Blog : Activism on the Seacoast
ENH Power has partnered with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Seacoast area to co-host The Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Seacoast Holiday Social from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 5 at the Green Alliance headquarters, located at 75 Congress St., Suite 304, Third Floor in downtown Portsmouth..
Enjoy refreshments, beverages, and fun for the whole family! Bring along an unwrapped item from the “Little’s Wish List” in support of the BBBS holiday drive in order to enter the raffle for a free year of power from ENH Power. The "Little's Wish List" can be seen here. Also, bring a copy of your electric bill to receive a special Coal-Free 24-month electricity rate of $0.0789/kWh.
At this event ENH is donating to BBBS $5 as well as 2 percent of renewal residuals for each home or small business that enrolls in this plan.
The deregulation of the energy market has substantially changed the power game for New Hampshire. Now, as NH residents and businesses have the choice in energy providers, the opportunity for significant savings, stable rates and cleaner energy sources is better than ever. Residents and business owners are longer restricted to power provided by utility companies. Having a choice in energy providers has, quite literally, given the power back to the people.
Recently partnering with the Green Alliance, ENH Power, has already made headway on educating the public with on the options available in the open energy market, in order for people to understand how their choice in provider can positively influence the energy markets. Along with Electricity Maine, ENH Power is part of the Provider Power family of companies. ENH is able to purchase electricity directly from the New England Power Pool, searching hourly for the best possible rates and passing the savings on to the customer at a fixed rate. Rather than being beholden to volatile markets and large public utilities, ENH power gives you the inside track to the most competitive prices – be it for home or business.
Addressing the need to advance cleaner energy sources, ENH Power offers green options for those of us who keep the environment close at heart. The Coal-Free plan and the Pure Green plan, allow residents and businesses to contract cleaner energy sources in conjunction with the purchase of Renewable Energy Credits and carbon credits.
As an environmentally sound sustainability consulting firm, Green Alliance supports the labeling of GMO (genetically modified organisms) and the people's right to know whether their food contains GMOs. Brought to our attention by Dr. Angela Lambert of Ancient Traditions, a Green Alliance Business Partner, there was a recent poll in New Hampshire, illustrating the strong support for requiring the foods containing GMOs be labelled, with more than eight out of ten voters favoring the proposal of GMO labeling.
Below is a guest blog from New Hampshire GMO Labeling Campaign:
CONCORD, NEW HAMPSHIRE — As voters in Washington hand in their ballots today to determine the fate of GMO labeling in their state, the issue of labeling genetically modified organisms or GMOs, as they’re commonly known, is heating up in New Hampshire. This Thursday, the New Hampshire House Environment and Agriculture committee will vote on a similar bill, HB 660, to require GMO labeling in the Granite state.
Consumer support for GMO labeling in the U.S. is wildly popular, according to the recent political opinion survey of New Hampshire registered voters on GMO food labeling conducted by The Mellman Group on behalf of Food Democracy Now!, a grassroots movement of more than 650,000 farmers and citizens dedicated to creating a more sustainable future for farmers and the environment.
According to pollster Mark Mellman, “The survey found nearly all Democrats (93%), Independents (89%) and Republicans (90%) in the state of New Hampshire agree that they have the right to know whether their food contains GMOs."
VIEW THE STUDY HERE: https://s3.amazonaws.com/media.fooddemocracynow.org/images/Food_Democrac...
Not everyone in the world is blessed with eyesight. According to the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, approximately 285 million people in the world are affected by low vision and blindness. Even with these numbers, 80 percent of visual impairment is readily treatable and/or easily prevented.
October was World Sight month. As a way to help encourage support for those without eyesight, Harbor Eyecare Center offered a matched percentage discount on glasses based on donations made towards helping the blind by up to $35. For example, donating $20 would net you a 20 percent discount on glasses, while donating $35 or more would get you 35 percent off on glasses. Additionally, Harbor Eyecare holds this special every October, so that you can take advantage of this awesome deal next year. All proceeds from this event go towards the Optometry Giving Sight charity.
Harbor Eyecare is involved in a number of other charity events related to giving a leg up to the blind. It participates in the Special Olympics event Opening Eyes, giving free eye exams to athletes in the event every June. Starting this month, Harbor Eyecare will also be giving free eye exams to patients with diabetes-related sight issues in honor of diabetes month in November. These are just some of the many ways that Harbor Eyecare gives back to the community.
