Blog : Activism on the Seacoast

Kittery Community Market Opening Sunday, June 7th

By John | Jun 1, 2015 | in

June 1, 2015 (Kittery, Maine)

Kittery Community Market is an outdoor seasonal farmers market and opens this Sunday, June 7 for the 2015 season. The market is open rain or shine each Sunday from 10am to 2pm through October 4, and is located in front of Tributary Brewing Company, at Post Office Square, 10 Shapleigh Road, Kittery Center Village, Kittery, Maine 03904.

Opening Day will feature a plant sale from the Shapleigh Sharks "Green Team" to raise funds for their ecological educational program, as well as variety of agricultural, prepared food and artisan vendors. Attend the market each week through August 9th and you'll be entered to win a Kayak from Portsmouth Kayak Adventures.

"It's summertime in the Seacoast and Kittery Community Market is your spot to shop and eat local every Sunday. Get fresh food from Zach's Farm, Greenlaw Gardens, Bumbleroot Organic Farm, AJ's Pizza, Belle's on Wheels, the Soup Guy, Robert's Maine Grill, and Lil's, as well as fine artisan crafts including White Pine Pottery and so much more. In addition to fresh local food, enjoy live music, a kid's corner with fun activities and a different community nonprofit featured each week. This year will be great for locals and tourists alike, and we are so excited for this season to start!" says market manager, Kris Bowden.

Green Businesses Team Up to Take the Bite Out of Golf

By John | Jun 1, 2015 | in

By Mark Quirk

NORTH HAMPTON – There will be a few more traps at Sagamore-Hampton Golf Club this summer, but golfers need not worry, these traps will be installed to enhance the playing experience.

This summer Tom Pray of Ecotech Pest Control Services, LLC is working with Sagamore-Hampton to test his Fly Cage at the 18-hole course. The Fly Cage, developed by Pray over the last year to control horseflies, greenheads and deerflies, will be positioned at two of the course's holes with two traps at each hole to test the cage's effectiveness.

“I want to put some out and see which spots will be best,” Pray said.

Richard Luff, the president of Sagamore-Hampton said he'd like to start testing at some of the holes on the course's back nine. Holes 10, 11 and 12 wind through the woods and that's where Luff said the deer-flies are most prevalent, especially in the morning.

“In those early morning rounds they can chase you around and make it unpleasant,” Luff said.

Luff said he has tried several other options to control the deerfly problem in the past, but none were successful. He hopes installing the Fly Cage will have better results.

NHPTV & Green Alliance Summer Cruise

By Sarah Mahoney | May 16, 2015 | in


Great Bay Stewards Nearing Their Goal

By Sarah Mahoney | May 16, 2015 | in

By Mark Quirk

GREENLAND – By this time next year the boardwalk at the Great Bay Estuary will be gone. Or at least that's the hope of the Great Bay Stewards, and they're close to accomplishing their goal. Now that the boardwalk is nearing the end of its life the Great Bay Stewards (GBS) have set out to raise the almost $350,000 needed to restore it.

It's their intent to replace the existing boardwalk with a new, more functional, environmentally-friendly one. And after a lengthy fund raising campaign, they only need to raise another $8,000 to match federal grant money before the Stewards hand the money over to the state. Then the New Hampshire Fish and Game, which manages the Great Bay Reserve, can put the project out to bid.

Peter Wellenberger, the executive director of the Great Bay Stewards, said he hopes to have the rest of the money raised by June 1 so they can start the contract process at that point. Wellenberger hopes to begin construction in November and have the project completed by next spring.

Ahead of the Times

By Sarah Mahoney | May 12, 2015 | in

Josh Denton is a guest blogger who is very active in environmental activism in Portsmouth as well as a member of the Green Alliance.

I am excited that a year and a half after I ran for City Council on a Deer Street parking garage, the City Council unanimously voted for this Worth Lot alternative. With this decade long debate settled, the City Council can address our future by enacting the single-use, carry-out, plastic bag ordinance.

All year, I have stated the proposed ordinance is legally sound under New Hampshire's solid waste statute. R.S.A. 149-M’s purpose is protecting human health, preserving the natural environment, and conserving natural resources. The ordinance does this by reducing plastic pieces in both our maritime food stream and our oceans, as well as conserving the precious fossil fuels that plastic shopping bags derive from.

The Gundalow Company's Sponsor a Student Program

By Sarah Mahoney | May 12, 2015 | in

The nonprofit Gundalow Company is encouraging you to consider sponsoring a student or a whole class to support the programs that they provide. By sponsoring a student or a class, the Gundalow Company will be able to continue to run their award-winning programs connecting students of all ages to the rivers and waterways throughout our watershed.

