News : February 2013

RAM Printing FSC Story

Feb 27, 2013

While the paper industry gets a bad rap from critics who say its products equal “environmental degradation,” for those businesses associated with the Forest Stewardship Council, the industry is actually at the forefront of encouraging sustainability.

And an innovative, environmentally aware New Hampshire printer has blazed the trail to make Forest Stewardship Council certification of printing products the standard that others who care about the planet emulate

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an independent, member-led, non-profit organization that assures environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically prosperous forest management through independent third-party certification and labeling of wood, paper and other forest products, according to the FSC US Web site

For more information click here

Environmental roots run deep for AutoBeGreen owner

Feb 26, 2013

From Exeter News-Letter

By Jim Cavan

The old joke goes that if you remember the 60s, you weren't really there.

Glenn Johnson, owner of the Exeter-based AutoBeGreen, a company specializing in unique green automotive and small engine products, remembers them well — so well, in fact, that they continue to inspire his life, his family and his business even today.

Growing up in Wayland, Mass., Johnson recalls vividly the examples of conservation and frugality imparted by his grandfather — the near total eschewing of restaurants, the veritable basement hardware store of bolts and washers, the steadfast refusal to waste even the most seemingly trivial wares.

"My grandfather prided himself on being the cook of the family — he never wanted to eat out," recalls Johnson. "That's just how he was raised, and those values just became part of our household."

For the full story from the Exeter News-Letter click here.


Huge Wind System Online Thanks to Seacoast Company

Feb 22, 2013

From Portsmouth Patch and Exeter Patch

By Jim Cavan

With the use of wind power continuing to grow, it’s no surprise that the tri-bladed turbines peppering an increasing swath of the American landscape have become the supermodels of green growth – the sky-swept arms and glistening towers appear tailor made for the camera’s lens.

But seldom is attention given to the green cutting edge’s more hidden inner workings, and the tools and technologies that make it all possible.

Take the dual wind turbine system recently put online in Gloucester, Massachusetts just a few months back. For all its outward grace and power – and at roughly 400 feet tall and 4-megawatts, there are plenty of both – the system wouldn’t have been possible without a high-tech data communications system provided by Portsmouth’s own TVC Systems.

For the full story from the Portsmouth Patch, click here!
For the full story from the Exeter Patch, click here!

Green Tips from Rockingham Electric Supply Co.

Feb 22, 2013

This week's Green Tips come from Rockingham Electric in Newington, which offers a wide range of lighting products and accessories.

1. CFLs: You may not know them by name, but those swirly light bulbs that remind you of soft-serve ice cream are called CFLs and are the best bulbs for your home or office lighting. Even though they cost a little more than incandescent bulbs, they use about a quarter as much energy and last around 10,000 hours longer.

2. If a CFL breaks, you can clean it up. Be sure to wear gloves and a protective mask. Sweep all the dust into a sealed container using a wet paper towel. Turn off the central air for 15 minutes, and take the container to your recycling center.

3. Materials: Eco-friendly bulbs are great, but they can be even better when used in eco-friendly lamps and light fixtures. To find sustainable lamps and fixtures, look for ones that are made with natural, recycled or reused materials.

For the entire article, Click Here!


Green Tips from Lynne Ganley

Feb 22, 2013

This week's Green Tips come from Lynne Ganley, a locally based independent Arbonne representative.

1. Use plant-based personal care products. Plants are bio-identical to the human body, meaning the body recognizes plants as being like itself. When you use plant-based products, the body knows exactly how to use and assimilate the ingredients, whereas synthetic ingredients can clog pores or cause unpleasant reactions.

2. Know your ingredients. Stay away from mineral oil, petroleum and petrolatum in your personal-care products — all are forms of gasoline or fuel, and they're in 98 percent of all personal-care products and cosmetics. In fact, petroleum jelly is a by-product of making gasoline.

