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December 22 to 27, 2011

In This Issue

News:

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

This week:

Celebrate Winter Solstice

Holiday Seal Cruises

More

Save The Date:

Beyond the Barways

Barn Raising: Make Your Business Profitable

More

Announcements:

New SouthCoast Rail Fact Sheet Updates

Higher Education's Role in Climate Change

Weekly Green Tip:

How Eco Friendly Is Your Bank?

Clip of the Week

We Live In a Wonderful World Indeed
The sequences of this video would marvel anyone with a pair of eyes. Couple it with the lyrics of What a Wonderful World recited by Sir David Attenborough and you would make our wonderful world even more wonderful.
Movie!

Weekly Quote:

"You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself."
- Nelson Mandela

Follow us!

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Read our new blog!

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
People SwimmingOne of the world's great wonders of pollution and planetary disregard is the enormous patch of garbage floating in the pacific estimated to have grown to about the size of California. Researchers have been studying its contents for their makeup and origins to better understand this inexcusable manmade phenomenon, but now tourist are joining the crew and paying high prices for the closeup experience of swimming with trash. What's making it an attractive curiousity is the addition of Japan Tsunami-debris which swept out to sea pieces of people's lives on March 11.

On the theme of we-never-learn, stricter new EPA disposal rules are behind a push that is sending used batteries to Mexico where standards are more lax. So, once again the U.S. is shipping its refuse somewhere else in the world where pollution and toxins can do their damage away from home. The lead in the batteries feeds a recycling market for the metal, but processing the battery acid is being improperly regulated and policed in the financally underpriviledged neighboring American nation.
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 intentional and non-violent approaches to widespread change. Our blogger writes: As a champion of sustainability, it can sometimes feel like, well, a futile effort. For all the personal change in improving our own footprints, combined with the grassroots organizations and causes that have gained some traction, does it seem like things have changed?
Leaf Bullet News
Global
DNA Graphic Study finds link between air pollution and increase in DNA damage
A study in the Czech Republic has found a link between exposure to certain air pollutants and an increase in DNA damage for people exposed to high levels of the pollution.

Air pollution is a major problem around the world, particularly in urban areas. In attempt to control regional air pollution levels, the European Union has introduced legal limits for exposure to a variety of different airborne pollutants. Read more here.

Blue Star Flag Europe Launches Eco-innovation Action Plan
Eco-innovation is crucial to delivering the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth states a new Eco-Innovation Action Plan formally launched today by the European Union.

The new Eco-Innovation Action Plan (EcoAP) seeks to boost innovation that reduces pressure on the environment, and bridge the gap between innovation and the market. Eco-friendly technologies are good for business and help create new jobs, so eco-innovation is crucial to the economic competitiveness of Europe. Read more here.

Protesters in Suits Durban deal may do little to cool heating planet
The world is forecast to grow hotter, sea levels to rise, intense weather to wreak even more destruction and the new deal struck by governments in Durban to cut greenhouse gas emissions will do little to lessen that damage.

Climate data from U.N. agencies indicates that the accumulation of heat-trapping gases will rise to such levels over the next eight years - before the newly agreed regime of cuts in emissions is supposed to be in place - that the planet is on a collision course with permanent environmental change. Read more here.

Mexican Building Lead From Old U.S. Batteries Sent to Mexico Raises Risks
NAUCALPAN DE JUAREZ, Mexico -- The spent batteries Americans turn in for recycling are increasingly being sent to Mexico, where their lead is often extracted by crude methods that are illegal in the United States, exposing plant workers and local residents to dangerous levels of a toxic metal.

The rising flow of batteries is a result of strict new Environmental Protection Agency standards on lead pollution, which make domestic recycling more difficult and expensive, but do not prohibit companies from exporting the work and the danger to countries where standards are low and enforcement is lax. Read more here.

Forest Global Forests Are Overlooked as Water Suppliers
The forests of the world supply a significant amount of moisture that creates rain. A new study published in Global Change Biology reveals how this important contribution of forests to the hydrologic cycle is often overlooked in water resource policy, such as that of the EU.

Reducing forest area reduces regional and continental rainfall. This needs to be recognized to obtain a fair picture of the forest role in the hydrologic cycle. Read more here.

Building Lit at Night India at the Energy Crossroads, Part 1
It was New York Times columnist Tom Friedman who made Bangalore famous. This city of seven million is the Silicon Valley of India, its technology parks and outsourcing services the driving force behind the country's remarkable recent boom. For Friedman, Bangalore was the key to understanding the new global economy, and he came up with a snappy catchphrase to describe it, which in turn became the title of a best-selling book: The World is Flat. In this flat new world, India's "knowledge economy" would rescue millions from rural poverty and usher them into a world of eight percent growth rates and abundant clean energy. Read more here.

