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July 28 to August 4, 2011

In This Issue


Global, national, and local news, plus our new Voices section

This week:

Coastal Explorers Camp

SouthCoast Green Drinks


Save The Date:

37th Annual Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) Summer Conference

6th Annual DNRT “Barn Bash” Square Dance



UMass Dartmouth to Offer BPI Certification Courses in August

SouthCoast Energy Challenge Launched!

Weekly Green Tip:

Turn Off Your Computer When Not in Use

Clip of the Week

She's Alive... Beautiful... Finite... Hurting... Worth Dying for
This is a non-commercial attempt to highlight the fact that world leaders, irresponsible corporates and mindless 'consumers' are combining to destroy life on earth. It is dedicated to all who died fighting for the planet and those whose lives are on the line today.

Weekly Quote:

"The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference."
- Elie Wiesel

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Leaf Bullet Letter from the Editors
Cool Animals

This is an especially long Almanac this week due to a plethora of news -- much of it inspiring despite the heat wave and growing U.S. debt. Because this edition is lengthy, some of your email displays may cut it off part way through an article, or before you get to the always interesting calendar of local green events. If this happens to you, there is an easy fix. Simply click on the "try here" link we always make available at the top of every issue to pop up the Almanac in its fully glory in your browser.

Though some weeks it seems like the world is awash in the challenges of climate change, this week the news seems uplifting and full of potential for positive change. Close to home, for example, we can focus on the article about the new Coalition for Buzzards Bay Sanctuary over the disappointments of Fairhaven's leaky sludge tanks. To refresh yourselves before more moving into the news, take a look at the amazing photos of wildlife from around the world finding ways to cool off. It's a bit of joy!

Leaf Bullet News
Polar Bear Swimming Longest Polar Bear Swim Recorded—426 Miles Straight
A female polar bear swam for a record-breaking nine days straight, traversing 426 miles (687 kilometers) of water—equivalent to the distance between Washington, D.C., and Boston, a new study says.

The predator made her epic journey in the Beaufort Sea (see map), where sea ice is shrinking due to global warming, forcing mother bears to swim greater and greater distances to reach land—to the peril of their cubs. Read more here.

Polish Shipyard Historic Polish shipyard set to 'go green'
GDANSK SHIPYARD, Poland — The Gdansk Shipyard, where the Solidarity movement that ended the communist era in Poland was born, is now trying to lead another Polish revolution ... in offshore wind power.

The European Union has laid out clean energy targets to be reached by its 27-members by 2020. To hit those marks Poland must break its coal addiction, which currently provides some 90 percent of the country's electrical power.

Environmental groups, energy experts and some politicians increasingly point to offshore wind farms as a viable alternative to coal, adding that it could have more economic upside than a planned investment in nuclear power. Read more here.

7 Billion Population The World at 7 Billion: Can We Stop Growing Now?
Demographers aren’t known for their sense of humor, but the ones who work for the United Nations recently announced that the world’s human population will hit 7 billion on Halloween this year. Since censuses and other surveys can scarcely justify such a precise calculation, it’s tempting to imagine that the UN Population Division, the data shop that pinpointed the Day of 7 Billion, is hinting that we should all be afraid, be very afraid. Read more here.

Climate Talks Global climate talks can reach agreement
A global deal on a pact to succeed the U.N.'s main climate agreement is still within reach but will not be struck this year, with the pace of talks still far too slow, New Zealand's top climate negotiator said on Wednesday.

Inevitably, there would be a gap after the Kyoto Protocol's first period expires in 2012, Minister of Climate Change Negotiations Tim Groser said in an interview after delegates from 35 nations attended two days of climate talks in Auckland. Read more here.

Wind Farm Bold New Approach to Wind 'Farm' Design May Provide Efficiency Gains
Conventional wisdom suggests that because we're approaching the theoretical limit on individual wind turbine efficiency, wind energy is now a mature technology. But California Institute of Technology researchers revisited some of the fundamental assumptions that guided the wind industry for the past 30 years, and now believe that a new approach to wind farm design -- one that places wind turbines close together instead of far apart -- may provide significant efficiency gains. Read more here.

Transition to Renewable Energy Stimulates the Economy, German Researchers Say
The transition to renewable energy is set to deliver an economic pay off as well in the years to come. Various studies show that a shift to alternative energy sources will raise the GNP in the coming decade and create new jobs, as Prof. Eicke Weber, spokesperson for the Fraunhofer Energy Alliance, points out. Fraunhofer scientists are developing concepts and solutions for the transition as it takes shape. Read more here.

