News : July 2015

2015 Recycler of the Year Loudon Veteran Goes Above and Beyond for Recycling Success

Jul 29, 2015

Originally published on Seacoast Online.

By John Brescia

MANCHESTER- Every year, the Northeast Resource Recovery Association (NRRA) presents one recipient the Recycler of the Year award, in honor of Sami Izzo, a late member who was both known and loved by the organization for her contributions to recycling and waste management. The NRRA is an organization working throughout New England to provide information and assistance in waste reduction and recycling. It also serves to bring organizations and responsible businesses together to achieve each other’s green goals.

According to the NRRA, “this award is given to an individual who best combines the qualities of commitment, leadership, and enthusiasm in developing and sustaining an environmentally and financially sound solid waste management program.” On June 8, Steve Bennett, manager of the Loudon, N.H transfer station, was honored with the award at the NRRA’s 34th Annual Northeast Recycling Conference and Expo at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester.

“I am totally surprised. I did not expect it at all,” said Bennett. He has been with the Loudon transfer station for twelve years. Having retired from his previous occupation at the age of 50, Bennett was seeking temporary employment when he saw a job posting for the transfer station, and decided to give it a shot. “I was intrigued by the challenge,” Bennett recalls. After beginning his new job over a decade ago, he realized that there was a lot more to the NRRA than he thought. “The NRRA is the place to go if you have no market, no place to sell or ship recyclables.”

Read the full article on Seacoastonline.com.

Flexibility and Community Keep Classes Full for Local Fitness Businesses

Jul 28, 2015

Originally Published on Seacoast Online.

By Anne Twombly

The record breaking snowfall in New England this past winter makes outdoor summer fun all the more desirable to New Hampshire residents. While beaches, streets and restaurant patios welcome a flood of tourists and locals eager to get outside, Seacoast fitness businesses offer great variety and a welcome break from the summer heat.

Nationally, the fitness industry typically experiences a cyclical wane in class attendance during the summer. Yet three Seacoast businesses, Zev Yoga, Gateway Taiji and Integrated Fitness of Dover, keep their studios busy throughout the summer months with flexible schedules, special seminars and classes complimentary to outdoor summer fun.

Are Your Pets Ticked Off? Natural Repellants may be the answer to pest management.

Jul 28, 2015

Originally Published in Portsmouth Patch.

By Rich Collins

New England is graced with somewhat unusual climate conditions – harsh winters often followed by beautiful, somewhat dry spring. But with these weather patterns come an onslaught of biting insects – ticks in particular – that target pets and their owners across the East. It’s well known that ticks carry Lyme and other types of debilitating diseases, as they lie in wait on tall grasses readying themselves to hitch a ride on cats and dogs. Pet owners often have their dogs and cats vaccinated against ticks; however, the nightmarish insects can still travel into our homes via pets and feed on humans.

So what can homeowners do to protect their dogs and cats, as well as themselves? The first solution is to avoid grassy or wooded areas entirely. But during the summer months, it’s not feasible to avoid the outdoors throughout the seacoast and the Great Bay (a known tick hotbed) area.

Read the full story in Portsmouth Patch.

 

900 Degrees Makes Sustainability Work

Jul 27, 2015

Originally published in New Hampshire Business Review.

By Michael McCord

Priscilla Lane-Rondeau grew up on what she calls a “gentleman’s farm” in New Ipswich. It was there that she says she learned firsthand about the importance of sustainability and locally sourced agriculture – long before they became trendy concepts.

“We had five pigs, eight goats and five lambs – different animals all the time. I learned so much even if I didn’t realize it at the time,” said Lane-Rondeau, owner of 900 Degrees, the Neapolitan pizzerias in Manchester and Epping.

She says she learned habits about keeping waste to a minimum and practicing conservation as a way of life, and chose to go as green and sustainable as possible when she opened the first 900 Degrees in the Manchester Millyard in 2007.

“Customers want this and tell me so every day. They are not only happy that we are so involved in our communities, but they want the freshly sourced ingredients that we use for all our meals,” she said. “And you see it now in grocery stores with much larger organic sections than just a few years ago because customers are demanding it. Every time you go to a grocery store and put local, organic goods on the checkout counter or one of our customers eats a pizza or salad with ingredients from local farms, it’s a vote for sustainability.”

Read the full article at nhbr.com.

Local Golf Course Works to Protect Great Bay

Jul 27, 2015

Originally published in the Hampton Union.

By Rich Collins

NORTH HAMPTON - A joint conservation effort between Sagamore-Hampton Golf, the state Department of Environmental Services, and UNH has put one North Hampton golf company at the forefront of conservation of Great Bay.

Though it appears at times as no more than a mere trickle of water, Cornelius Brook is a small stream that flows quietly through the Sagamore-Hampton Golf course. Its significance lies in the fact that its ultimate destination is New Hampshire’s Great Bay, which has been succumbing to pollution pressures in recent times. The Great Bay is one of the most important estuaries in the country, and named as one of 28 US EPA, Estuaries of National Significance.

