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desertSMART EcoFair - shining a light on science and sustainability.

desertSMART EcoFair will be once again be putting science and sustainability in the spotlight in Central Australia with a program of events running over the weekend Friday 11th August - Sunday 13th August.

 desertSMART EcoFair is Central Australia’s premier science and sustainability event and has connected thousands of people to science and sustainability in Alice Springs since 2009.

Organised by the Arid Lands Environment Centre the event is in it’s ninth year and this year will feature special guests Associate Professor Bernadette McCabe (National Centre for Engineering in Agriculture, University of Southern Queensland), journalist and science communicator Giles Parkinson (Renew Economy) and desertSMART EcoFair Ambassador Costa Georgiadis (Gardening Australia).

The EcoFair will be utilising a number of venues around Alice Springs with events at the Olive Pink Botanic Garden, Alice Springs Community Garden, and Sunday’s Sustainable Living Festival being held at Snow Kenna Park this year. 

“The EcoFair has now been running for 9 years, and each year we strive to find new ways to engage the community on science and sustainability issues,” said Nicole Pietsch, desertSMART EcoFair Coordinator. 

“Living in remote arid Australia presents a number of challenges, but also a unique opportunity to work together as a community to solve issues around energy, water, waste, food, transport and planning in the arid lands. EcoFair aims to encourage information sharing and community discussion on how we can create a shared sustainable future. Science has a big role to play in informing those discussions,” said Nicole Pietsch.

“Highlights of this year’s event include the Eco-Science Schools Day where hundreds of local school students experience hands on workshops based on science and sustainability, the inaugural workshop by Costa Georgiadis exploring the science of arid zone gardening, and the feature presentations at the Sustainable Living Festival this year being held at Snow Kenna Park.”

“We’re really excited to have journalist and science communicator Giles Parkinson speak to us about our rapidly transforming energy systems and Associate Professor Bernadette McCabe talk about the exciting developments in transforming waste into biogas. Of course, EcoFair Ambassador Costa Georgiadis will be back bringing his energy and enthusiasm for science and sustainability to this National Science Week event,” said Nicole Pietsch. 

The desertSMART EcoFair ( is organised by the Arid Lands Environment Centre ( as part of National Science Week. The program includes: 

Friday 11th August

9am EcoScience Schools Day @ Olive Pink Botanic Gardens

6pm Bicycle Film Festival @ Olive Pink Botanic Gardens

Saturday 12th August

9am Food for Alice with Costa @ ALEC 90 Gap Road

2pm Garden to Plate including Green Thumbs with Costa Georgiadis, Bush Wok Cook Off, Food Waste to Energy @ Alice Springs Community Garden

Sunday 13th August

9.30am Sustainable Living Festival with feature speakers, workshops, market stalls and entertainment @ Snow Kenna Park 


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