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December 15 to 22, 2011

In This Issue


Global, National, and Local news, plus our Voices section

This week:

REI: Introduction to Map and Compass

Fairhaven Winter Farmers Market


Save The Date:

Green from the Ground Up: Winter Adult Education

A Winter Adventure at Great Neck Sanctuary



Artists for Save The Bay Sale and Exhibit

UMass Center for Marketing Research Accepting Requests

Weekly Green Tip:

Online shopping - a greener choice.

Clip of the Week

Schooner Ernestina on Buzzards Bay
Enjoy a few moments of environmental and historic beauty close to home with this video of the Schooner Ernestina under sail on Buzzards Bay provided by the Coalition to Save Buzzards Bay.

Weekly Quote:

"The future will be green, or not at all. This truth lies at the heart of humankind's most pressing challenge: to learn to live in harmony with the Earth on a genuinely sustainable basis."
- Sir Jonathon Porritt

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Apply for our Online Sustainability Certificate Program

Make a difference!

Join others in the community to make a real difference! Take the
South Coast Energy Challenge!
Leaf Bullet Letter from the Editors
Woman on MountainAs sustainability struggles to make progress on improving the future of the planet on so many fronts, the National Geographic Society is celebrating its 10,000th grant for global exploration since 1888. Highlighting this uplifting story gives us 10 reasons to celebrate discoveries about what makes the earth and some of its very special advocates unique. The 120-year history of research includes the excavation of Machu Picchu, the discovery of the Titanic wreck, and Jane Goodall's chimpanzee research.

This story is a welcome juxtaposition with our current danger in the U.S. of being delared a police state. Having passed the House and Senate, the only thing that stands between our Bill of Rights and the abolishment of those rights is President Barak Obama's signature on the National Defense Authorization Act making it law.

Along with much talk about the results, or lack of them, from the world climate change summit in Africa, there is economic fallout in the news as currency values become increasingly shakey. The European Central Bank is feeling pressure to intervene to support the euro while Chinese investment funds are threatening the dollar. Still, one writer recommends that where world leaders are falling short in finding financial answers to a greener planet, business leaders may be able to provide much needed support if they are willing to take sustainable economic actions.
Leaf Bullet Blogging on the New Sustainability
Our blog supplements the Sustainability Almanac with thoughts about sustainable practices and lifestyle choices that invite comment. Blogging on the New Sustainability: Meditations on Sustainability and Freedom this week talks about the choices between quality and quantity in agriculture, and our over confidence in ready-to-buy groceries. Our blogger writes: We see bountiful shelves at the grocery store, and it seems so easy to forget that our current infrastructure of "just in time" logistics, perfected by Walmart, means that after a sustained catastrophic event to the supply chain, we may have less than one day's worth of food available. Yikes.
Leaf Bullet News
Global Mayors Put UN's Sustainable City Guidelines In Motion
After providing the curriculum for training urban leaders from 12 Southeast and Central Asian nations a few weeks ago, the United Nations is now globally launching the full content of the Shanghai Manual: A Guide for Sustainable Urban Development in the 21st Century.

The free publication features 47 global urban sustainability case studies and dozens of timely policy recommendations. The Shanghai Manual is a practical tool intended to help the world's major and medium-sized cities in developing nations further advance their local green economies. Read more here.

Two Men Talking Leading Agricultural Organisations Issue Joint Appeal to Climate Negotiators in Durban
DURBAN, South Africa -- A group of 16 of the world's leading agricultural organisations (including three United Nations agencies, the World Bank, CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), FANRPAN, the Global Forum on Agricultural Research, Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions (SACAU) and the World Farmers' Organisation) has jointly endorsed a letter calling on COP17 climate negotiators to take concrete action to include agriculture in the text of the climate agreement. Read more here.

Multinational Discussion Carbon Capture Safeguards Agreed to at Durban Climate Talks
With the approval of rules on the inclusion of carbon capture and storage allocations at the Durban climate talks that just concluded, a potentially huge carbon capture and storage (CCS) industry is created.

Durban has laid the groundwork with a draft set of rules for the inclusion of CCS in the Clean Development Mechanism, bringing it into the cap and trade carbon market; opening up the possibility that investing in CCS will finally become economically viable. Read more here.

