Blog : April 2014

ReVision Energy made a music video, and you should watch it

By Sam | Apr 8, 2014 | in

Who knew the folks at ReVision Energy were so talented? Check out this awesome music video by the ReVisionistas as they perform a parody version of "The Cover of the Rolling Stone" by Dr. Hook. It's a riot, and now it's stuck in all of our heads. Be sure to check out ReVision's page for more information on the great things they're doing in the area to make our energy greener.

Q & A with Ted Hauri, Solar Customer in Mason, NH

By Madelaine | Apr 8, 2014 | in

Ted Hauri in Mason, New Hampshire had a large solar hot water system installed to provide supplemental heat to his greenhouse, which uses radiant distribution, as well as solar photovoltaic for his home. We asked him about his choice to combine these two renewable energy technologies and why he decided to go solar now.

REVISION: Why did you go solar?

TED: I went solar because I thought it was a good investment. With the total cost reduced by the NH rebate and the federal tax credit, the return on my photovoltaic and thermal systems should be in the range of 6 to 8 %. And that's only calculating electric and propane savings. I put in a large (14 KW) system so that I can fuel an electric car, which will give me an even greater return.

It's true that this investment lacks liquidity, but I consider that offset by the reliability of the system (the sun always rises) and the fact that fossil fuel costs will continue to rise. The installation gives me a greater degree of independence from the fluctuations of world markets. Another great benefit is that I am gaining hands-on experience with a new technology that I believe has a terrific future.

UNH Dairy Bar Sustainably Satisfying Sweet Tooths

By Kyle | Apr 8, 2014 | in

Durham, NH— Need to satisfy a sweet tooth or cool down on a hot summer day? Stop in for an always-overflowing cone of the UNH Dairy Bar’s famous ice cream brought in locally from Blake’s in Manchester. In 2008, UNH Dining Services took over the Dairy Bar owed and previously managed by UNH with the goal to center their business around sustainability. 

Since re-opening in 2008, the Dairy Bar provides students and the public alike with affordable, local, sustainable fresh food and ice cream options. Reaching out to local farmers and businesses, the Dairy Bar has compiled a menu that is 75 percent locally sourced. Recently, the Dairy Bar in partnership with the UNH’s College of Life Sciences and Agriculture, bought two 96-by-30 “high tunnels”—structures similar to greenhouses with a focus on greater passive environmental control—to offer fresh produce directly from the UNH campus farm land. Feel good about stopping in to get a fair trade cup of coffee from NH Coffee Roasters in Dover or any breakfast sandwich made with hormone and cage free eggs from Pete and Gerry’s in Monroe.

 

Community Toolbox, Inc. Joins Green Alliance!

By Craig | Apr 8, 2014 | in


Friends and members, please welcome Community Toolbox, Inc. to the Green Alliance!

One saying goes: out with the old and in with the new. But there's also the saying, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Community Toolbox 
is a nonprofit in Portsmouth that accepts donations of new and used home building supplies they then sell at their outlet store. Funds from these sales support their Fix-It program, the driving cause behind the business.

Kids Eat Right Presentation to Recap National Nutrition Month

By Patrick | Apr 4, 2014 | in

Our world’s hunger dilemma goes unnoticed at times– people often fail to see the struggle of those around them. It’s not until we hear the facts that the goose bumps rise. In the past year, organizations like the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Exeter have been successful in distributing over 269,700 lbs. of food to 3,055 Exeter Area households in need. In addition they aided 45 homeless families and individuals with referrals to shelters, emergency supplies and food.

Although March and National Nutrition Month have drawn to a close, Alicia Rossman (registered dietitian with Starry Brook Natural Medicine) will be holding a community lunch and learn on Saturday, April 5 targeting issues like hunger and obesity. The mission is to present community members with facts in the hopes of stimulating positive change while helping families make better decisions when providing affordable nutrition to loved ones.

A member of the Kids Eat Right Campaign, Rossman realizes the importance of getting kids to recognize the benefits of eating healthfully and feeling whole (both mentally and physically) at a young age.

The presentation will include information on how community members can make a difference and get involved in hunger relief efforts, what organizations are in their area, where they can volunteer, donate and how to build a successful food pantry. The importance of having a reliably stocked local pantry was demonstrated this past winter by the frequency of snowstorms and the frigid temperatures brought on by the “Polar Vortex”.

