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January 12 to 19, 2012

In This Issue


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

This week:

South Coast Green Drinks

Photograph the Full Moon


Save The Date:

A Winter Adventure at Great Neck Sanctuary

"Green" Your Athletics Operation Webinar



Regional Bikeway Conversation

Organic Farming Practices Course at BCC

Weekly Green Tip:

Not changing your oil until you need to

Clip of the Week

'Like being on steroids': PBS links extreme weather to climate
Mainstream news outlets spent a lot of time in 2011 covering the record-breaking year for extreme weather in the U.S. But only a few of them spent much time exploring the link between those events and global warming.

Weekly Quote:

"What keeps things going, what sustains families, what makes work meaningful, what contributes to our wellbeing and what really connects us to Nature is cooperation."
- Ed Mayo, Secretary General of Co-operatives UK

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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
Apples Food Network tackled food waste when it challenged celebrity chefs to create a gourmet banquet using only food that was headed for the garbage. The special program called "The Big Waste" was created to teach viewers about all the perfectly edible, but perhaps blemished or oddly formed, fruit and produce that gets thrown away even before it reaches store shelves. Hunger experts have estimated that starting now, without increasing food production, we could gather enough such edibles to feed the world. The show will re-air January 14 at 4pm ET and January 15 at 5pm ET.

On the policy front, the United Nations is being targetted for a World Environmental Organisation to help move human societies around the globe toward more ecofriendly economic development and sustainability policies. Those who attend the Rio+20 Summit on Climate Change will decide its fate.

The foot-dragging that has been going on for years in the United States over joining any declarations for reducing greenhouse gases may finally be breaking as policymakers are starting to react to climate change and energy conservation news as well as feeling the pressure from their voting public to show some proactive leadership.
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 explores how the modern interpretation of anarchy relates to sustainability. While my investigation into this ideology has only begun to scratch the surface of it, it seems that what we are calling resiliency is precisely what Anarchism calls for. We need to organize our communities around the idea that to depend upon shipments of food and other necessities is to fail a sustainable future. Trucks cannot keep coming indefinitely loaded with fossil fuel dependent goods.
Leaf Bullet News
Solar Panels on Desert Could Saudi Arabia Become the Next Solar Market Hotspot?
Oil's more than likely the first thing that pops into your mind when Saudi Arabia is mentioned. Sunlight might follow close behind, though, and for good reason. Located within the equatorial "Sun Belt," where more solar radiation hits the earth than any other part of the globe, best available measurements are that Saudi Arabia receives an average 2,200 thermal kilowatt hours (kWh) of solar energy per square meter of land area every day. Read more here.

River Ecuador court upholds historic environmental case against Chevron
BOGOTA -- Humberto Piaguaje, a school teacher in Ecuador's Amazon, says he has lost eight family members to cancer. He blames the rash of deaths in his village of San Pablo de Kantesiya -- close to Colombia and Peru -- on river water contaminated by upstream oil operations.

On Tuesday, an Ecuadoran appeals court agreed, upholding an $18 billion judgment against Chevron Corp. saying it was liable for the shoddy environmental practices of its predecessor, Texaco, which dumped millions of gallons of oil-tainted waste water in streams and creeks. Texaco operated in Ecuador from 1960 to 1992 and the two companies merged in 2001. Read more here.

Oil Rig New Oil find in Arctic by Norway
Norwegian oil firm Statoil has made a second big oil discovery in the Barents Sea in less than a year and predicted more discoveries to come in the region, further boosting the remote Arctic region's oil prospects. The discovery will also improve the oil prospects of Norway, the world's eighth-largest oil exporter and the second-largest for gas, which has seen declining oil output since 2001, following a string of offshore discoveries made over the past year. The new oil find, called Havis, could hold between 200 million and 300 million barrels of oil equivalent. Read more here.

IMF Director Europe may avoid recession this year, IMF says
Europe as a whole may avoid a recession this year and there were reasons to be more upbeat about prospects for the region, South Africa's Business Day newspaper quoted International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde as saying.