Earth View Beam It Down: A Drive to Launch Space-Based Solar
In an aircraft hangar in Germany, scientists are firing lasers across the room in the hopes of bringing science fiction to life: beaming solar power directly from space.

According to a new report by the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA), space-based solar technologies now in development in the lab will be technically feasible and ready for practical demonstration within the next decade or two. Read more here.

Oil Platform In Brazil, Oil Boom Brings Environmental Worries
In Brazil, the discovery of huge oil deposits has prompted a patriotic outpouring as Brazilians celebrate the country's rise as an oil power.

Currently the world's ninth largest oil producer, Brazil believes it may become one of the top four or five oil producers in a few years. But a recent spill 200 miles off the country's famous beaches has brought home the pitfalls of deep-sea drilling. Read more here.

Bird Monkey, Carnivorous Plants Among New Species Found In Mekong River Region
Researchers identified 208 new species in the Mekong River region of Southeast Asia in 2010, according to a report released by the World Wildlife Federation conservation group Monday.

From the WWF news release: "A new monkey, a self-cloning skink, five carnivorous plants, and a unique leaf warbler are among the 208 species newly described by science in the Greater Mekong region in 2010. A total of 145 plants, 28 reptiles, 25 fish, 7 amphibians, 2 mammals, and 1 bird were all discovered within the Greater Mekong region of Southeast Asia that spans Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and the south-western Chinese province of Yunnan." Read more here.

Coins Pressure for more ECB action after summit falls short
Pressure mounted on Wednesday for the European Central Bank to intervene more decisively after financial markets judged that yet another EU summit had failed to resolve the euro zone's debt crisis.

But Germany's powerful central bank chief, Jens Weidmann, an influential voice in the ECB, made clear his opposition to ramping up the ECB's purchases of euro zone government bonds. Read more here.

Paper Money China's $300 billion fund a wake-up call to U.S.
China's plan for a new $300 billion sovereign wealth fund is as much a warning to Washington as it is a body blow to Brussels.

It's the clearest sign yet of Beijing's waning faith in bonds issued by Europe and the United States. Europe's festering debt debacle, record low yields on U.S. Treasuries and a depreciating dollar all add weight to the view in China that the time is ripe to change investment tack. Read more here.

Landscaper Will California privatize its state parks?
David Gurney, independent journalist, slammed the state of California 's winter closure of Sugarloaf Ridge State Park in Sonoma County -- and pondered whether state parks proposed for closure will be turned over to private interests, as some have proposed.

"In the first ring of a dismal peal that signals the death knell for our revered State Parks system, Sugarloaf Ridge Park east of Santa Rosa has now closed," said Gurney in his latest column on his Noyo News Blog. Read more here.

Smokestacks Scrubbing Carbon Dioxide from Air May Prove Too Costly
One of the seemingly ideal and direct solutions to climate change is to efficiently vacuum up greenhouse gases straight from the atmosphere. But a new study finds that such a proposal is very far-fetched and tremendously expensive.

The president's science adviser, John Holdren, and Energy Secretary Steven Chu have expressed support in the past for capturing and storing pollution from the air as a measure to mitigate global temperature increases. Read more here.

Mailbox Postmaster General Talks Sustainability in Durban While Promoting Junk Mail Back Home
US Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe is a busy man, working incessantly on securing the future of the Postal Service. Yet, last week he found the time to attend the COP17 climate conference in Durban, South Africa, where according to a USPS press release he "heralded the U.S. Postal Service's sustainability successes, making the business case to go green." Read more here.

Groups Sue to Block Auction of Offshore Oil Leases
Environmental groups on Tuesday challenged the first attempted auction of offshore petroleum leases in the western Gulf of Mexico since the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010, filing a lawsuit in Federal District Court in Washington. The suit claims that the federal government has failed to take steps to avoid a repeat of the BP oil spill. Read more here.

Palm Trees Quality of Air? That's as Murky as Western Sky
DENVER -- Oh say, can you see across the Grand Canyon? Not as well as you used to on some days.

The question of how clean the air is in the American West has never been an easy one to answer, strange to say. And now scientists say it is getting harder, with implications that ripple out in surprising ways, from the kitchen faucets of Los Angeles to public health clinics in canyon-land Utah to the economics of tourism. Read more here.