Starry Brook’s fellow Green Alliance Business Partner, 900 Degrees Neapolitan Pizzeria will be catering Rossman’s Kids Eat Right presentation. Jon and Pricilla, the owners of the Manchester and Epping-based pizza hotspots, have honorably agreed to supply the event with healthy snacks for lunch.

Hodgson Brook Project Offers Rain Barrels to Area Residents for a Discount

By Kyle | Apr 4, 2014 | in

Save the rain! Interested in reducing polluted water in the coastal area? Hodgson Brook Restoration Project and Great Bay Community College has partnered with the Great American Rain Barrel Company to offer rain barrels to area residents at a discount to help reach their mission of preserving the water quality and habitats of Hodgson Brook, a body of water that has been historically neglected. Originating in uplands west of Portsmouth, the Hodgson Brook continues easterly to North Mill Pond, which empties into the Piscataqua River.

Rain barrels help conserve water, reduce pollution and save homeowners money. Rain landing on rooftops, driveways, and roads collect and carry pollutants in local streams and rivers, threatening fragile ecosystems that native plants and animals rely on. Rain barrels help offset the growing global concern of water shortage. By storing rainwater, the barrels provide clean water for homeowners to use for watering gardens, lawns, filling pools, and washing cars.

Roommates Unwanted: Protecting Your Home from Carpenter Ants

By Craig | Apr 3, 2014 | in

April begins carpenter ant season here in New England, where ants are the most commonly reported pest. Tens of thousands of homes in New Hampshire are affected, causing millions of dollars of damage nationwide. Even seeing just one ant can mean an infestation. According to Tom Pray of Ecotech Pest Control, if there's one there's probably more. Lots more.

"You might see 20 one day, and none the next. But if you’re seeing them around the house, you have a nest in the house," says Pray.

Pray is the Sherlock Holmes of the insect world. Instead of solving murder mysteries, Pray specializes in solving insect enigmas. He searches homes for clues: where are insects coming from? How much damage have they caused and what's the best way to get rid of them? For Pray this is what makes the job exciting: every day is new and solving a customer's problem is what brings him satisfaction.

Green Alliance Spring Blowout Deals

By Sam | Apr 3, 2014 | in

 

Ahhh, springtime. A season of change and new beginnings. Here at the Green Alliance, we like to kick off spring with our annual Spring Cleaning Blowout sales, where a select few of our Business Partners offer an above-and-beyond discount on their services. All these discounts will be vaild through May 31st if you're a Green Alliance member.

 

You are a Green Alliance member, aren't you?

If you're not, there is no better time to sign up than right now. Just a look at all the deals we have! 

2014 Portsmouth Restaurant Week

By Mary | Apr 2, 2014 | in

Portsmouth Restaurant Week is here so get ready for a memorable culinary experience! Two Green Alliance businesses, Favorite Foods and The Portsmouth Brewery, are taking part in this week-long event. Favorite Foods will supply fresh, sustainable goods to many of the area’s finest restaurants. The discounts begin on Thursday, April 3 and end on Saturday, April 12.

Experience all the Seacoast and the Greater Portsmouth area have to offer during this 10-day long event. Over 50 participating restaurants on the Seacoast will offer special three-course fixed menus for lunch and dinner.

The Portsmouth Brewery has been providing a sustainable alternative for dining since 1991 with their famous handcrafted beer and local fare. Restaurant Week is the perfect way to get a taste of the Seacoast while supporting green businesses. Click here to view 10 distinctive dishes featured in this year's Portsmouth Restaurant Week! Click here for more information on Restaurant Week Portsmouth.

Unacceptable Levels film screening & "Coffee & Conversation"

By Patrick | Apr 2, 2014 | in

SALISBURY — There is mounting evidence linking human health issues to the chemicals in our environment. Autism now affects one in 50 children. Cancer is the leading cause of death in children younger than 15 in the United States (after accidents). 80,000 chemicals on our store shelves, and in the consumer market today, have not been tested for safety or their long-term impact on human health.

On April 16, Sativa Saposnek, a member of The Greater Newburyport Mothers and Families Club (GNFC), will present the Salisbury premiere of the critically acclaimed, award-winning documentary Unacceptable Levels, a story about the chemicals in our bodies, how they got there and what we can do about it. The film examines the results of the chemical revolution of the 1940s through the eyes of affable filmmaker Ed Brown, a father seeking to understand the world in which he and his wife are raising their children. To create this debut documentary, one man and his camera traveled extensively to find and interview top minds in the fields of science, advocacy, and law. Weaving their testimonies into a compelling narrative, Brown presents us with the story of how the chemical revolution brought us to where we are, and of where, if we’re not vigilant, it may take us.

