Circular economy campaign

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Transition Margaret River and a collaborative of other local groups will spearhead the Make It Local campaign.
Camera IconTransition Margaret River and a collaborative of other local groups will spearhead the Make It Local campaign. Credit: Warren Hately

Ratepayers will back a grassroots project to support the local “circular economy”, co-ordinated by Transition Margaret River.

The Shire of Augusta-Margaret River allocated $9170 to the Make It Local campaign last month, with the program expected to ramp up next year.

The Margaret River Chamber of Commerce, Margaret River Regional Environment Centre, the Organic Garden, and Witchcliffe Ecovillage were among those set to get involved, Transition’s Karen Majer said. “We want to get people on-board to buy local, create, recycle, swap and share,” Ms Majer told the Times.

“Thinking local keeps money circulating in our economy, supports local businesses, develops a more resilient community, and reduces our greenhouse gas emissions. It’s a win-win.”

The funding decision was made during debate about the Shire’s Environmental Management Fund, which distributed $200,000 to local green projects, but Make It Local was funded separately as unbudgeted expenditure aligned with the Shire’s proposed sustainable economy budget. Make It Local is described as a one-year program “to build the culture of buying, sourcing, producing, creating, sharing and recycling at the local/regional level, and to develop partnerships for a more circular economy and sustainable community”.

It was a “valuable project for the community”, a council report said.

Chamber deputy president Melissa D’Ath said the project would bring together different groups working to boost trade.

“We heard everyone was trying to do something, so we thought ‘Let’s bring it all together’,” she said. “So we are pooling our funds and resources so we’re spearheading the campaign.”

Ms Majer said the idea emerged from the climate action summit held during this year’s Margaret River Pro.

The group was in the planning stages now for a year of events, and more members were welcome, she said.

The program follows jitters from traders about disruption caused by the impending main street redevelopment and concerns the local economy has been taking a battering because of wider economic sluggishness.

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