3. Use personal-care products that aren't tested on animals or contain animal products or by-products. Road kill, diseased farm animals, euthanized pets, the meat that didn't sell at the grocery store, old restaurant grease — are all used as ingredients in personal-care products and cosmetics. Animal or animal by-product ingredients are not beneficial to humans in any way.

To read the full article, Click Here!


Bring on the rain

Feb 22, 2013

February 22, 2013

From Portsmouth Herald

By Jim Cavan

The last two decades have seen a growth in the eco-conscious application known as the rain garden.

Rain gardens are planted depressions that help filter elements and contaminants out of water runoff from man-made surfaces, curbing the amount of pollutants reaching aquifers, rivers and other water sources.

Since their first mass application in the early 1990s, rain gardens have become an increasingly common avenue for property owners dealing with excess rainwater. They are cheaper than more complex storm-management systems and lend desirable aesthetics.

"The main purpose of the rain garden is to effectively treat and purify the water before it goes back into the aquifer, and to hold off surges of water from storms," said Shannon Alther of Portsmouth-based TMS Architects. "But the vegetation itself can also add a nice visual element to the site, and can help attract things like birds and butterflies that can add to its look and feel."

Lately, TMS has been part of a number of residential and commercial projects involving rain gardens.

In 2011, TMS partnered with Altus Engineering of Portsmouth to lend its design expertise in the construction of a large rain garden at Regeneration Park, a business campus located at the former Toyota dealership on Route 1 near the Portsmouth/Rye border. Thanks in part to the rain garden, the park reduced the amount of pavement by 16,000 square feet, while allowing filtered water back in to the wetlands next to the complex.

To read the whole story, Click Here!

Husband-Wife Chiropractic Team Helps Families Adjust to Healthy Lifestyle

Feb 20, 2013

From the Portsmouth Patch

By Heikki Perry

SOUTH BERWICK, Maine — It’s “all in the family” for a well-respected chiropractic practice, not only because it now features a husband-wife doctor team priding itself on valuing its own family, but also because it transfers that attitude to its patients and their families.

Dr. Briana Duga — or Dr. Bri, as she likes to be called — joined her husband, Dr. Seth LaFlamme, on Feb. 4 at Great Works Chiropractic & Wellness, 235 Main Street, to be a practicing chiropractor intensely interested in taking care of families and children, her biggest interest being pregnancy, infants and toddlers.

“We’re very excited,” says Dr. LaFlamme — or Dr. Seth, as he likes to be called. They’re both eminently qualified in treating adults. But treating children is a special area of interest they both have, and that’s why they’re both undergoing advanced training in that treatment area.

“She has a real way with kids, and having undergone three pregnancies herself, she’s really great at working with woman and pregnant moms and motherhood,” Dr. Seth said about Dr. Bri.

To read the entire story in the Patch, click here!

Electrolyzed Water Revolutionizes Housekeeping and Food Service

Feb 20, 2013

From the Portsmouth Patch

By Heikki Perry

LYNNFIELD, Mass. — A former journalist and a former computer security executive turned entrepreneurs have transformed an interest in science and the environment into selling cutting-edge cleaning and sanitizing products that work better, cost less and are safer than their chemical counterparts, helping Mother Earth in the bargain.

Patrick Lucci and Gerard Kiley, managing partners of Massachusetts-based Lynnfield Green Technologies, sell the Toucan - ECO, an “electrolyzer” that produces a harmless yet effective cleaning and sanitizing solution created from table salt, tap water and a small charge of electricity. The tabletop device takes four minutes to activate 1.5 liters of a cleaning and sanitizing solution that is electrolyzed water.

Lynnfield also sells the Toucan Mini, which does the same thing in the same way as the Toucan - ECO, only it makes a smaller quantity of electrolyzed water, and Lynnfield sells industrial-size sanitizers to hotels, restaurants and large institutions.

For the full story in the Patch, click here!

Academy to Instruct ABCs of Sustainability for Businesses

Feb 20, 2013

From the Londonderry Patch and the Concord Patch

By Heikki Perry

A human resources company is offering classes at its Sustainability Academy designed to guide small- and mid-size businesses through the process of getting sustainability started and implemented in their organizations.

