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May 19 to 26, 2011

In This Issue


Global, national, and local news

This week:

Southcoast Sustainable Cinema: GASLAND

Community Garden Kickoff


Save The Date:

Green Jobs, Green Economy Initiative Fundraiser/ Friendraiser with Van Jones

Spaghetti Fundraiser



Food Conference: Reclaiming Our Community

Sustainability Summer Camp 2011 - Remaking Our World: Greening the planet and our lives

Weekly Green Tip:

Water Saving Tips In the Garden

Clip of the Week

Fall River - New Bedford Bike Ride - May 15 2011
About fifty cyclists from Fall River and New Bedford, MA, biked the ten miles from their respective cities to the University of Massachusetts in Dartmouth to trace the route of a potential South Coast Bikeway between the two cities.

Weekly Quote:

"Nature always strikes back. It takes all the running we can do to remain in the same place."
- Rene Dubos

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Leaf Bullet News
Fuel Taxes As Vehicle Efficiency Evolves, So Do Fuel Taxes
In a world that is aiming to use less fuel, governments have begun to realize that fuel taxes don't stretch as far as they once did.

Increasing fuel economy of vehicles and a federal gas tax untouched since the Clinton Administration in the United States have left holes in state and federal road maintenance budgets, which are fueled almost entirely through gas taxes. Read more here.

Aquaponics Aquaponics a Sustainable Food Alternative
With food prices rising and access to water and land limited in many parts of the world, many are looking at food production alternatives, one of them called aquaponics.

While the term, aquaponics, may sound alien, the practice is beginning to grab the attention of many who see it as one sustainable agricultural solution for an increasingly crowded planet. This is especially true for poverty stricken countries. Read more here.

Dutch exchange plans world's first biomass product
The APX-Endex energy exchange and the Port of Rotterdam will launch an exchange-traded wood fuel product by the end of the year, the first of its kind, the exchange told Reuters on Monday.

The global biomass market is growing as a result of emerging economy demand and European Union targets to replace fossil fuels with renewable sources of energy, but there are still few international pricing benchmarks. Read more here.

Seaports Seaports Need a Plan for Weathering Climate Change, Researchers Say
The majority of seaports around the world are unprepared for the potentially damaging impacts of climate change in the coming century, according to a new Stanford University study.

In a survey posed to port authorities around the world, the Stanford team found that most officials are unsure how best to protect their facilities from rising sea levels and more frequent Katrina-magnitude storms, which scientists say could be a consequence of global warming. Results from the survey are published in the journal Climatic Change. Read more here.

Bangladesh Bangladesh: The Coming Storm
The people of Bangladesh have much to teach us about how a crowded planet can best adapt to rising sea levels. For them, that future is now.
We may be seven billion specks on the surface of Earth, but when you're in Bangladesh, it sometimes feels as if half the human race were crammed into a space the size of Louisiana. Dhaka, its capital, is so crowded that every park and footpath has been colonized by the homeless. To stroll here in the mists of early morning is to navigate an obstacle course of makeshift beds and sleeping children. Later the city's steamy roads and alleyways clog with the chaos of some 15 million people, most of them stuck in traffic. Read more here.

Bus Biofuel and Energy Harvesting for Green School Bus of the Future
In a first-of-its-kind demonstration project, the Ford Motor Company and Georgia Tech are transforming a conventional school bus into a lesson in sustainability. The new bus will run on biofuel made from reclaimed cooking oil, and it will sport a new hydraulic system that captures the energy from its own brakes. The demo bus is small – it only seats 16 – but it will serve as the platform for a cost-benefit analysis in hopes of showing that school districts can reap the environmental benefits of similar conversions without incurring additional expenses. Read more here.

Nuclear Nations Nuclear Nations Turn To Natural Gas And Renewables
Engineers probing the ruined nuclear reactors at Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi plant are finding yet more damage. Not only did fuel melt in three reactors, but there's also a newly discovered hole in one reactor vessel, and radioactive water continues to leak at the site. That mess has led several governments to reassess nuclear power.

Japan was planning 14 new reactors. Germany, famously anti-nuclear, had approved several new plants. Utilities in the U.S. had plans for new reactors as well. And now? Read more here.

Dupont Logo Sustainability and Cost Dominate Packaging Industry
Sustainability and cost are the top issues in the worldwide packaging industry, according to a new survey conducted by Dupont. More than 40% of respondents cited sustainability as the toughest challenge they face, while 33% named cost as a major factor.

The company surveyed more than 500 packaging professionals and found that the need to package food, consumer and industrial products in a more sustainable and affordable way dominates the industry. Read more here.

Trees Alcoa Turns Buildings into Pollution-Eating "Trees"
The aluminum giant Alcoa is launching a new self-cleaning building material that can help decompose airborne pollutants that stick to surfaces, much the same as trees and other plants do. The new material, a pre-coated architechtural panel called "Reynobond with EcoClean," is the result of a collaboration between Alcoa and the Japanese manufacturer TOTO. It's based on titanium dioxide, the common white pigment with about a million different uses that is rapidly emerging as a sustainability powerhouse. Read more here.

WikiLeaks cables show that it was all about the oil
In 2006, three years after the Russian government had charged Mikhail Khodorkovsky — then the country's wealthiest businessman — with fraud and moved to break up his Yukos oil company, U.S. diplomats had had enough. Read more here.

Florida Rail Florida's High-speed rail money redirected to states that aren't run by idiots
It's all over for high-speed rail in Florida. The Tampa to Orlando line had the backing of everyone from business to the state's Republican legislators; but Rick Scott, the new Tea Party-backed governor, blocked it as a "big government boondoggle". Today the Transportation Department announced that the money will go elsewhere. Read more here.

