Blog : January 2014

Sustainable Homes By Eco Sound Builders

By Mary | Jan 28, 2014 | in

Eco Sound Builders, LLC is a Green Alliance business partner passionate about creating energy efficient buildings and homes. It was built from the ground up by father and son duo, Roger and Ethan Korpi. In 2008, after their first full year in business, the Korpis decided to extend their cliental all the way from the Lakes and White Mountain Region to the Seacoast of New Hampshire and Maine. Peter Robie, the third partner of Eco Sound oversees the newest, most Southern branch on the Seacoast.

12th Annual Seacoast Home & Garden Show Comes to Durham

By Mary | Jan 28, 2014 | in

The 12th Annual Seacoast Home and Garden Show is coming to the UNH Whittemore Center on March 29 and 30. Hundreds of local vendors will showcase their latest products and services. This type of trade show is an extremely helpful marketing tool for any home-related business because of the large amount of attendees who will take part. This is an ideal place to come brainstorm ideas if you are in the process of remodeling your house, designing your kitchen, planting a beautiful garden or all of the above. Come shop for flowers, garden supplies and tools or just stop by to meet some of the area’s best culinary chefs. The show will include seminars to educate guests on home improvement. The Green Alliance will have a booth set up, so be sure to come find them! GA Business Partner Eco Firebox is one of the many other vendors who will also have a table at the show.

Chinburg Properties' Green Building Philosophy Proves Successful

By Mary | Jan 28, 2014 | in

Chinburg Properties, a Green Alliance Business Partner, is the largest builder of energy efficient homes on the Seacoast. Not only is it known for high quality property development, general contracting and innovative construction, but also for its excellent customer service. Chinburg Properties has been in business for more than 25 years, and continues to thrive thanks to its large network of relationships with New Hampshire’s best designers, architects and engineers.

What makes Chinburg Properties special is its green building strategies. Recycling run-down buildings is what it does best. In 2002, President Eric Chinburg started to incorporate Energy Star standards when he was developing houses. In 2011, he decided to make Energy Star standards mandatory for all new home constructions. Building “cluster communities,” a frequently used building style, features greener living spaces. Chinburg Properties also uses many eco-friendly technologies, including demand water heaters, solar hot water and geothermal heating and cooling.

Little Tree Education's Sustainability Report Card

By Madelaine | Jan 28, 2014 | in

Did you know that every business/organization in The Green Alliance undergoes a full and transparent Sustainability Certification? We want to be sure that everyone knows what each business has accomplished and what they are still working toward when it comes to green business practices. Check out Little Tree Education's Report Card below to see how they scored!

To read Little Tree Education's full Sustainability Evaluation, click here

Green Alliance members save $50 off their child's first month of tuition at Little Tree! To join the Green Alliance, click here

Tar Sands Exposed: UNH Student Environmental Action Coalition to Host Tour Stop

By Madelaine | Jan 28, 2014 | in

The UNH Student Environmental Action Coalition will be speaking about the current, highly controversial, tar sands issue that is affecting us locally and people internationally. In New England, the issue of tar sands is on the rise because of the looming possibility of the reversal of the Portland-Montreal pipeline with intentions to pump tar sands from Canada to Maine.

Canadian tar sands are currently the biggest tar sand threat to our environment. Tar sands are made up of heavy crude oil mixed with sand, bitumen, and clay. In order to extract the oil, enough natural gas must generate heat and steam to melt the oil out of the sand. Up to five barrels of water are required to obtain one barrel of oil. Tar sands oil produces three times the greenhouse gas emissions of conventionally produced oil.

This presentation will go more in depth about the nature of tar sands. Coalition members will speak about their personal experiences from travelling along the Portland-Montreal pipeline. They will expose the audience to the truth about how tar sands are threatening our ecosystems, cultural heritage, and health.

Award-winning photographer Garth Lenz will be sharing photographs that he has captured during the past several years of the destruction this issue has caused.

This will be a great opportunity to become aware of the current threats to our environment, and learn what you can do to help stop them. The event will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 28, in the MUB theatre at University of New Hampshire. 

To learn more about this event, click here.

When the Polar Vortex Pushes Seacoast Residents, Simply Green Pushes Back

By Patrick | Jan 27, 2014 | in

NORTH HAMPTON -- If you haven’t been outside recently, you are not to blame.. Winter, and more specifically, the “polar vortex” are upon us in impressive force. So when you finally complete that treacherous trek from your car up the front steps to the warm embrace sealed behind your front door -- take notice of how great it feels.

