Blog : May 2014

Great Bay Stewards Green Story: Protecting New Hampshire’s Precious Coast

By Theresa | May 8, 2014 | in

Over four decades ago, the Great Bay Stewards organization was formed by a group of environmentalists determined to prevent the development of an oil refinery along New Hampshire’s pristine coastline. Since their success, the Great Bay Stewards have grown and transformed into one of the Seacoast’s most steadfast and hard-working conservation organizations. The Great Bay Stewards also act as a ‘friends group’ to the Great Bay Discovery Center and the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (GBNERR).

In the mid 1990s, the Stewards spearheaded an effort to convert the former Pease Air Force Base into a National Wildlife Refuge. They were also instrumental in the implementation of the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. The Reserve is one of just 28 in the nation, and offers immeasurable opportunities for environmental education and research.

Marcom4 Green Story: Bringing Sustainability to the World of Marketing

By Theresa | May 8, 2014 | in

Marcom4, a marketing collective comprised of four New Hampshire women, has found a way to incorporate sustainability into their business model. Andrea Knowles, Jane Marlow Cutter, Kara Stere, and Dannielle Sargent have come together with years of combined marketing experience to offer top-notch branding, messaging, content, and strategy services to their clients.

Marcom4 shares office space with RiverWorks Printing, a large-scale eco-friendly printing company based in Greenland, New Hampshire. In an industry known for excess waste, RiverWorks Printing provides customers with a full suite of eco-friendly options, from biodegradable banners and recyclable posters to banner stands made from bamboo. Although a majority of their work is done online, Marcom4 does their printing almost exclusively with RiverWorks. The Marcom4 team also designed RiverWorks’ new logo.

RiverWorks Printing is also a member of the Green Alliance. “When we heard about the Green Alliance from RiverWorks, we knew that we had to find a way to get involved,” explains Andrea Knowles, Director of Media Strategy.

adaptDESIGN Green Story: Redefining Green Architecture

By Theresa | May 8, 2014 | in

AdaptDESIGN, of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, takes pride in bringing sustainability into every aspect of their architecture firm. Robert Cook and Paul Fowler, cofounders of Adapt, specialize in designing beautiful homes that complement the land they are built on. By focusing on three fundamental aspects of architecture - creative practicality, durability, and regionalism – Adapt designs homes that please environmentalists and architecture lovers alike.

For Cook and Fowler, creative practicality comes with constant assessment of the size, scale, and program of each project. By considering how a building will naturally fit into a site, Adapt can maximize energy efficiency. For example, many homes designed by Adapt have large southerly windows that take advantage of passive solar heating. According to Cook, creating energy-efficient buildings is not a far fetched dream; “it’s just good design. We design homes that fit the build site.”

Smuttynose Brewing Company Opens New Location

By Madelaine | May 8, 2014 | in

By Madelaine Swymer
Green Alliance Staff Writer

HAMPTON — Smuttynose Brewing Company is excited to announce the grand opening of its new location at Towle Farm in Hampton, N.H.! This historic site is now home to Smuttynose’s new energy-efficient headquarters and brewery. Doors open on May 31, with public tours running from 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. After opening day the brewery will resume its normally scheduled summer tour hours.

“Our entire staff is so excited to open the new brewery to the world,” said Peter Egelston, Founder and President of Smuttynose, “but closing Heritage Avenue is bittersweet. It’s been our home for nearly 20 years and we hope to send it off in style.”

Regular tour hours are winding down at the Portsmouth location. But there’s still a chance to tour the original brewery one last time! This weekend Smuttynose will host an open house during its regular tour hours. There will be no other tours in the two weeks following the last open house, as the tour staff will be setting up the new tasting area and retail shop at Towle Farm.

That Great Smell of Mulch is Here Thanks to Cornerstone Tree Care

By Amanda | May 7, 2014 | in

BY HERB PERRY
Green Alliance Correspondent

PORTSMOUTH — “The first day of spring is one thing, and the first spring day is another. The difference between them is sometimes as great as amonth,” American poet Henry van Dyke once noted — though he could have added “or longer.”

Typical April weather in Northern New England only hints at spring now and again, but now that it’s May, spring seems to have arrived, and gardeners should be thinking of, well, their gardens. “In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt,” Canadian poet Margaret Atwood wrote. In that vein, a Portsmouth company, Cornerstone Tree Care, offers local gardeners organic, locally made, recycled mulch that plants and flowers love.

