Having trouble reading this Atlas? Try here - http://sustainabilityalmanac.org/issues/2010_08_19.htm
Have information you'd like to add to the Almanac? Send an email and we'll add it to the list.

Sustainability Logo
August 19 to 26, 2010

In This Issue

News:

Global, national, and local news

This week:

Boston GreenFest

Family Concert

More

Save The Date:

Fairhaven EcoEnergyFair

Working Waterfront Festival

More

Announcements:

Fall Organic Agriculture courses

Sharing the Harvest volunteers needed

Weekly Green Tip:

Top Reasons to Use EWG's Shopper's Guide to Reduce Your Pesticide Exposures

Clip of the Week

Pesticide Spraying and Organic Farms
Berkley's Kettle Pond Farm on Channel 10 news about pesticide spraying to control mosquitoes
Pesticide

Weekly Quote:

"I have no doubt that we will be successful in harnessing the sun's energy.... If sunbeams were weapons of war, we would have had solar energy centuries ago."
- Sir George Porter, quoted in The Observer, 26 August 1973

Follow us!

Facebook | Twitter
Flickr | LinkedIn

Apply for our Online Sustainability Certificate Program

Leaf Bullet News
Global
Norton World 2009 CO2 emissions off 1.3 percent: institute
Global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 2009 fell 1.3 percent to 31.3 billion tonnes in the first year-on-year decline in this decade, German renewable energy institute IWR said on Friday.

The Muenster-based institute, which advises German ministries, cited the global economic crisis and rising investments in renewable energies for the fall in emissions. Read more here.

Straddle Bus "Straddling" bus–a cheaper, greener and faster alternative to commute
A big concern on top of urban transportation planner's mind is how to speed up the traffic: putting more buses on the road will jam the roads even worse and deteriorate the air; building more subway is costly and time consuming. Well, here is an cheaper, greener and fast alternative to lighten their mind up a bit: the straddling bus, first exhibited on the 13th Beijing International High-tech Expo in May this year. In the near future, the model is to be put into pilot use in Beijing's Mentougou District.

Proposed by Shenzhen Hashi Future Parking Equipment Co., Ltd, the model looks like a subway or light-rail train bestriding the road. It is 4-4.5 m high with two levels: passengers board on the upper level while other vehicles lower than 2 m can go through under. Read more here.

Canada tracks BPA exposure, finds in most people
Bisphenol A, a widely used chemical that Canada is banning from baby bottles, is present in the bodies of 91 percent of Canadians, according to a report that shows just how prevalent the controversial chemical is in daily life.

Statistics Canada said Monday's report was the first time it has measured the extent that the industrial chemical, known as BPA, has been absorbed by people exposed to it. Read more here.

Geoengineering 'Cheap' solar geoengineering plans may have unintended consequences
Researchers warn that individual countries looking to go it alone with 'cheap' solutions to regional climate change could inflict negative impacts on the rest of world

Large-scale 'geoengineering' interventions to alter the climate, such as increasing cloud cover to deflect solar radiation, may not work on a global scale, a new study has warned. Read more here.

Tanzania Tanzania's Serengeti Highway plan could destroy major carbon sink
Environmentalists are dismayed at plans by the Tanzanian government to build a major commercial highway through Serengeti National Park

The Tanzanian President has vowed to go ahead with controversial plans to construct a major road through the Serengeti, despite fierce opposition from environmentalists and the tourism industry. Read more here.

Food supplies most at risk in Afghanistan and Africa
(Reuters) - Afghanistan and nations in sub-Saharan Africa are most at risk from shocks to food supplies such as droughts or floods while Nordic countries are least vulnerable, according to an index released on Thursday.

"Of 50 nations most at risk, 36 are located in Africa," said Fiona Place, an environmental analyst at British-based consultancy Maplecroft, which compiled the 163-nation food security risk index. Read more here.

Russians Could Climate Change Get Us Killed?
As Russia reels under broiling temperatures completely outside the range of its experience, a widely quoted Russian political scientist is voicing the suspicion that the regional climate change is the deliberate work of the US, according to Radio Free Europe.

