The end of the year is almost upon us and we want to thank you for your support over the year and to wish you and all your loved ones, a happy festive season.
What a year it’s been with heartache and loss caused by widespread flooding in many parts of the country, a resurgence of COVID, and rising cost of living pressures. However, there have also been small positive steps on environmental protection and climate change, more domestic travel allowing reunions with family and friends and indeed holidays(!)
At ACT for Bees and Other Pollinators we feel we’re ending the year on a high and we hope that you’re feeling the same. That’s not to underestimate the challenges ahead, nor the difficulties faced by many in our community. But with summer finally arriving after a magnificently floriferous spring, our hearts can sing!
Since October, we’ve had a stalls at the COGS Kambah Open Day, Woden’s 60th Birthday celebrations and at Bunnings Tuggeranong for Christmas celebrations; we held a range of activities throughout Wild Pollinator Week including talks at Floriade with the Canberra Environment Centre and the Tuggeranong Library; had an exciting morning filming for ANU students planting for pollinators in the ANU Thrive Kitchen Garden program. It was a wonderful collaboration with the Canberra Environment Centre and ANU Thrive Kitchen Garden and we’re very much looking forward to seeing the garden thrive! We’ll keep you posted about the video for the ACT Government’s Zero Emissions grant. Most recently, thanks to collaboration with Sally Holliday who runs the Landcare Wellbeing through Nature program.a successful Native Bee Hotel Workshop led by our local native bee expert, Peter Abbott, Peter says that there are at least 170 different specifies of native bees in the ACT and NSW South Coast Region and 120 species at the ANBG.
We’ve continued our advocacy work to make the ACT a more pollinator friendly environment and are thrilled that the ACT Legislative Assembly recently passed a motion calling for a wide range of data about wild pollinators to inform policy and educate Canberrans on the actions they can take to support these important insects. Further details are below.
Our last event of the year will be a workshop in conjunction with the Molongo Conservation Group, Habitat for Wildlife Event.
 Peter Abbott, Native Bees of the ACT and NSW South Coast: A Spotter’s Guide p 18
 Peter Abbott writing in Fronds, the Magazine of the Friends of the Australian National Botanical Gardens, Number 102, December 2022, p. 6
Habitat for Wildlife Event and Propagation Workshop Friday 16th December 4:00-6pm
This Habitat for Wildlife event with the Molonglo Conservation Group and ACT for Bees is all about how we can help create a habitat network for pollinators.
For any green thumbs, we’ll be doing some propagating to increase the habitat network in Coombs and its surrounding suburbs. This will include a variety of herbs that you’ll be able to use as much as our bees!
Meet Friends of Molonglo Green Spaces and hear about opportunities in the area to volunteer, enjoy a BBQ in the cottage’s beautiful garden while the children take part in some pollinator themed activities and chat with other bee and garden lovers.
Book here for Habitat for Wildlife Workshop.
ACT Legislative Assembly motion
Suzanne Orr, the Member for Yerrabi tabled a Notice of Motion on 22 November calling on the ACT Government to report extensively on the ACT’s bee and pollinator populations, including on:
United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity Meeting in Canada 7-12 December 2023
The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is the only legal framework globally addressing the protection, restoration, and use of nature. Almost 200 countries are currently meeting in Montreal, Canada, to finalise a Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.
Despite an increase in policies and actions internationally to support biodiversity, indicators show that biodiversity around the world further declined between 2011 and 2020. The degradation of ecosystems and decline of biodiversity exacerbate climate change and threaten the natural processes which protect human health and provide clean air, water and food. For this reason, the issues papers prepared in the lead up to the meeting have called for a significant expansion of conservation measures, including a target of 30% of the earth’s land and sea to be designated protected areas by 2030. Estimates vary about what proportion of the planet is functionally intact with one estimate as low as 3% of land and sea. Restoring the web of life (functionality of ecosystems) and allowing healthy animal populations – rewilding – will therefore be required for our land, freshwater, and seas. This is quite a complex issue, with significant implications for indigenous peoples and local communities and unsurprisingly, there is a diverse range of views on the quantum of the target itself and how it might work. You can read more about it here and here.