GE’s ‘green’ engine offers new chance with military
WASHINGTON — For months, General Electric has fought an uphill battle to keep funds flowing for development of a next-generation F-35 fighter engine, a program the White House, Pentagon, and many in Congress oppose as wasteful — but one which would support hundreds of jobs at GE Aviation’s plants in Lynn and elsewhere.

Attracting less attention has been GE’s work on new “green’’ engine technology for the Air Force that, analysts and specialists say, could greatly improve the company’s ability to compete for engine contracts. The technology is intended to make aircraft engines far more fuel-efficient, saving money for the Pentagon while potentially reestablishing GE’s long-term role in jet engine contracting, and the jobs that come with it. Read more here.

Rate Your Utility How Green is Your Utility? NREL Rates the Top Ten for Renewable Energy
The National Renewable Energy Laboratory came out with its Top Ten list for renewable energy programs by utilities last week, and it indicates some strong points of growth in the green energy sector. The report looked at 850 utilities that offer voluntary green power programs, which offer customers a chance to earmark their energy consumption for wind, solar and other forms of renewable energy. The catch is that customers generally have to pay a premium for green power. That may seem like a huge turn-off, especially in tough times. However, some utilities have already racked up some pretty impressive numbers, and in some areas the price of renewable energy is nosediving to cost-competitiveness with fossil fuels. Read more here.

No battle Historic Vicksburg, Mississippi faces flood siege
The historic Civil War city of Vicksburg, which withstood a 47-day Union army siege

in 1863, was facing a different kind of invasion on Monday as flooding threatened to top an earth levee nearby.

The city itself is perched atop a bluff overlooking the river, and the Vicksburg National Military Park marking the Civil War battle is not threatened by the flooding, according to the National Park Service. Read more here.

Flood Gates Floodway opening a blessing for Louisiana cities, refineries
Water will be channeled toward homes, farms, a wildlife refuge and a small oil refinery but avoid inundating New Orleans and Baton Rouge.
KROTZ SPRINGS, Louisiana - The opening of a key spillway to relieve flooding along the Mississippi River could create logistical headaches for big Gulf Coast refiners, but will likely spare the lion's share of the area's refining capacity from flooding danger.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Saturday opened the Morganza Spillway to channel water away from the Mississippi River and into the Atchafalaya River basin. Read more here.

Seattle Launches Energy Benchmarking Program for Commercial Buildings
Measuring and tracking the energy efficiency of its commercial buildings is now included in a formal benchmarking program that has been launched by the City of Seattle.

The city has sent letters today to some 800 large commercial property owners and managers informing them about a new citywide program designed to help owners and managers assess and improve building energy efficiency and spur the market for building energy retrofits. Read more here.

Obama Announces Steps To Boost U.S. Oil Output
Facing continued public unhappiness over gas prices, President Barack Obama is directing his administration to ramp up U.S. oil production by extending existing leases in the Gulf of Mexico and off Alaska's coast and holding more frequent lease sales in a federal petroleum reserve in Alaska.

Obama said Saturday that the measures "make good sense" and will help reduce U.S. consumption of imported oil in the long term. But he acknowledged anew that they won't help to immediately bring down gasoline prices topping $4 a gallon in many parts of the country. Read more here.

Non-toxic Reciepts Taco Bell, Other Fast Food Chains Ditch BPA laced Paper Receipts
While the long term human health impacts of bisphenol A (BPA) are still not entirely understood, more medical research suggests that the chemical wreaks havoc with humans’ endocrine and nervous systems. Nevertheless, few government health agencies have banned or regulated BPA, and companies like Coca-Cola continue to use the chemical in beverage can liners. Read more here.

Move used nuclear fuel to interim sites, says White House panel
Draft recommendations from a White House commission on spent nuclear fuel released Friday include a call for one or more new aboveground interim storage sites in the United States. But the advice, which is subject to revision in a preliminary commission report due out in July, has already drawn fire from Republicans in the House of Representatives, foreshadowing a coming fight over nuclear waste. Read more here.

New Jersey New Jersey opens window for offshore wind power applications
New Jersey opened the window for applications to build what could be the nation's first offshore wind power projects.

There are currently no offshore wind projects in U.S. waters, but several companies in many states have been jockeying for years to be the first to build such a wind farm. Read more here.

Big Ag Sues Big Ag sues to block commercial salmon season
Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water… the “great whites” of California’s Central Valley, the big agribusiness companies that depend on public water for their profits, are trying a legal water grab.

The San Joaquin River Group Authority, a group of water contractors including Central Valley agribusiness interests and the city of San Francisco, is suing the federal government to block the commercial salmon fishing season off the California coast. Read more here.

Endangered Species A Coast-to-Coast Guide to Endangered Species
THE whoosh of a surfacing orca and the glower of a mother grizzly still have the power to raise goose bumps; a soaring California condor can yet astonish. But chances to admire many of our wildlife neighbors are becoming increasingly uncommon.

Even so, the nation brims with natural wonders and a treasure trove of diverse plants and animals. Read more here.

Living Economy Making a Living (Economy)
In a world rushing toward environmental and social collapse, there is no place for war, speculation, auto-dependent sprawl, toxic contamination, and wasteful consumption —activities that generate a major portion of current GDP. This massive misallocation of resources is an artifact of a mistaken belief that human prosperity is maximized by unrestrained global competition for resources, markets, and money to drive growth in the consumption of whatever goods and services generate the greatest private financial profit. Read more here.

Obesity Study finds community income related to child obesity
The food you eat, how much exercise you get and which zip code you call home. These are all things that can make you fat, according to a public health study.