Harbor Eye Care is Business Partner of the Green Alliance. Green card holders can receive 20% on any complete prescription eyewear purchase. To learn more about the Green Alliance or to become a member, visit www.greenalliance.biz.
ELIOT, Maine — In the renewable energy realm, Eliot, Maine, may be at the forefront. With help from ReVision Energy, a renewable energy contractor serving northern New England, this small town is seeing the sunny side of energy production. A total of 150 solar panels were installed on the roof of a town garage on Route 236. Today, the panels are working to power the town garage, transfer station, with excess energy supplying a portion of the police station.
ReVision Energy is a Business Partner of the Green Alliance, a union of local sustainable businesses promoting environmentally sound business practices and a green co-op offering discounted green products and services to its members.
Since installation of the solar panels, in July 2013, and with three months worth of energy generation data and thorough extrapolation of this data, the town expects the panels to produce a total of 51,700 kilowatt-hours of energy per year. That is enough energy to provide the garage with the necessary 20,000 kilowatt-hours, and the 15,000 kilowatt-hours needed at the transfer station, with excess power supplying a portion of the police station’s energy needs.
The Eliot Energy Commission has dedicated years to the project, and to see it through to the end has brought many — commission member Charlie Case included — pure joy. After the town signed a contract with ReVision Energy, the plan became reality.
Guest Blog: New Hampshire Environmental Community Calls for Study of Underground Alternatives in Federal Review of Northern Pass
By: Christophe Courchesne, Conservation Law Foundation
To find out more about the partnership between Green Alliance and Conservation Law Foundation, click Here!
Earlier this week, seven leading New Hampshire environmental organizations, including CLF, sent a joint letter to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) calling for a truly comprehensive and fair environmental review of the Northern Pass transmission project, including a complete analysis of underground transmission alternatives in New Hampshire and other states. To read the whole document click here.
Yesterday’s announcement of the New England Clean Power Link project in Vermont confirms that underground alternatives are reasonable, economic, and likely to have significant advantages over a project like Northern Pass. It has never been clearer that DOE must carefully analyze these alternatives and weigh them in deciding whether the current Northern Pass proposal is consistent with the public interest. Contrary to the misleading arguments in Northern Pass’s flawed amended permit application, advanced underground transmission technology and potential underground routes warrant detailed study in DOE’s environmental impact statement.
Wouldn't you like to know exactly where your food comes from? Wouldn't you like to know whether your food was organically grown or modified extensively in a lab? This is exactly what several people in New Hampshire, including Dr. Angela Lambert of Ancient Traditions Natural Medicine, are petitioning to do: make labeling of genetically modified food mandatory. As a doctor, Angela is dedicated to promoting the availability of healthy foods, and believes that GMO foods with unknown health risks should be labeled as such.
Many foods these days are genetically modified for a number of reasons: to protect crops from being destroyed by pests, give foods a longer shelf life and to prevent them from carrying viruses. Although proponents of genetic modification claim that GMO foods have no detrimental health effects compared to regular foods, that is not an absolute certainty, since the risks have not been accurately identified and managed. Currently, GMO foods are not required to be labeled, so the average consumer has no way of knowing whether the food they are buying is genetically modified or not.
With the practice of labeling GMO foods being mandatory in 64 other countries, it is rather strange that the United States is the odd country out. However, if this bill is passed, consumers in New Hampshire will be able to enjoy the freedom of choosing whether or not to purchase GMO foods. If you want to let the state of New Hampshire know that you want GMO foods to be labeled, you can sign the petition here.
To learn more about Ancient Traditions Medicine, you can visit their website at www.naturalmedicinenh.org.
Ancient Traditions Medicine is a business partner of the Green Alliance. Green Alliance members save 20% on all naturopathic services. To learn more about the Green Alliance or to become a member, you can visit their website at www.greenalliance.biz.
KITTERY-There is nothing more beautiful than confidence. Or so believes Rosemarie Golini, owner of the popular New Freedom Laser in Kittery, Maine, a business she founded fifteen years ago to provide healthy, safe cosmetic laser services to help people build or regain confidence. While the cosmetic industry has gained a bad rap over the years, Golini has remained loyal to her belief that beauty does not start and stop on the surface.
“My initial experience with laser treatment was actually as a recipient,” revealed Golini. “When I needed laser procedures it was not on a cosmetic level but on a medical level. I experienced first-hand the benefits going beyond appearance so I continue to operate with that mentality of healing and treatment versus a temporary or superficial fix.”