Chocolate Kit Kat Kit Kat Factory Achieves Zero Waste Milestone
The Kit Kat candy bar has been described as the “biggest little meal” and the “best companion to a cup of tea.” For decades, Nestlé, which manufactures Kit Kats in the UK and licenses the bar to Hershey in the U.S., reminded Brits and Americans to “Have a break, have a Kit Kat,” and so millions have obliged and wolfed down billions of the candy bars. Well, chocolate junkies who call zero waste their cup of tea will be pleased to learn that the world’s largest confectionary plant is now a zero-waste operation. Read more here.

African Toilet Gates challenges researchers to reinvent the toilet
It is time to reinvent the toilet for the developing world where other attempts to improve sanitation have failed, according to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Although billions of dollars have been poured into sanitation infrastructure in the developing world, rapid population growth means that there are now more people without access to improved sanitation in Sub-Saharan Africa than ever before, according to Sylvia Mathews Burwell, president of the Global Development Program at the foundation. Read more here.

California Dam Will Dam Removal in the West Restore Salmon?
A controversial plan to remove four dams from the Klamath River to save endangered salmon could make its way to Congress in the coming weeks.

Capitol Hill lawmakers will consider taking down California’s Iron Gate, Copco 2, Copco 1, and John C. Boyle dams at a cost of about $1 billion, half of that potentially funded with federal tax dollars.

The removal plan has the backing of several Native American tribes on the Klamath who rely on the river for salmon fishing, as well as farmers who depend on its water for irrigation. The plan also has the support of PacifiCorp, Warren Buffett’s power company, which owns the dams. Read more here.

Lake Tahoe Two States Protect Lake Tahoe, But One Eyes Changes
Lake Tahoe sits right on the state line between California and Nevada, and the two states work together to protect the lake's ecosystem. The partnership has helped to stall the reduction in the remarkable clarity of the lake's deep blue waters.

But now Nevada wants out of the partnership if it doesn't get some concessions from California. Read more here.

Ozone EPA Seeks To Tighten Ozone Standards
The Environmental Protection Agency is expected any day now to tighten the standard for how much ozone is safe to breathe, but the level of ozone that scientists say is safe doesn't sit well with industry. The agency decision is sitting at the White House, awaiting approval.

The EPA is redoing the ozone standard set under President George W. Bush. The Bush administration's EPA ignored the advice of its own panel of outside scientific advisers. It set the standard for a healthy level of ozone in the air at 75 parts per billion. Read more here.

Heat Wave Heat: The 'Most Dangerous Natural Disaster'
Much of the eastern and central United States remains under an excessive heat warning Saturday morning. Triple-digit temperatures neared or exceeded record highs from Missouri to Massachusetts this week. In Philadelphia, the mercury topped out at a sultry 104 degrees on Friday. Public health workers mobilized to help the elderly and others affected by the heat.

Earlier in the week the heat caused the pavement to buckle on an on-ramp connecting the Commodore Barry Bridge to Interstate 95, just south of Philadelphia. Construction crews had to make emergency repairs to get the ramp open again. If the heat is doing that to pavement, imagine what it's doing to people. Read more here.

Montana launches $85 million carbon storage project
The federal government has given final approval to an $85 million, eight-year pilot project to inject a million tons of carbon dioxide, a major greenhouse gas, into underground rock formations in Montana for storage.

The Montana State University project seeks to determine whether carbon dioxide emissions from sources such as coal-fired power plants and cement production can be safely and economically captured and stored instead of being released into the atmosphere. Read more here.

Volleys Fly in House Debate on E.P.A. and Interior
The House of Representatives began heated debate on Monday on an appropriations bill for the Department of Interior and Environmental Protection Agency that pits Republican critics of environmental regulation against Democrats who fear that landmark protections could be gutted.

The legislation, which could come to a floor vote this week, would cut Interior’s funds by $750 million, or about 7 percent, and the E.P.A.’s budget by $1.5 billion, or 18 percent. (The latter cut would bring reductions in the E.P.A.’s budget to 34 percent over two years.) Read more here.

Power Lines Renewable Energy May Get a Boost from New Electric Grid Rules
New rules passed last week by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission may spur the renewable energy sector to grow even faster than current trends, while also bringing clean energy to regions and customers that have historically been dependent on fossil fuel-based power.

"The impact is pretty big," said Gene Grace, senior counsel with the American Wind Energy Association. "It has the potential to be somewhat of a game-changer in terms of planning and cost allocation." Read more here.