The Sustainability Academy is a three-class program that helps businesses start with sustainability in a very practical way. Each is a stand-alone class, and together they give small- and mid-size business owners the right amount of knowledge and tools to start a sustainability program at their company. After each three-hour class, participants will have an action plan in hand that they can implement in their workplace. And two weeks after each class, participants return to the Sustainability Academy to share the results with their classmates.

The Sustainability Academy is the brainchild of Mirjam IJtsma, owner of Cultural Chemistry, a unique service that mimics a traditional human resources department but offers its services at a fraction of the typical cost. She started the Small Business Academy — which supports the Sustainability Academy — because there is no place in New England where small- and mid-size business owners can attend workshops that deliver hands-on, practical knowledge without either spending an arm and a leg or when just one or two people need to be trained.

“When meeting with other consultants in the sustainability area, we felt that this was specifically true when it came to training in the area of social responsibility and sustainability,” IJtsma says. “This is when we decided to join forces. We are very proud to have a solid faculty team that can support small businesses with direct feedback, coaching and their knowledge.”

To read the full story in the Londonderry Patch, click here!

To read the full story in the Concord Patch, click here!

Green on white Firms tackle winter clean-up without sacrificing environment

Feb 20, 2013

From Foster's Daily Democrat

By Heikki Perry

DOVER — As difficult as it was earlier in the week for crews to remove as much as 30 inches of snow in Seacoast towns, three area businesses took extra steps to ensure that in removing the snow they did not harm the environment.

Dover-based Wade Landscaping prides itself on being an innovative, environmentally conscious landscaping company, an ethos that carries over to its winter operations.

“We haul all snow we move to a designated snow storage area, said Brian Wade, owner of Wade Landscaping. “We do this in the spring. We can sweep a parking lot and dispose of the remains as hazardous materials. We also make sure that any snow that is stacked be kept away from waterways, drainage, etc., due to the presence of possible contaminants, which include oil and antifreeze. Of course all of our equipment runs on bio diesel and we have an anti-idling policy.”

Eliot, Maine-based Suntree Tree Healthcare, part of Piscataqua Landscaping Company, removes snow in southernmost Maine and across the border in New Hampshire in towns such as Dover. Manger Chris Kemp also employs green techniques to remove snow, but he does so, he said, with a caveat.

For the full story in Foster's, click here.

Gloucester erects 4-megawatt wind system thanks to help from Portsmouth company

Feb 20, 2013

From Seacoast Online

By Jim Cavan

With the use of wind power continuing to grow, it’s no surprise that the tri-bladed turbines peppering an increasing swath of the American landscape have become the supermodels of green growth – the sky-swept arms and glistening towers appear tailor made for the camera’s lens.

But seldom is attention given to the green cutting edge’s more hidden inner workings, and the tools and technologies that make it all possible.

Take the dual wind turbine system recently put online in Gloucester, Massachusetts just a few months back. For all its outward grace and power – and at roughly 400 feet tall and 4-megawatts, there are plenty of both – the system wouldn’t have been possible without a high-tech data communications system provided by Portsmouth’s own TVC Systems.

TVC, which specializes in high-tech information control systems designed to bolster energy efficiency and overall performance, provided what project manager Adam Sargent calls “communication architecture,” or the mechanisms necessary to tie the dual turbine into an electrical grid.

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

Forget about the Gym; UNH Community Embraces Yoga As Sustainable, Accessible and Affordable Fitness

Feb 18, 2013

From Exeter Patch

By Austin Sorette

These days college students are turning away from the traditional gym and looking for more stimulating, rewarding and sustainable options to stay physically fit. 

So it’s no surprise that one of the most popular modern trends is also one of the greenest forms of exercise.

If you're a college student, it can also be one of the most affordable as well.

Yoga stimulates the body, the spirit, and the mind. No wonder, then, that more and more young people are being drawn in by this ancient tradition.