Dr. Lauren Smith, medical director for the state Department of Public Health, traced a direct correlation between child obesity rates and a community’s median household income. Read more here.

National View: One-sided pacts encourage outsourcing of U.S. jobs
Federal budget clashes represent one major front in the struggle to spur a sustainable American economic recovery — but only one. Also vital is getting U.S. trade policy right.

That's why President Obama must scrap his business-as-usual approach to this often overlooked issue, and push to strengthen pending trade deals with Colombia, Korea and Panama negotiated by his predecessor. Read more here.

LED bulbs hit 100 watts as federal ban looms
NEW YORK — Two leading makers of lighting products are showcasing LED bulbs that are bright enough to replace energy-guzzling 100-watt light bulbs set to disappear from stores in January.

Their demonstrations at the LightFair trade show in Philadelphia this week mean that brighter LED bulbs will likely go on sale next year, but after a government ban takes effect. Read more here.

Local Pink Recycling Bins
Fall River goes pink and green
FALL RIVER — There will be splashes of pink in front of some Fall River businesses starting next month. That's when the city will roll out its new single-stream recycling program for businesses, featuring pink recycling carts that will help raise awareness and funds for the fight against breast cancer, as well as encouraging more recycling in the city as a whole.

Currently, the city is only recycling about 12 to 14 percent of the materials the DPW picks up. While not very impressive, Fall River's recycling rate is up from 5 to 7 percent prior to the enactment of a single-stream recycling program. City officials have a goal of increasing the city's recycling rate to 20 percent in the short-term and 40 percent in the long-term. Read more here.

State wins appeal on original oil spill law
A federal appeals court in Boston lifted an injunction against a state law meant to protect Buzzards Bay from a repeat of the 2003 oil spill. A three-judge panel of the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the Coast Guard failed to meet federal requirements for environmental analysis before it issued rules that preempted the state's 2004 oil spill law. The appeals court reversed an earlier decision by a federal district court, which barred enforcement of the state law. Read more here.

A showcase for building green
Look at the rundown interior of 5 Channel Center, a nearly 100-year-old building in the Fort Point neighborhood, said Nolan Browne; admittedly, it might be hard to see why the Fraunhofer Center for Sustainable Energy Systems would relocate there from Cambridge.

The firm, which is a subsidiary of the German research organization Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, helps start-up energy efficiency companies commercialize cutting-edge products and services. But right now, its designated new space looks pretty shabby, with paint peeling off the walls, pipes and wires dangling toward the dust, and office detritus littering the floor. Read more here.

Loan hangup puts federal financing for Cape Wind project in doubt
A key piece of federal support for the proposed Nantucket Sound wind farm is now in doubt.

The United States Department of Energy has put an application for a federal loan guarantee for the 130-turbine Cape Wind project on hold until more resources for the program become available, according to a statement from the company. Read more here.

Cow Power Biogas from Cow Power Helps Small College Cut Carbon Emissions
A small liberal arts school in Vermont, Green Mountain College, took the opportunity of its 174th commencement ceremony last weekend to announce that it has achieved "climate neutrality" – an equilibrium between the carbon dioxide that it emits and the carbon dioxide it removes. Green Mountain reached this milestone partly through conventional means including purchased carbon offsets, but it also relied on some unique local resources. Read more here.

Extensive Methane Leaks Discovered Under Streets of Boston
Earlier this year, Boston University researchers and collaborators conducted a mobile greenhouse gas audit in Boston and found hundreds of natural gas leaks under the streets and sidewalks of Greater Boston. Nathan Phillips, associate professor of geography and environment and director of BU's Center for Environmental and Energy Studies (CEES), and his research partners will present these and related findings at NOAA's Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) Global Monitoring Annual Conference in Boulder, Colorado. Read more here.

Cleantech Fundraising in Massachusetts: A Look at the Data
Last August, the Boston Business Journal ran a story entitled “Cleantech deal gap grows between the coasts”, which compared the cleantech deals in California versus Massachusetts. The numbers were stark: in 2008, Massachusetts had 36 cleantech deals to California’s 134; in 2009, Massachusetts had 27 deals to California’s 117; and for the first six months of 2010, Massachusetts had 18 deals to California’s 92.

With these numbers in mind, I took a look at the cleantech fundraising activity since these figures came out to see if these trends have continued and to see what is behind them. Read more here.

End Fuel Subsidies Battle to End Oil Subsidies Goes Local, and Viral
PROVIDENCE — The battle over ending federal subsidies to the biggest oil companies got a little louder Monday.

Standing across the Providence River from an Exxon Mobil fuel terminal, three of Rhode Island's four members of Congress announced their support for legislation to stop the tax breaks and excessive profits afforded to the oil industry. Read more here.

State officials in Maine target local food sovereignty bills in effort to thwart food freedom
A battle is erupting in Maine as state bureaucrats challenge the validity of the various food sovereignty bills recently passed by a handful of towns in the Pine Tree State. The bills override numerous provisions in the federal Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that increase federal and state control over not only small farms, but also individuals and groups that grow, sell, prepare, or otherwise distribute food of any kind. Read more here.

Chamber supports municipal health care reform
The exceptionally high cost of health care insurance in Massachusetts has been repeatedly identified as the most critical issue impacting local businesses. Significant increases each year are threatening economic stability, growth potential and the ability for private employers to make needed additions to the work force. Read more here.

Westport Handy House Westport selectmen end debate on $415,000 in CPA money for Handy House
WESTPORT — Selectmen voted 3-2 Monday night to end discussion of the land deal that allowed $415,000 of Community Preservation Act money to be given to the Westport Historical Society and used to purchased the historic Handy House, 202 Hixbridge Road.