Harbor Eyecare Center: Tom Ford Styles Show

By Patrick | May 7, 2014 | in

Since the dawn of spectacles, eyewear has come quite a long way in terms of fashion. From the highly distinguished and aristocratic monocle to the first pair of bifocals, glasses and more specifically frames have become increasingly customizable to each and every individual.

Join Harbor Eyecare Center on May 22 as they celebrate the stylistic side of vision while introducing their new Tom Ford frames line.

Harbor is excited to offer the work of a designer as prestigious as Tom Ford. His work can be seen on the faces of many celebrities including Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, and even Kim Kardashian.

In addition to refreshments, the Portsmouth-based eye care provider will be offering a free frame giveaway and other exclusive deals throughout the evening. Don’t miss your chance to check out the Tom Ford Style Show and get to know your local sustainable eye care professionals!

For more information about the show, click here.

Business Partner Gundalow Cruise Contest

By Sam | May 7, 2014 | in

This summer, we're holding a contest for our Business Partners, where the winner gets a private charter on the Gundalow. Last year, Ecotech Pest Control and The Green Cocoon tied for the crown, and they had a great time. Now it's time to do it all over again!

Here are the rules:
Starting today through August 1st, Green Alliance Business Partners that talk us up and lay the groundwork for a potential new Business Partner, and then follow up with an email introduction to Sam or Sarah, will get a point. On the 1st of August, the Business Partner with the most qualified referral points will receive a free private cruise with the Gundalow Company.

The Business Partner that facilitates the most introductions between the GA and potential new Business Partners will receive a free Gundalow cruise that charters up to 40 of their friends, staff, clients, or guests of choice!

NHBSR Spring Conference

By Amanda | May 7, 2014 | in

What makes a business socially responsible? Some believe responsibility lies only to those economically benefitting from the business. Others believe social responsibility goes much further and the business is responsible for all actions that impact the environment and the community. New Hampshire Businesses for Social Responsibility (NHBSR) annual spring conference attempts to bring this discussion to life

Seth Goldman is the founder and so-called “Tea-EO” of Honest Tea and will be the keynote speaker at the conference joined by other industry leaders. The conference will take place at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord, NH on May 12 from 8 to 4.

NHBSR Spring Conferences address issues around sustainable operations, community outreach and engagement, socially responsible and financially beneficial workplace practices, starting green teams, engaging employees in sustainability efforts and more. These annual conferences are designed to be all-encompassing and offer attainable ideas to organizations at all levels of sustainability. These annual conferences attract everyone on the business spectrum from the corporate world to the non-profit world. As well as students interested in social responsibility and employees looking for tools to engage management.

NHBSR is the business organization driving the social responsibility agenda here in New Hampshire. The Green Alliance often collaborates with NHBSR and will have an informational booth at the conference, so make sure to stop by and say hi! Let's get the discussion rolling on social responsibility!

Seacoast Gardening Club on the Cutting Edge of Sustainability

By Ali | May 7, 2014 | in

By Michael McCord
Green Alliance Correspondent

PORTSMOUTH – An upcoming meeting of the Piscataqua Garden Club will have a very green theme.

The May 13 event will include presentations from three business partners of the Green Alliance, the Portsmouth organization that connects green-driven consumers with more than 100 green-minded businesses. The unique meeting was organized by the conservation committee of the Piscataqua Garden Club and will take place at Service Credit Union in Portsmouth. The three Green Alliance presenters will be Site Structures, EcoTech Pest Control Services, and Green Maids.

“This is part of our mission as an organization,” said Deb Chag, co-chair of the club’s conservation committee. The Piscataqua Garden Club was founded in 1926 and boasts a membership ranging from Biddeford, Maine to Hampton, New Hampshire. The Green Alliance presentations, Chag explained, will be an environmental education platform to better inform members on conservation issues.

Guest Blog: Divest or Engage? SRI Mutual Funds Debate Best Way to Tackle Fossil Fuels

By Madelaine | May 7, 2014 | in

The Guest Blog below is from our friends at Progressive Asset Management, Inc. PAM is an independent full-service investment brokerage firm that specializes in socially responsible investing. This article from its spring newsletter discusses current debate on the best way to tackle Fossil Fuels.

The launch of the Fossil-Free campaign in 2008 by Bill McKibben and 350.org --calling for the divestment of the “Top 200” publicly-traded energy companies based on estimated carbon reserves in the ground -- has divided the socially responsible mutual fund industry into essentially two camps. Both sides have the same goal of weaning the world from CO2 producing fossil fuels in favor of cleaner alternative energies. But they differ on their approach to forcing big oil to change.