Woman on Hillside India at the Energy Crossroads, Part 1
Could the fate of the planet be shaped by rice husks, eucalyptus twigs, and cow dung? Serious question. Power from the sun is the sexy poster child of renewable energy. Power from the soil -- biomass -- is the ugly duckling. For more than 700 million people in South Asia, daily survival still depends on burning biomass, and the idea that these people will continue to power their lives with firewood and agricultural waste carries a persistent stigma: it's a symbol of the past, not the future; it's a health hazard and a poverty trap; it's crude, dirty, and downright distasteful. Read more here.

Policymakers need a better understanding of science
A Ugandan report suggests that policymakers' interest in science and technology is growing. But they need support to turn it into action.

If there was an easy route between scientific evidence and policymaking, last week's UN Climate Change Conference (COP 17) in Durban, South Africa, would surely have reflected the scientific consensus and ended in a clear-cut global agreement on immediate steps to curtail carbon emissions. Read more here.

National
Ariel View Putting Farmland On A Fertilizer Diet
The U.S. Department of Agriculture released a document that got no attention on the nightly news, or almost anywhere, really. Its title, I'm sure you'll agree, is a snooze: National Nutrient Management Standard.

Yet this document represents the agency's best attempt to solve one of the country's -- and the world's -- really huge environmental problems: The nitrogen and phosphorus that pollute waterways. Read more here.

Woman and Plants Who Are The Young Farmers Of 'Generation Organic'?
For decades, as young people have been leaving farms behind, the average age of the American farmer has been rising. The last time the government counted farmers, in 2002, the average farmer was 55-years-old.

But there's a new surge of youthful vigor into American agriculture -- at least in the corner of it devoted to organic, local food. Thousands of young people who've never farmed before are trying it out. Read more here.

Mailbox Occupy Wall Street on the Waterfront
Activists with the Occupy movement attempted a shutdown of several ports along the West Coast--from San Diego to Anchorage, Alaska. The protests targeted what the activists called "Wall Street on the waterfront."

The protests succeeded in disrupting port activity in Oakland, Calif., Portland, Ore., and Longview, Wash. In Longview, the union sent workers home citing safety concerns, triggering a clause in their contract that allowed them to be paid for four hours of work. Read more here.

Horses Think Our Wild Horses Are Safe?
ince 1971, the Wild Horses Act has been 1) dramatically undercut by the 2004 Burns Amendment, which re-authorized the sale of captured horses for slaughter, 2) persistently undermined by the Bureau of Land Management, and 3) challenged at nearly every turn by the ranching and cattle industries, which persist in seeking to rid the horses from public and private land even as their members line up on the dole for subsidized grazing fees.

Powerful political and economic forces, arrayed at virtually every level of government, have overwhelmed the organizations which advocate on behalf of the nation's wild horses. As interpreted and applied, then, the Act no longer protects the horses the way it was supposed to. Read more here.

Coal Plant EPA Rules On Coal Plants Will Force Some Of Dirtiest Plants To Shut Down
More than 32 mostly coal-fired power plants in a dozen states will be forced to shut down and an additional 36 might have to close because of new federal air pollution regulations, according to an Associated Press survey.

Together, those plants -- some of the oldest and dirtiest in the country -- produce enough electricity for more than 22 million households, the AP survey found. But their demise probably won't cause homes to go dark. Read more here.

Melting Ice As Permafrost Thaws, Scientists Study the Risks
FAIRBANKS, Alaska -- A bubble rose through a hole in the surface of a frozen lake. It popped, followed by another, and another, as if a pot were somehow boiling in the icy depths.

Every bursting bubble sent up a puff of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas generated beneath the lake from the decay of plant debris. These plants last saw the light of day 30,000 years ago and have been locked in a deep freeze -- until now. Read more here.

Luminescent Eel Illuminating the Perils of Pollution, Nature's Way
FORT PIERCE, Fla. -- Edith Widder presented a handful of greenish muck that had been pulled from the shallows of the Indian River Lagoon and cupped it in her palm.

"See that?" she asked. "That's a lot of decayed organic matter. It's just a great holding area for pollutants."

Dr. Widder has found a way to put bioluminescence to work to fight pollution in the Indian River Lagoon, a 156-mile estuary that scientists say is one of Florida's most precious and threatened ecosystems. Read more here.

Llight Bulbs Congress' bill may slow switch to efficient light bulbs
Congress' move this weekend to save Thomas Edison's 131-year-old incandescent light bulb from a federally required phaseout, slated to begin Jan. 1., may slow but not halt the nation's switch to more efficient lighting.