Man with File U.S. Envoy Relieved by Climate Talks' Outcome
The senior American climate change envoy, Todd D. Stern, is back in Washington from the double-overtime United Nations negotiations in Durban, South Africa, and has declared himself pretty well satisfied with the result, although closing the deal wasn 't easy.

"I think this has ended up being quite a significant agreement and very much along the lines of what we 've been pushing," Mr. Stern said in a telephone interview on Tuesday. "That was not fully expected when we went in." Read more here.

Obama Obama's Most Fateful Decision
The 2012 National Defense Authorization Act, if signed into law, will signal the death knell of our constitutional republic and the formal inception of a legalized police state in the United States. Passed by the House on May 26, 2011 (HR 1540), the Senate version (S. 1867) was passed on Dec. 1, 2011. Now only one man -- Barack Obama, a scholar of constitutional law -- will make the decision as to whether the Bill of Rights he went to Harvard to study will be superceded by a law that abrogates it. Read more here.

Wind Turbine Spoiling Walden: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Cape Wind
It's been 10 years since a proposal was submitted to build America 's first offshore wind farm in Nantucket Sound off Cape Cod. The federal government finally approved the project earlier this year, although court battles continue to delay construction. After a decade of division, our contributing editor shares his personal journey of acceptance. Read more here.

Building Profile 3 Ways Businesses Can Pick Up Where COP17 Fell Short
Last week, in Durban, South Africa, over 190 countries concluded negotiations to frame new international commitments to address global climate change. COP17 was a crucial gathering because time is limited to negotiate a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, the legally-binding international agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that is set to expire in 2012.

Perhaps in recognition of the urgent need for action, businesses and private investors are increasingly channeling finance for innovative solutions to global climate change. Here are a few examples that may be relevant for your company... Read more here.

Woman in Field The Evolution of the Sustainability Professional
It used to be whenever a group of sustainability professionals got together, we'd debate for a few minutes about whether our job was to work ourselves out of a job. Now, it's a question I get asked whenever I'm interviewed about my role. And I admit, my view has changed in the last 3+ years.

For a short while, I thought that's exactly what I was supposed to do. After all, my mission is to embed principles of sustainability into our strategy, our operations, and our culture. That would imply that at some point I'll be "done." Read more here.

Fishing Boat Scientists Say Cod Are Scant; Nets Say Otherwise
GLOUCESTER -- Federal regulators are considering the unthinkable in New England: severely restricting -- maybe even shutting down -- cod fishing in the Gulf of Maine, from north of Cape Cod clear up to Canada. New data suggest that the status of the humble fish that has sustained the region for centuries is much worse than previously thought. Read more here.

Selectmen agree to wind discussion after shouting match
FAIRHAVEN -- Selectmen are appealing to the developer to address resident wind concerns after a meeting this week deteriorated into a shouting match between town officials and turbine opponents.

Selectmen Michael Silvia said Tuesday that concerns raised by residents about the turbines, along with information submitted to selectmen, will be forwarded to the developer and a forum will be organized for future discussion. Read more here.

SouthCoast companies share in state workforce grants
BOSTON - Several SouthCoast businesses and industries are among 138 Massachusetts companies sharing in nearly $11.4 million in Workforce Training Fund grants, announced today by the Patrick-Murray Administration.

The grants, which support up to two years of training, will create approximately 1,700 new jobs and train a total of 13,000 workers, according to a news release from the governor's office. Read more here.

Fuel assistance at risk with funding deadline
If lawmakers don't boost spending on home heating fuel assistance soon, local program directors fear low-income households won't be able to stay warm in the New Year.

Lawmakers are facing a Friday deadline to either pass a budget or adopt another short-term resolution to keep the government funded. Local officials say they will exhaust Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program money in a few weeks unless lawmakers increase funding. Read more here.

Fall River Redevelopment Authority to discuss solar deal at meeting
FALL RIVER - The $3.2 million proposed land sale for a solar wind farm will be among several projects updated at this week's Redevelopment Authority meeting.

Corporation Counsel Steven Torres is negotiating a two-part deal with SunMark Andover LLC in Newton, and plans to bring the latest information to the board, officials said.

That includes the sale of 42 acres, 12.5 acres in the Commerce Park and the remainder in a portion of the biopark not separated under the SouthCoast Life Science and Technology Park at Fall River, said Kenneth Fiola Jr. of the Redevelopment Authority. Read more here.