Mountaintop Mining New Study Links Mountaintop Removal to 60,000 Additional Cancer Cases
Among the 1.2 million American citizens living in mountaintop removal mining counties in central Appalachia, an additional 60,000 cases of cancer are directly linked to the federally sanctioned strip-mining practice.

That is the damning conclusion in a breakthrough study, released last night in the peer-reviewed Journal of Community Health: The Publication for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. Read more here.

What Do the Debt Ceiling and Climate Crisis Have in Common?
One of the problems that the Congress is encountering as it tries to raise the debt ceiling is that a significant number of Republican and Tea Party Members of Congress apparently hold the view that there actually would not be consequences for global markets or the US economy if we defaulted. This view is, of course, absurd -- but it illustrates a larger problem. Dramatic changes in the way we communicate with one another about issues affecting the common good have diminished the role of reason and fact-based analysis, encouraging ideological extremists to construct their own alternative version of reality and defend it against fact-based reasoning. Read more here.

Capitol Hill 4 Ways to Flip the Switch on the Climate Change Debate
The recent failed effort in the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal legislation that transitions the country to more energy-efficient light bulbs is an indicator of the political momentum shifts related to climate change legislation since last November's election.

Just as they have done with the current debt-ceiling debate, ideologues in the Republican Party are exerting influence that, in my opinion, is disproportionate to mainstream sentiment. Read more here.

Environmental Activist Tim DeChristopher Sentenced to Prison, Tells the Court, "This Is What Hope Looks Like"
"In these times of a morally bankrupt government that has sold out its principles, this is what patriotism looks like." Read his words to the court.
Yesterday Tim DeChristopher was sentenced to 2 years in federal prison and was handed a $10,000 fine for bidding on oil and gas drilling leases in an attempt to protect public lands.

"Thank you for the opportunity to speak before the court. " Read more here.

Why the Government Says Whitebark Pine is Endangered But Won't Do Anything About It
Last Tuesday we wrote about how the whitebark pine -- a tree that ranges across the American West and provides grizzly bears with a crucial food source -- is now officially, according to the U.S. government, endangered by climate change. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's landmark decision, however, didn't put Pinus albicaulis on the official endangered species list or require the government to do anything to protect it from extinction. Technically, FWS declared that listing the whitebark pine under the Endangered Species Act was "warranted but precluded."

Say what? Initial reports of the FWS decision didn't do much to explain this quirky phrase, basically offering that the government didn't have the resources to deal with putting the species on the list, though the science was clear that it belonged there. Read more here.

WalMart Bananas Wal-Mart Aims to Crush Food Deserts, Small Farms
Now that Wal-Mart has effectively stomped many small businesses in the United States out of business, it has set its sights on grocery stores and small farms.

Mega-retailers Wal-Mart and Walgreen's recently got on board with First Lady Michelle Obama's push to reduce the amount of "food deserts" in the United States. A food desert is any area in the industrialized world where healthy, affordable food is difficult to obtain. Food deserts exist in rural and urban areas and are most noticeable in economically deprived minority communities. Living in a food desert can lead to a variety of diet-related health problems. Read more here.

Millennials and Consumption
America’s newest generation – the Millennials – is currently making their passage into adulthood. They are confident, connected, open to change, and consider themselves as having more power in the role of consumer than as voter. But who are they? How are they different? And, how might they reshape our economy towards a sustainable future? Read more here.

National View: Census Bureau offers a poor definition of poverty
For two decades, the Census Bureau has reported almost yearly that more than 35 million Americans live in "poverty." Last fall, census officials grabbed headlines by saying 43.5 million persons were poor. That's one in seven Americans. But what does it mean to be "poor" in America? What is poverty? Read more here.

Smart Growth The country's most ambitious smart growth project shows some progress, much remaining potential
I once called the Atlanta BeltLine “the country’s best smart growth project.” I still haven’t seen one that is better in concept. But now, with a few years of history, how is the implementation coming along? Is the reality matching the vision?

The challenge with writing about the BeltLine is that the massive public/private undertaking is so enormous, so multifaceted, so ambitious and potentially transformative, so complicated that it is difficult to know where to start, how much to say, and what comments are fair. I’ll try to boil it down to a few impressions that I have formed as a highly interested observer from afar. Read more here.

Sludge Tanks Leaky tanks stall $8 million sludge-to-energy project in Fairhaven
FAIRHAVEN — The second of two defective components to Fairhaven's planned anaerobic digester plant, a highly touted project to turn waste into energy, may delay the operation's start by nearly a year, according to a public works official.