Selectman Antone Vieira Jr. had called into the question the gifting of public funds to a private entity, but attorney David Jenkins, of Town Counsel Kopelman and Paige, assured selectmen Monday night that the transfer was legal. Read more here.

Somerset Town Meeting voters reject ban on power stations
SOMERSET — Voters at Monday’s Town Meeting rejected a petition to ban new power plants in town, but approved a new committee to plan uses for the closed-down Somerset Station power plant site.

An environmental group led a charge to ban new power plants — except those using renewable energy — anywhere in town, but it didn’t win favor with voters or many town officials who said restrictions on the Somerset Station site could hurt prospective owners. Read more here.

Fall River Parks Parks designed by famed Olmsted getting upgrades, touch-ups
FALL RIVER — The city’s three Olmsted parks, designed by famous park architect Frederick Law Olmsted, are undergoing continuous upgrades and maintenance, although the depth and scope of that work is much influenced by the availability of funds, Community Maintenance Director Kenneth Pacheco said. Read more here.

OLMSTED FACTS: Frederick Law Olmsted famed for parks nationwide...
City residents and city leaders alike often brag about the city’s three “Olmsted parks,” but who was Frederick Law Olmsted, other than the designer of Kennedy, North and Ruggles parks?

Olmsted designed not only New York’s Central Park, but Boston’s “Emerald Necklace,” links of greenery extending from Boston Common to Fenway Park. Read more here.

NRC sends team to inspect Pilgrim plant
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission sent a three-member inspection team to the Pilgrim nuclear power plant on Monday to try and figure out what led to an automatic shutdown last week that's been blamed on human error.

The shutdown at the Plymouth plant occurred as the reactor was being returned to service May 10 from a scheduled refueling and maintenance outage. Read more here.

Pilgrim Power Plant
Pilgrim nuclear plant remains out of service
PLYMOUTH — The owner of the Pilgrim nuclear power plant reports that no power is being generated again today, for the fourth straight day.

The plant had reached 14 percent of its capacity on Friday, three days after the first unplanned, automatic shutdown of its reactor in more than a year. Read more here.

Lang: UMD deadline for South End land transfer 'artificial'
NEW BEDFORD — Ignoring a deadline set by UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Jean F. MacCormack last week, Mayor Scott W. Lang says his legal team will not file an application for a South End land transfer with the federal government that would clear the way for a UMass expansion by Monday.

He remains confident, however, that the proposed expansion to School of Marine Science and Technology, which could cost as much as $48 million, will become a reality in New Bedford. Read more here.

OUR VIEW: Window of opportunity on SMAST in New Bedford may be closed
The UMass Dartmouth School of Marine Science and Technology, built and opened in 1996, has developed a reputation for being more than an ivory tower of marine studies.

The value it's brought to New Bedford is undeniable. The school's survey of Georges Bank scallop populations, begun in 1999, almost single-handedly placed the city at the top of U.S. fishing ports. Read more here.

Fishermen snag reparations, apologies from feds
NEW BEDFORD — A former New Bedford scalloper was awarded apologies and almost two-thirds of the reparations announced Tuesday, by Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco, to make up for prosecutorial excess and overboard fines.

In an extraordinary move, the government apologized to those targeted in 13 prosecutions during the past decade and released the damning evidence in a 250-page report by Special Master Charles Swartwood III, a retired federal judge who interviewed dozens of witnesses. Read more here.

Lawmakers demand fishing enforcement report
NEW BEDFORD — Two congressmen from Massachusetts have joined the state's two senators in giving Commerce Secretary Gary Locke three days to make public the preliminary report of the special master appointed to review law enforcement abuses in the Northeast fishery. Read more here.

City Council seeks fishing meeting with NOAA
NEW BEDFORD — The City Council wants representatives of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to answer questions about regulations fishermen consider too restrictive.

The council referred to its Committee on Appointments and Briefings a request by Councilor Bruce Duarte Jr. to have NOAA officials meet with that committee. The request seeks to have the officials discuss local concerns about the fishing industry, and fishermen would be invited when the proposed discussion is held. Read more here.

LETTER: Fall River should embrace container port
This past week, the commonwealth of Massachusetts received great news related to the CSX expansion hub being back on track in Worcester.

Hats off to Worcester for having the foresight to foster the expansion. CSX is planning ahead for the future in the expansion of freight rail service in the commonwealth and throughout the country. A major part of this expansion is related to short sea shipping which is expected to be the future of freight movement in the eastern seaboard. Read more here.

Yogurt-making co-op eliminates the waste
Sam Katz-Christy, a builder of robots by day, was tired of throwing out plastic yogurt containers, so he decided to make his own yogurt, using milk from glass bottles and mason jars for storage.

"One evening, making yogurt in my kitchen, I thought there are probably 20 other people in the city also making yogurt once a week in their kitchens, and if we all worked together we could be a lot more efficient and have a lot more fun,'' explained Katz-Christy. Read more here

Leaf Bullet This Week in Sustainability

Green Drinks Providence

May 19, 5:30-8:30 p.m., Location TBA
Green Drinks is an international organization that allows people in the "green" and environmental community to come together. Through this network people have made friends, found jobs, exchanged information, developed new ideas and have helped others in the field with special projects. Info: Contact Bill Mott at bmott@theoceanproject.org.

Green Futures Monthly Meeting

May 19, 7 p.m., Union United Methodist Church, corner of Highland Ave.& Pearce St., Fall River
Please try to attend - bring any interested friends or relatives.
Email: info@greenfutures.org. Details here.

