BEAM Mitchell Environment Group is an independent, membership based group.
A thriving community, locally active and globally aware
- Stand up on issues that impact our environment
- Take a collaborative approach and support one another
- Respect each other – everyone has something to offer
- Be accountable for what we say and do
‘BEAM’, originally “Broadford Environmental Action Movement” has become a name in its own right, and was formed in 1989 to provide a forum for environmental action and discussion within the Broadford community. Since then we have grown to a shire-wide group, merging with other like minded local groups, and currently have around 120 memberships, many of these families.
BEAM is about acting locally on global issues
There are lots of urgent global issues including climate change, peak oil, food security and biodiversity decline. The key global environment issues are:
- Climate change: reducing carbon emissions and dealing with the impact of climate change
- Peak oil: will have a major impact on how we live.
- Food security: as well as peak oil, we may be past peak land, peak water, peak phosphorus. Someone even suggested peak oxygen! We now have centuries of soil degradation. And we have concerns about the ethics of food production and the quality of the food we eat.
- Biodiversity decline: in Australia, habitat loss and fragmentation and ongoing gradual destruction caused by management practices is bringing us closer to the extinction of many species and a decline in the ecological processes that support us.
What we do
Over the years BEAM has been involved in a broad range of activities including:
- Providing submissions on a range of local and state government policies and strategies, such as the Mitchell Shire Open Space and Recreation Trails Strategy.
- Successfully objecting to proposed mining on Mount Piper.
- Committee level involvement in the Rural Sustainable Communities Program.
- Leading an investigative project into management options for stable waste in the Mitchell Shire.
- Ongoing involvement in the Mitchell Shire Environment Advisory Committee.
- Presenting evidence at the Victorian Bushfire Royal Commission.
- Supporting the establishment of the Transition Towns Initiative Mitchell.
BEAM has submitted papers to state and local government regarding environmental concerns including:
- Submissions to the Mitchell Shire Council and VCAT in relation to the proposed Cherry Tree Hill wind farm development
- Mitchell Shire 2020 strategy
- VEAC enquiry into remnant vegetation (including a response to issues raised by the Bushfires Royal Commission)
- Kilmore Hospital Reservoir Management Plan
- Mitchell Shire Planning Scheme review
- Granite Park Management Strategy
- Monument Hill Management Plan, and
- Mitchell Shire Open Space and Recreational Trails Strategy
Plus BEAM has:
- Led the development of Sustainable Seymour
- Participated in Clean Up Australia Day and National Tree Day events
- Auspiced the establishment of the Transition Town Initiative-Mitchell group based in Wallan.
- Supported the South West Goulburn Landcare Network Farmblitz Project
- Continued our constructive involvement with the Mitchell Shire Council
- Participated in Shire/CFA planning sessions formalizing fire access tracks in Kilmore’s Monument Hill
See the timeline of the history of BEAM since 1989 – 2010
How does BEAM work?
BEAM is an independent, membership based group and we believe the strength of our group is in its members and the interests, experience and enthusiasm they bring.
The BEAM committee
The BEAM committee consists of 8-10 members: 4-5 are office bearers (see below), and the others ordinary committee members. Office bearer terms are up to 5 years, to encourage rotation of leadership roles and to prevent burnout. New committee members are not expected to take on an office bearer position (unless they want to!) and can be ‘buddied’ with a more experienced committee member for up to a year.
What do committee members do?
Committee members work together to determine the group’s activities, ensure the group is financially viable and accountable, and enhance the group’s local profile. In practice, this involves a range of activities, including:
- Attending and participating in bi-monthly 2-hour meetings
- Contributing to email discussions and decisions in between
- Organising and participating in projects and activities
- Participating in working groups with other stakeholders, or representing BEAM at other meetings or activities
- Contributing to the BEAM newsletter
- Acting as an office bearer for the group
- Taking on portfolios on topics that are of particular interest to them
What do office bearers do?
- President- The president is the group’s Chairperson, responsible for organising and chairing committee meetings. The chair also takes a leading role in setting the course of activities, and monitoring progress. They may also act as a spokesperson or represent BEAM at official functions.
- Vice President- The vice president stands in for the president when they’re absent, so needs to be active and up to date with current activities and issues.
- Secretary- The BEAM secretary prepares and distributes meeting agendas and minutes, and coordinates correspondence to and from members and other stakeholders. They also ensure BEAM meets its incorporation responsibilities by submitting the annual statement.
- Treasurer- The treasurer’s job is to monitor the group’s financial processes and keep on top of reporting obligations. This involves preparing a financial report for each committee meeting, organising and monitoring bank accounts, arranging or the payment of accounts, and drawing up a budget. They also liaise with external auditors for the production of annual financial statements.
Why not join us?
If you are interested in creating a more sustainable future in and around the Mitchell Shire. If you looking for a new challenge, and the opportunity to:
- Contribute your ideas and skills, and shape the future of your environment group?
- Gain new knowledge and skills?
- Expand your networks and meet new people?
Then the BEAM committee is the place to be!
Do I need to be experienced?
NO!! The BEAM committee is small, informal and friendly, an ideal starting place if you’re new to committees. New committee members will not be expected to take on an office bearer position (unless they want to!) and will be ‘buddied’ with a more experienced committee member for up to a year.
All BEAM members are also welcome to attend monthly meetings to meet the committee, and ‘experience’ a meeting. To register your interest or get further information, please contact us.