"The euro-zone scene has changed massively over the last 18 months or so ... there are reasons to be a little bit more upbeat about the prospects," she told the daily in an interview published on Monday after a visit to South Africa last week. Read more here.

Construction Worker Power woes could trip Indonesia's economic surge
Indonesia's inability to meet the rising energy needs of its businesses, from steelmakers to hotel resorts, threatens to put the brakes on growth in Southeast Asia's largest economy.

The recent update of Indonesia's sovereign debt rating by Fitch to investment status should help attract more investors. But analysts and industry watchers fear wasteful subsidies and rampant corruption will reduce crucial investment in the infrastructure needed to supply power. Read more here.

Bug on Rice Plant Stop Abusing Insecticides in Rice, Experts Urge
To prevent devastating insect pest outbreaks in rice that cause millions of dollars of damage, the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has called for a ban on certain insecticides in rice production as part of its new Action plan to reduce planthopper damage to rice crops in Asia.

Many beneficial insects that prey on planthoppers are killed inadvertently when insecticides are misused or are used indiscriminately. Also, growing three rice crops a year or using the same varieties over a large area and for a long period can lead to pest outbreaks due to the adaptation and buildup of pest populations. Read more here.

Men in Khaki A world organisation for an equitable green economy
The proposed UN World Environment Organisation is badly needed to give poor countries a strong voice in green policy.

The United Nations will be convening in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, next June to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Earth Summit, held in the same city. The Rio+20 conference will assess progress since 1992 and aim to secure renewed political commitment to sustainable development. Read more here.

People and Computers Scientists call for global neglected disease database
A global database for neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) "is feasible and should be expanded without delay", the developers of a first 'proof of concept' for such a tool have said.

Such information is essential for planning and implementing cost-effective, sustainable control interventions in areas where there is limited knowledge of disease distribution. Read more here.

Map Riches of Renewable Energy in U.S. Revealed by Free Online Atlas
A free online atlas of renewable energy resources in the U.S.A. is now available courtesy of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Though designed for policymakers and planners, the new "RE Atlas" is a user-friendly interface that provides anyone who can use a computer with a vivid picture of the vast potential this country has for safe, low risk forms of energy including solar, wind and geothermal. Read more here.

Dam 2011: The Year Renewables Overtook Nuclear in the US
2011 was, it's generally agreed, a crappy year. There were tornados in the US, flooding in Asia, an oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico, and financial turmoil in Europe. Even the Arab Spring, which we've all been so excited about, has yet to produce any definitively democratic governments. But here's a statistic to feel a bit warmer about: 2011 was the year renewable energy overtook nuclear energy in the US. Read more here.

Cargo Ship The Race To Dig Deeper Ports For Bigger Cargo Ships
In 2014, when expansion of the Panama Canal is complete, a new generation of superlarge cargo ships will begin calling on the East Coast. Cities like New York; Savannah, Ga.; and Miami are vying for the new business, as they race to deepen their ports and expand their facilities to accommodate the new ships.

But some of the cities are running into significant challenges. In Miami, where plans are under way to deepen the port to 50 feet, dredging is a hot topic. Some see it as a great business opportunity. To others, it's a threat to the environment. Read more here.

Freeways Sky View Lawsuit Seeks Justice for 1.2 million Residents Living Near SoCal Freeways
More than a million people in the Los Angeles region are exposed to undisclosed, unhealthy levels of air pollution every day, according to a lawsuit filed today by Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), and Communities for a Better Environment.

Pollution produced by the region's millions of diesel and gasoline powered vehicles cause a heavy health burden for everyone living in Southern California, but evidence shows that it harms families and individuals living within approximately 300 yard of LA's heavily-trafficked roadways even more. Read more here.

