One Warm Day

Mar 27, 2015

Published in New Hampshire Business Review

By Kristyn Lak Miller

Spring Cleaning is the annual ritual of thoroughly cleaning a house after the winter season. Yet using chemical-laden conventional cleaning products does more harm than good, especially if there are children in the house.

Products like laundry detergent and liquid cleaners for floors, sinks and stovetops are known health hazards, which is why most include a “Keep Out of Reach of Children” warning label. Yet keeping these common cleaners out of children’s reach may not be enough.

According to a series of studies, exposure to the chemicals found in common household cleaners – even exposure through the skin or respiratory tract – is linked to childhood maladies like autism, asthma, allergies, ADHD and cancer. And exposure can start before a child is born. A recent study in PLOS One journal reveals pregnant women with high levels of exposure to commonly used chemicals di-nbutyl phthalate and di-isobutyl phthalate gave birth to children with significantly lower IQ’s; according to the study, by age 7, children with higher exposure levels had IQ’s more than six points below children with lower exposure levels.

But there is an increasingly large consumer migration away from these types of products and services in favor of safer, more environmentally conscious alternatives.

Click here to read the full story on New Hampshire Business Review. 

For Building Owners Who Made Energy Efficient Upgrades 2014 Was a Good Year

Mar 26, 2015

Originally published on Seacoast Online. 

By Craig Robert Brown

HAMPTON FALLS – If you’re a business or apartment complex owner who made substantial energy efficiency upgrades to your property last year, you will be glad to learn 2014 was a good year for reducing your taxes. On December 16, 2014, Congress passed the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014, which reinstated the Energy Policy Act of 2006. The reinstated act enables tax incentives for businesses and building owners for 2014. President Obama signed the bill when it was presented to him.

Congress passed the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014, which reinstated the Energy Policy Act of 2006. The reinstated act enables tax incentives for businesses and building owners for 2014. TIPA reenacted

a 50 percent bonus depreciation for energy efficient commercial buildings, and energy deductions.
What does that mean for business owners? According to Jeff Hiatt of Performance Business Solutions, this could be a substantial benefit to your business.

The Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014 (TIPA) reenacted a 50 percent bonus depreciation for energy efficient commercial buildings, and energy deductions. This allows building owners to take up to $1.80 per square foot for efficiency upgrades they made during 2014. Apartment building owners could get up to a $2,000 per unit Federal Tax Credit.

Why was the Energy Policy Act ever “off the table?” It’s a puzzling question that started at its outset in 2006. At that time, the law stated that if a building owner made efficiency upgrades to buildings, he or she could take either a deduction or tax credit for having made that improvement to the building. That policy was in place until December 31, 2013 when it was supposed to “sunset,” or disappear. However, this past December, Congress decided to act as if the sunset never occurred and reenacted the policy.

To read the full story on Seacoast Online, click here. 

Favorite Foods’ recipe for success

Mar 25, 2015

Originally posted on New Hampshire Business Review.

By Michael Mccord

Chris Barstow has a philosophy that has served his company well for more than a quarter-century: “If we help our customers do more business and become more profitable, then we will reap the benefits.”

Barstow is president and CEO of Favorite Foods, the Somersworth-based restaurant supply company that has carved a profitable niche in a highly competitive industry that includes giants such as Sysco, US Foods and Performance Food Group.

With annual revenue of about $37.5 million, the 53-employee revenue firm provides supplies to local, independent restaurants as well as some state prisons, military installations, private schools and food manufacturers.

Barstow, a Pennsylvania native, was working in Silicon Valley as a high-tech distributor for Texas Instruments when his brother, Jeff, founded the company. When he went on a Maine vacation to visit his brother, he was already at a career crossroads.

Read the fully story on New Hampshire Business Review here.

Green alliance: Will Lange defies age on ‘Windows to the Wild’

Mar 25, 2015

Originally published in The New Hampshire. 

By Mike Bizier 

Aside from UNH, Durham is also home to the only locally owned, state-wide public television station in New Hampshire: New Hampshire Public Television (NHPTV). NHPTV boasts a wide variety of educational and environmental themed programming including the award-winning program “Windows to the Wild.”

“Windows to the Wild” follows 80-year-old outdoor adventurer Willem Lange as he hikes, paddles, and climbs his way across New England. With a gray beard, years of experience and friendly demeanor, Lange is the embodiment of the classic American folk hero.

Born in Albany, New York in 1935, Lange was instilled with a strong sense of exploration and discovery from an early age.  

To read the full story in The New Hampshire, click here

Meet a Green Alliance Business: Progressive Asset Management Group

Mar 23, 2015

Originally posted on Seacoast Online.

What: Progressive Asset Management Group (PAM Group), the SRI division of Financial West Group, is a nationwide network of financial advisers who work with clients who are interested in having their wealth and investments follow their values. Locally, this group includes the firm's Seacoast branch in Newmarket, which opened in 1996 and is run by locals Hunter Brownlie and Mike Smith.

The PAM Group’s local financial advisers provide clients with environmentally and socially responsible investment strategies that include stocks, bonds, mutual funds, portfolio management, retirement planning, education funding and more; all with an eye on great returns and matching an investor's values with their financial portfolio.

One area in which PAM Group strives to educate clients, and the public, is on divesting from companies profiting off climate change, and reinvesting money into companies committed to reducing its negative impact. Financial advisers offer opportunities to invest in clean energy generation, energy efficiency, energy storage, agriculture, green building and more as a way to transition to a more sustainable economy.

Read the full story on Seacoast Online here.

Weather Change Can Impact Business

Mar 23, 2015

Originally published in the Portsmouth Herald and Seacoast Online.