His idea is that the US is secretly trying to kill Russians and wipe out their crops with "climate-change weapons." Read more here.

National
Shrimp 'CSI' for seafood: Gulf fish gets safety tests
WASHINGTON -- Fish, shrimp and other catches from the Gulf of Mexico are being ground up to hunt for minute traces of oil in what's considered unprecedented safety testing - sort of a "CSI" for seafood that's far more reassuring than the sniff test that made all the headlines.

And while the dispersant that was dumped into the massive oil spill has consumers nervous, health regulators contend there's no evidence it builds up in seafood - although they're working to create a test for it, just in case. Read more here.

Boats Louisiana shrimp season opens amid spill concern
Commercial fishermen can now trawl Louisiana's waters for white shrimp as the season opened on Monday, but questions linger about the effects BP Plc's Gulf of Mexico oil spill will have on the harvest.

Some state waters have been open for brown shrimping since the well ruptured on April 20, but the overall catch has been down from previous years partly because a number of boats are signed up with BP's oil spill clean-up program. Read more here.

Farmer's Market Eat an Apple (Doctor's Orders)
The farm stand is becoming the new apothecary, dispensing apples — not to mention artichokes, asparagus and arugula — to fill a novel kind of prescription.

Doctors at three health centers in Massachusetts have begun advising patients to eat "prescription produce" from local farmers' markets, in an effort to fight obesity in children of low-income families. Now they will give coupons amounting to $1 a day for each member of a patient's family to promote healthy meals. Read more here.

More coverage - New Way to Pay for Fresh Food: By Rx

Farmer's Market How Design Can Help Farmers' Markets Feed a Growing Demand
A century ago, you probably wouldn't have spent your Saturday morning lugging local produce back from a farmers' market because chances were, like the other 95 percent of America, you lived on a farm. But today the numbers are flipped: Now most of our country's population lives in cities, and less than 1 percent of our population are farmers. For any major city, it's the same story: As our food production slips further and further afield, our urban residents have suffered—physically and economically—from a lack of access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Read more here.

WindCalif. Leads In Clean Energy, But Challenges Loom
California has always been ahead of the curve when it comes to renewable power, and the state's clean energy business is flourishing. One of the first large-scale wind farms in the country was built just outside the Bay Area at the Altamont Pass, and this year, California regulators are reviewing twice as many renewable power contracts as last year.

More of those projects are coming online, including a 16-acre solar farm outside of Sacramento a few weeks ago. Read more here.

Solar Recycling Land for Green Energy Ideas
Thousands of acres of farmland here in the San Joaquin Valley have been removed from agricultural production, largely because the once fertile land is contaminated by salt buildup from years of irrigation.

But large swaths of those dry fields could have a valuable new use in their future — making electricity. Read more here.

Small House 10 Tiny Houses for Simpler Living
A couple of weeks ago I was inundated with ads for Jay Shafer's Tumbleweed Houses (http://www.tumbleweedhouses.com) and I have to tell you I became completely intrigued by the subject. I found his tiny homes to be elegant and a really great idea. I actually began dreaming of how cool it would be to have a tiny house of my own with no mortgage and none of the stuff that I really don't need. In addition, the utility bills would also be miniscule which is something I am always interested in but especially this time of the year. Here are 10 tiny houses for simpler living that caught my eye. Read more here.

Local
Mills Real estate company sees a future in former Fall River mills
FALL RIVER — Old mill buildings are so common in the city that natives don't seem to see them, not really.

Michelle Pelletier of Jefferson Realty sees them, buys them, rehabs them and turns them into office space that gives these old factories a 21st century future. Read more here.

Art 'REMARKABLE' RESULTS: Students learn to reuse ordinary materials and make something truly extraordinary
WESTPORT - What do you do with old magazines, plastic shopping bags and cardboard soda can containers?

If you're part of the children's camp sponsored by the Westport Art Group, you create art projects with these materials.

The Westport Art Group Summer Camp for Kids is in its fourth year of existence. The theme this summer is "Reduce, Reuse, Remarkable." Read more here.