One of two steel tanks, each about 30 feet high and 25 feet in diameter, failed to pass a 48-hour leak test, an error that affects both tanks and will take at least four to five months to correct, according to public works Chairman Geoffrey Haworth. Read more here.

Buzzards Bay Coalition puts together a gift of inestimable value
...The whole area is as idyllic a location as any in SouthCoast, rivaling in its own way vistas such as that of Buzzards Bay off the Fort Rodman/Fort Taber cliffs or the grand beach at Horseneck.

The LaPalme and Acushnet Saw Mill sights are being made possible by the Coalition for Buzzards Bay, which is closing in on its hopes to assemble the 50-acre LaPalme farm and the 20-acre former sawmill property into a 70-acre conservation sanctuary.

The sanctuary, as deeply wooded as Freetown State Forest, would, astoundingly, be within walking distance of most of New Bedford's densely-populated North End and Acushnet's center. Read more here.

R.I.’s ocean-zoning plan first approved in U.S.
NARRAGANSETT — The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has approved a Rhode Island ocean zoning plan that designates waters off the state’s coast for renewable energy development. The Ocean Special Area Management Plan, or SAMP, is the first of its kind in the nation to win federal approval. Read more here.

Course offers practical advice for businesses looking to go green
FALL RIVER — What makes a business green? What can businesses, nonprofits and just about any other enterprise do to adopt sustainable practices, and save money in the process?

The concepts of “green” and “sustainable” encompass a variety of aspects, and, for the most part, there’s no clear road map to adopting eco-friendly practices in the workplace. That is, until now. Read more here.

Recycling facility, Westport neighbors clash over noise complaints
WESTPORT - For the second time in two months, representatives of A&E Metals, 403 American Legion Highway, clashed with residents of nearby Jordan’s Way, who say noise and fumes produced by the recycling facility are destroying the quality of life in their neighborhood.

Last month, when residents told selectmen that noise and vibrations from the business were disturbing their lives and shaking pictures off their walls, selectmen agreed to moderate a meeting between A&E, Jordan’s Way residents and members of the town’s Board of Health, Planning Board and Building Department. Read more here.

EPA rejects funds to clean up former Freetown factory
FREETOWN - At the last Town Meeting, voters approved forming a town Housing Authority, which will help the town draw closer to its goal of establishing senior housing. Recently, the town encountered some roadblocks toward that goal.

The state Environmental Protection Agency recently rejected the town’s bid for funding to further clean up the former screw factory site on County Road, which for more than five years has been considered a prospective site for senior housing. Read more here.

Artists out, leather goods in at 21 Cove St.
NEW BEDFORD — A collection of artists will have to move their studios out of a South End mill by Aug. 31 to make way for a leather goods manufacturer.

Roland Letendre says he plans to move his South End-based company, U.S. Saddlebag Co., which employs about 50 and has a product line that includes saddlebags, tool bags, tank covers, trunk bags and riding chaps, into the 21 Cove St. mill. Read more here.

Damage to UMass Dartmouth's wind turbine pushes back construction
DARTMOUTH - Construction of a 243-foot wind turbine at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth has been pushed back because of minor weather damage that took place while the turbine was in storage.

The University said in March it was moving ahead with plans for the turbine, with construction to start in the spring and be completed by the fall. Months later, there is no evidence of work ongoing at the site. Read more here.

Fall River planners, City Council haggle over waterfront
FALL RIVER - Planning Director James Hartnett was asked by his board to seek a legal opinion following the City Council’s vote this week to direct the Planning Board to issue a recommendation on the proposed waterfront district zoning ordinance.

Submitted by Mayor Will Flanagan and the planning department, the change for two miles of city waterfront adds great flexibility for development. Read more here.

Exhibit gives you a peek at diets of others worldwide
Normally, it would be rude to stare at a stranger’s meal, much less judge it. But the Boston Museum of Science exhibit “What I Eat: Around the World in 25 Diets” is an invitation to do just that.

“These are virtual meals where you’re voyeuristically looking at what people are eating,” said journalist Faith D’Alusio, who wrote the text that accompanies the photos by her husband, Peter Menzel. “And you immediately contrast it with your own diet and start thinking, ‘Why does the food look so different in each photograph?’” Read more here.

Flanagan, city officials sign contract to study removal of smokestacks
FALL RIVER - Mayor Will Flanagan and fiscal officials on Monday signed off on a contract aimed at demolishing the sky-high metal towers at the incinerator plant and eliminating any chance that method of trash removal will be used again. Read more here.

