Newstead hosted a visiting Parliamentary Committee as part of a State Government Inquiry into Climate Change on September 19.

The committee, led by chairman and MP Darren Cheeseman, viewed the solar panels on the Newstead Pavilion at the Rec Reserve, toured the Community Garden and visited the Enviro Shop and EV charging station.

During the visit locals explained how the government could support Newstead in a changing climate. David Tuck, of Newstead Landcare, said it must pass laws to protect conservation biodiversity, Chris Johnston, of Talking Fire, urged support to help communities to understand and prepare for fire in a way that maximised ecological benefits alongside human safety, Janet Barker talked about the need to shade and protect food growing areas including the Community Garden in summer and, on behalf of Renewable Newstead, Gen Barlow re-iterated the need to support renewable energy projects in small towns like Newstead.

The inquiry is investigating what government can do to support communities to tackle climate change. The committee visited Newstead between public hearings in Ballarat and Bendigo. Its final report will be handed down in late June next year.

 Renewable Newstead’s Project Co-ordinator Kirsty Mackay organised the visit.