“There is definitely something cool about yoga and how it looks and feels challenging.” says Lona Kovacs, owner of the Dover based Green Lotus Yoga Studio. “It's interesting to hear all of the things that make people walk through our door.”

To read the full story in Exeter Patch, click Here!

Local Architecture Firm Serves Sustainability Locally and Globally

Feb 15, 2013

From the Exeter and Portsmouth Patches

By Jim Cavan

For as well worn and bumper sticker-ready as it’s become, the mantra implies an unintentional duality counter to its very meaning: You can do one or the other, but attempting both would amount to tilting at windmills. become, the mantra implies an unintentional duality counter to its very meaning: You can do one or the other, but attempting both would amount to tilting at windmills.

Not if you’re Paul Fowler and Bob Cook, that is.

Despite having only recently launched their Portsmouth architecture firm, adaptDESIGN, Fowler and Cook’s involvement in two high-profile projects – one local, the other half a world away – is proof positive that giving back knows neither boundaries nor borders.

Back in October, Fowler received a call from a Cornell University representative seeking a green-minded design and architecture firm to help sponsor student efforts to construct a prototype for a new kind of sustainable housing unit in Nicaragua. The Cornell representative had gotten wind of adaptDESIGN by way of Green Alliance, the Portsmouth-based “green business union” that adaptDESIGN joined a little less than a year ago.

According to Sustainable Neighborhoods Nicaragua’s (SNN) website, Nicaragua is currently facing one of the most acute housing crises in the world, with nearly two out of every three citizens experiencing impediments of one kind or another in finding adequate housing. The goal of SNN is to construct long-term housing units that are affordable, sturdy, and sustainable as possible...

For the full story in the Exeter patch, Click Here!

For the full story in the Portsmouth patch, Click Here!

At Brixham, Green’s Next Generation is Growing Up Now

Feb 15, 2013

From the Portsmouth Patch

By Jim Cavan

In the last few years, with the visibility of environmental disasters ever more heightened, one refrain has risen – perhaps more than any other – above the discursive fray:

What about the next generation?

Its charges might only be 100 or so strong, but York’s Brixham Montessori School is more than doing its part to assure that theirs is a future as bright – and green – as possible.

Originally founded in Portsmouth in 1997 as the Orchard Montessori Friends School, in 2000 founder Alica Johnson-Grafe reopened the school under the Brixham banner. Since then, Brixham has grown from eight students to just under 100, and includes curricula for toddlers, preschoolers and early elementary students alike.

For the full story from the Portsmouth Patch, click here.

One Chiropractor’s Harrowing, Hopeful Journey

Feb 15, 2013

From Portsmouth Patch, Exeter Patch, and Seacoast Online

By Jim Cavan

Dr. Jessica Caruso didn’t go to Harvard Medical School, although she has read Gray’s Anatomy. She’s never directed an open-heart surgery, though numerous “Top Doctor” awards have graced her mantle.

There are few whose journey through the medical world have been more all encompassing – or more mettle testing – than Caruso’s. It’s a journey that’s taken her from death’s cusp to surgeon’s knife, from addiction to redemption and just about everywhere in between.

Today, Caruso oversees a 3,000 square-foot multi-faceted chiropractic center in Londonderry, a second “community chiropractic” office in Portsmouth, and a loving family that recently welcomed its latest addition – baby Jackson – into the fold.

For the full story from the Portsmouth Patch, click here.
For the full story from the Exeter Patch, click here.
For the full story from Seacoast Online, click here.

For Green Lotus, giving a part of the practice

Feb 12, 2013

From Seacoast Online

By Jim Cavan

Two weeks ago, a swell of over 200 yoga students filled the old wood-lined floors of The River Mill at Dover Landing for the Fifth Annual Yoga Mala. The goal: To complete 108 sun salutations – a foundational sequence of postures common in most traditional forms of yoga – in a little over two hours.