SouthCoast Energy Challenge, SAVINGS 14
This year when selecting your holiday tree, consider something radical: buy or dig up a live tree! That way, when the holiday season has passed, your tree can grow, thrive and pull CO2 right out of the air, promoting healthy air and soil for generations to come. Read more here.

Scituate resident looks to bring Viridian, green energy to the South Shore
When Scituate resident Charles Hausmann heard about Viridian Energy's green energy ideas, he knew he had found something big.

He and business partner, Tim Lopes, had been looking for a third-party green energy supplier for some time to help usher environmentally friendly energy into Massachusetts. It wasn't long before Hausmann found Viridian, which had seen much success in other nearby states.

With the national company at the helm, Hausmann said he has found a prime way to make green energy affordable for the South Shore. Read more here.

Solar panels to be put up at RI sites
The Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources has awarded $1.5 million in federal stimulus funds to the Dept. of Environmental Management to install solar panels at nine DEM facilities to create energy to be used to offset the energy needs at the following sites: Read more here.

Costly fight looms over wind turbines
There can be no denying the rising opposition to two wind turbines that would rise nearly 400 feet off Arsene Street in Fairhaven.

Windwise, a group opposed to the turbine project, collected more than 160 signatures on a petition earlier this week that argues a town-issued building permit for the turbines is illegal.

Opposition has grown since November's shutdown by the town of Falmouth of wind turbines that it has erected and news that Fairhaven work crews were preparing the construction site near the waste water treatment plant for erection of that town's wind turbines. Read more here.

Future of R.I.'s Water Supply is Unclear
NORTH KINGSTOWN - The Rhode Island Water Resources Board recently held an all-day strategic planning session, at the Quonset Development Corporation, to discuss the short- and long-term goals of the embattled agency and to outline potential future water supply projects.

The future of the agency, which is responsible for ensuring sufficient current and future water supply, is now unclear. As a result, its leadership is bailing. Last month, the board's chairman, William Penn, submitted his resignation letter to the governor, writing: "Now that the Board no longer has financial or fiduciary responsibilities, I feel my professional financial expertise is no longer needed and my continued participation as Chairman and Member would be a misuse of my time." Read more here.

Slower job growth, Europe, Fed cuts seen as threats to Mass. tax receipts
BOSTON - Employment growth in Massachusetts will largely stagnate over the next 18 months, sharply slowing the state's recovery from a recession, state revenue officials projected Monday.

Although job growth in Massachusetts will exceed the national rate, according to Revenue Commissioner Amy Pitter, slowing job growth adds to a litany of economic headwinds facing Gov. Deval Patrick and legislative leaders.

Stalled job growth could also portend enormous political challenges for incumbents in a 2012 election year in which lawmakers will seek new two-year terms based largely on promises they made to reverse years of surging unemployment. Read more here.

New Options Considered to Stop Landfill Odor
JOHNSTON - The source of the odor problem at the Central Landfill is expected to be known this week. A study by an independent group was initiated Dec. 9 and the results originally were expected to be released to the state Department of Environmental Management (DEM) Dec. 13, but may take a few extra days, according to Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation (RIRRC) director Michael O'Connell.

Since October, local residents and others from surrounding communities have complained of a strong odor coming from the Central Landfill. On Oct. 19, DEM issued a letter of noncompliance directing RIRRC to implement immediate actions to eliminate the objectionable stench generated by the facility. Read more here.

Firefighters seek sprinkler requirements for one- and two-family homes
BOSTON - Firefighters, mourning the loss of one of their own in a Worcester house fire last week, pleaded with state public safety officials Tuesday to give cities and towns the authority to require sprinkler systems in new one- or two-family homes. But they ran into stiff opposition from homebuilders, realtors, engineers and contractors. Read more here.

Leaf Bullet This Week in Sustainability

Wild Saturdays ~ Animal Interviews

December 17, 11:30am to 12:30pm, Audubon Environmental Education Center, 1401 Hope Street, Bristol, RI
Take a wild adventure with Audubon! Saturday provides the opportunity to go wild and discover nature. These programs are free with admission and are open to all ages. Animal Interviews: Get up-close with creatures and learn about their habits and habitats. Details here.