The goal of this event is to open the door to conversations about the chemical burden our bodies carry so we can make informed decisions and healthier choices now and in the future. The hope is that you will walk away from the film empowered with resources and knowledge about ways to make small changes in your own lives that, down the road, will lead to significant changes for making our world, our lives, our families, and us healthier and more sustainable.

Erin Switalski, Executive Director of Women’s Voices for the Earth, says, “This movie is a must see for all of us whose vision is a future free from toxic chemicals... policy makers, CEOs, educators and parents alike.” Beth Buczynski of ecosalon says, “Unacceptable Levels is a no-nonsense documentary that will challenge everything you think you know about health, safety, and environmental protection."

Environmental Film Festival Showcases Beauty of Nature, Positive Change

By Sam | Apr 2, 2014 | in

PORTSMOUTH - It’s well known that properly maintaining forests and bodies of water are important to sustaining a healthy ecosystem, and New Hampshire is no exception. Sometimes, it takes a truly breathtaking panoramic nature shot on the big screen to inspire people to make a change. This year, a band of local businesses and nonprofits are hoping to inspire people with a series of selected films about preservation.

On April 25, The Southeast Land Trust of New Hampshire will host their 4th annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival, one stop of many on the festival’s tour. The festival, taking place at The Music Hall, will feature 12 short films, ranging in length and style, hand-picked by the Southeast Land Trust committee.

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival is held every January in Nevada City, California. Now entering their 12th year, the fest has given hundreds of environmental activists and nature filmmakers a home to showcase their stunning camera skills, all with a different theme each year. This year, the theme of the national film festival is “emPOWERment,” focusing on films about people or organizations that have taken it upon themselves to make a positive change in the environment. Within that theme, the Southeast Land Trust has also taken on a curator’s role in their selections.

“We chose several films with a water theme this year,” said Isabel Aley, Southeast Land Trust Outreach Coordinator. “Preserving this area’s water resources is something very important to the Land Trust.”

Water conservation, though not in the Land Trust’s name, is still an important facet of land conservation. Lakes, streams, and groundwater make up a community’s source of drinking water, and reckless development or pollution can put those sources of water in danger. In a continuing effort to preserve the quality of land and water for New Hampshire’s residents, the Southeast Land Trust puts on events like this film festival to raise awareness about the importance of their mission.

Adapt Design Makes Workplaces Brighter

By Madelaine | Apr 1, 2014 | in

PORTSMOUTH — Connoisseurs of Green Design, Bob Cook and Paul Fowler have the expertise to make your design dreams a reality. Their design firm, Adapt Design, offers a wide range of design services. Adapt Design not only conceives of sustainable homes from the ground up, but it can design renovations that will maximize your workspace as well.

Adapt recently designed a stylish sustainable office space in downtown Portsmouth. The office features simple yet effective architectural choices that save resources and expenses. The design incorporates “day-lighting.” Large windows and skylights were installed for natural light to pour in, dramatically reducing the need to turn on lights during the day. The upper-half of the largest wall in the office is made with glass. This allows natural light to fill the office. The bottom half of the wall remains closed and maintains visual and acoustic privacy for employees.

This recent project exemplifies Adapt’s core values, keeping in mind how its designs will impact the collective future. To reduce its carbon footprint Adapt utilizes techniques and resources most appropriate for the region where a project is located. This “creative practicality” produces many benefits. Practical choices like these, along with designing to utilize space to its full potential, allows Adapt Design's work to be flexible to future living and climate changes.

Olympic Green Cleaning Joins Green Alliance!

By Sam | Apr 1, 2014 | in

 Hey Green Alliance friends! We want to give a big, warm welcome to Olympic Green Cleaning, our newest Business Partner!

Athena Klokelis and Alina Corrigan, college roommates turned business partners, have embarked on a mission to bring corporate social responsibility and environmentally sustainable practices to their cleaning service. Based in Hooksett, NH, Olympic Green Cleaning hopes to establish their client base in a competitive industry with a strong commitment to the environment and creating a healthier home or office. Using all EPA approved and USDA biopreferred products, it provides a cleaning service that won't leave harmful chemical residue on surfaces.