South Coast Sustainable Cinema - GASLAND

May 19, 7-9 PM, Fairhaven Unitarian Memorial Church
"The largest domestic natural gas drilling boom in history has swept across the United States. The Halliburton-developed drilling technology of "fracking" or hydraulic fracturing has unlocked a "Saudia Arabia of natural gas" just beneath us. But is fracking safe? When filmmaker Josh Fox is asked to lease his land for drilling, he embarks on a cross-country odyssey uncovering a trail of secrets, lies and contamination. A recently drilled nearby Pennsylvania town reports that residents are able to light their drinking water on fire. This is just one of the many absurd and astonishing revelations of a new country called GASLAND. Part verite travelogue, part expose, part mystery, part bluegrass banjo meltdown, part showdown." Details here.

Spring Bird Walk

May 20, 7:00 – 9:00 a.m., Lloyd Center Headquarters, lower lot
Rise early to see and hear bird activity during mid-spring before the leaves are fully out and the forest birds are highly visible with many species having already arrived for the nesting season. The walk will begin with bird observations at the Lloyd Center's Headquarters where many songbirds may be seen along the forest edges and on the Center's birdfeeders. Details here. (Rain date: Saturday, May 21st)

Applications of Biological Medicine

May 20-22, Waypoint Conference Center, New Bedford
This Seminar is designed for healthcare practitioners, medical students and the public who are interested in learning more about Biological Medicine. Details here.

Endangered Species Day

May 20, all day, Buttonwood Park Zoo
Cost: Free with zoo admission Join us for a self-lead stroll around the zoo to find out more about endangered and threatened species. Details here.

Bird Walk at Ridge Hill

May 21, 8:00 am – 10:00 am, Ridge Hill
Cost: Free with zoo admission Join us for a self-lead stroll around the zoo to find out more about endangered and threatened species. Details here.

Operation Clean Sweep - Volunteer!

May 21, 8:30 am – 12:00 pm, Sawyer Street and North Front Street, New Bedford
Help keep New Bedford clean! Community service groups, clubs, businesses and individuals are encouraged to participate in this community event. Also, this is a great way to earn your community service hours. Tools and gloves are provided. To learn more, visit www.operationcleansweep.net and pre-register or call (508) 979-1493. Also, find us on Facebook. Details here.

Community Garden Kick-Off

May 21, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, Westport Town Farm
Inch by inch, row by row, help us make this garden grow! Cultivate a stronger community along with delicious fresh veggies by joining us as we start another growing season at our Westport community garden. Details here.

Somerset Beach Cleanup

May 22, 9:30am – 12pm, Shoreside - Across from Fortier Boats, 34 Riverside Ave, Somerset
Volunteers Needed for Somerset Beach Cleanup Event! Clean the Bay and the Town of Somerset are organizing a shoreline cleanup near the Braga Bridge on Sunday May 22 from 10:30-1:00PM. Volunteers will work alongside Clean the Bay Crew and Boats to remove small and medium sized debris along the shoreline. Please wear appropriate clothing for the weather and close-toed shoes. Bring work gloves, sunscreen and a water bottle. Volunteers should expect to bend and lift repeatedly. Register here.

SEMAP Forestry Talk & Walk

May 22, 10:00 - 11:30 am, Soule Homestead Education Center, Middleborough
Free Event with Forestry Expert Rupert Grantham! The future of Massachusetts’s forestland: Forest fragmentation is as big a problem as ever. Our forests are invaluable in the ecological services they provide yet they can not stand up to ever increasing development values. What do we want our communities to look like in the future? We will examine the history of land-use in the southeast and how it has shaped the forests we see today. We will also consider the history of our working landscape; the value and importance of actively managing lands and supporting a sustainable local forest products market. A short presentation will be followed by a forest walk.Details here.

Sunset Kayak Tour

May 25, 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m., Lloyd Center Headquarters
Cost: Members: $38 Non-members: $45 Pre-registration required by Noon on Tuesday, May 24th. Ages 14 and up. Limit: 10 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 shore birds flock to feed, see fish jump and await the multitude of color changes in the sky. Details here.

Using Social Media to Engage the Community in Energy Efficiency Projects

May 26, 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM, Webinar
This webinar will be a round-table discussion on the ways grantees use social media tools to enhance and promote EECBG and SEP projects within their communities.  First, DOE communications experts will introduce a range of social media resources. Then, grantee panelists will discuss specifically how their organizations use social media tools to provide a forum for community networking and stakeholder engagement, notify the public about training, financing and rebate opportunities, increase participation in bike-share and similar participatory projects, and get the word out on successful projects for grantees and subgrantees.  Strategies and policies for managing social media will also be shared. Discussions will be led by a technical moderator from the Department of Energy, and the audience will be invited to share their experiences and ask questions of the panelists.. Details here.

Leaf Bullet Save The Date

Westport Town Farm Community Garden Volunteers

May 28, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, Westport Town Farm
Cultivate a stronger community along with delicious fresh veggies by volunteering at our community garden. Join us Saturdays during the season or call 508.636.5780 to arrange a time that's convenient for you. All ages welcome, no prior experience needed. Details here.

Create Your Own Herb Container

May 28, 10:00 am, Partners Village Store and Kitchen, 865 Main Road, Westport
Enjoy fresh herbs all summer long with your very own herb garden container! At Partners Village Store and Kitchen, 865 Main Road, Westport, MA. $30.00 per container which includes: instruction, soil, container and herbs. Choose 3 of your favorites from a wide and varied selection.Please contact Partners at 508-636-2572 for reservations. Barri Throop is a long time Westport resident and botanical designer. Her specialties are fresh and dried arrangements, wreaths, swags, flower and herb garden design for businesses as well as local residents. Barri also gives talks and is a regular at the Farmers Market in Westport. She is well known for her contributions to the National Herb Society, Garden Club of Buzzards Bay, Westport River Gardeners and the American Daffodil Society. She has won flower and herb show awards for her amazing work. Details here.