REI: Introduction to Map and Compass

December 17, 9AM - 3PM, Rocky Woods, Medfield, MA
During this field outing, we'll help you see three dimensions of the land in the two dimensions of a topographic map by teaching you how to read contour lines, landmarks and other map features. We'll also talk about magnetic north, true north, and magnetic variation (declination), and help you make sense of it all. From there, you'll learn how to take a bearing from the terrain and your map so that you can triangulate your position and plan a route. Maps and compasses will be provided. Details here.

Fairhaven Indoor Farmers Market

December 18, 1 to 4pm, Nemasket Gallery, 56 Bridge Street Fairhaven, MA
Indoor Farmers Market will have bread, cookies, meat, honey, jam, eggs,candy apples, chocolate and of coarse lots of veggies and fruit! Details here.

Leaf Bullet Save The Date

Teaching Land Care Professionals to "Go Organic"

January 9 to 13, 1 to 4 pm, Worcester State University
The Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) annual Accreditation Course in Organic Land Care will be a five-day intensive course providing professionals and master gardeners with the education needed to create thriving landscapes. The 30 hour course features a faculty of respected scientists and experienced organic land care practitioners. Class topics include: Site Analysis, Design, and Maintenance; Rain Gardens and Storm Water Infiltration; Soil Health; Fertilizer and Soil Amendments; Client Relations and Running a Business and more. Four hands-on case studies are also included in the course. Attendees may take an optional exam on the final day of the course to become NOFA Accredited Organic Land Care Professionals (AOLCPs). AOLCPs are entitled to use the NOFA Organic Land Care logo and be listed in the AOLCP Online Searchable Database at www.organiclandcare.net as well as in online and print versions of the annual NOFA Guide to Organic Land Care. This year, NOFA will be offering a group discount of 15% off total registration to any company, agency or organization sending three or more members or employees to the Accreditation Course. For information, contact the Program Coordinator, Caro Roszell at (508) 360-0874 or caro@nofamass.org or visit www.nofamass.org/programs/landcare/ to register online.

Southeast Agricultural Mediation Workshop: Conflict Resolution Skills

January 18, 6 to 8 pm, Carver Public Library, 2 Meadowbrook Way, Carver MA
This free, interactive workshop will introduce farmers and agricultural commissions to basic communication and conflict resolution skills to enhance their ability to address conflicts that arise in day-to-day dealings with customers, suppliers, neighbors, the public, etc. Participants will take a look at their own perceptions of conflict, and also learn effective techniques for better communication, as well as managing and resolving conflict. The workshop also includes a "conflict clinic" where participants have the opportunity to discuss real conflicts and get tips on how to address these situations. Facilitated by Courtney Breese is the Program Manager at the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration (MOPC) and runs the Agricultural Mediation Program at MOPC and Loraine Della Porta is Deputy Director of the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration (MOPC). For more information and to register go to www.semaponline.org.

Green from the Ground Up: Winter Adult Education Class

January 19, Thursday nights for 10 weeks, 6 to 8pm and 5 to 8pm depanding on date, Greater New Bedford Voc-Tech High School
In this 10 'week class, we'll go well beyond the usual Green Building Basics and Minimums, and get into the most important High Efficiency Green Building Essentials that actually pay for themselves. After all..."he most important thing a Green Building can do is Conserve Energy." Learn about "Real World" effective and affordable green building technologies and strategies. Learn new advanced methods, materials and techniques that are very efficient and cost effective, many that can be implemented right away in your next home remodeling project. We'll provide you with the most important information you'll need to plan for a truly sustainable green build, remodel or retrofit project. Learn to build Green for much less, plus many ways to $ave on various construction and hidden costs. For more information and to register, visit the Greater New Bedford Voc-Tech High School Web site.

Beyond the Barways

January 21, 1pm, 1100 Main Rd., Westport.
Barways are those inviting openings in stone walls and fences that lure us to the fields and paths ahead. Join The Trustees of Reservations for a guided walk on protected, privately-owned land. Learn about land protection from the experts and get a rare glimpse of open space preserved for Westport's future. Be prepared for uneven ground and grand surprises! Pre-registration required. Details here.