The Gundalow Company hosts over 100 field trips each year for over 2,000 students. They charge each class a nominal fee which covers less than 50% of the actual costs of our programs. The remaining program costs must be raised through sponsorships and individual donors, like you.

Their floating classroom brings a new perspective to their mission, which is "to protect the Piscataqua region’s maritime heritage and environment through education and action, as students of all ages experience our rivers and bays from the deck of a historically significant vessel." Their award winning programs engage students in hands-on learning while under sail.

Does Your Business Have the Greenest Commuters?

By Ken | May 12, 2015 | in

The time is here to find out, does your business have the greenest commuters.  CommuteSmart Seacoast is having their CommuteSmart Seacoast B2B Challenge June 8 through June 19.  CommuteSmart Seacoast is a transportation management association which promotes smart commuting including carpooling, riding the bus, walking, and teleworking.  The CommuteSmart Seacoast B2B Challenge is to find out who has the smartest and greenest commuting workforce in the New Hampshire Seacoast.  All New Hampshire Seacoast businesses are eligible, and encouraged, to enter the challenge.

What does the challenge involve?  Companies who have registered will have their employees log their commute into the system.  

There are three prizes:

Let Your Voice Be Heard

By Ken | May 8, 2015 | in

Local Business Pitching in to Help Shelter

By John | May 5, 2015 | in

By Mark Quirk

PORTSMOUTH – When the people at the Cross Roads House decided to hire Site Structures Landscape, Inc. during their renovations five years ago they probably had no idea what they were going to get for their money.

They paid Site Structures to do the original work, but since then the company based in Eliot, Maine, has been maintaining the grounds free of charge and this week they're there for an annual makeover.

“We're very, very appreciative of the support we receive from Site Structures,” said Martha Stone, executive director at Cross Roads House. “We've had the privilege of working with them ever since they did our renovations five years ago.”

Site Structures is donating 20 cubic yards of mulch on Wednesday and three workers there to help spread it. They will have two workers there on Thursday and volunteers from Liberty Mutual will be there both days.

Adopt a Beach

By John | May 5, 2015 | in

Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to inspiring people to help conserve the marine environment from pollution. Founded by whale watch naturalists Jen Kennedy and Dianna Schulte, Blue Ocean also seeks to protect marine mammals and document important whale habitat and threats to whales.

As way to reduce marine pollution, Blue Ocean maintains their Adopt-a-Beach program, a volunteer initiative which involves a group of people selecting a particular beach at which to go and clean once a month, by picking up trash. Available beaches can be found throughout New Hampshire and into Massachusetts and Maine.

Be Loyal To Your Soil: Compost!

By Sarah Mahoney | May 4, 2015 | in

International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW) is the largest and most comprehensive education initiative of the compost industry. It is celebrated each year in the first full week of May, this year being May 3rd to May 9th.

ICAW is a multi-media publicity and education event that showcases composting and compost products. It features everything from composting in your backyard to large-scale commercial composting facilities and businesses serving entire communities.

This year’s theme is Be Loyal To Your Soil: Compost!

As the US Representative of the composting industry, USCC has signed onto the International Year of Soils, a project of the Global Soils Partnership and the Food and Agriculture Office of the United Nations.

Our US Theme will center on the need for compost as a component of healthy soil here in our country, in infrastructure development, agriculture and food production – compost’s role in everything from mitigation of brownfields, stormwater management and erosion control, and water conservation.

17 Years Later, the Honest Journey Continues

By Sarah Mahoney | Apr 30, 2015 | in

By Seth Goldman, Co-founder & TeaEO of Honest Tea

Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England is a green certified Green Alliance Business Partner and the distributor of Honest Tea in the region.

Seventeen years ago I turned on the Packard-Bell computer in a bedroom of my house and started Honest Tea. On that first day, there was an infinite number of “Unknowns” but there were a few “Knowns”:

  • My co-founder Barry and I were on the same page – he was going to be my business partner, advisor and Chairman of the Board while keeping his day job as an Economics professor at the Yale School of Management.
  • We had an aspiration to create a mission-driven brand and enterprise that could have a positive impact on health, the environment and our supplier communities.
  • We had $50,000 in the bank, not coincidentally, an amount I had received a few months prior from the proceeds of an investment my Dad made in my name back in 1970.
  • We had brewed a few promising varieties of tea in Barry’s kitchen – among them green tea with mint which became Moroccan Mint, spiced black tea which became Kashmiri Chai and brewed hibiscus with fruit based on a German dessert known as Rote Grutze that became Black Forest Berry.
  • Of the many label concepts we developed, the one with the big T in the front, in which the T acted like a keyhole into the culture behind the tea recipe, seemed the most promising.
  • My wife and three sons were on board for the ride – Julie was ready to put up with a brewmaster living in the basement and the boys were happy to serve as taste testers, even if our youngest Isaac had to drink his Black Forest Berry from a baby bottle.