Cornelius Brook is perhaps no more important than any of the numerous tributaries that feed into the Great Bay, but thanks to a new joint project that is underway, the water that flows into the brook will be that much cleaner and free of dangerous fertilizers as it enters the larger Winnicut River on its way toward Great Bay and ultimately the Atlantic Ocean.

According to the state DES website, seven rivers in total carry pollution from 42 New Hampshire and 10 Maine communities into the Great Bay watershed, which comprises of 1,023 square miles. A 2013 State of Estuaries report shows the Great Bay is in trouble, resulting in 12 of 16 environmental indicators with negative or cautionary trends.

Read the full article at Hampton Union.

RiverWoods Draws Parallels with "Blue Zones"

Jul 27, 2015

Originally published in Fosters.

By Josh Rosenson

EXETER - Blue Zones have been identified by author Dan Buettner in the book "The Blue Zones" as areas where populations live longer and enjoy a superior quality of life into old age.

Several Blue Zones have been identified around the world such as Sardinia, Italy, and Okinawa, Japan, and the areas studied have been identified as sharing six specific characteristics that are believed to aid in the superior quality of life at an older age.

RiverWoods Continuing Care Retirement Community in Exeter, also shares many of these characteristics that are suggested to be linked with living longer and healthier in older age.

“RiverWoods is structured in a unique way,” said Cathleen Toomey, RiverWoods’ VP. “People join when they are independent and able to live on their own. They make their home here and gain friends. When and if they need another level of care they can transition to assisted living or skilled nursing, in a private room, with no limit in length of stay, and no increase in fee. Meanwhile, your community is here to support you. That is the extraordinary benefit of a CCRC.”

Read the full article on Fosters.com.

Seacoast Salutes Festival at Redhook to Honor Military

Jul 22, 2015

Originally published in the Portsmouth Herald.

More than 3,000 people are expected to attend Seacoast Salutes, a military appreciation day, Sunday, July 26 from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. on the grounds of Redhook Brewery at Pease International Tradeport.

The event will feature live music, a BMX stunt show, children's activities and a barbecue while honoring the men and women of the military and raising funds for the New Hampshire Air National Guard’s Chaplains Emergency Relief Fund and the New Hampshire Military Assistance Foundation. The show will be hosted by Greg Kretschmar from WHEB’s Greg and the Morning Buzz.

The festival will feature an all-day barbecue hosted by Foster’s Clambake and Catering.

Admission is $15 for the general public, $10 for veterans and free for all active duty military personnel and their families. Advance ticket sales available to the general public at www.SeacoastSalutes.com.

Seacoast Salutes is sponsored by Service Credit Union and Redhook Brewery.

Read the full story in the Portsmouth Herald.

Driving Change in Transportation

Jul 22, 2015

Originally published in the Portsmouth Herald.

By Anne Twombly

Any Seacoast local will tell you, parking in Portsmouth can be a challenge, especially among commuters who also cope with increases in gas prices. And with the city’s recent decision to build a new $23.2 million parking garage with funding in part from increased parking fees at meters and the High-Hanover garage, drivers are turning to different forms of transportation.

Local electric bike and scooter dealer, EZBikes and Scooters of Exeter has been meeting this growing demand for alternative transportation on the Seacoast.

After nearly 30 years of providing mobile electronic services through his business Autosounds of NH, Tom Hemenway, expanded his business six years ago to include electric bikes. One year later, he and his wife and co-owner Teresa Hemenway, added gas powered scooters to the mix.

Read the full story in the Portsmouth Herald.

Local Businesses Team Up to Reduce E-Waste

Jul 20, 2015

Originally published on Patch.com and Seacoast Online.

By Anne Twombly

PORTMOUTH – The fast pace of technological change coupled with the short lifespan of modern consumer goods leaves many individuals and businesses with obsolete electronics. These unwanted electronic goods, known as e-waste, are often carelessly discarded, causing an unwitting environmental and health threat. But two local businesses are coming together to bring awareness to this issue and offer a sustainable opportunity for retiring unwanted electronic goods.

On July 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., local e-cycler, MetalWave, is extending its electronic recycling services to the entirety of Pease Tradeport tenants and their employees mostly free of charge at Redhook Brewery.

To give some perspective as to the scope of this service to the community, the Tenants Association at Pease, or TAP, encompasses just under 100 businesses and approximately 6,000 employees – all of whom are eligible to participate in the July 21st e-cycle fest.

“After last year’s success,” said Jim Jubb, Business Development Manager at MetalWave. “We’re pleased to partner with Redhook and TAP for the second annual event, we know this kind of thing is meaningful on so many levels.”

Readh the full article on Patch.com and Seacoast Online.

Socially Responsible Investing Reaches New Asset High

Jul 15, 2015

Originally published in Seacoast Online.

By Michael McCord

The popularity of Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) for investors who want to express their progressive values has reached a new high.