Golini’s personal connection to laser treatment inspired her to pioneer an industry that was, itself, just breaking new grounds. So much so that during her early years while working in electrolysis, Golini was approached by researchers from Mass General Hospital to test out one of the first commercial lasers used for hair removal. While the approach had its skeptics, Golini believed in the potential of laser treatments to be a healthier, cleaner solution to hair removal and skin rejuvenation. And her instincts proved right. Now, fifteen years later Golini is among the top tier of experts that provide affordable and safe laser treatment services.
With today’s top of the line, state of the art equipment, New Freedom Laser offers services to both men and women to treat skin and hair issues without breaking their wallet or their threshold for pain. Since opening in 1998, New Freedom has conducted 250,000 laser hair removal and skin rejuvenation procedures, in the process giving new leases on life to countless people – of all ages, from all walks of life, men and women alike. To ensure the best results, free educational consultations and sample treatments are offered to all clients.
“Experience matters,” Golini said of her long tenure in the industry, “that’s where I have the most value to offer clients. I listen to them when they explain their issue or problem in order to address it effectively and entirely.”
DOVER — Sarah Greenshields, the founder and owner of GA business partner Little Tree Education, is running for a position on the Dover School Board.
The School Board oversees financial decisions for the school district. With Sarah’s diverse background in business consulting and financing, she is a strong candidate for the position. Sarah’s business consulting services focus on creating as much growth as possible with limited funds; considering the drastic budget cuts throughout the Dover school district, Sarah’s knowledge would be invaluable.
Sarah’s specialties are helping businesses streamline operations, building budgets, creating business plans, and raising capital. Her combination of financial experience and interest in education will encourage economic growth while still keeping broader educational goals in mind.
Dover needs sound leadership during this time of change; there is currently an interim superintendent, and the new School Board will be in charge of finding a permanent replacement.
GREENLAND — When describing the dynamic synergy that flows between their entrepreneurial spirit and eco-consciousness, Jane and Jeff Cutters’ stories have many chapters. From revenue generation and restaurant, to printing and publicity, to family and fishing, the Cutters have dedicated their personal and professional lives to supporting each other’s big-picture goals.
After meeting Jeff, who persuaded Jane not to join friends in California in 1989, the couple got down to business—literally.
From 1991 to 2006 Jeff owned the popular Portsmouth restaurant, Molly Malone’s, on State Street, “which was the place to be for a long time,” Jane said. After short stints as WHEB’s sales assistant, and account executive for The Alternative Agency, Jane fast tracked her Northeast sales career by helping to form ATA Transit Advertising in 1992, which she still owns today.
At the same time, Jane and Jeff’s personal lives grew. They married in 1992 and were thrilled to welcome two sons to their family in 1998 and 2000. As their professional and personal lives evolved, they didn’t stop to take a breath.
“Jane and I are each other’s support team,” Jeff said. “We have always gone above and beyond to exceed our life goals. At one point, we had five different jobs between us because that’s what it took. Once you have success with one business, it builds confidence in your next venture as the learning curve becomes less and less. Working for someone else is out of the equation after you've been on your own for a certain amount of time.”
On Saturday, Nov. 2, the Southeast Land Trust will host its 11th annual Fall Fundraiser Event. This year, the theme of the event will be “Eat, Play, Give,” which reflects the festive aspect of the traditional evening and the spirit behind the organization’s work.
The “Eat, Play, Give” event will be a night of fun. What better way to celebrate another year of land protection than a great night out with friends? Attendees will enjoy complimentary hors d'oeuvres, desserts, and drinks in historic downtown Portsmouth. Throughout the night, there will be a silent auction on more than 100 items and live music by Sea Smoke. On top of all the fun, SELT Executive Director Brian Hart assured that “every dollar spent at our fall fundraiser will go directly towards supporting our work in local communities.”
The Southeast Land Trust conserves land and natural resources in southeast New Hampshire. The trust preserves water resources, working farms and forest, wildlife habitat, and community landscapes by working with landowners throughout the region. The trust recognizes the value in our area’s natural resources. Functional farms provide local food to farmers markets, while preserved forests provide space for recreation and solitude. Clean water is essential for both our own health and the health of the environment, and having natural areas is vital for providing habitat to native wildlife along the Seacoast.
“Essentially, the trust works to save places that are important to people,” said Hart in a recent conversation. “Whether that means saving a farm for people to buy corn or preserving scenic places in which to hike, the trust is working hard to serve the community and the environment.”