A Winter Adventure at Great Neck Sanctuary

January 21, 9am to Noon, Great Neck Sanctuary, Wareham
Join Bay Coalition conservation and education staff for a guided nature walk and exploration at one of the best hidden treasures in Buzzards Bay. The Great Neck Sanctuary (managed by Mass Audubon) has everything that makes this region so specatular - forests, wetlands, beaches, and the bay - and you will be surprised at whats happening all winter long. Reservations requested. Contact Rob Hancock at 508.999.6363 or hancock@savebuzzardsbay.org.

Barn Raising: Marketing Your Farm Business and Increasing Your Sales

January 24 to March 6, Tuesdays, 5:30 to 8:30 pm, UMass Extension Cranberry Station, Wareham, MA
SEMAP has partnered with Kelly Pelissier owner of Sage Hill Design and Katie Cavanagh Farms Forever Coordinator to offer a very comprehensive workshop series that takes you through the steps of developing a marketing plan for your farm. The workshop series will help you:
- Develop a branding concept for your farm.
- Develop an overall marketing campaign for your farm - plus mini-campaigns for different seasons.
- Understand and decide what marketing tools (web, print, etc.) best attract customers to your farm.
- Learn how to plan and create the framework for your farms website.
- Plan and create a WordPress website for your farm.
For more information and to register, visit the SEMAP online.