By MJ Shoer

Last week, I had the pleasure of being part of a Weather Preparedness Forum held at the offices of The Green Alliance. Being concerned about sustainability and related environmental issues, the Green Alliance, together with the American Red Cross, the University of New Hampshire and my company, Jenaly Technology Group, hosted this important forum.

This winter is a great example of what the future may hold as a result of climate change. Even though this winter is considered to have been another warm one, our region saw some of the heaviest snowfalls we have seen in years. Despite the challenges of ice dams and high drifts, the region has come through the winter fairly well, all things considered. We did not suffer widespread power outages or roof collapses, despite several that did occur. Businesses specifically, seemed to come through better than several homes and apartment complexes from what I am hearing.

While we should be relieved, it should also be a very stark example that we need to be prepared for worse. We were lucky this winter, we may not be next, or during hurricane season. Just yesterday I saw a report that a melting glacier in Antarctica may cause an 11-foot rise in sea levels. That is very significant and could lead to considerable encroachment and not just at the shoreline. Water tables may rise, leading to flooding or weakening of underlying earth that could impact buildings and roads.

Rea the full story on Seacoast Online here.

Proulx Oil Expands into Manchester

Mar 19, 2015

Originally published on Portsmouth Patch.

By Michael McCord

Newmarket-based Proulx Oil & Propane has expanded its market share into central New Hampshire by acquiring a long-established Manchester company.

The acquisition in early February by Proulx Oil & Propane of J. A. Bourque & Sons came after discussions between the companies began in the fall of 2014. Proulx Oil & Propane President James Proulx said his company’s third acquisition is a strong one because both companies have established brand names and high marks for customer service. Additionally, both companies are family-owned with deep roots in the two regions.

According to Proulx the acquisition made sense both in brand and service, especially given his company’s work along the Route 101 corridor.

To read the full story on Portsmouth Patch, click here.  

Businesses Come Together at Weather Preparedness Forum

Mar 19, 2015

Originally published on Portsmouth Patch and Seacoast Online.

By Mike Bizier

PORTSMOUTH- If this past winter has taught us anything it’s that weather is getting more and more extreme. Last Thursday, the Green Alliance hosted Weathering Change, a business preparedness forum held at their office of 75 Congress St, Suite 304, uniting over 30 businesses to tackle the issue of resiliency in the face of harsh environmental conditions brought about by climate change.

The event was put into motion by Roger Stephenson from the New Hampshire Coastal Adaptation Workgroup, an organization aimed at educating the public on resources they can use in the event of an environmental disaster and Marsha Haines from the Vermont and New Hampshire branches of the American Red Cross. The two organizations collaborated with the Green Alliance which helped to tap in to its community of sustainable entrepreneurs and green-minded citizens.

The event itself began with a brief introduction by Stephenson followed bypresentations from various guest speakers. These speakers were from a wide range of business backgrounds including MJ Shoer of Jenaly Technology Group, Ray Dube from Coca Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England (CCNNE) and Clark James from the Smuttynose Brewing Company. Each of these unique guests brought a different perspective and approach to this very serious issue. 

Read the full story on Portsmouth Patch here.

Read the full story on Seacoast Online here

This Printing and Transportation Partnership Is Really Green

Mar 19, 2015

Originally published in Business NH Magazine. 

By Kristyn Lak Miller

Each day, roughly 1,785 people rely on COAST’s fleet of 24 buses and trolleys in Greenland to get where they’re going throughout the Seacoast region. And the Cooperative Alliance for Seacoast Transportation (COAST) works with RiverWorks Printing for much of its strategic, and sustainable, printing needs.

“As a sustainable transportation provider, it’s very meaningful for us to work with like-minded businesses that are focused on increasing the sustainability of their business operations,” says Rad Nichols, executive director for COAST. “RiverWorks is a reliable and professional partner. They’ve been very accommodating in meeting our unique printing and installation needs, and they stand behind their work, which has been of the highest quality.”

Greenland-based RiverWorks Printing was founded in 2009 and has worked on many projects with ATA (Alternate Transit Advertising), which focuses on exterior bus advertising aimed at helping raise money for 13 public transit systems throughout New England, including COAST. It was through ATA, that RiverWorks was introduced to COAST. Specializing in large-format commercial printing for its local and national clients, RiverWorks has forged a unique, green niche to provide a full suite of eco-friendly, sustainability-driven options, from biodegradable banners and recyclable posters to fully recyclable banner stands. 

To read the full story in Business NH Magazine, click here

Meet a Green Alliance business

Mar 18, 2015

Originally published on Seacoast Online. 

Who: Newmarket Dental

What: Referred to as "New Hampshire's Greenest Dentist," Dr. Nate Swanson, owner of Newmarket Dental, earned the distinction when he first designed his business to create as little waste as possible.

From there he began looking at the actual tools of the trade; the toothbrushes, floss, seat covers and other dental implements. He replaced traditional toothbrushes with 100 percent recyclable and bio-degradable ones (made from recycled Stonyfield yogurt cups); switched from plastic seat covers to corn-based slip covers; changed from conventional plastic cups to corn-based cups and switched to floss with a recyclable container. He also gave his offices a green renovation including: LED lighting, eco-wool upholstery, low or no-VOC paints, end and conference room tables made from a locally sourced, naturally felled maple tree, as well as countertops and cabinets from Corian, a longer-lasting material than wood or plastic. He also added motion-sensing LED lights, a recycled synthetic floor that looks like aged wooden boards and LEED-certified cabinetry in the examination rooms. Dr. Swanson exhaustively researched the products before incorporating them into his renovation to ensure they met his high eco-friendly standards. Newmarket Dental also uses digital records, X-rays and recently incorporated digital health histories, filled out by clients on an iPad, in lieu of paper.

Read the full story on Seacoast Online here.