Recently, I've had the privilege of attending a press conference held by the Citizens for Clean and Fair Power (CCFP). There was a small crowd there, mixed with a combination of media representatives and speakers for the conference. The main focus of the press conference was to give a shout out to the scores of local businesses that support the CCFP's mission. Some of those businesses are: The Green Alliance, Smuttynose Brewery, Flatbread Company, Eyelook Optical, Ceres Bakery and more. The scenery of the park and the ocean in the background was rugged and beautiful, something that New Hampshire often prides itself on. The purpose of the press conference was so that we could keep it that way by responsibly retiring the Schiller Coal-burning Power Plant.
One of the main reasons the CCFP and many others want the plant to be retired is the effect that it has on the environment. One of the speakers, Joan Karos, told about how the plant has affected her life. "Despite the fact that I have never been a smoker, I am a victim of lung cancer. I believe that Schiller Station contributed to my cancer." The coal being burnt at the plant released a large variety of toxins into the air, including lead, mercury, soot, smog and more. Even though Joan did not live near the plant at the time, the toxins still went all over for an unknown distance." Her message to the crowd was to retire the plant now, so that others would not end up like her.
Around the Portsmouth area, power has been traditionally provided by the Schiller Station coal-burning plant. However, this power is provided with a hefty cost: Toxins are released into the air that are known to cause health problems, including asthma and cardiovascular disease. With many alternative ways to generate power that don't require such a heavy toll on the environment, why should Portsmouth still be stuck with coal-related power and polluted air?
On Oct. 9, at 11am, the Citizens for Clean and Fair Power (CCFP) will be holding a press conference at Prescott Park, revealing 50 local businesses endorsing a campaign to retire the Schiller Station coal-fired power plant. The CCFP believes that the people of Portsmouth deserve clean air and envision replacing the current power structure with clean sustainable energy that supports the scenic look of the area. To this end, the CCFP and several other concerned business owners and residents have called on Governor Hassan and other elected officials to retire the plant.
Jeff Barnum is no stranger to the open waters. As a recreational fisherman and ocean lover, Barnum is among the many coastal residents who are concerned with the protection of our local water resources.
While Barnum finds company in his support for clean water and healthy water systems, he is distinguished by his efforts to act upon his beliefs in order to protect and restore the water resources that define coastal New Hampshire by vying for and successfully achieving the title of the new Great Bay-Piscataqua WATERKEEPER with the Conservation Law Foundation.
The Great Bay-Piscataqua WATERKEEPER is a dynamic role that serves to protect and restore the Great Bay, Little Bay, the Piscataqua River and all the waters comprising the Great Bay estuary. By assuming this position, Barnum will build off of the relationships and programs established by former WATERKEEPER, Peter Wellenberger.
“In early 2012, Peter jumped in, energized people, networked, and created a coalition of local non-profits, businesses and municipal stakeholders called Rescue Great Bay in an effort to bring the pollution and nutrient issues to the forefront,” praises Barnum.
In addition to continuing the collaborative organization of Rescue Great Bay, Barnum has already hit the ground running in order to leverage the public and municipal support for improving the Great Bay watershed sewage treatment operations, and supporting the EPA permits to reduce the high levels of nitrogen discharges into the bay. The harsh effects of rising nitrogen levels in the bay are observed in the biological health of the extent and vitality of eel grass, an essential component of estuarine ecosystems.
Nearly two years ago we brought you a story about a very generous family from Dover, N.H., Diane and Peter McDonald, who donated half a cord of hardwood and a stainless steel sink to the York County Shelter Programs (YCSP). The McDonalds, being GA members, reached out to our director, Sarah Brown, who immediately thought of YCSP because two of its shelters are wood heated.
We remind you of this story because it has happened again! Another generous person, Sharon Osborne of the Manchester area, has offered up a cord of wood to those in need. With enough wood to last her family a few years, she does not want to see this beautiful, already cut oak wood rot and go to waste. She has reached out to the Green Alliance to find an organization that could put the wood to good use. We immediately thought of YCSP again, as well as our business partners at Habitat for Humanity to see if either had a need for it. We hope to connect this generous donation with those who need it most.
York County Shelter Programs is an organization that not only helps people in need but tries to do so as sustainably as possible. It helps hundreds of homeless people every year of all walks of life, providing a great service to the community. It also uses solar power, efficient insulation, and energy star appliances in its five residences. To learn more about the amazing things this organization is doing, check out its Green Alliance Profile here!
