The Hepburn Relocalisation Network is a loosely formed community group based in the Central Victoria regions of Hepburn and Daylesford.
The Network has been screening films that show local initiatives strengthening communities and building local resilience, and other films that are relevant to the issues of Peak Oil, Global Warming or the concept of Relocalisation, with an attempt to find films that inspire.
The group recognises the urgent realities of Peak Oil and Climate Change and is responding by;
• Raising awareness of how peak oil and global climate change affect our community, and then
• Looking at how we can respond to these realities with a plan for the future.
Our local responses will vary from other communities’ responses, as local needs differ from place to place. The specific situations of each community can only be addressed by a relocalisation strategy i.e. a return to looking at the local situation and looking for a local response.
A couple of years ago our group was inspired by the work of permaculture students at the Kinsale Further Education College, who under the mentorship of Rob Hopkins in 2005 produced a very important report outlining how their small town of West Cork, plans to move from a high energy consumption town to a low energy one.
This town, similar in size to Daylesford/Hepburn seemed like a mirror town of our own. We then set out to begin on a process of articulating, in our own way, to also develop a plan for our town, which will help us to move to a low energy future. Our plan may be a story, a written vision, of how we see our future unfold during the next few years, decades and over the century of decreasing ‘cheap’ fossil fuels.
This year HRN has hosted an international guest speaker from Cuba, Roberto Perez (who featured in the film The Power of Community – How Cuba Survived Peak Oil), at the Daylesford Town Hall for an extremely successful event that brought together people and groups interested in sustainability from all over Central Victoria.
We are continuing to show films and plan to keep building networks within our community, our neighbouring towns, as well as the larger cities of Ballarat, Bendigo and Melbourne.