This winter, add to that feeling with the knowledge that the fuel you burn is much better for the environment -- and do so at a discount! North Hampton company Simply Green is one of the biggest names in the biofuels game.

As an original member in 2008, Simply Green helped in the foundation of the Green Alliance, which has since grown into a community of 115 green businesses. However, the family-owned and operated biofuels business has also had great success of its own since it began in 2007.

Among the worldwide list of “Hottest Companies in BioEnergy,” Simply Green was also commended by the governor of Maine, and was awarded “Environmental Hero of Maine” in 2008.

Compliment Your Valentine’s Day With Something Sweet

By Patrick | Jan 27, 2014 | in

STRATHAM — Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. If you’re looking to impress your date by showing up with a plate of delicious brownies or a tray of chocolate chip cookies, you might be in luck.

The Acorn School of Stratham is holding its 40th Annual Bake Sale and Raffle from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Feb. 14 inside of Citizen’s Bank on Water Street in Exeter. So whether you’re in the area or just a baked-goods enthusiast, stop by to claim your Valentine’s Day goodies, personalized heart cookies, and other traditional baked goods.

Remember that all proceeds will go directly to support the Becky Shepard Scholarship Fund. This fantastic scholarship makes it possible for 3-, 4-, and 5-year-old children to enjoy the vital experience of preschool and kindergarten. So be sure to swing by and purchase raffle tickets for a chance to win one of several prizes, including an incredible gift basket.

ENH Power Proving Energy Choice Can Be Sustainable

By Jim Cavan | Jan 27, 2014 | in

As Americans, we’ve adopted as gospel the freedom to “shop around” – to compare and contrast product prices and bona fides and make choices that appeal to conscience and wallet alike.

When it comes to electricity, however, the tendency is to assume that there simply is no alternative to whatever’s surging through our fridges and flat screens.

Electricity is electricity, the thinking goes. How can one option be better than any other?

Now, thanks to companies like ENH Power, New Hampshire residents are finally becoming privy to a mantra most never even considered: You have a choice.

A 2012 story published in Business NH magazine details the complex, often contentious history of energy deregulation in New Hampshire. For years, commercial and residential customers were limited to choosing from a handful of large-scale providers.

And while the wheels for reform were set in motion almost two decades ago, it was only in the past few years that a slew of small-scale competitors finally began to break through the public utility stranglehold.

According to the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission, as of the end of 2013, more than 98,000 residential customers of PSNH have elected to get their power from a third party supply company. With more than 54,000 customers, ENH Power is the largest of these providers,

“Most people are so busy, they simply don’t have time to sit down and try to study up on the ins and outs of the state’s energy landscape,” explains Julie Lapham, ENH’s New Hampshire Community Outreach Coordinator. “But once you sit them down and explain to them what happens when you choose ENH, they get it.”

Along with Electricity Maine and Provider Power Mass, ENH Power is part of the Provider Power family of companies. Their business model is different from many other supply companies.

Northwestern Mutual of Portsmouth seeks Associate Financial Representative

By Patrick | Jan 27, 2014 | in

Did you know the Green Alliance has a Green Jobs Board? We post information about job openings within the Green Alliance business partner community. Open the door to your green career today.

Northwestern Mutual of Portsmouth seeks an Associate Financial Representative. Don’t miss your opportunity to join the ranks of what was voted one of the “World’s Most Admired” life insurance companies by Fortune magazine’s annual survey in 2012. The position involves assistance in daily administrative support as well as client service support. To review the full list of qualifications and further responsibilities, click here. Contact Larry Russell with a cover letter and resume at larry.russell@nm.com.

Acorn Organic Salon Photo Tour

By Sam | Jan 27, 2014 | in

If you're walking through downtown Dover and wondering where Acorn Organic Salon went, the answer is: not far! Now located underneath Dover Natural Marketplace, Acorn is the perfect stop for a cut, wash, or color before grocery shopping or a bite to eat.

Organic food nourishes the body without pesticides and chemicals. Why wouldn't you want to give your hair the same love? Stocked with all natural and organic haircare products, Acorn can give you that brand new 'do you wanted without the unhealthy chemicals, so you can feel as good about what you put in your hair as what you put in your body.

Here's a quick virtual tour of Acorn Organic Salon's adorable new spot:

Click for the whole tour!