Crapo Hill At the top of the heap, Crapo Hill puts on a show
DARTMOUTH — It was an unlikely sight: A pack of about 40 mostly middle-aged men slogged their way to the peak of the Crapo Hill landfill Monday morning. At 320 feet above sea level, they could see about 10 miles into the mist, but what was under their feet was what they came to admire.

From all corners of the continent, they are members of the Solid Waste Association of North America, in Boston this week for their annual convention. Read more here.

Solar Fall River installs pair of solar trash compactors
FALL RIVER — The two new solar-powered trash compactors placed downtown and on the waterfront are small steps toward becoming more environmentally friendly, and they illustrate the city's commitment to going green, Mayor Will Flanagan said.

Flanagan held a press conference Wednesday to unveil the two compactors, one on the boardwalk on the Taunton River and the other on Old Second Street, the pedestrian walkway where a farmer's market was established earlier this summer. Read more here.

Market Tri-town farmers market finds success in its inaugural year
MATTAPOISETT — The notes from a banjo floating on the summer breeze failed to disturb two llamas grazing peacefully on the lawn at Old Rochester Regional Junior High School.

The llamas added one more element to the vibrant and colorful Tuesday afternoon farmers market enjoying its first year on the school grounds. Read more here.

Governor candidates spar over Cape Wind, energy
BOSTON — Incumbent Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick was the lone candidate to defend a planned wind farm off Cape Cod at a gubernatorial debate Monday focused on the future of renewable energy in Massachusetts.

Patrick said the proposed 130-turbine Cape Wind project in Nantucket Sound will thrust the state to the forefront of offshore wind energy in the US and guarantee reliably priced electricity into the future. Read more here.

Soderbergh He gives old materials a second life as furniture
Jeff Soderbergh has been called the poster child for recycling. He tracks down old windows, heating grates, corbels and doors — architectural elements with a provenance — and turns them into curious sculptures and elegant pieces of furniture.

His materials come from all over the world, and his pieces have ended up in museums and private collections. Soderbergh has made a bed from a Gothic church window from Dublin, chairs from a 1902 baby grand, and a coffee table from a soapstone lab counter that came from a Newport middle school. Read more here.

Vine Officials wary of fast-growing, invasive vine
The mile-a-minute vine grows and grows and grows — 6 inches a day, to be exact — and it is crawling toward our area, destroying native vegetation in its path.

It recently turned up in Middleboro, and officials are asking residents to report any mile-a-minute they see growing in and around SouthCoast communities. Read more here.

Dartmouth looks to reconstruct former state police barracks for veterans housing
DARTMOUTH — Housing Authority officials are now looking to start a $750,000 to $800,000 reconstruction of the former state police barracks on Route 6 following Gov. Deval Patrick's signing of legislation giving the property to the town for $1.

"We're going to start pushing forward now," Christopher Markey, vice chairman of the Housing Authority, said Monday. "We're hoping that before the winter there will be some work on it." Read more here.

Leaf Bullet This Week in Sustainability

Slocum River Kayak Tour

August 19, 9:00 a.m. - Noon, Lloyd Center, Dartmouth
Members: $45 Non-Members: $55. Pre-registration required. Limit: 8 Suitable for ages 14 and older. Meeting place: Lloyd Center Headquarters The Slocum River is a peaceful scenic estuary, offering extraordinary views, great birding and paddling. Come explore the many coves and marshes along this classic New England landscape. Paddlers of all abilities are welcome. All tours include basic kayak equipment and instruction by certified guides. Details here.

Dune Hike

August 19, 10:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. , Cherry and Webb Conservation Area (Town Beach) - Westport
The last time you were at the beach did you stop to take a closer look at the dune system behind you? This hearty ecosystem is home to many different plants and animals; however it is sensitive to human impact. Come explore the stretch of dunes at Cherry & Webb Beach and learn about the diverse characteristics of a dune system. See the different specialized plants and animals that have the ability to survive in this ecosystem. Learn how dune systems form and are a critical part of the barrier beaches that protect the mainland from strong storms. Discover the ecology of the dunes and learn about the history of the dunes in Westport. To register for this dune hike or for more information call the WRWA office at (508)636-3016. Please let us know if you do not have a beach pass since you need one to park at Cherry & Webb. Costs are $5 for non-members and free for members. Details here.

Sunset Kayak Tour

August 19, 6:00 p.m.- 8:00 p.m. , Lloyd Center Headquarters, Dartmouth
What better way to end the day than a peaceful paddle along the Slocum River. You'll feel your stress dissolve as you glide along this spectacular estuary, enjoying the setting sun. Watch wading and shorebirds flock to feed, see fish jump and await the multitude of color changes in the sky. This is a wonderful and relaxing way to explore the delicate ecosystem of this salt marsh. Details here.

Green Futures Monthly Meeting

August 19, 7:00 p.m., Union United Methodist Church, corner of Highland Ave.& Pearce St., Fall River, MA
Please make every effort to attend. Bring a friend! Email: info@greenfutures.org. Details here.

Boston GreenFest

August 19-21, all day, Boston City Hall Plaza
Boston GreenFest is organized by the Foundation for a Green Future, Inc. As the region's largest multicultural environmental festival, Boston GreenFest celebrates the many ways we can create a better world by greening our lives and our communities. Details here.

Seining For Subtropicals

August 21, 10:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., Lloyd Center Headquarters
Members: $20 Non-Members: $25
Pre-registration required
Leader: Mark Mello, Lloyd Center Research Director Join Mark on a short canoe paddle from Tripp's boatyard to the edge of the eelgrass beds at the mouth of the Westport River. You will be using a seine (special kind of fishing net) to try to nab seahorses, jacks (a perch-like marine fish), groupers and other southern species that enter our waters in late summer. Plan on getting wet (including your shoes, shells can be sharp, so no bare feet!) Bring a lunch and sun protection. Details here.

Family Concert

August 21, 6 - 8PM, Westport Town Farm (directions)
The South Coast Chamber Music Society will perform compositions that celebrate open spaces and natural settings. Bring your own picnic supper, chairs, blankets and flashlights.

This concert is supported by the Westport Cultural Society through a grant from the Helen E. Ellis Charitable Trust administered by Bank of America. Details here.

Farm Day @ Chamberlain Farm

August 22, 12:00PM - 4:00PM, Berkley (directions)
Farm Day is a chance to taste and sample locally grown items. Not only will you get a chance to purchase fresh from the farm, you will be able to sample some of the best that Southern New England has to offer. Food Sampling of: vegetables and fruit, cheeses, wines & beers, meats, seafoods, baked goods, pig roast. Live music, cash bar, grill open, hayrides, cranberry bog tours, pony rides, horseshoes, local artifact display, local historian and yard sale! ADMISSION IS FREE! Hosted by Chamberlain Farm at the Chamberlain Farm: 12 Friend Street, Berkley, MA. Details here.


Leaf Bullet Save The Date

Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust's 2010 "Barn Bash" Square Dance

August 28, 6:00pm-10:30pm, at the Sylvan Nursery Barn 253 Horseneck Road, Dartmouth
Please join DNRT and its local supporters for a fun-filled evening of delicious food and lively square-dancing to benefit land conservation in Dartmouth. Food by Morton's Fork Catering. Dancing to the calling of Linda Leslie & the music of "Three Cats and a Dog". Details here.

Kayak the Westport River

August 29, 9AM - 1PM, Osprey Sea Kayaks, 489 Old County Rd, Westport, MA
Paddle north from The Let to Spectacle Island, viewing protected properties along the way. Bring water, sun block and water shoes. Please pre-register. Details here.

Electric Car Talk

September 8, 6 p.m., BRAVO, 123 Empire St., Providence.
Al Dahlberg, coordinator of Project Get Ready RI, will talk about advancements in legislation, infrastructure and public awareness that are paving the way for adoption of electrical vehicles in the state. The Rhode Island chapter of the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association is sponsoring the meeting. Free. Details here.

Coalition for the Responsible Siting of LNG Facilities

September 9, 7 p.m., Calvary Temple Assembly of God, 4321 North Main St., Fall River, MA
Please make every effort to attend. Bring a friend! Email: nolng1@yahoo.com

Fair Trade Futures Conference

September 10-12, Quincy, MA
rom September 10-12, 2010, the Fair Trade Futures Conference will bring together entrepreneurs, students, advocates, faith community members, and interested individuals, in Quincy, MA for the largest Fair Trade event in North American history! The event will include workshop, debates, site visits, discussions, social activities, and an exposition of 50+ Fair Trade vendors to educate and inspire about the holistic approach to business and poverty alleviation that Fair Trade provides. Details here.

Feast in the Field

September 10, 6:00PM - 10:00PM | Portsmouth, RI (directions)
You are cordially invited to join us for the Third Annual Feast in the Field - a unique culinary experience celebrating locally produced seasonal foods, native wines and a spectacular coastal New England setting To Benefit New England FarmWays (NEFW) Since 2005, NEFW has benefitted farm operators in southern New England through training programs, technical assistance and marketing support to position and promote their farms as places of significant history, culture, ecology and beauty; farmers as stewards of our lands and natural resources; and agriculture in its many forms as essential to the economic development and quality of life we enjoy in the region. This year's Feast is part of NEFW's 2010 Campaign - "The Farm – Southern New England''s Next Great Destination." Details here.

Chaos, Fractals, and Patterns in Nature

September 11, 10AM - 12Noon, Watuppa Reservation Headquarters, 2929 Blossom Road, Fall River, MA
Free. No description yet. Details here.

3rd Annual Eco/Energy Fair

September 11, 10AM - 2:00pm, Harrop Center at the Unitarian Church, Fairhaven
Please join us for our 3rd annual Eco/Energy Fair in the Center of Fairhaven from 10am-2pm. As in past years there will be educational booths and companies available to explain their alternative energy products. Join us for this wonderful free event. Lunch will be available for purchase on the porch of Harrop Center at the Unitarian Church. Details here.

Extending the Season: Growing Winter Greens

September 11, 3:00PM - 5:00PM, Providence
he garden is on the corner of Westminster and Bridgham Streets Hosted by Urban Agriculture Task Force at the Bridgham Community Garden: 1200 Westminster St, Providence, RI. Contact Urban Agriculture Task Force at (401) 273-9419 x27 for more information. Details here.

Fifth Annual Slocum River Regatta

September 11, Demarest Lloyd State Park, Barney's Joy Road, Dartmouth
Price varies by event category. Pre-registration required. This event is open to single/double racing/recreational shells, single/tandem kayaks, canoes, single/double fixed-seat rowboats – five-oared whaleboats (with cox), all in men's, women's and co-ed categories. Races will start and finish near the mouth of the Slocum River (nearby the Lloyd Center's pier and dock) and traverse a two-mile closed-loop buoyed course on the tidal waters of one of New England's most beautiful estuaries. The emphasis of the regatta is on good fun and enjoyment of the scenic Slocum River. A post-race light lunch and awards ceremonies will follow the race. Details here.

Sunset Kayak Tour

September 16, 5:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., Lloyd Center Headquarters, Dartmouth
What better way to end the day than a peaceful paddle along the Slocum River. You'll feel your stress dissolve as you glide along this spectacular estuary, enjoying the setting sun. Watch wading and shorebirds flock to feed, see fish jump and await the multitude of color changes in the sky. This is a wonderful and relaxing way to explore the delicate ecosystem of this salt marsh. Details here.

Green Futures Monthly Meeting

September 16, 7:00 p.m., Union United Methodist Church, corner of Highland Ave.& Pearce St., Fall River
Please make every effort to attend. Bring a friend! Email: info@greenfutures.org Details here.

From Burping Fish to Giant Oil Spills: How can a local Sea Grant Agent help fishing communities survive?

September 23, Reception at 6:15, talk at 7, Ocean Explorium, New Bedford
Mr. Theberge writes that "Right now one of the popular ideas/issues in ecology is how do we insure that natural communities stay resilient, so that they can recover from disturbances. We should have the same goal for fishing communities: How can we keep them resilient against climate change, fluctuating fish populations, changes in fuel prices, oil spills and other natural, social and economic factors?" Details here.