Fall River Herald's View: Trash incinerator site's future is the burning question
The pair of smokestacks atop Fall River’s idle trash incinerator stand 100 feet high, dominating the city’s skyline. At one time, the incinerator was capable of burning 450 tons of trash per day, but it hasn’t been operational in more than 15 years. Still, the smokestacks remain a glaring reminder of the city’s past.

New incinerators in Massachusetts have been banned since a state moratorium was put into place in 1990. The Fall River incinerator was shut down in 1995 under pressure from local citizens and environmentalists, and the city did not go out to bond on the significant costs associated with retrofitting the incinerator to meet environmental standards. Read more here.

Amid intense hurricane predictions, SouthCoast is at the ready
Somerset has 200 cots ready to go, pumps ready to lend in case of a flood and enough information in a 3-inch-thick binder to plan for nearly any emergency. Fall River has seven shelters capable of holding thousands of people, and Swansea knows the first areas that need to be evacuated if a hurricane strikes.

Hurricane season, which officially began June 1, has gotten off to a very quiet start. But forecasters are predicting three to six major hurricanes in the Atlantic during an unusually intense storm season, and the south coast of Massachusetts is never completely in the clear. Read more here.

New website to address cumulative harm on communities and the environment
New Bedford residents, like those in many cities, are at risk for high rates of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and high blood pressure, according to state and federal studies.

Now, researchers from Boston University School of Public Health, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Northstar Learning Centers are studying the reasons why, trying to unravel what they believe is a myriad of combining factors – from PCBs and prenatal tobacco exposure for ADHD, to diet and fine particulate matter exposure for high blood pressure -- that may be increasing the illness risk for residents.

The research is part of a growing effort nationally to study the cumulative health impact of human activities, including pollution, racial discrimination, malnutrition, poverty, and other factors that may disproportionately harm some communities. Read more here.

Fla. wildlife official to head NOAA fisheries enforcement
There is a new top fishery cop at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. On Monday, NOAA announced that Florida's Bruce Buckson has been appointed as director of the NOAA Fisheries Office of Law Enforcement.

Buckson, a deputy director at the Division of Law Enforcement at Florida's Wildlife Conservation Commission since 2007, takes up his new duties on Sept. 4. A career lawman, Buckson has been with the Florida agency for the past 29 years and also served as liaison to NOAA's Office for Law Enforcement for federal enforcement issues.

"From what I am hearing back from people within the fishing industry, this seems to be a positive development," Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., said of Buckson's appointment to head an agency that has been embroiled in controversy in the Northeast. Read more here.

Art museum bus is making its rounds
The New Bedford Art Museum's mobile art education summer program is under way.

For the past 16 years, two purple artMOBILE buses have traveled throughout New Bedford, bringing free art education to children at parks, summer school programs and community centers. Each purple bus is staffed by trained art educators who have art lessons planned for each stop, engaging the children in creative and educational projects. Read more here.

Rail Push Next stop in rail push is D.C., Patrick says
WESTPORT - Gov. Deval Patrick said Thursday state officials will make their case for South Coast Rail to environmental regulators in Washington after suffering what he called a "setback" with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's regional office.

During a public forum held outdoors on Westport Point, Patrick assured an audience of about 100 people that commuter rail will be extended to New Bedford and Fall River. But he noted there is resistance to the Stoughton route because it goes through the swamp on a currently dormant rail bed. Read more here.

Frank bill would steer fishing fines to research, reparations
NEW BEDFORD - U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., has been joined by a dozen other legislators of both parties in filing legislation to steer money from the misused NOAA Asset Forfeiture Fund into paying reparations to fishermen and financing state-based fisheries research.

The bill, which Frank had promised was coming, tracks the approach taken by U.S. Sens. Scott Brown and John F. Kerry toward NOAA's record of failure to account for the fund over a decade's time, as discovered by Commerce Department Inspector General Todd Zinser. Read more here.

SMAST talks 'ongoing'
NEW BEDFORD — Negotiations between UMass Dartmouth and the city over the possible expansion of the South End SMAST are ongoing, according to both sides, and a neighborhood meeting to discuss the proposed expansion is tentatively scheduled for next month.

UMass has proposed a $48 million expansion to the South End campus of its School for Marine Science and Technology, but the school has been at odds with Mayor Scott W. Lang over the transfer of the property deed. Read more here.