Auto Mechanic Here Come the Jobs! (But How's the Pay?)
As the jobs finally start to appear, a dearth of high-paying positions is dividing our society, politics and middle class. The November job surge, for example, occurred primarily in retail, leisure and hospitality, sectors known for low wages. The other high-growth areas were professional services and health care, where higher education is a central determinant of income. Manufacturing and construction, one of the few areas left in the American economy where members of the middle class without elite educational pedigrees can find strong wages, were moribund. Read more here.

Closed Sign USDA Plans to Close 259 Offices
On the heels of 2011, a year packed with foodborne illness outbreaks, you might expect the federal government to beef up its inspections and consumer protection. Instead, yesterday the U.S. Agriculture Department announced plans to close nearly 260 offices, reports the Associated Press.

The motive for the closures? Money, of course. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack estimates the agency will save approximately $60 million a year by reducing its presence in certain regions. (The agency's budget is $145 billion annually.) But the closings have some people worried. Read more here.

Charging Station New Electric Vehicle Consortium Packs a Powerful Punch
A new consortium of electric vehicle stakeholders has just launched a new EV demonstration project that promises to boost President Obama's efforts to create a national EV infrastructure. Though consumer interest in EVs seems to surge with every spike in gas prices, a concerted public-private effort is needed in order to transform that desire into a workable mainstream alternative to fossil fuel-powered vehicles. Read more here.

Man at Water's Edge EPA: Toxic chemical releases rise 16% in 2010
Reversing a downward trend, the amount of toxic chemicals released into the nation's environment in 2010 was 16% higher than the year before, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports.

Tied largely to changes in metal mining, 3.93 billion pounds of toxic chemicals were released into the environment in 2010, according to the EPA's annual Toxics Release Inventory. Such amounts had previously been falling since 2006. Read more here.

Apocalyptic Landscape This Is The Year When Developed Nations Must Choose Between Pain And Disaster
2012 will be the year that the consequences of the choices made by nations of the so-called developed world will begin to truly manifest themselves in the economic realm. We are in the closing chapters of the current Debt Supercycle, with different countries strewn out along the path, some at more advanced stages than others but all headed for a destination that will force major decisions if politically painful actions are not taken. The longer that process takes, the fewer options that are available and the more painful the outcomes. Read more here.

Digital Screen Technology Addiction Will Lead to Our Evolution--or Enslavement
Electronic devices are hijacking the pleasure-creating circuits in our brains, giving rise to compulsive behavior in many users. This has created a growing number of people who become prisoners to virtual worlds while they engage in dangerous activities in the physical world. The results are disturbing.

For the past 150,000 generations, evolution has designed our minds, brains, and body to live in only one world at a time. When we attempt to live in two simultaneously -- the physical and the virtual -- the consequences can be very serious. Read more here.

Meeting Room Just in Time: "TimeBanking"
As the recession and Occupy movement encourage people to reimagine work and how they get their needs met in the new economy, Timebanks are catching fire. They are a clever tool to circumvent the scarcity and misdirection of conventional money. Timebanks are at heart a simple concept -- you work for an hour, earn an hour credit, and spend an hour with anyone in your Timebank community. Read more here.

Yogurt Healthy Processed Foods: Do They Exist?
It's unrealistic to think that the average person, who's faced with fast food and processed food on a regular basis, can start following a completely rigid diet of 100 percent "clean," fresh or local foods. While it may work for some people, it's not reasonable for the masses as issues of seasonality and transportation make it difficult for all of us to access fresh and local foods all the time. Read more here.

Shoreline and Rivers 2012's Not-Quite Hopeless U.S. Climate Policy
Some of my climate scientist colleagues at Columbia University's Earth Institute are frustrated about the inability of the U.S. Congress to enact new legislation on climate change.

While poll data shows that the climate issue is becoming increasingly ideological in the U.S., a slow and gradual awareness of the importance of carbon footprints, renewable energy and energy efficiency is making its way through the American body politic. Even if you don't understand climate science and climate modeling, a car that gets 50 miles per gallon and a house that is cheaper to heat and cool is hard to argue against. Read more here.