Green Jobs, Green Economy Initiative Fundraiser/Friendraiser with Van Jones

June 2, 6:00 - 8:00 pm, 689 Belleville Ave, New Bedford
Community Ecology: Moving from Competition to Co-Creation. We are honored to have Van Jones as the featured speaker for the event. Jones is a globally-recognized, award-winning pioneer in human rights and the clean-energy economy. Contact: Kalia Lydgate, klydgate@marioninstitute.org. Details here.

Woodland Plant Walk

June 4, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm, Destruction Brook Woods
With guest leader Jim Sears. Details here.

Westport Town Farm Community Garden Volunteers

June 4, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, Westport Town Farm
Cultivate a stronger community along with delicious fresh veggies by volunteering at our community garden. Join us Saturdays during the season or call 508.636.5780 to arrange a time that's convenient for you. All ages welcome, no prior experience needed. Details here.

Kayak Program with Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures

June 4, 9:00 am – 1:00 pm, Osprey Sea Kayak, Old County Rd, Westport
Join Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures and Shelli Costa, Education Director, from the Westport River Watershed Alliance, on a kayak trip in the Westport River. Enjoy being out on the water while spotting birds, learning about the watershed, and paddling down the river. Costs are $40 for members, and $50 for non-members. Please contact Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures at (508)636-0300 to register for this event. Details here.

Kayak Free Gardening Workshop — "Taming Your Tomatoes"

June 4, 10-11:30 a.m., Fox Point Community Garden, corner of Gano and Power streets, Providence
The free workshop will cover planting, staking and plant care — watering, mulching, fertilizing, weeding and pest management — as well as various methods of preparing and saving the fruits, such as drying and preserving in oil. The event is sponsored by the Southside Community Land Trust and the Fox Point Community Garden. Details here.

'Walk Your Paws Off' to benefit Humane Society & Shelter SouthCoast

June 5, 10 am – 3 pm, Freetown-Fall River State Forest on Slab Bridge Road
Sponsorships are an important part of the walk. People of all ages are invited to participate in the walk. Participants may pick up registration and sponsorship forms at the shelter, 31 Ventura Drive, Dartmouth. Those who give a minimum $25 sponsorship donation will get a free T-shirt. For more information, call 508-995-6661 or visit hsssc.org. Participants are encouraged to bring adoptable animals and show them to others. Prizes will be awarded. Registration for walkers begins at 10 a.m. Freetown State Forest offers picnic areas and plenty of free parking.

Kayak Program with Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures

June 6, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m., Osprey Sea Kayak, Westport
Join Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures and Shelli Costa, Education Director, from the Westport River Watershed Alliance, on a kayak trip in the Westport River. Enjoy being out on the water while spotting birds, learning about the watershed, and paddling down the river. Costs are $40 for members, and $50 for non-members. Please contact Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures at (508)636-0300 to register for this event. Details here.

Coalition for Responsible Siting of LNG Facilities

June 9, 7pm, Olde Towne Hall, 1478 County St., Somerset, MA
Olde Towne Hall, 1478 County St., Somerset, MA Please try to attend and bring friends and family. Email: nolng1@yahoo.com

Coalition for Responsible Siting of LNG Facilities - Famous Spaghetti & Meatball Dinner & Raffle

June 11, 6:00pm, Calvary Temple Assembly of God, 4321 North Main St., Fall River
Come enjoy our fundraiser catered by Ma Raffa's Italian Restaurant of Somerset, MA ! Raffle includes scores of donated items and gift certificates. $10. per person For more info: 508-646-3616 Email: nolng1@yahoo.com.

Cooks & Books Series: SEMAP & How On Earth

June 11, 6:30pm at the Mattapoisett Public Library, 7 Barstow Street, Mattapoisett
FREE EVENT! Join SEMAP and Margie Baldwin, founding member of Marion Institute and How On Earth for an evening discussion of local food and sustainable agriculture. Discover how you can help support local farms in Southeastern Mass., as well as create healthy eating habits that help the planet! Cost: FREE! RSVP to scogswell@semaponline.org. Details here.

East Over Bird Walk

June 11, 7-9 AM, East Over Reservation
Bill Gil of the Paskamansett Bird Club leads a walk through the East Over Reservation's picturesque forests and fields in search of Orioles, Bobolinks and Bluebirds. Details here.

Salt Marsh Monitoring Workshop

June 15, 1-4 PM, Lloyd Center Headquarters
Volunteers wanted for salt marsh monitoring assistance!

The Lloyd Center has received a grant from MA Ecological Restoration Program to monitor the major chemical and biological indicators of salt marsh health in two local salt marshes which were recently restored: "The marsh" in Somerset and West Island in Fairhaven. The parameters to be monitored include salinity and groundwater levels, birds, finfish, and vegetation. Details here.

Quarterly Meeting - Crafting a Regional Energy Strategy

June 16, 1-4 PM, The ATMC, Fall River
Join Clean Energy Companies, the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences, Municipal Leaders, Policymakers, and your neighbors and friends to discuss the energy future of Southeastern Massachusetts. With revolutions in the Middle East; new concerns about Natural Gas, Coal, and Nuclear Power; and rising oil prices, the future of our energy supply becomes increasingly uncertain. On June 16th, we will speak frankly about our situation and discuss potential regional responses and support for the development of renewable energy systems at the municipal and regional level. Details here.