Leaf Bullet Announcements
New SouthCoast Rail Project Manager's Fact Sheet Updates
Newly minted SouthCoast Rail Project Manager Jean Fox is reaching out to her constitutents with an informative Fact Sheet which includes recent area improvement grant recipient descriptions. She is also gathering community ideas and concerns about the Rail Project as she works on its Final Environmental Impact Statement/Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIS/FEIR). For more information, visit www.mass.gov/southcoastrail. To read the Fact Sheet click here.
Save The Bay to host Bay-themed art sale and exhibit featuring more than 200 original works of art by local artists
The Artists for Save The Bay Sale and Exhibit is designed to bring iconic images dotting the state's landscape, from sunset over Narragansett Bay to scenic beachfront. Artists for Save The Bay Sale and Exhibit provides the perfect opportunity to pick up a Rhode Island-inspired holiday gift while supporting a worthy cause. Pieces, valued between $50 and $3,000, will include paintings, photography, jewelry, and sculpture. 50 percent of the sale proceeds will benefit Save The Bay programs. More information on the Artists for Save The Bay Sale and Exhibit available at www.savebay.org/artists.
New Report: "Higher Education's Role in Adapting to a Changing Climate."
The American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) has released a new resource titled "Higher Education's Role in Adapting to a Changing Climate." This report was developed by the ACUPCC Climate Adaptation Committee to support the ACUPCC network in addressing the timely issue of climate adaptation. It includes examples of how campuses are handling issues related to adaptation in their education, research, operations, and community engagement activities, and provides an overview of the key issues presidents, trustees, and administers need to address in light of the impacts of climate change. Details here.
Job Opening: Director of Environmental Stewardship
The City of New Bedford is currently accepting applications for Director of Environmental Stewardship. The Director serves as the executive head of the Department of Environmental Stewardship, and promotes and coordinates the integration of environmental management and sustainability issues into policies, rules, produces, services and operations. The Director is responsible for overseeing site assessment and remediation projects, environmental planning projects, providing assistance to the Conservation Commission and advising City departments (including the School Department) on environmental compliance issues. The Director works under the general supervision of the Mayor. A complete job description is available at: http://www.newbedford-ma.gov/Personnel/jobs/Director_of_Env_Stwd.pdf. Instructions for how to apply can be found on the City's Personnel/Employment Opportunities website at: http://www.newbedford-ma.gov/Personnel/employ.html.
Bioneers Connecting for Change Conference Videos
This year, the Marion Institute is making youttube videos of its featured Bioneers keynote conference speakers available online for everyone to experience. First up is Amy Goodman from Democracy NOW! with her comments about the state of our nation's media and its coverage of sustainability issues. Check the Connecting for Change Facebook page for links and announcements of further video postings. Check for video releases on Facebook.
UMass Center for Marketing Research Accepting Requests
The UMass Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research is accepting requests from area businesses and other organizations to perform marketing research for the spring semester, beginning in Jan. 2012. The UMass Dartmouth center performs customized market research at affordable prices. Clients range from small and start-up businesses to Fortune 500 companies and include firms from both the commercial and nonprofit sectors. Each semester, about eight clients are selected for participation in the ongoing research program involving graduate and undergraduate marketing students. The final project is a statistically valid, survey-based research study. For a full listing of past clients and testimonials from them, visit http://www.umassd.edu/cmr. Any business interested in becoming a client should contact center director Nora Ganim Barnes for more information regarding fees and semester timelines. Barnes can be reached at 508-999-8756 or nbarnes@umassd.edu.
UMass Dartmouth Winter Term Energy Auditing Course
Energy auditing is a growing field and one that has many ties to engineering, sustainability, construction, and communications. Students matriculating with 4-year degrees and building energy certifications are increasingly in demand by building performance contractors. This hybrid (partially online) course will prepare students to pass the nationally-recognized Building Performance Institute (BPI) Building Analyst Written and Field Exams, now the industry-standard certification for energy auditors. Students will learn to conduct accurate building analysis; provide information, reports and documentation of findings; and make appropriate recommendations for weatherization and energy improvements. Students successfully completing the course will be knowledgeable about space and water heating systems and combustion appliance zones. The course includes a significant focus on safety procedures and safety equipment as it applies to the residential energy field. For more information contact Professor Anne Stephenson Stephenson.anne@gmail.com.
Organic Farming Practices Course at BCC
Registration for winter/spring course in Organic Farming Practices (OFP 115) is open at Bristol Community College in Fall River. The course is designed for gardeners, farmers, landscapers, community organizations, and concerned citizens. The course will cover farm management (planning, records, & budgeting), plant propagation, season extension, and major crop cultivation. Senior citizens and veterans may be eligible for waiver of tuition for credit courses. Courses begin January 24, 2012. For more information contact Professor Jim Corven james.corven@bristolcc.edu.
Natural Beekeeping Course at BCC
Get the buzz about beekeeping. Bristol Community College is offering open enrollment to its spring Natural Beekeeping course. Aspiring and new beekeepers will learn the essential skills necessary to begin a hobby or small enterprise as a beekeeper including purchasing and establishing a hive, disease and pest management, and harvesting the honey. The 6-week course, which emphasizes organic methods of beekeeping, includes at least one field day demonstration of installing, feeding, and the beginning steps of establishing a hive. Participants will have the opportunity to purchase their own bees, hives and equipment. The course will be held on Mondays, from 6:00 to 9:00 pm, starting February 27. It may be taken as a noncredit course or for one college credit. For more information contact Professor Jim Corven james.corven@bristolcc.edu.
Regional Bikeway Conversation
Conversations about the Regional Bikeway are heating up and we need your help! The Fall River, Dartmouth, and New Bedford bikepath committees are seeking members. For more information contact:
New Bedford: Angela Bannister bannist324@yahoo.com or Pauline Hamel phamel@bu.edu
Dartmouth: Wendy Henderson whenderson@town.dartmouth.ma.us
Fall River: Brian Pearson btrekman@comcast.net
For information about the regional bikeway, contact Adam Recchia arecchia@srpedd.org.
For information about upcoming bikerides, contact Brian Pearson btrekman@comcast.net.
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. The writing contest is open to all young people in the world from the ages of eight through seventeen (8-17). There is a $400.00 award every month to eight or more young authors with scholarship awards ranging from $25.00 to $100.00 through 2015. In addition, the judges will select the best essay in the calendar year and that young person will receive a $500.00 scholarship award. Yearly the top fifty essays will be sent to the White House and be made available to governments across the world. Bi-yearly, the best one hundred winning essays will be published as an e-book for world wide distribution. Learn about the contest here.
Buy Carbon Credits with the Marion Institute
Offset one ton of carbon emissions for just $7. Your tax-free donation will go directly to the Marion Institute's Gaviotas Carbon Offset Initiative, which has been reforesting tropical rainforest for over twenty years. Donate here.

Leaf Bullet Weekly Green Tip
Online shopping - a greener choice.
Even with shipping factored in, online shopping turns out to be a greener choice (especially if you choose for many people on your list from one Web site). It saves on gas, fuel emissions, big store heating, cooling and lighting, and shipping economizes by sending many packages to one place.
Learn more here.

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