5 Green Tips from Cornerstone Tree Care

By Patrick | Jan 27, 2014 | in

Spring is right around the corner, and it's time to start thinking about your backyard! This week's Green Tips come from Cornerstone Tree Care and provide some great info on how to more gently care for the trees on your property. Learn more about Cornerstone Tree Care by visiting their website.

1. Compost your leaves and other garden waste at home instead of bagging and carting them to the transfer station. All that material is food for your plants and trees. Why pay for compost from somebody else when you already have the ingredients to make your own? Don't have the space? Get together with your neighbors to create a shared spot that you all can use.

Cuzin Richard Spearheads 13th Comedy Benefit

By Jim Cavan | Jan 24, 2014 | in

They say that laughter is the best medicine, but for two Seacoast nonprofit organizations, it can also make for a fantastic fundraiser.

On Valentine’s Day, comedian Michael McDonald and Cuzin Richard Entertainment Associates (CREA) will host the 13th Annual Comedy Xxtravaganza at the Music Hall in Portsmouth.

A percentage of the proceeds from the show will benefit a pair of local causes: the Seacoast Family Food Pantry and Cross Roads House, a transitional shelter and outreach center for individuals and families.

McDonald, who returns for his 12th straight year at the show’s helm, highlights an impressive cast of nationally renowned comedians including Tony V, Mike Whitman, and Dave Rattigan.

If the last dozen events are any indication, the Xxtravaganza is sure to be as successful at selling tickets as they are providing much-needed boosts – moral as well as financial – to two organizations that genuinely need it.

“Basically, it’s like having seasons tickets for the Green Bay Packers – the only way to get in is if someone dies,” says Mike McDonald, who has headlined the show since its initial incarnation. “There’s definitely a loyal fanbase that turns out, the comics are all top-notch, and it’s all for a good community cause.”

Asked if hosting the show on Valentine’s Day will hinder attendance, McDonald is unequivocal.

“Whether it’s Valentine’s Day or any other occasion – what’s better than giving someone an experience you both can share?” McDonald posits “Nothing says I love you more than comedy. It certainly beats gas station roses.”

As for the show itself, McDonald says this year’s lineup was built with a single goal in mind: to knock it out of the park from the second the stage lights flash.

“We tried to put together a lineup that, top to bottom, is going to rip it up,” he says.

Dave Rattigan – another of the event’s headlining acts – is looking forward to collecting some money of his own.

"Portsmouth is one of my favorite places and the Music Hall is a fantastic place to see a show, or perform in," said Rattigan. "I especially love performing with Tony V., because he owes me money and this will be another chance to collect."

Ridgeview Construction seeks Seasoned Project Manager

By Patrick | Jan 24, 2014 | in

Did you know the Green Alliance has a Green Jobs Board? We post information about job openings within our business partner community. Open the door to your green career today. 

Green Alliance business partner, Ridgeview Construction is seeking a seasoned Project Manager. This award-winning custom homebuilder has recently had its share of success and growth and is trying to find an enthusiastic candidate to move forward with. Don't miss this opportunity to join such a unique construction business. If you would like to read more about the position and the necessary qualifications, please visit our Green Jobs Board.

Winter Pruning Protects Trees Facing New Threats 

By Mary | Jan 24, 2014 | in

Winter is the perfect time to invest in preventative tree care that will help keep trees healthy and green all spring and summer long and reduce the potential for costly winter storm tree damage and even extended power outages.

“Because the leaves are gone, we have an opportunity to clearly see the structure of a tree, and identify what should be removed for its health,” according to Portsmouth arborist Micum Davis of Cornerstone Tree Care. Cornerstone’s Davis is sometimes referred to as the Seacoast’s “tree whisperer”.

“The dormant season is also the best time to trim a tree from a biological standpoint, in large part because harmful fungi are also currently dormant,” he says. 

Winter structural pruning gives trees a head start in realizing their ideal form aesthetically and architecturally.  Ignoring the internal structure of a tree can lead to rubbing wounds, unseen hazards, branch failure, fungi prevalence, and premature tree failure and removal. When a rubbing limb is removed early on, it conveniently allows the tree to focus its resources on expanding those healthy and necessary limbs which contribute to the tree’s overall strength and beauty.  Experienced arborists have an eye for seeing which limbs will cause problems down the road.  A precise nip here and cut there can make a world of difference in the long run.

That kind of preventative care is particularly important today, as climate change, disease, and invasive species combine to pose new threats to local tree species.