Women's Full Moon Canoe Trip

June 16, 6:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Lloyd Center
Cost: Members: $20 Non-members: $25. Pre-registration required by noon on Wednesday, June 15th. Limit: 12 Leader: Liz Moniz, Lloyd Center Senior Educator-Naturalist Sorry gents, this one's for ladies only! Enjoy canoeing the historic Slocum River. Transportation to launching site and all equipment provided. Bring footwear that won't mind getting wet, as well as a snack and libation (non-alcoholic). Register online or call our event phone at 508-558-2918. If you have specific questions regarding the program, please call Liz at 508-990-0505 x15. Details here.

South Coast Sustainable Cinema - PLAY AGAIN

June 16, 7-9 PM, Location TBA
One generation from now most people in the U.S. will have spent more time in the virtual world than in nature. New media technologies have improved our lives in countless ways. Information now appears with a click. Overseas friends are part of our daily lives. And even grandma loves Wii. But what are we missing when we are behind screens? And how will this impact our children, our society, and eventually, our planet? Details here.

River Run 2011

June 18, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m., Lloyd Center Headquarters
Join WRWA and Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures for the 8th annual River Run on the Westport River.  The day will start off with paddlers racing on either a 3.5 mile Family Fun Course or the 6.5 mile Challenge Course.  It will be followed with a celebration at the Head of Westport with food, children's games, and awards for the paddlers.  For more information and for registration details click here or call us at (508)636-3016. Details here.

Summer Solstice by Candelight

June 18, 7-9 PM, Copicut Woods
Celebrate the arrival of summer and the quiet beauty of Copicut Woods at twilight with a candlelit walk down Miller Lane. We'll begin by making candle lanterns that will light our way down the trail at dusk Details here.

Cornell Farm Bird Walk

June 19, 7-9 AM, Cornell Farm
Explore the hay fields and salt marsh along the Little River in search of songbirds, waterfowl and osprey with Bill Gil of the Paskamansett Bird Club. Details here.

SEMAP's Annual Farm-to-Table Dinner

June 20, 5:00pm to Sunset, Round the Bend Farm, Dartmouth MA
Enjoy the summer solstice with SEMAP and friends at our annual fundraising dinner! Fresh locally grown food served in open air fashion is at the center of this unique dining experience. Click here to see more information, and to order your tickets! *SEMAP Foodshed Members get two free tickets! Details here.

Slocum River Kayak Tour

June 25, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Lloyd Center Headquarters, Dartmouth
Cost: Members: $45 Non-members: $55. Pre-registration required by noon on Friday, June 24th. Ages 14 and up. Limit: 10 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. Register online or call the Center's event phone at 508-558-2918. Details here.