The Senate and House passed a massive spending bill, which President Obama is expected to sign this week, that includes a measure barring the Department of Energy from enforcing more efficient light bulb rules. Those rules, requiring bulbs use at least 25% less energy, do not ban all incandescents but phase out Edison's bulbs in favor of the more efficient halogen incandescent, the CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) or LED (light emitting diode.) Read more here.

Discourse
Protesters After Durban: Climate Activists Target Corporate Power
This year's United Nations climate negotiations in Durban -- the Conference of the Parties, where world governments get together ostensibly to talk about reining in climate change--proceeded much like the previous two. The talks ended with an extension of the Kyoto Protocol and a two-page agreement (called the "Durban Platform") to make another agreement by 2015, next time "with legal force."

"We're not going to be overly distracted by the ongoing shell game of endless U.N. negotiations," Bill McKibben, founder of the climate activist group 350.org, said in a statement after the close of the climate talks. "We know that the real debate is between the bottom line of the scientists, and the bottom line of the fossil fuel companies ... we're going to take on the subsidies that make the oil companies so rich, and the systemic corruption that makes them so politically powerful." Read more here.

Newt Gingrich Newt's biggest problem: He used to be pro-environment
Was Newt Gingrich once an environmentalist? Pretty much - when you look over his record, it seems pretty obvious that he cares about the planet -- cares enough to actually want to do something about it.

The problem is, he cares about power more, and you can't rise in today's Republican party unless you're personally in favor of shooting wolves from helicopters. He's talking a good anti-environment talk now, but as we get closer to the primaries, how long will his opponents hold back from tarring him with a leafy green brush? Read more here.

Congress and Keystone XL: A National Disgrace
With needed tax relief for working families set to expire at year's end, Congress should be sending President Obama a clean bill that asks a simple question: should we extend middle class tax relief and unemployment benefits at a time when our workers are struggling with hard times? For anyone who cares about fairness and families, that's an easy one.

Instead, House Republicans tacked onto that bill a contentious and unrelated question: should we allow Big Oil to build the Keystone XL pipeline, to take the dirtiest oil on the planet from the tar sands of Canada, through the heartland of America, to refineries and ports on the Gulf of Mexico? Read more here.

Green Ball 6 Laws of Green Marketing
As standards become more well-defined and consumers demand more transparency, companies are increasingly in need of the skills to, first of all, begin that difficult process toward the ever-evolving "sustainable" business. But for those already on that path, an understanding of how to report and communicate their successes and hurdles is becoming essential as well. Read more here.

Local
Health board to investigate legality of nuisance challenge to wind project
FAIRHAVEN - The noise that erupted in Town Hall Monday night, after Dolores Caton said she wanted a legal opinion on whether the Board of Health could challenge the wind turbine project, was loud enough to have hailed the arrival of a rock star.

Caton, one of three members of the Board of Health, said she disagreed with Chairman Peter DeTerra's statement that the board could do nothing about the turbines because no nuisance exists now. Read more here.

Coalition, bog owner, reach agreement on Rochester dam
ROCHESTER - A plan to remove the Hathaway Pond Dam is being halted as part of an agreement between the project's petitioner, the Buzzards Bay Coalition, and its main opponent, Beaton, Inc., a cranberry grower abutting the dam.

The two sides announced in a joint press release that the coalition will suspend its permitting process to remove the pond dam and will return the pond's water supply to a level that Beaton needs for its cranberry bogs. Read more here.

Acushnet determined not to be burned by solar farms
ACUSHNET - Selectmen vowed again Monday not to let the town become snagged on any costs involved in dismantling solar-farming projects that ultimately shut down or otherwise go awry.

The Planning Board, meanwhile, is poised to review a Wing Lane solar-array proposal tonight, but selectmen have asked that any special permit/site plan review approval for the plan be delayed one week. Read more here.

Mass. receives $60M from feds to help homeless
BOSTON - Massachusetts is getting a $60 million boost from the federal government to help provide housing to homeless people in the state.

The funding is intended to be used to help provide transitional and permanent housing and supportive services to homeless people across Massachusetts. Read more here.

Deal with U.S. would increase Massachusetts Medicaid funding by $5.7 billion
BOSTON - The Patrick administration has struck a $26.75 billion deal with the Obama administration that the governor says will set the stage for a "new round of innovations" in Massachusetts's health care system and that federal officials say will serve as a precursor to sweeping changes in the way health care is delivered in the Bay State. Read more here.