In high-tech, another kind of job crunch
Vital Mass. sector faces worker shortage
Massachusetts has developed a technology labor shortage, one that could undermine a vital sector that helped pull the state from the last recession and is driving its recovery. Demand for high-tech talent is so great that workers are turning down six-figure salaries and companies are offering five-figure cash bounties for successful referrals - a stark contrast to lackluster hiring that has created a large pool of long-term unemployed and kept the state jobless rate at historically high levels. Read more here.

Leaf Bullet This Week in Sustainability

River Rats

Tuesdays July 26, August 2, 9 and 16, 10-11am, Gooseberry Island, Westport
Thursdays July 28, August 4, 11 and 18, 10-11am, Cherry and Webb, Westport
Join Westport River Watershed Alliance this summer at the beach, for children ages 3-6. Each session will feature an hour at the beach during which participants will listen for shore birds, use nets to catch fish and crabs and explore the sand for hidden creatures. Hands-on investigations, activities, games and crafts will help participants learn about animals at the beach. Cost: $8 members/ $10 nonmembers Details here.

Alien Worlds: New Discoveries Around Distant Stars

July 29, 10 am - 5 pm, Museum of Natural History at Roger Williams Park, Providence
It has only been 15 years since the discovery of the first planet outside our solar system. Since then we have found hundreds more, and the number grows every week. What are these planets like? How do scientists find them? And could any of them harbor life around strange and distant stars? This exhibit offers a look inside the science that is emerging from these discoveries, the new ways in which planets are being discovered, and a glimpse at what the future may hold. Fee $2.00. Children under 4 years old free. Contact email: info@musnathist.com Details here.

Summer Concert at Soule Homestead

July 30, 6 pm, Soule Homestead, Middleboro
Bring a blanket or chair, pack a picnic dinner and listen to LIVE ACOUSTIC MUSIC in a beautiful and family friendly setting. Join us this Saturday at 6pm at the Soule Homestead Education Center located at 46 Soule Street in Middleboro. All shows start at 6pm, rain or shine. Please look for us in the classroom in the case of rainy weather. Admission is $10 or $8 for Senior Citizens, Students (children 12 and under are free) and Open Mic performers. Details here.

Coastal Explorers

August 1 to 5, 9am-1pm, Gooseberry Island, Westport
Youngsters age 7 to 9 can join Westport River Watershed Alliance this summer to discover the wildlife in our coastal waters in this hands-on, science day program. We’ll use a seine net to catch critters, complete scavenger hunts, hike through the dunes, play some nature games on the beach, and create crafts from natural objects. Cost: $160members/$190nonmembers Details here.

SouthCoast Green Drinks

August 2, 6:30 pm, Rose Alley Ale House, New Bedford
Tuesday nights weekly at 6:30pm starting August 2nd at the Rose Ally Ale House, 94 Front St. New Bedford, MA. An after work social opportunity to discuss Green initiatives and activities happening in the South Coast. Green drinks are a way to informally meet other like minded indviduals concerned about the topics of sustainability, in a comfortable atmosphere. Please consider joining us! For more information, contact Jen Gonet jgonet@umassd.edu or Colleen Dawicki cdawicki@umassd.edu..

Leaf Bullet Save The Date

Massachusetts Marketplace Festival

August 6th, 10 am to 4 pm, Wellesley
New England farmers, specialty food producers, and artisans will come together for the 15th annual Massachusetts Marketplace Festival on Saturday, August 6th at the Gardens at Elm Bank in Wellesley. Homemade crafts, soaps, baked goods, popcorn, teas, herbs, fine art, and annual plants from vendors located throughout Massachusetts and New England will be available for sampling and purchase. Details here.

Neighborhood volunteer canvass day & cookout!

August 6th, 1 pm to 4 pm, Buttonwood Park, New Bedford
All are welcome at the first major canvas of the SouthCoast Energy Challenge. Sunday, August 7 at 1:00pm, at the Warming House at Buttonwood Park in New Bedford, MA. We will gather at 1:00 pm for a group canvas training, where volunteers will recieve t-shirts, instructions, and a brief training. We will canvas neighborhoods immediately around Buttonwood for about 2 hours, then return to the park for a cook out! If you are interested in volunteering to canvas with us, please RSVP with your name and t-shirt size!! All are welcome. Details here.

Baking Demonstration At Harlow House - Steamed Brown Bread and Cornbread

August 11th, 1 pm, Plymouth
Harlow Old Fort House in Plymouth will offer demonstrations by master baker Kirsten Atchison. Kirsten grew up in Germany where dinner is called “Abendbrot” (evening bread) and afternoon coffee and cake is a national institution. Now a resident of Plymouth, Kirsten has enjoyed recreating her favorite German breads as well breads and cakes from all over the world. Details here.