Cleaning Up Hodgson Brook... How Many Cigarette Butts Are Too Many?

By Katelyn | Apr 30, 2015 | in

Candace Dolan is a guest blogger for the Green Alliance and the Watershed Coordinator of the Hodgson Brook Restoration Project. The Hodgson Brook Watershed spans 2,135 acres in Portsmouth and the brook itself, which is often hidden from view, is visible throughout the Pease Tradeport. Land use and pollution have degraded the freshwater stream and due to these the problems the brook is not listed as an impaired waterway.

Hodgson Brook collects stormwater from 20% of the City of Portsmouth. This seven mile brook is polluted from stormwater, which as it travels to storm drains, washes over lawns, roads and parking lots. On its way to the brook, it picks up excess fertilizer, bacteria from pet waste, oil and grease from vehicles, trash and the cigarette butts that eventually make their way to local beaches.

Last week, two groups of Earth Day volunteers on the Pease Tradeport collected over a pound and a half of cigarette butts from the stream banks and road side near storm drains leading to Hodgson Brook. These remains translate to over 183 packs of cigarettes!

Cigarette butts are the most commonly discarded piece of waste worldwide. It is estimated that 1.69 BILLION pounds of butts wind up as toxic trash each year, creating an enormous environmental, health, and economic burden. Contrary to popular belief, cigarette butts are NOT biodegradable! Cigarette butt waste is a huge environmental issue, with a global impact -- it is both unsightly and unhealthy.

All Politics are Local

By Sarah Mahoney | Apr 29, 2015 | in

Josh Denton is a guest blogger who is very active in environmental activism in Portsmouth as well as a member of the Green Alliance.

All politics are local. The environment, climate change, and America’s energy independence are not just big intangible ideas for only state, federal, and foreign governments to address. Portsmouth’s City Council can contribute by enacting the single-use, carry-out, plastic bag ordinance.

Harm to marine life, or the greenhouse gas emitted for a plastic shopping bags’ single use, is why many support the ordinance. I advocate for it because our reliance on the fossil fuels that these convenience items derive from continually sends our service members into combat. An Iraqi infantry battalion combat advisor teammate of mine eight years ago, is back at the same Iraqi base today, doing almost the same exact thing. Part of breaking this cycle of oil dependence and war is Americans consciously and collectively using less single-use plastics.

Earth Day Party and Cleanup Changed Pease Tradeport for the Better

By Katelyn | Apr 28, 2015 | in

Last Thursday, Redhook Brewery organized a cleanup of the Pease Tradeport grounds to celebrate the true meaning of Earth Day: beautifying our planet for future generations to enjoy. Redhook worked with the Hodgson Brook Association to collect trash from the brook, which travels through the Tradeport and is listed as an impaired waterway.

The Hodgson Brook Watershed includes 2,135 acres in Portsmouth, and the brook itself is seven miles long and collects stormwater from 20% of Portsmouth. The Hodgson Brook has become increasingly polluted over the last several years due to stormwater runoff that picks up fertilizers, oil, and trash as it makes its way to storm drains which empty into the brook. The Hodgson Brook Restoration Project aims to improve the quality of the brook through community outreach and education, monitoring pollutant levels, and cleanups to reduce visible pollution around the waterway.

On Earth Day, Redhook employees, employees from Lonza and Newmarket Inc., and individual volunteers spread out around the Tradeport and collected trash littered around the Hodgson Brook. Volunteers picked up nearly 150 bags of trash plus over a pound and a half of cigarette butts alone. Cigarette butts are a common sight around the brook because people often believe they are made of paper and biodegradable; however, cigarettes butts contain plastic and fiberglass and have a five year lifespan before they begin to degrade.

Integrated Fitness

By John | Apr 27, 2015 | in

Time to get geared up for a day of compassion and competition! Integrated Fitness, of Dover, New Hampshire, is an excellent health club dedicated to helping people exercise efficiently and live nutritious, healthy lifestyles. But while they are focused on physical health, they also want to improve emotional health. On Saturday, May 9th, Integrated Fitness will host its first ever Day of Fitness, a charity event for Suicide Awareness.