Fall River takes another step toward a green future
FALL RIVER -- City officials will gather Tuesday to celebrate the completion of the first phase of a project aimed at saving the city millions of dollars.

The completion of the Silvia Elementary School 76-kilowatt solar panel installation marks the end of the first phase of a multi-phase energy efficiency initiative for Ameresco, Inc. to design, build, own, operate and maintain four solar photovoltaic electricity generating systems. The project also features a comprehensive Energy Savings Performance Contract that is expected to save the city more than $2.7 million in energy savings during the life of the contract. Read more here.

Former Somerset drive-in a proposed Solar Farm
SOMERSET -- A solar panel project has been proposed for the site of the former Somerset Family Drive-In Theater off Brayton Point Road.

The proposal includes 1,571 solar panels spread in four locations across the site of nearly 7 acres. It would be built on wooded land on the east side of Brayton Point Road, behind Stop & Shop, Home Depot and Horton'9s Gym. Read more here.

Person with Garbage Sandwich residents, officials laud 'pay as you throw'
SANDWICH -- Cynthia Myers initially balked at paying for town trash bags to toss out her garbage but now likes the idea."It forced me to recycle out of cheapness," she said as she tossed recyclables into a bin at the town's transfer station Friday. "It made me do more of something that's important to do."

Myers is not alone. With six months of experience, town officials say the pay-as-you-throw system has done precisely what it was intended to do -- it's increased recycling and reduced the amount of solid waste being tossed into trash bins and, ultimately, hauled to SEMASS, the waste-to-energy plant in Rochester. Read more here.

BCC, Swansea's Case High team up to study green energy
SWANSEA -- Joseph Case High School students will have the opportunity to learn about sustainable and green energy technologies with a new pilot project between the high school and Bristol Community College.

Superintendent Christine Stanton said sustainable energy is a growing field and may become a career choice for some students. For that reason, a high school course may prepare, and even propel, students to elect the science as a course of study in college. Read more here.

Applications Available for Energy Aid Fund
The 2011-12 Massachusetts Good Neighbor Energy Fund is now open to all qualified candidates, The Salvation Army, the fund's administrator, announced. The fund helps families in temporary crisis who do not qualify for federal or state assistance with the payment of their energy expenses. Read more here.

SouthCoast Energy Challenge: Turn down the temp 2 degrees
The weather has turned, and we are all feeling the chill - smoke is drifting out of chimneys, and furnaces and boilers are working hard all across SouthCoast. Stay comfortable but save some money on your heating bills. Read more here.

Promoting Trees in Boston
The public is invited to the Boston Urban Forest Council meeting at the office of Boston Natural Areas Network, 62 Summer Street, Boston, on Tuesday evening, January 24 at 6:30 p.m. One goal is developing a resident based stewardship & advocacy group whose goals are to promote, plant and care for trees in Boston. Read more here.

Food Waste Represents Opportunity
Harvest Power, a Waltham-based cleantech startup, is working on the new frontier of using organic waste - anything biodegradable from animals and plants - for renewable energy. Although anaerobic technology is well developed in Europe, the use of airtight reactors to decompose organic waste and change it into biogas for energy is still taking root in the U.S. Read more here.

Freetown board OKs CPA question for April ballot
FREETOWN - The town is a step closer to deciding whether the Community Preservation Act is a good fit. "In a town with no senior housing, this is an important first step. CPA funds could be used, for example, to convert a historic building into apartments for seniors."

According to Fox, CPA funds can also be used to repair and upgrade historic structures that have fallen into disrepair from lack of resources."CPA will also be a terrific resources for our outdoor recreation facilities," she said. Other towns that have adopted CPA (149 total statewide) have used their funds for building or updating sports fields, sidewalks and bike paths. Read more here.

Environmental Legislation Underway at Statehouse
Many of the state's 2012 environmental initiatives are expected to be repeats of bills that died in committee last year.

