After a week of whack-a-mole thunderstorms and possible Covid scares we were relieved that the Australian Conservation Foundation led team could present their Transport for a Sustainable Future event at the Bracken Ridge Tavern (BRT).
I had been inspired by a similar event hosted by Brisbane South ACF team and approached the Brisbane North group to see if they were interested. Yes, they were, and we were off, buoyed by the success of Australian Electric Vehicles Association’s recentEV event at Cleveland.
Once a month the Rust and Chrome group of classic cars, bikes and hot rods meets at the tavern on a Sunday morning. I had been a few times and had a great welcome, so I thought I would approach the BRT management to see if they would be willing to host our event. They most graciously accepted! We had a team and a venue. Next came a date.
To avoid clashes we chose October 31, only realising later that it was a long weekend. Despite that, we decided to press ahead and invite as many groups as possible who represent the EV and environmental community.
The day unfolded into almost a circus event – marquees going up, vehicles arriving – even a gentleman on a unicycle (electric of course) was doing laps around the rapidly filling carpark. We had bikes, electric bikes, and electric motorbikes, stand up scooters, an electric campervan, and loads of EVs.
Although not as many of the general public attended as I hoped, there was lots of networking amongst the disparate parts of the EV ecosystem – chargers, vehicles, rideshare, scooters, DIY conversion enthusiasts – lots to learn from each other and lots of stories to tell. Hopefully I will be able to write up all the stories before I run out of ink on my computer.
I even had a meeting using the front seats of my Tesla as an office to plan another EV event early next year in Brisbane’s inner west – we have a date.
Going forward I would expect many similar events over the next two years as those experienced in EV ownership acquaint a public thirsty for information about the marvels of the electric machines available for transport.
Are we doing the car makers’ jobs for them? Yes. Are we doing the dealers’ jobs? The government’s job (the NSW government is planning to run meetings like what we are already doing). Probably, but we love it.
“It has been a fantastic morning with many questions from the public. This is the best way to see the diversity of EV’s in the market” said Bernard Lakey who rides the Evoke electric motorcycle. Bernard is the Greens candidate for Bonner.
Many thanks to Kerry Levingston of ACF and her team who carried the majority of the workload, and participating organisations – Scootmasters, AEVA, Blind Freddy Bikes, Traction EVs, EV Charging Australia, RE GenEV, Energa, Aspley Bike Shop, Space4Cycling.
The next event that I am aware of will be held at the Logan Central Community Centre on Saturday, November 20. If you want to help click here to contact Charge Ahead.
David Waterworth is a researcher and writer, a retired school teacher who continues to provoke thought through his writing. He divides his time between looking after his grandchildren and trying to make sure they have a planet to live on. He is long on Tesla.