Beginning at 9 AM, the Day of Fitness will consist of several athletic events, including a deadlift competition, a pushup competition, a plank competition, and a one mile run, with prizes given to the winners in each event. In between the competitions, everyone will enjoy appearances by public speakers, raffle prizes, and free chair massages.

Jon Arnold, director of Integrated Fitness, seeks to raise awareness of both the dangers of suicide and the means to prevent it, having suffered a loss from suicide earlier in his life. Now, as the leader of Integrated Fitness, this health and fitness advocate works to improve peoples’ physical health, which encourages emotional well-being at the same time. He and his staff of personal trainers lead comprehensive and rigorous classes to make sure their customers stay healthy.

Join the GA for Free Tickets to the Wild & Scenic Film Festival

By Katelyn | Apr 21, 2015 | in

Earth Day is April 22, but why not celebrate our beautiful planet all month long? To honor the great Earth that we live on, we want you to attend the Wild and Scenic Film Festival and enjoy the variety of short films focused on environmental topics, such as renewable energy, land conservation, and wildlife habitat protection. Join the Green Alliance as a Sustaining Member and you will receive 3 free tickets to the Wild and Scenic Film Festival (a $48 value)!

This year, the film festival will be held at the Portsmouth Music Hall on Friday, April 24 at 7 p.m. Aside from enjoying 13 environmental films, guests will also have the opportunity to win donated prizes from local businesses at the free raffle.

The Wild and Scenic Film Festival is the largest environmental film festival in North America and works to bring moving environmental documentaries to communities across the country. The Southeast Land Trust has brought the festival to Portsmouth for the last four years, thanks to help from local sponsors including the Green Alliance, who has been a sponsor for the past three years. Several Green Alliance Business Partners are also sponsoring the event such as Ultra Geothermal, Cornerstone Tree Care, Progressive Asset Management Group, Proulx Oil and Propane, and Be Good Branding.

CCNNE Continues to Make Sustainability a Priority

By Sarah Mahoney | Apr 16, 2015 | in

Here in New Hampshire, Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England (CCNNE), an independent bottler, ensures they’re doing more than just talking about recycling programs. Through technological modernization of its production lines and a rethinking of how it uses water, the Londonderry Production Center is one of the most sustainable and energy efficient operations. CCNNE’s Londonderry Production Center has won Coca-Cola’s National Quality award 9 times!

Their Dasani plant bottle is made from 30% renewable resources, over 12 million pounds of recycled commodities were sold in 2013, 264 million pounds of cardboard was saved and just under 300,000 oak trees saved by using recycled plastic trays, and have a 93% recycling diversion rate at their manufacturing facility in Londonderry.

Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation Beach Cleanup for Earth Day

By Sarah Mahoney | Apr 16, 2015 | in

Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation will be hosting two beach cleanups on Saturday, April 18, 2015 in celebration of Earth Day. One will be at Hampton Beach. Volunteers should meet at 10:30a.m. at the Blue Ocean Discovery Center, 170 Ocean Blvd, Hampton Beach. 

The other cleanup will be at Pierce Island at 11:00a.m. Volunteers for that cleanup should meet at the swimming pool. All supplies, including bags, non-latex gloves, and data cards will be provided.

Beach cleanups are a way for the public to get involved in keeping the beaches along the Gulf of Maine clean. They rid the shore of litter such as cigarettes, food wrappers, straws, and bottle caps that can be harmful to marine life. Cleanup volunteers record their findings, which allow the organization to learn about long-term trends in pollution and problem areas. Families, small and large groups, and individuals are all welcome to participate.

Integrated Fitness of Dover’s Introduces Day of Fitness for Suicide Prevention

By Sarah Mahoney | Apr 15, 2015 | in

Fitness is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle, along with proper nutrition. But it also provides an outlet to improve mental health functions. On May 9, Integrated Fitness of Dover will host the first annual Day of Fitness at their facility in Dover, New Hampshire. The event is free, but donations for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention are accepted.

“I have been personally looking for ways to make a difference for people who have been affected by suicide,” said Integrated Fitness owner, Jon Arnold.
“My 23-year old sister took her own life about 2 years ago. It was a horrific ordeal that our family went through. We don’t want that to affect anyone else if we could possibly help it.”

At Integrated Fitness Arnold's certified trainers help people of any level incorporate fitness into their daily lives and to meet their individual health goals.

There will be numerous events at the Day of Fitness to inspire people achieve their personal goals, including dead-lift, plank and push-up competitions and a one-mile run. Winners of each category will win an award for their performance.

The day also includes speakers from the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention.