The Hub Foundation
Founded in May 2014, the Hub Foundation Castlemaine Ltd is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. It was set up to help reduce our Shire’s – and our planet’s – CO2 emissions. Since we started, our solar bulk-buy project alone, called MASH, has cut emissions by over 2,600 tonnes a year (equal to around 525 cars off the road) with 1.7MW of solar installed since September 2014. This is saving residents over $380,000 each year off their electricity bills. The Hub is an office and restaurant complex on the corner of Barker and Templeton Streets in Castlemaine, Victoria.
The chair, Neil Barrett, has worked as an economist, state coordinator of FOE, CEO of Video Education Australasia, and founder and inaugural chair of the local sustainability group, MASG. He has also co-authored a book on uranium mining and produced many educational and public interest videos. He is currently manager of the Hub building.
Heather Barrett has a background in both business and community development. In 1994 she won the inaugural Victorian Business Woman of the Year. Currently, she is a committee member of the Growing Abundance Project, coordinator of the Hub Plot community garden and treasurer of the Foundation.
Mark Carter has worked as a graphic designer in Melbourne and Castlemaine for mainly public sector clients, NGOs and trade unions. Since working with Neil at FOE over 40 years ago he has maintained an interest in political and environmental campaigning and now contributes to the Foundation’s print-based marketing.
Jo Kaptein has been the Foundation’s project officer since mid 2014. With a Masters in Marketing and a solid background in marketing in the UK, she has been instrumental in the success of the two MASH bulk-buy projects and the now-rejuvenated Ride to Work day in October each year. She has also been very successful in forming partnerships with other organisations in the region.
Deane Belfield is an engineer/entrepreneur, having worked for, or consulted to, major bluechip companies around the world. He is the principal of ECO2SYS which brings businesses together to create synergistic, industrial, ecology and renewable energy solutions, and also a director of Regenerative Australian Farmers (RAF).
Geoff Crosby is the principal of Crosby Architects and director of the Castlemaine Institute. He has a strong interest in sustainable housing design and building, in helping solve issues related to energy and water use in the community, and in the arts. One of his current projects is the development of a carbon neutral eco village.
Taryn Lane works for Embark Australia, a not-for-profit set up to kickstart the community energy sector in Australia. She has also worked for Australia’s first community-owned cooperative wind farm, Hepburn Wind, for over five years and is a founding director of the Australian Wind Alliance and an adviser to the Coalition for Community Energy.
Damien Moyse, the Alternative Technology Association’s Policy & Research Manager, leads ATA’s policy and advocacy work, covering the areas of energy efficiency, demand management, renewable energy and carbon markets, water conservation and sustainable transport. He also oversees ATA’s portfolio of research and consulting projects.
Jodi Newcombe is director of Carbon Arts, an organisation exploring the frontiers of art, science and ecology. She founded Carbon Arts following an international career as an environmental economist and sustainability consultant. Jodi’s experience in natural resource management and policy design, green technology and low-carbon urban development inform her current work.
Dr David Stratton is a retired IT lecturer and engineer. He is on the board of Renewable Newstead and has a long history of involvement in climate change issues. As David says `I used to teach computer networks; I’m now involved in community networks and the Hub Foundation is an important part of the local network’.
Terry White has been working creatively in the area of conservation and climate change for many years. He established the Central Victorian Greenhouse Alliance – the first of many alliances involving local councils in Victoria – in 2000 and later worked with the Western Alliance for Greenhouse Action in Melbourne.
Memberships and Affiliation
The Hub Foundation is a member of Environment Victoria, the Australian Conservation Foundation, the Victorian Wind Alliance and Solar Citizens and is affiliated with Friends of the Earth Melbourne.