37th Annual Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) Summer Conference

August 12th - 14th Amherst,
This year we'll be presenting two workshops at the Summer Conference: (1) a beginner workshop "Interpreting Soil Tests" - Accurately gauging nutrient needs in our soils is a critical step in making sound fertility decisions. We will set out to demystify soil test results, from cation exchange capacity (CEC) and base saturation to ppm and lbs/acre. Hands on activity included to help participants gain confidence in interpreting soil test results. (2) an advaced workshop "The Case for Full Spectrum Fertility" - An examination of our pre-transplant fertility protocol. Join us as we discuss the steps taken at Brix Bounty Farm in the critical week leading up to transplanting. Focusing on soil fertility we aim to create prime soil conditions for vigorous root growth and thriving transplants. Inoculants, amendments, and energy in depth. Details here.

Kids World Festival

August 13th and 14th , 11am - 6pm, Fall River's Heritage State Park
For one weekend it will be a kid’s world and the rest of us will just be living in it. On Aug. 13 and 14, Heritage State Park will turn into the Kids World Festival, giving families a free activity to wile away their summer days. Both days will feature a mix of activities and displays intended to stimulate kids’ minds, ears, eyes and senses. Among the attractions will be Animal Instincts Live. Owner Bob Schenck said the attraction will highlight animals from around the world including a species of tortoise that can grow to become the second largest in the world to the appearance of the world’s smallest parrot, measuring around 3 inches. Details here.

Kettle Pond Farm Saturday Supper - Heirloom Varieties

August 27th , Berkley
What is an heirloom vegetable anyway? Come by for some learning and tasting. Learn about what they are, why we use them and taste test the varieties on the farm. Details here.

6th Annual DNRT “Barn Bash” Square Dance at the Sylvan Nursery Barn

August 27th , 6 to 10:30 pm, Westport
More information to come or contact the Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust at 508-991-2289. Details here.

Seining for Subtropicals

August 27th, 10:30 am to 3 pm, Lloyd Center Headquarters, 430 Potomska Road, Dartmouth
Join Mark Mello, Lloyd Center Research Director, 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. Cost: Members $20, Non-members: $25. Pre-registration required by noon on Friday, August 26th. Register online or call the Center's event phone at 508-558-2918. If you have specific questions regarding the program, please call Mark at 508-990-0505 x 22. Details here.

Migration Stop-over Walk

August 27th, 8-11am, Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary, Westport
Join a staff member as we search for migratory birds in the salt marsh, within our shrublands, and out on Little Beach spit - where often hundreds of terns will be staging before migrating south for the winter. Fee: Adults $4.00 member / $6.00 non-member, Children $4.00 members / $6.00 non-members. Registration is required. Register by phone with a credit card by calling (508) 636-2437. For more information, email gpurtell@massaudubon.org. Details here.

Dartmouth Grange Fair

September 9 - 10 Dartmouth
A Celebration of Rural Community at the Dartmouth Grange in historic Russells Mills Village. More information to come. Details here.

Leaf Bullet Announcements
SouthCoast Energy Challenge Launched!
The Energy Challenge is your chance to save money while conserving energy and protecting your environment. We invite you to be among the first to register for the Challenge, which will launch publicly in August. All you need to do is visit www.SouthCoastEnergyChallenge.org to register. The SouthCoast Energy Challenge is an initiative of the Southeastern Environmental Education Alliance (SEEAL). Please, take the Challenge today by registering at www.SouthCoastEnergyChallenge.org. You'll learn different actions to help you start saving right away, and, you'll have the option to track your actual utility savings online. There's even an easy on-line carbon calculator you can use to measure your own household's annual carbon footprint! Get details here.
DOE Releases Annual Market Reports for Wind Energy, Advanced Vehicles, and Fuel Cell Technology
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released three 2010 market reports which detail the market conditions and trends for wind energy, advanced vehicles, and fuel cell technologies. Taken together, these three market reports illustrate growth in deployment and manufacturing across all three technologies—improving the nation’s global competitiveness in the clean energy economy and creating clean tech jobs for U.S. workers. Get details here.
UMass Dartmouth to Offer BPI Certification Courses in August
Upon completion of this 7 week program and successful completion of exams students will be certified in BPI standards. BPI (Building Performance Institute) is a national standards development and credentialing organization for residential energy efficiency retrofit work. Students completing the program and exams will be:
  • Level 1: BPI Residential Building Envelope Whole House Air Leakage Control Installer
  • Level 2: BPI Building Envelope Professional Certification
  • Level 3: BPI Building Analyst Certified

Course Dates: August 10th-September 20th
Get details here.

