decreased, even allowing for Woolworths" snowballing growth. For company cars, CO2e emissions rose by 9.2% as the fleet of 3100 grew.
Woolworths "did not have the opportunity" to work with the Green Building Council to develop a green star-rating tool for retail; nor it has not met its target to establish a forum with transport suppliers to develop a low carbon strategy. Further, it did not trial the use of hybrid powered trucks for home deliveries or implement a waste audit program for all stores and distribution centres.
One could ask why the roofs of Woolworths" 800 supermarkets are not covered in solar panels; why the company trucks food thousands of kilometers to places where local producers can provide fresher, cheaper food. Environmental responsibility is more than painting your buildings green, putting staff in green uniforms and applying for coveted awards.
Let"s not start on Woolworths "social responsibility initiatives". Ask the residents of places where Woolworths has tried or is trying to force itself onto communities that do not need or want it: Mullumbimby, Thornleigh, Lane Cove, Neutral Bay, Moree, Erskinville, Griffith, Palmers Island, Armidale, Mittagong, Dural, Bega, Lane Cove (NSW); Maleny, Sandgate, Samford, Bli Bli, Canungra (Qld); St Kilda, Shepparton, Doncaster East, Mt Evelyn, Seville (Vic) and Wallaroo (South Australia).

PERU PROTESTS by indigenous people have not been stopped, as per the BBC. Jack Travis and Meryn are still trying to get to Lake Titicaca: front line news!

Mullumbimby iNTervention Awareness Group: Locals with concerns about the racist aspects of NT intervention, seek members who can contribute by lobbying, community education, event management, fundraising, etc. contact: Karen Hodder 02 6684 6407

RAINBOW BRIDGE TO WOODSTOCK: Gathering of the Tribes, Durrumbul Hall, Main Arm, Mullum on Saturday 4th July, 4pm till 12: come celebrate the vibrant culture of the rainbow region, at 4pm, join in the Rainbow Circle, Ceremony & Big Drum Jam then it's Nimbin meets Byron with everything in between with dozens of entertainers.

GET UP PETITION to stop government slugging refugees with a bill for staying in detention: Kasian was charged $160,000 for accommodation at Baxter Detention Centre for 16 months.,166705,2

ACCOMMODATION to let: Ocean Shores tel 0411 583376.

QUOTE: From La Via Campesina (2007) by Annette Desmarais p152
"The difficulty for us, as farming people, is that we are rooted in the places where we live and grow our food. The other side, the corporate world, is globally mobile. This is a big difficulty for us. But our way of approaching it is not to become globally mobile ourselves, which is impossible. We can"t move our gardens around the world. Nor do we want to. The way in which we"ve approached this is to recognize there are people like us everywhere in the world who are farming people, who are rooted, culturally rooted, in their places. And what we need to do is build bridges of solidarity with each other which respect that unique place each of us has in our own community, in our own country. These bridges will unite us on those issues or in those places where we have to meet at a global level."

See you at Helena"s movie tomorrow, which also builds bridges.


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