Leaf Bullet Announcements
Food Conference: Reclaiming Our Community
A four day educational and working conference addressing the South Coast Region's food systems, food availability, and local food education. (July 11-14)
Monday: You are what you eat
Tuesday: Food Vulnerability-Food Systems Challenges
Wednesday: Food Availability
Thursday: Reclaiming Our Community: Small Changes-Huge Impact
What will the conference be like? Learn, Engage, and Participate in the Local Food Movement! Presentations, panel discussions, and working groups focused on local food topics and issues. Get details and register here.
Sustainability Summer Camp 2011 - Remaking Our World: Greening the planet and our lives
July 25-July 29. WHO: Students entering grades 6, 7 or 8, dedicated to creating a more sustainable world.
WHAT: Campers will be engaged in hands-on projects using artistic media and film technologies to document and promote their environmental learning from the week. Activities throughout the week will include environmental crafts, building, utilizing energy technologies, and scientific research in the campus forest. Field trips and swimming are also part of the week.
WHY: The goal of camp is to develop creative sustainability leaders equipped to respond to the environmental challenges of the 21st century. Topics covered include Renewable Energy Technologies, Environmental Science, Environmental Math, and Nutrition. Get details and register here.
Fall River Community Garden Plots
The First Congregational Church on Rock Street in Fall River is graciously making its land available to the general public for gardening. Applications are available by email from Fall River's Community Garden Coordinator Nichole Fortier at nfortier63@gmail.com. Please do not contact the church! Preference will be given to those who can assist at the Church's Garden Work Day on Sat., May 21 (9:00 - 4:00). If more applications are received than there are plots, a lottery system will be used.
It's Time to Join a CSA!
Community Supported Agriculture, often shortened to CSA, is a prepaid subscription to a farm's produce for the season. Most CSAs give shareholders a weekly supply of veggies, herbs, fruits and sometimes even eggs and meat. You know it's fresh and you get to meet the farm and people who grew your food! The prepaid CSA arrangements also makes it a source of financial security for the farmer. Some CSAs also incorporate farm workdays for shareholders. Pickup days vary by farm and some offer pickups in Providence. Find local ones here.
Organic Pest & Disease Control Course
Bristol Community College announces a new course in Organic Pest & Disease Control. The course is designed to benefit farmers, gardeners, nursery growers, landscapers, land managers, and community organizations. The course will be a practical survey of principles and practices for effective management of pests and diseases in SE Massachusetts and Rhode Island. The course will be available as a 1 credit college accredited course ($166 tuition) or as a noncredit course ($75) through the Center for Workforce and Community Education. Online enrollment is available at www.bristolcc.edu. Senior citizens and veterans may be eligible for waiver of tuition for credit courses. The course will begin on September 12 and meet Mondays (6-9 pm) until October 24. More information: contact Dr. Jim Corven (james.corven@bristolcc.edu).
Springtime Organic Gardening Course
This spring Brix Bounty Farm is helping you to trade your foodmiles for foodsteps. Join us for Diggin' Deep – a dynamic hands-on learning opportunity for new & experienced gardeners interested in gaining knowledge and skills central to organic vegetable production 10 AM – 2 PM on 5 Saturdays: May 21 – June 25 with optional session on May 28th at Brix Bounty Farm, 858 Tucker Road, Dartmouth MA 02747. Cost: Please consider "Paying it Forward" with a donation to NOFAMass. Pre-registration is required, space is limited Email derekchristianson@gmail.com or call the farm, 508-992-1868, to register Learn more here.
Ocean Explorium Annual Appeal 2011
The Ocean Explorium has just launched its 2011 Annual Appeal, with a mailing to individual and corporate members, donors, volunteers and community supporters. Contributions to the Annual Appeal support the organization, its staff, exhibits and programs. Mark Smith, Executive Director of the Ocean Explorium, hopes that gifts to this year's Appeal surpass previous campaigns as a new exhibit is being installed at the same time that demand for programs continues to increase. Learn more here.
Volunteering at Sharing the Harvest Community Farm
Get exercise, enjoy the outdoors, and have a positive impact on your life and others. Volunteers help in every stage of farming here at STH – from planting seeds, to transplanting seeds grown into plants; to cultivating those freshly-planted plants to harvesting their produce. During April, volunteers can expect to spend the majority of their time in the greenhouse, seeding; they may also freshen up the raised beds and direct-seed some cooler-weather crops. If you're interested in volunteering, our drop-in hours are: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday mornings from 9:00AM to 1:00PM - Wednesday afternoons from 2:00PM to 5:00PM. For more information about volunteering, please visit www.ymcasouthcoast.org and search for Sharing the Harvest. You can also contact us by email at sharingtheharvest@ymcasouthcoast.org or via phone at 508 993 3361 extension 13.
Local Agriculture Opportunities
Building Agricultural Skills for the Southcoast - Our apprenticeship program is at the heart of our on farm educational programs. In 2009, we initiated a formal apprenticeship program through collaboration with 2 New Bedford community organizations to provide a summertime urban agricultural apprenticeship. This season we are expanding our training programs to offer full-season agricultural production apprenticeships, as well as hope to continue our urban agriculture partnerships. Come learn the craft of organic agriculture on a small scale diversified vegetable farm.  Learn more here or here (PDF)
New Bedford Wetland Photo Contest
The New Bedford Conservation Commission is proud to announce the first ever New Bedford Wetland Photo Contest! We are looking for your best photograph(s) of any flora, fauna, or natural landscape in New Bedford’s wetlands. The goal of this contest is for everyone to become more aware of wetlands in New Bedford and of their beauty and benefit to the environment. Photographs will be displayed at New Bedford City Hall and the public can vote for their favorite photo(s). The top 12 photographs will have their credited picture in the 2012 Conservation Commission electronic calendar. There is also a drawing to win great prizes just for entering the photo contest. Pictures will be accepted until September 30, voting begins October – November 4th and winners will be announced in December.

For more information and to read official rules, view New Bedford wetland locations and to print an entry form visit  http://www.newbedford-ma.gov/WetlandPhotoContest.htm
Buy Carbon Credits with the Marion Institute
Happy New Year from everyone here at the Marion Institute, where to celebrate 2011 we have just introduced our $7 Carbon Diet which is your chance to offset one ton of carbon emissions for just $7. Your tax-free donation will go directly to our Gaviotas Carbon Offset Initiative, which has been reforesting tropical rainforest for over twenty years. So here's hoping you, and our planet, have a great new year. Donate here.
Sustainability Assessment: Responsibility and Renewal
Our sustainability assessment, "Responsibility and Renewal," the work of dozens of UMD community members, was published a few weeks ago. Packed with information about our current state and our collective dreams, the publication is available online at: http://issuu.com/umdpublications/docs/responsibility_renewal_assessment We also have beautiful printed copies for use in classes and offices--call us for more information. Download it here (PDF).
New Bedford's Ocean Explorium seeks volunteers
The Ocean Explorium is currently in need of adult volunteers for our admissions and gift shop operations. All volunteers for the Ocean Explorium receive training, uniform shirts and other benefits. Volunteers are invited to learn about aquarium operations, behind the scenes as well as in the public eye. Learn more here.
EPA Webcasts and Podcasts: Local Climate and Energy Webcasts
The Local Climate and Energy Webcast Series assists local governments as they explore topics related to local government climate change and clean energy efforts. These monthly webcasts highlight EPA resources available to local governments and present examples of successful climate and energy programs and policies implemented locally. Presentations, recordings, and other supplemental materials are available sorted by topic or sorted by date. Learn more here.
Coalition For Buzzards Bay seeks many positions
The Coalition for Buzzards Bay is growing and we are looking for talented, energetic, and passionate staff members and volunteers to help further our mission. Check out the opportunities here.
Essay Contest for Kids and Teens
Like A Drop of Water's writing contest offers young people, ages eight through seventeen, world wide the opportunity to share their ideas on how they and their countries can reduce climate change and pollution. We hope parents, grandparents and teachers will feel free to share their ideas with their young author. Teachers and their students may submit a class essay as well as serve as judges. Learn about the contest here.

Leaf Bullet Weekly Green Tip
Water Saving Tips In the Garden
Gardening can be a fulfilling activity to help you relax outdoors. But, if you aren't careful, an environmentally-friendly activity can quickly turn into a sink for precious natural water resources. Learn more here.

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