Some were novices; others had been practitioners for decades. But all of them came with a common purpose: to help raise money for two local nonprofits committed to helping families in need find warmth and nourishment in trying times.

This year’s Mala is expected to net in excess of $20,000 for H(EAT) – which looks to donate 10,000 gallons of heating oil and 10,000 meals annually – and SNAP (Supported Nutritional Agriculture Program), an organization seeking to make locally-grown produce and farmer’s markets eligible for various state and federal food voucher programs.

Click Here to read the full story in Seacoast Online!

GA to Host W.I.L.D. Center Family Field Trip

Feb 11, 2013

From Seacoast Blogs

By Tricia Dinkel

It’s getting W.I.L.D at the Green Alliance office! February marks the next installment of the Green Families Club Field Trip program, with an interactive, live animal show featuring the W.I.L.D Center & Zoological Park of New England.

On Wednesday, February 13th from 5pm – 6:30pm, Executive Director, Derek Small will offer families the W.I.L.D experience, and demonstrate how the programs benefit the mission of animal advocacy and rehabilitation of the W.I.L.D Center. Join us at the Green Alliance office in downtown Portsmouth for this specially designed program and personally meet local and exotic animals!

Space is limited. RSVP to with you member # and number of kids/adults attending.

For the full story, Click Here!

ReVision Energy Building Huge Solar Array

Feb 11, 2013

From the Exeter Patch

By Heikki Perry

NEW LONDON, N.H. — ReVision Energy of Exeter has partnered with Colby-Sawyer College to build one of the largest solar photovoltaic arrays in New Hampshire, initiating a significant step toward the college's long-term goal of becoming a carbon-neutral campus by 2050.

The installation of the 127 kilowatt solar array at Colby-Sawyer is second only to ReVision’s largest project, a 167 kilowatt solar array at Thomas College in Waterville, Maine. A solar photovoltaic array is comprised of silicon-based panels that convert sunlight into electricity. A total of 517 solar photovoltaic panels have been installed on the roofs of four campus buildings at no expense out of pocket to Colby Sawyer, offering electricity from the sun, more cost effectively than the traditional power company and fossil fuels can offer.

The system provides a visible manifestation of Colby-Sawyer's commitment to sustainability and an example of active renewable energy systems on campus. Over the 25-year warranty life of the panels, the system will generate more than 3.3 million kilowatt-hours bringing more than $435,000 of anticipated utility savings to the campus.

For the full story from the Patch, click here.

5 Green Tips

Feb 4, 2013

From the Portsmouth Herald

This week’s Green Tips come from Brian Yurick of Home Town Technology Consultants, an IT company based in Portsmouth.

1. Use your computer’s power-save settings. Unless you have very specific needs, there’s no reason for your computers to be running 24/7, especially at night.

2. Ask about upgrading your current computer rather than always getting the latest and greatest.

3. If you must get a new computer, donate or find a good use for your old computer. There’s no reason to send it to the landfill if a charity or nonprofit could use it. The Green Alliance at 75 Congress St. in Portsmouth hosts a free laptop recycling program via responsible recycler Metal Wave.

To read the full story, Click Here!

Some naturopathic care now covered by insurance

Feb 4, 2013

From the Portsmouth Herald

By Heikki Perry

 EXETER — A new law that took effect Jan. 1, but was already being implemented by three New Hampshire companies, requires insurers to provide coverage for services delivered by naturopathic doctors if those services would be covered when provided by other primary care providers. And that has put patients who qualify for the coverage in a better state of mind.

"Instead of paying an almost $200 bill, I had to pay a $20 co-pay in my last visit. It's amazing. It's a huge change," said Laura E. Mayer, a patient of Dr. Robyn Giard, a naturopathic doctor with a practice named Starry Brook Natural Medicine in Exeter.

Mayer is covered by Tufts Health Plan, which along with Cigna and United Healthcare had started covering patients even before the law officially went into effect. Blue Cross Blue Shield began implementing its coverage on Jan. 1.

 To read the full story in the Herald, click here.