Working Waterfront Festival

September 25-26, 11am - 7pm (5pm on Sunday), New Bedford State Pier Area
Join us in New Bedford, America's largest commercial fishing port, to learn about the men and women who harvest the North Atlantic. Walk the decks of a scalloper, dine on fresh seafood, mend a fishing net and watch a Coast Guard rescue demonstration. Experience the workings of the industry which brings seafood from the ocean to your plate. Details here.


Leaf Bullet Announcements
Organic Agriculture certificate courses open for September
Bristol Community College (BCC) announces the opening of registration for its Organic Agriculture program with courses leading to a 29-credit certificate in organic agriculture. Courses are offered in the Fall 2010 and Spring 2011 semesters. Organic Farming Practices I is the first of a two-semester course sequence focusing on soils and raising crops organically. Other courses include plant biology, water management, and sociology of food, famine, & farming. Additional courses planned for the Spring semester (2011) include Natural Beekeeping. Upon completing the coursework students can do an on-farm practicum with local farms to apply the theory learned in the classroom. The certificate will provide graduates with the skills to strengthen their farming/gardening capabilities as producers, consultants, or employees of the regionally developing small-scale agriculture sector. BCC is an open enrollment college and students are invited to enroll in the program or to take single courses to meet their own needs.

Details about the program and course descriptions are online, or email Dr. Jim Corven at james.corven@bristolcc.edu
Fall Sustainability Courses
We are pleased to announce our summer and fall sustainability courses, including several online-only courses for those hot summer months. See the course list here.
Farmer's Markets!
With the harvest in full swing, it's time to get out and buy from your local farmers. Support local growers, raisers, craftspeople, and other businesses at your local farmer's markets this summer. See the local list here.
Sharing the Harvest Volunteers Needed
In the Dartmouth YMCA's Sharing the Harvest July newsletter they have put out a call for volunteers to help them bring in the harvests for 2010. It's a great way to get your hands dirty, pitching in to help grow food for the Hunger Commission of SE Massachusetts and community members in need. They have volunteer drop in hours on Wednesdays and Saturdays 9AM-Noon and Thursdays 2:30PM-5PM. For more information just stop by the Dartmouth YMCA or call their volunteer coordinator, Donna at 508-993-3361 x13 or email: sharingtheharvest@ymcasouthcoast.org.
Westport River EcoTours
Eco-tours of the Westport River are available on Thursdays and Fridays until Labor Day Weekend. There will be a tour at 10 AM to noon and another from 1PM to 3PM on Thursdays and Fridays. If none of those time work for you, give us a call and we will see if we can find another time during the week to take you on a journey down the river. There is a limit of four people per tour, and children under the age of 13 must wear a life preserver at all times. It is $25 per person for WRWA members, and $35 non-members. Please call our office at (508)636-3016 to book a tour. If you are paying with a credit card please give us your information when you reserve your tour – your card will not be charged until after the tour. The boat leaves from Dock D-Slip 1 from F.L. Tripps on Cherry & Webb Lane, so please meet us there at least ten minutes before departure time. Learn more.

Bioneers Seeking Volunteers

Volunteering at Bioneers by the Bay is a wonderful and economical way to experience the conference as well as a tremendous opportunity to help a great cause. We will give you a one-day pass in exchange for your full-day volunteer shift. Details here.

Lloyd Center Seeking Director of Development

The Lloyd Center for the Environment, a highly regarded research and educational organization, headquartered in Dartmouth Massachusetts, seeks an experienced Director of Development to work closely with the Executive Director and the Board of Directors in developing and executing an aggressive fundraising strategy. Details here.


Leaf Bullet Weekly Green Tip
Top Reasons to Use Environmental Working Group's Shopper's Guide to Reduce Your Pesticide Exposures
Just what the title says. Pesticide exposure can be minimized. Learn more here.

Have information you'd like to add to the Almanac? Send an email and we'll add it to the list.

Subscribe or Unsubscribe to the Sustainability Almanac. If you unsubscribe, we'd appreciate if you could tell us what prompted the unsubscription.