Westport to receive $350,000 for East Beach Road repairs
WESTPORT - The town will receive up to $350,000 for work associated with the construction of an emergency shoreline road, after Tropical Storm Irene destroyed a 750-foot section of East Beach Road.

Richard A. Davey, secretary and chief executive officer of the state Department of Transportation, Davey said the $350,000 is to cover construction costs associated with the temporary bypass and to do further work. He said the funds are contained in a $4.65 million Federal Highway Administration grant that was awarded to MassDOT. Read more here.

Red Brook restoration continues in Wareham
WAREHAM - Red Brook forms a natural border between Wareham and Plymouth, and has drawn the interest of hikers, fishermen and nature lovers for centuries.

The purchase of Century Bogs by the state Department of Fish and Game earlier this fall will allow the state to move forward in continuing restoration to the Red Brook watershed, and leave the area permanently protected, officials said.

The 245-acre property was purchased for $3 million using money from the 2008 $1.7 billion Energy and Environmental Bond Bill. The land will be part of MassWildlife's Red Brook Wildlife Management Area, which is adjacent to the 210-acre Lyman Reserve. Read more here.

Imported fly proves effective against winter moth
The tide could be turning against a winter moth invasion that has been ravaging deciduous forests in Southeastern Massachusetts for nearly a decade.

Or at least that's what UMass Amherst professor Joseph Elkinton hopes.

This fall, DNA testing helped confirm that the parasitic flies he has been releasing in affected areas had formed a resident population at five sites, including in Falmouth and Seekonk. In a similar winter moth outbreak in Nova Scotia, parasitic flies all but wiped out the moth population within a few years of establishing residency."I'm quite confident this will work. I don't know how long it will take," Elkinton said. Read more here.

First Brayton Point cooling tower starts operating
FALL RIVER - As the plume of steam rising hundreds of feet above Brayton Point proves, the power plant's $620 million project to lessen its environmental impact on Mount Hope Bay is in motion.

Over the weekend, colder temperatures combined with the gradual process of putting the towers into operation made steam rising from the plant's western tower clear high in the sky above Somerset. The other tower will being operation by next spring, according to plant spokeswoman Lisa Lundy. Read more here.

R.I. Development Needs to be Low Impact
Rhode Island is experiencing more rain and more storms, and the state's current infrastructure doesn't manage this excess water very well.

The Ocean State's abundance of impervious surfaces, such as roads, driveways, sidewalks, parking lots, roofs and compacted soil in residential lawns stop rainwater from being filtered by the ground in a natural way. Worse, curb and gutter systems along the sides of roads funnel all this stormwater runoff into drains, which then pipe the water en mass directly into local streams, wetlands and Narragansett Bay. Read more here.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle ... Rejoice!
In the five weeks between Thanksgiving and the new year, Americans produce five times more trash than any other time of year. Whether you are dreaming of a white Christmas, or lamenting a blue Christmas without a loved one, everyone should be looking to increase the Christmas green. Here are some tips for decorating, entertaining and gift giving for all of Santa's eco-conscious elves... Read more here.

Leaf Bullet This Week in Sustainability

Welcome Winter Solstice

December 22, 6:30 - 8pm, Oak Knoll Wildlife Sanctuary, Attleboro, MA
We will celebrate this time of year when the sun is at its greatest distance from the celestial equator. In December this is when the sun reaches its southernmost point. What is happening to the wildlife at Oak Knoll this time of year? Who is hibernating? Who is migrating? Who is active this time of year? We'll enjoy an adventurous hike around Lake Talaquega after which we'll warm up by the woodstove with hot cocoa and cookies Details here.

Save The Bay Newport Seal Cruises

December 24, 25, 12 noon, Save the Bay Exploration Center, 175 Memorial Boulevard, Newport, RI 02840
Want to see a cow or pup that doesn't live on land? The Save The Bay Seal Watching Cruises, which treat peepers to panoplies of splash-happy seals, kick off on Thanksgiving weekend. These cruises provide the perfect opportunity to introduce holiday guests to the many wonders Rhode Island has to offer.One- or two-hour tours provide stunning glimpses of harbor seals while peppering guests with fun facts about the aquatic mammals -- such as their social habits and frequent haunts. Expert guide and binoculars included in ticket price! Guests of all ages welcome. Tickets:$20 to $30 adults, $15 to $25 Save The Bay members, seniors and childrenages 5 to 12; free for children younger than 5. For more information or to make reservations, visit www.savebay.org/seals.


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
How Eco Friendly Is Your Bank?
A really green bank is one that goes way beyond using paper made with recycled content. A financial institution's environmental street cred should also be gauged by its investments and which industries it loans money to.
Learn more here.

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