The Environment Council of Rhode Island's (ECRI) list of priority legislation is expected to focus on four main areas: a new transit funding formula for RIPTA and the state transportation system; producer responsibility laws for products that are difficult to discard; approval of new standards for climate-change emissions, such as a 20 percent reduction by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050; and stopping an expected proposal for a waste incinerator in Woonsocket. Read more here.

BCC in Fall River to offer free job training program starting Jan. 18
FALL RIVER - Bristol Community College is offering free job training with the Personal Care Assistant Program.

The 10-week training program prepares people as direct care workers and is federally funded through the state's Executive Office of Health and Human Services and the Executive Office of Elder Affairs. Read more here.

Leaf Bullet This Week in Sustainability

Meet Olympic Medal Winner and Boston's Bicycle Czar Nicole Freedman

January 12, 9:30am, Fall River Government Center
Olympic Medal Winner and Boston's Bicycle Czar, Nicole Freedman will be in Fall River to speak to us on creating a bicycle friendly Fall River on Thursday, January 12 at 9:30 AM, at Government Center in the first floor hearing room. A light breakfast will be available. If you are interested in attending please let Julie Kelly know jkelly@fallriverma.org.

Photographing the Full Moon

January 12, 7 to 9pm, Allens Pond Field Station, 1280 Horseneck Road, Westport MA.
Want to capture a phenomenal photograph? Join photographer and naturalist Myer Bornstein on a unique journey and educational experience as he guides you to an optimal viewing area, gives you detailed instruction and aids you in snapping that perfect full moon shot. Participants need to bring their own single lens reflex camera with both normal and telephoto lenses and a remote release, extra battery and sturdy tripod. Dress for outdoor weather, bring a flashlight and if possible, we recommend bringing hand warmers. We will meet at the Allens Pond field station for a brief overview of the night's program and will enjoy some hot chocolate before heading out. We may travel to Stone Barn Farm and/or Gooseberry Island throughout the workshop, in search of that perfect photo! Adults $12.00 Audubon members / $15.00 non-members. Click here for registration form. For more information, call (508) 636-2437.

Owl Prowl

January 13, 7 to 9pm, Audubon Environmental Education Center, 1401 Hope Street, Bristol, RI
Head out along the boardwalk for an evening of fun - learning about the owls of Rhode Island. Begin the evening with a presentation on these amazing creatures and visit with one of Audubon's live owls. Then walk the evening trails in search of these intriguing birds in their natural setting. Dress warmly and bring a flashlight. Member Fee: $8/member adult, $4/member child. Non-Member Fee: $12/non-member adult, $6/non-member child. Details here.

Winter Indoor Market

January 13, 8:00am - 12:00pm, CD Rec, 72 Bank Street, Fall River
Join us at CD Recreation for the First Annual Winter Indoor Market! The market will be held the second Saturday of every month so let all of your friends know; the more the merrier! Local vendors with meats, cheeses, wines, vegetables, and other great goods will be available and are looking to see you there! Details here.

Save The Bay Newport Seal Cruises

January 14 and 15, 12 noon, Save the Bay Exploration Center, 175 Memorial Boulevard, Newport
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.

New Bedford Bike Committee Meeting

January 18, 6pm, New Bedford City Hall, Room 314
The South Coast Bikeway Committee received a grant of $3500 from the Narragansett Bay Wheelmen for our efforts to promote and publicize our efforts!! The committee is working on a brochure to promote the Regional Pathway. This coming month we will elect new Co-Chairs and other official members of the committee. Several individuals have already been nominated, but nominations are still open so please email me with any further suggestions oryour own interest in running, and I will send out a roster of candidates before the meeting. For information contact Pauline Hamela at pauline.hamel@newbedford-ma.gov.

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.

South Coast Green Drinks

January 18, 6pm, Rose Alley Ale House, 94 Front St. New Bedford, MA
Green Drinks is an informal, open, post-work social event (i.e. happy hour) for people interested in "green" topics and initiatives happening both in our region and elsewhere. There is no set structure or itinerary and everyone is welcome to attend. Just show up at or after 6:00 and look for the "SouthCoast Green Drinks" sign. Find us on Facebook!.