On the one side is the “Total Divestment” camp comprised of SRI mutual funds that embrace 350.org’s call for fossil-free investing -- and even take it one step further, eliminating all fossil fuel companies from their portfolios, including coal, oil, natural gas, pipelines and energy service companies. Leading proponents of this fossil-free group include the Green Century funds, Portfolio 21, and Shelton Green Alpha Fund.

Bowl for Kids' Sake

By Kyle | May 6, 2014 | in

Join Big Brothers and Sisters of the Greater Seacoast at their event Bowl for Kids’ Sake. Bowl for Kids' Sake is a fun and easy way for you and your company, friends, or family to support the life-changing work of Big Brothers Big Sisters. If you care about kids and want to have fun with your friends, then Bowl for Kids' Sake is for you!

Bowl for Kids' Sake is Big Brothers Big Sisters largest national fundraiser, raising over $20 million annually for children in need across the country. Because of Bowl for Kids' Sake, more Bigs and Littles can be paired up, more friendships can be created and improved outlooks on life can be started. Donations will go towards matching children who are on our waiting list with a caring, supportive mentor, background checks, activities and ongoing support.

Green Alliance seeks a Freelance Sustainability Certifier!

By Sam | May 6, 2014 | in

Are you well versed in sustainability and looking for an opportunity to put it to work and get hands on experience? Are you an outgoing, mature person who likes to talk to and meet other people? Do you have a way with words? Are you a graduate student, or recently graduated?

If this sounds like you, then the Green Alliance has the perfect freelance opportunity!

The Green Alliance strives to increase the profits of businesses that have the least impact on the environment and to encourage more sustainable business practices through “Business-to-Business” mentoring and strength in partnership. We also want to educate and influence the public to consider the goods and services they use in their own communities and to encourage more sustainable choices.

Eco Firebox Efficiently Warms Your Home

By Kyle | May 6, 2014 | in

Eco Firebox’s affordable, sustainable, and efficient heating system makes curling up by the fire on a cold day that much better. In 2010 Les Veilleux, owner of Eco Firebox, developed a masonry heater that is as green as it is attractive and functional. A masonry heater is more efficient than a traditional fireplace, burning gas emitted from the timber as opposed to solely burning the wood. Where as a traditional fireplace uses only 20 percent of its heat potential, masonry heaters burn the wood's emitted gas utilizing 98 percent. Heat cubes can also be used in the stoves. These heat cubes allow greater design possibilities, offer higher BTU output and distribute heat evenly as it travels upwards from the stove. Veilleux developed the heaters to be efficient and health conscious by eliminating the release of harmful chemicals like carbon dioxide, creosote and tar typical of wood stoves and fireplaces.

Our Town Energy Alliance Aims to Lower Individuals Fuel Payments

By | May 6, 2014 | in

BY HEIKKI (HERB) PERRY
Green Alliance Correspondent

BARNSTEAD, N.H. — Most people view their home-heating fuel options like they do a nightmare, feeling vulnerable to the vagaries of a volatile energy market, fearing they will be ripped off when they do buy fuel, therefore not knowing what to do.

By hitching their wagons to Our Town Energy Alliance (OTEA), however, consumers no longer face this challenge by themselves. Guided by a commitment to help New Englanders save money while reducing their environmental footprint, OTEA has grown from a small contingent of 75 members to a vibrant organization of roughly 10,000 in a little more than a decade.

From researching pricing plans to find optimal savings to offering a range of products designed to maximize energy efficiency to using only trusted fuel-oil vendors, OTEA is a trusted third-party voice that does the homework for the consumer.

An Acorn Community

By Ali | May 6, 2014 | in

The Acorn School found its home in 1975, when Rebecca Shepard purchased a small plot of land in Stratham, NH. It wasn’t long after that the school was bursting with life. Accommodating children ages three to six, students learn and experience far more than the average kindergartener. A typical school day revolves around exploring nature trails as well as outdoor classrooms with environmentally progressive ideas. The class sizes are small; allowing a one to six teacher-to-child ratio, creating an atmosphere better suited to each individual’s unique learning experience.

Acorn has aimed its teaching style at diversity to give their students the availability to learn all aspects of the creative curriculum. “We are embellishing on the founding roots of the school,” explains Director Sue Bendroth. “Essentially our programs teach students to think about what they are using, how they are using it, and how they might use it in the future.”