World Environment Day Festival 2023

Knox Park Murwillumbah, Sunday July 16th.

Hosted by the Caldera Environment Centre in conjunction with community environmental groups from around the region. The event gives local environmental organisations an arena to bring attention to their issues and their actions, plus Guest Speakers, plus performance entertainment. 

Our event promotes sustainability and the protection of the natural environment, in that we invite and host environmentally themed Guest Speakers, we encourage environmentally themed singer-songwriters, and we host local community environment organisations.

We provide a platform for local Caldera performance artists to be showcased, including for example, a much appreciated local indigenous dance group, singer-songwriters, and  circus and acrobat performing artists.

The Programme Includes:

A Welcome to Country welcome [hopefully].

The Kids Caring for Country Dance Group passes on knowledge of the Elders and Indigenous Earth Care through dance and expression, extending a hand to welcome our participation.

THE PITTS FAMILY CIRCUS: IN this day and age The Pitts are a true rarity, an actual performing family acrobatic troupe, all the children have performed from birth (sometimes before) and continue to work together to keep the family going, even through trying times. Blurring the lines between truth and fiction the Pitts perform a variety of rare and spectacular circus acts always presented with a keen sense of dark laconic lunacy. Ages 42. 40, 16, 10, and 5 years.

HOOPLA CIRCUS: This local circus troupe has students from toddler years all the way up to adults. Many have gone on to pursue circus as a profession. Let Susie & her crew entertain you with some seriously funky acrobatics & tricks sprinkled with a touch of humour. Photo: Alissa Sharp.


A major focus this year will be native forest destruction and the growing momentum for ending Native Forestry in Australia, Terri Nicholson (of the Landmark Terania Creek Rainforest Movement) will deliver the message of the forests with her soul-moving melodies and lyrics.  

Terri’s songwriting inspiration comes from the forest and from the heart. Growing up surrounded by the beauty of the Terania rainforest, as well as the knowledge that it was her community’s activism that had protected it from logging, gives her a deep appreciation and courage that comes through in her songs. Keeping the songs of the forest protests alive feels important for the continuity of story and commitment to native forest protection. Guided by her sense of ecological-self, always in deep reverence and relationship with the living earth, her songs of love and heartache with human relationships also have a gentle, strong and honest depth. 

Luna Junction weave a colourful tapestry of Traditional and Original Music. Jovial and joyous with undertones of nonsense.  Shani Forrester and her dynamic musical troupe juggle genres and instruments with environmental themes.  They take the audience on a journey around the globe. An eclectic extravaganza of fun for the whole family.


KIZUNA TAIKO DRUMMERS. Feel Earth’s vibration through the power of Japanese Drumming.  Taiko has ancient origins in the Shinto tradition which believes Nature is sacred and its elements are all around us.  Taiko uses whole body drumming and music to connect our elemental energies to the natural world. The Gold Coast Kizuna troupe have been sharing the art and power of Taiko throughout Australia.


Susie Russell & Dailan Pugh on STOPPING NATIVE FOREST LOGGING: Long term warriors for our forests, Sussie and Dailan will explain why native forests are vital to our own survival as well as the wildlife they protect. Australia’s native forests are being destroyed at alarming rates (mostly for toilet paper!)  What can we do about it?   The role forests play in reducing C02 emissions is vital in the latest IPPC report – research signed off by Governments in nearly every Nation in the World.

Rebecca Whan on Sustainable Design: Earth Walls & Buildings, with a workshop afterwards. Recent living disasters have highlighted the importance of the connection to community and to our environment.  Starting with the earth beneath our feet we can relearn ancient techniques of building and shelter.  The benefits of earth building are manifold – especially beneficial to our well- being.

Anthony Hill – Solutions to Pesky Plastic! This years theme for the UNEP World Environment Day is “Solutions to Plastic Pollution” and in that vein, Anthony will host a lively presentation and discussion about this global issue, provide insights into the “big picture” behind the problem and how it is being solved locally. In this family-friendly session, he will provide many easy and practical examples to help us reduce our plastic footprint. Maybe you have some to share as well??

Note adjusted speaker change: Harry Hackett – Glossy Black Cockatoos. This species is now listed as Vulnerable under Federal laws – the biggest threat being loss of habitat – especially since the destructive 2019 fires.
The ‘Citizen Scientist’ Glossy Squad are having a real impact on the conservation of these magnificent birds. Find out about glossy ecology, specialist habitat, how to spot them and how important you are in this collaborative conservation effort.

Courtney Castles Bees: Courtney will be talking about Australian native bees, both solitary and stingless, with a focus on stingless bees; The different species of native bees that we have here in the Northern Rivers and what we can do to help our native bees, especially after so many were lost in the floods; What life’s like inside the hierarchical hive!; Pests which can infest and kill stingless bee hives; a gentle method of duplication (as opposed to splitting).

Donovan Teal : Forensic Wildlife photographer. A citizen scientist and forensic wildlife photographer based in northern NSW. As a bush regenerator I visit some of the area’s most beautiful forests and have grown passionate about photographing some of the stranger lifeforms that call these forests home including the weirdest members of the insect and fungi world like insect and spider eating fungi. 

At The Event: SEEDTREE MAPS is a unique tree identification mapping experience designed to connect people with their native trees. Our team takes clients on a tree tour of their property, sharing their knowledge of the forest. Clients are then given an interactive, customised map that can be opened on any device, that provides accurate, well-researched information about their trees.  The SEEDTREE MAP connects people with their trees, engages children with nature, educates on how to collect seeds to grow their own trees for free!

At this year’s World Environment Day festival, Tweed Shire Council will have 3 main expo areas. 

Sustainability & Environment, featuring:

Face Painting – native and endangered species including koala, Albert’s lyrebird, giant barred frog, Richmond birdwing butterfly and spotted-tail quoll

Weed identification – TSC have partnered with Rous County Council to showcase some of our nastiest weeds, including weeds classed as prohibited matter. We will be available to identify weeds, to provide advice about landholder obligations under current biosecurity legislation and to discuss approaches to weed control.

Bike maintenance education and workshop – do you know how to fix your stuff? Do you know how to change the tube in your tyre? Get into active travel by looking after your bike! An experienced Bike Mechanic from Murwillumbah Cycles will be on hand from 10am-12pm to provide a demonstration of basic bike maintenance and answer your questions. 

Sustainability Awards nomination support – are you an person or business owner who is a local sustainability champion? We love your work! Debbie and Jane will be available between 1-3pm to answer your questions and support you in putting together an nomination for the Tweed’s Sustainability Awards 2023.

Climate Ready Tweed – small actions make a big difference! Tell us what you’re doing to take action for sustainability in your home, workplace or community. You can also register for our upcoming Community Action Network event, to build capacity in our local communities and networks. 

Water and Wastewater unit

Launch of the new Portable Water Filling Station – provides the community with a better way of filling up their water bottles with tap water, while getting the message out that single use plastic water bottles are bad and tap water is better. The station comes with 2 professional banners directing people to get their ‘free tap water refills here’ because it’s ‘good for you and great for the environment’. 

Taste test: tap vs bottled water challenge – can you taste the difference? Recent lab results show our tap water equals the quality of bottled water.

Free shower timers – save water with our free timersTarget 160campaign informationOnly flush the 3 Ps down the loo informationWally the Waterdrop – our mascot returns better than ever for this year’s festival!

North East Waste

Take the Three Bin Challenge – which rubbish goes where?Take the Community Recycling Centre ChallengeGreat reusable prizes to be won, as well as information on waste and recycling in the Tweed and Northern Rivers