Care about climate change? Help get Simon Richardson to Paris…


At Verandah Magazine we’re all in favour of a good cause – and this is a good cause.  Go to the link at the bottom of the story to support the Zero Emissions Byron project and help get Byron Shire Mayor Simon Richardson to Paris to showcase Byron at the UNFCCC Climate Change Conference. He’s raised $2,420 of the $4,000 needed with eight days to go…

Says Richardson: “We have two choices when facing the low carbon future ahead of us- ride the wave and make Byron economically, socially and environmentally sustainable and a model for others to follow, or water-tread in the foam out the back of the wave and hope we don’t get left behind. This project to create Australia’s first Zero Emissions Community in 10 years has the potential to secure millions of dollars of renewable energy and emission reduction investment, to secure and enhance the rich biodiversity of the region and support local communities establish cooperative models of living. It is the game changer for Byron and can be the game changer for Australia.


Re-navigating our economy to one powered by locally or regionally generated renewable energy with zero net emissions will create jobs, establish sustainable economies and ensure our society lives in balance with its environment. Byron Shire has the people with the skills and commitment to become a zero net emission community. The time is now for this to start.

As Mayor of Byron Shire, I have been invited to promote the Shire at the United Nations Framework convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Paris, November 30-December 11. It is set to become one of the most momentous conferences in world history.

I have been invited to attend to present the Zero Emissions Byron (ZEB) project within the Cities and Regions Pavilion, as part of the Compact of Mayors and the Compact of States and Regions initiatives – the two leading global initiatives announced at the UN Climate Summit 2014 in New York, US.


I will be Australia’s only Mayor invited to the event, specifically, to showcase the ZEB project as an Oceania representative, by ICLEI – the international organisation of Local Governments for Sustainability.

As the only Australian representative at the lead up UNFCCC conference in Bonn, Germany earlier this year, the world sustainability community took notice of Byron-we are set create great excitement again.

The benefits of being inside the tent at Paris are numerous:

  • *Showcasing Byron as a leader in this area will bring people to Byron to see what is happening, it will put Byron on the map, and firmly connecting Byron with innovation and sustainability in the eyes of the world’s influencers
  • *ZEB showcases the strength, passion and commitment of our community and is something of which to be proud.
  • *Putting ourselves forward can attract funders from overseas to support zero emissions projects in Byron, including renewable energy, organic farming, re-vegetation projects etc
  • *Having access to confidential conversations allows us to learn best practice initiatives from other shires, cities and regions. For example, I have been invited to participate in a confidential dialogue, to spend two hours engaging with leaders from fifteen cities, towns and regions from around the world. The Mayor of Vancouver, Canada, Gregor Robertson, has already agreed to lead off this dialogue by sharing his city’s recent experience with designing a long-term plan to shift Vancouver to using 100% renewable energy. This will be a closed event (not open to media coverage), to encourage free and candid dialogue among participants.*Being the only Australian local government present, we have strong and regular access to Australian government officials in the climate change field; this will position us perfectly to be at the forefront of funding and trailing of emission reduction projects that flow after an increased emission target that will flow after Paris.

You can help Simon Richardson get to Paris by clicking on the link below and donating:



Leave a Reply