On Monday 6 June I attended the state funeral of past Co-op member Dr Moss Cass.
To think we live a concept that was part of the life and vision of such an extraordinary man is humbling.
After the welcome to country by Aunty Joy Murphy and musicians, Moss was honoured by many luminaries, including Bob Brown, former leader of the Australian Greens, Brian Howe, former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia and The Honourable Mark Dreyfus, QC MP Attorney-General, and Moss's family.
Moss Cass, 1976
His son Dan has wrote in his obituary:
“He demonstrated a purposeful life. His luminous intelligence, honesty and passion for justice opened you. He could imagine a green and fair world and did as much as anyone to bring it about. He could talk politics and solve problems and believed everyone had something valuable to contribute. He taught us that collaborative thinking is what we do. To live is to work it all out: how to care for each other and the planet.”
I think Moss would have been proud to have known how the Co-op’s focus on conservation and citizen science has grown and that this environmental planning experiment, our home, has resulted in not only custodians of this piece of land, but the opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past.
Round the Bend Conservation Co-operative has the potential to re-frame the way people live and to start looking at not “How can the earth’s treasures sustain us?” or “How can we use what the earth provides?” but “What does the earth need from us to be sustainable?”
You can read Dan Cass's obituary here.
Moss Cass was a member of the Co-op from 1973 to 1976. During that time he was a member of the Whitlam Labour Government as Minister for Conservation and the Environment.