Southeast New Hampshire Habitat for Humanity ReStore supplies new and reusable, donated building materials. These items are sold at 30 percent to 80 percent off retail. This program also helps in the building of more affordable homes by Habitat for Humanity that go to families in need in the Seacoast community. For more information check out their Green Alliance Profile here!
If you would like to inquire about this donation contact Sarah Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.
GA members receive 10 percent of everything in ReStore!
Did you know it takes about 6,000 nails to build a Habitat for Humanity house and that each nail costs approximately 5 cents?
The launch of Nickels for Nails will take place on Oct. 7, 2013. Nickels for Nails is a new youth-led fundraising initiative of Southeast New Hampshire Habitat for Humanity that mobilizes youth ages 5 to 25 to fund and build Habitat homes for sponsor families. Through the use of coin collection containers in classrooms, teachers, youth group coordinators and students will start a successful fund drive.
In addition, teachers can also download curriculum plans to teach their students about the growing housing crisis and how everyone can contribute in some way. The school or organization that raises the most during the coin drive will be eligible to win a prize and be recognized by Southeast New Hampshire Habitat for Humanity.
This event is a great way to educate youths and the public about the housing crisis in New Hampshire. It allows them to take part in something greater by building a home here. It’s easy to help, and even the youngest child will understand the purpose. The children will be eager to see the jar as it fills up.
For more information about Nickels for Nails, visit here.
Snakes, lizards, and other creepy creatures may scare many people; that is not the case for Caleb Bruss. Caleb is the Co-Director and Curator of Herpetology at Granite State Zoo, a Green Alliance business partner.
Caleb became interested in animals when he was very young. It all began with a fascination with dinosaurs. His grandfather was a paleontologist at the University of Wisconsin, and early experiences with fossils left an impression on a young Caleb. He spent much of the time outdoors and fueled his curiosity by climbing trees, jumping in ponds, and chasing frogs. To Caleb, all creatures were interesting, regardless of how cute or fuzzy they were.
Caleb was also exposed to a lot of animals as he grew up. His family always had dogs, and many of his family friends had small farms. When he was fourteen he got his first reptile, a panther chameleon named Hiroshi. Panther chameleons are not a typical first reptile pet, but Caleb prepared himself through extensive research until he was somewhat of an expert on the breed. Hiroshi ended up being a great companion, and Caleb started to take in other reptiles in need of rescue.
In high school, Caleb found an outlet for his budding interest in herpetology in extended science courses. After being accepted at RIT, Caleb immersed himself in their Biology program. He spent time working in a genetic lab with different iguana species, volunteered in an exotic pet shop, and had an internship at Granite State Zoo. Since then, he has never looked back.
The Great Bay Stewards Annual Meeting will take place on Thursday, October 3rd, at 7pm at the Hugh Gregg Center (89 Depot Road, Greenland, NH). The night will feature an update on the Steward's activities, plus guest speaker W. Jeff Bolster, author of the award-winning book "Mortal Sea: Fishing in the Atlantic in the Age of Sail."
The Great Bay Stewards are a group of volunteers dedicated to protecting and preserving Great Bay. The Stewards help maintain the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and run programs at the Great Bay Discovery Center.
"Mortal Sea" examines the dependency of humans on the Atlantic from a historical perspective. W. Jeff Bolster, a historian and a seaman, offers a unique perspective on Atlantic environmental and social history. Autographed copies of the book will be available for purchase (with a discount for Steward members!) and refreshments will be served.
PORTSMOUTH — An “elegantly casual barn party” featuring fabulous food and drink, live music, and silent and live auctions will highlight the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Greater Seacoast fall fundraiser, an annual event that benefits children throughout the Seacoast.
“The Big Bash on little bay” will take place from 6:30 to 10 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 18, at 224 Little Bay Road in Newington at a private home with, of course, a barn. This annual fall event directly funds the agency’s mission, which is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.
“This is our major fundraising event for the year,” says Alyssa Salmon, BBBSGS development and communications director. “It’s a wonderful thing to see the community really coming together in support, because this is our community. The agency is a vital part of it. The children we serve are our community.”
BBBSGS is a 35-year-old organization serving 39 cities and towns in Rockingham and Strafford counties, with a vision that all children achieve success in life. Adult mentors expand the perspective of children ranging in age from 6 through 17 years old by encouraging them to look beyond their situation to the outside world of possibilities to see that bigger and better things are attainable.
“Most kids can benefit from having a mentor in their lives. Having a positive adult role model in their life is the single most important thing to helping them reach their potential and have success in life,” says BBBSGS Executive Director Stacy Kramer.