Sustainable "Center Cafe" Opens in South End "ecoNewBedford" District
The Center Café is the last piece of the demonstration project on Brock Avenue called ecoNewBedford. It serves coffee and ice cream, salads, home-made soups, and lite sandwiches. Breakfast sandwiches, fruit-yogurt smoothies, and waffles are served any time. The café open early morning and into the evening. A 400 square foot private meeting room can be reserved by local organizations or for use as a flexible workplace. Offsite catering is available. Occasional presentations on topics ranging from Setting New Directions, Empowering Creativity, and Active Lifestyles are planned. Artists are hanging their work for sale in the Café, and a selection of gifts is also available.

The Center Café is the last piece of the demonstration project on Brock Avenue called ecoNewBedford. It serves coffee and ice cream, salads, home-made soups, and lite sandwiches. Breakfast sandwiches, fruit-yogurt smoothies, and waffles are served any time. The café open early morning and into the evening. A 400 square foot private meeting room can be reserved by local organizations or for use as a flexible workplace. Offsite catering is available. Occasional presentations on topics ranging from Setting New Directions, Empowering Creativity, and Active Lifestyles are planned. Artists are hanging their work for sale in the Café, and a selection of gifts is also available. Get details here.
Artist to Donate Sales to RI Nature Conservancy
Little Compton artist Kris Donovan will partner with the Rhode Island Nature Conservancy during July and August. Donovan will donate 10 percent of all painting sales to the conservancy and the Dundery Brook Boardwalk Trail Project in Little Compton. The gift will help to build the new 1.3 mile long Dundery Brook Greenway Trail, a boardwalk path through a forested wetland in Little Compton. The trail is a project of The Nature Conservancy of Rhode Island and, thanks to a matching grant, all gifts will be doubled. Visit Donovan Studio at 9 Francis Lane during the upcoming South Coast Artists Open Studios Tour on July 16 and 17 and Aug. 20 and 21 or any time by chance or appointment. Donovan’s work can also be seen at the Donovan Gallery at Tiverton Four Corners and Gallery Eleven Fine Art, 11 State St., Bristol. Call 401-683-8308 or email info@krisdonovan.com for information or an appointment, or visit www.krisdonovan.com. Get details here.
Organic Agriculture I course open for September
Bristol Community College (BCC) announces the opening of registration for the Organic Farming Practices I (OFP 114). This is the first of a two-semester course sequence and is designed for farmers, gardeners, landscapers, land managers, community development organizations, consumers, and public policy decision makers seeking practical alternatives for long-term sustainable food production and land use. This course will include the rationale and outlook for sustainable agriculture, soil fertility and management, tillage options, cover crops, crop rotation plans, composting, and organic crop production. BCC is an open enrollment college. Senior citizens and veterans may be eligible for waiver of tuition for credit courses. The course will begin on September 12 and meet Tuesdays and Thursdays at 2:00 pm until December 16. Information and registration is available online at http://www.bristolcc.edu Questions? email Dr. Jim Corven at james.corven@bristolcc.edu Get details here.
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. 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 $100 per tour for WRWA members, and $140 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. Get details here.
Zoo Crew Summer Program for Children
Zoo Members: $175 per week for one child. (Siblings are $150 each) Non-Members: $200 per week for one child. (Siblings are $175 each) Zoo Crew is a summer program for children ages 8-12. Each session has a balance of outdoor and classroom learning opportunities, educational games and activities, crafts, and fun! Each week-long program runs 9:00AM-3:00PM, Monday thru Friday. For more information or to register, please call the Zoo's education department at (508) 991-6178 x 31. Session One: July 25-July 29 Session Two: August 1- August 5 Sessions Three: August 8-August 12 Get details here.
Department of Energy Webcasts
This interactive page will help you quickly find live webcasts that fit your schedule, or on-demand webcasts and pre-recorded training presentations to view at your convenience. You can choose your time zone as well and filter the list by week, month, webinar series, eligible activity or topic, or presenter. The DOE offers free online training to help you improve the energy performance of your organization. No travel, no lost time out of the office, and no cost - The DOE makes it easy to get the information you need, today. Join your colleagues to better understand how the DOE can help you lower operating costs, improve your energy management program, and expand your professional development. Get details 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).
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. 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.
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).
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
Turn Off Your Computer When Not in Use
It's a myth that leaving your computer on overnight saves energy. Learn more here.

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