Leaf Bullet Save The Date

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.

"Green" Your Athletics Operation Webinar

January 26, 1 to 2:30 pm, Online
Sustainability continues to be a buzzword on campuses, yet many athletics offices do not know where to begin with greening their operations. Compounding this problem, many campus sustainability officers are not experts in intercollegiate athletics operations. Join the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education for a program that will describe ways to bridge these disparate campus operations and design workable, result-oriented approaches to environmentally sustainable athletic activities and facilities. The webcast will provide information on how to work with campus sustainability offices, tailor campus efforts to available resources, and maximize the community and public effects of green progress. For more information click here. To register, click here.

Viewing Party for TedX Manhattan's Conference: Changing the Way We Eat

February 12, 10:30am to 5:30 pm, Coalition for Buzzards Bay, New Bedford
SEMAP is hosting a viewing party for TedX Manhattan's conference: Changing the Way We Eat suring the SouthCoast CSA Fair. Learn more about local farms offering CSAs (community supported agriculture) and sign up for the 2012 season at the same time! We will conduct a potluck lunch (12:15-1:30). Bring a dish to share. Challenge yourself to use as many local ingredients as possible! FREE. For more information, contact Sarah Cogswell, Program Director at scogswell@semaponline.org.

Agriculture and Food Conference of Southeastern Massachusetts

February 25, 8:30am to 5:00pm, Bristol County Agricultural High School, Dighton, MA
Registration is now open for this fifth annual conference presented by the Southeastern Massachusetts Agricultural Partnership, Inc. (SEMAP) and Bristol County Conservation District (BCCD). This all-day event will feature an information-packed range of 18 workshops geared toward both professional farmers and local food-focused members of the community, plus a special series of workshops on organic practices and three youth sessions for children ages 9-12. Offerings include:
- Three workshops by Will Bonsall of the Scatterseed Project;
- Sessions on the business of farming (marketing, land leasing, institutional sales);
- New organic track workshops, in partnership with NOFA/Mass;
- Resource fair where farmers and gardeners alike can learn about organizations and businesses helping them to grow;
- Locally-sourced lunch prepared by Green Gal Catering that is included in registration (yes, in mid-winter!);
- Seed swap and more!
Registration is only $50 for the public, and $35 for farmers; SEMAP and NOFA members receive a 10% discount. To register and for information on conference updates, details on workshops and speakers, visit and follow the link, www.SEMAPonline.org or call (508) 295-2212 x50.

Leaf Bullet Announcements
Sustainability Newsletter
We are thrilled to announce the launch of our latest newsletter, for Winter of 2012! Check out stories about our new forest living lab, our big campus-wide energy retofit, successful sustainability alumni, the southcoast bike path, and more! Download the PDF here.
Christmas lights wanted for February illumination event in Newport park
Give a new life to Christmas tree lights. The Friends of Ballard Park are looking for lights, outdoor extension cords and lamps, 2 feet or higher, for its Annual Illuminated Garden in February. Donations are tax deductible. Drop off lights to Newport's Clean City Program Office, 80 Halsey St., Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. or at the Friends of Ballard Park's office, 226 Bellevue Ave. #10, Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friends of Ballard Park will also pick lights if you call the group at (401) 619-3377.
The Top 10 Peak Oil Books Of 2012
"Peak Oil" is the term for predictions about when we will have passed the mark for extracting oil from the earth in its best quantities. After Peak Oil, extraction supplies will only dwindle. Experts say we already passed that mark three decades ago. For the best, most recent reading on the subject, including its effects on the economy, energy supplies, and other factors expected to peak and dwindle, click here.
New SouthCoast Rail Project Manager's Fact Sheet
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.
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.
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
Driving green means not changing your oil until you need to
More modern motor oils, better control of the combustion process through vastly more powerful electronic circuitry, and the persistence of generations-old auto advice have combined to lengthen oil-change intervals.
Learn more here.

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