According to the most recent trends report by The Forum on Sustainable & Responsible Investment (US SIF), the total of U.S. assets under management using SRI strategies dramatically increased by 76 percent from the period of 2012 to 2014. Overall, those SRI-strategy assets rose from $3.74 trillion at the beginning of 2012 to $6.57 trillion at the start of 2014.

The explosive growth of SRI-targeted investing does not surprise Mike Smith, the Newmarket-based representative for the Progressive Asset Management Group (PAM Group).

Read the full story in Seacoast Online.

Franklin is Ground Zero for NH Solar

Jul 14, 2015

Originally published in Business NH Magazine.

by Michael Mccord

If all goes as planned, the largest municipal solar project of its kind will go online in Franklin later this year.

The agreement between the city of Franklin and NhSolarGarden will lead to the development of portions of 40 acres of currently unused land and generate more than 10 megawatts of power annually. It could go online as early as September.

Franklin city councilor and former mayor Tony Guinta has a unique perspective. Guinta works at Nobis Engineering in Concord, which is handling the site development.

“Franklin has constantly been criticized for being a community that’s struggled finding an adequate tax base ever since the booming mill industry left in the 1970s and 1980s,” Guinta said. “Franklin is showing the region, the state, the country, and the world that large solar installations are economically viable. We don’t have to wait five years from now or 10 years from now.”

Read the full story in Business NH Magazine.

Tea Company Offers an Honest Alternative

Jul 14, 2015

Originally Published in Seacoast Online.

By Mark Quirk

For Seth Goldman, saving the environment and helping Americans become healthier has been a lifelong mission.

Goldman grew up in Massachusetts across the street from Paul Sabin, a childhood friend who became one of the nation’s most respected scholars of environmental history. While Sabin went into academia, Goldman pursued the entrepreneurial path when he launched a less sweet tasting alternative to the mass produced bottled beverages on the market.

That product is Honest Tea, a hand-plucked organic and Fair Trade Certified bottled iced tea. Goldman made it part of his company’s mission statement to seek to create organic beverages using honesty, integrity and sustainable practices to produce a product that doesn’t sacrifice taste.

Honest Tea and its bottler, Coca-Cola of Northern New England, want consumers to think differently about their selections.

Read the full story in Seacoast Online.

Solar Power Rising in N.H.

Jul 13, 2015

Originally published on Fosters and in the Portsmouth Herald.

By Morgan Palmer

A Stratham-based alternative energy company hopes to change New Hampshire's status as a solar energy laggard.
NHSolarGarden.com is working on building solar arrays all over the state that would create more solar energy in New Hampshire than all of the current solar energy projects combined.
Andrew Kellar, who founded NHSolarGarden.com in 2013, says the Granite State has been lagging in solar development in comparison to other states. New Hampshire, which currently has around 7 megawatts of solar energy installed state-wide, was ranked 33rd in solar development nationally by the Solar Energy Industries Association. In comparison, Massachusetts is ranked fourth in solar development nationally and has 308 megawatts of solar energy. Vermont is ranked 22nd in the country in solar development and has 79 megawatts of solar energy.
Development of solar energy now is crucial, said Kellar, as electric rates in the state are continuing to climb. New Hampshire has the eighth highest electricity rate in the country, and rates have increased around 7.9 percent in the last 11 years.

Read the full article on Fosters and on Seacoast Online.

Cruise the Piscataqua With the Isles of Shoals Steamship Company

Jul 13, 2015

Originally publsihed on Patch.com.

By Katelyn Monroe

PORTSMOUTH- With the month of July well underway, New England residents are flocking to the beach, lake house, favorite river spot, or just about anywhere else they can stay cool. A fun day on the water doesn’t have to come to an end at sunset, thanks to the Isles of Shoals Steampship Company’s cruises down the Piscataqua River.

This summer, the Isles of Shoals Steamship Company will host Reggae on the River each Wednesday night where guests will enjoy an evening of live reggae music and dancing on the newly renovated M/V Thomas Laighton. This two and a half hour cruise is the perfect way to relax after a stressful day at work, or an equally long day at the beach, and take in the sights of the Piscataqua River and harbor.

In addition to the Reggae Cruise, the Isles of Shoals Steamship Company offers party cruises, Portsmouth Harbor tours, and visits to Star Island and Isles of Shoals. They also offer private charters and event cruises; there truly is something for everything aboard the M/V Thomas Laighton, and Celia Thaxter.

Read the full article on Patch.com.

A Journey Home

Jul 8, 2015

Originally published in Seacoast Online.

By Ken Johnson

One snowy, slushy and rainy afternoon in late-March, Rob and Julia Moreau made the three hour trek from their North Adams, Massachusetts, home to Mary's Dogs Rescue & Adoption in Northwood, New Hampshire. Upon their arrival they were warmly met by Mary Doane, the owner of Mary's Dogs, who brought the Moreau's into a side room so that they could meet their new family member: Little Man, a corgi.

“We have three rescues," Julia Moreau said. “To me, most important is to help an animal. There are so many animals that need a good home and need a chance.”

The ASPCA estimates that 3.9 million dogs enter shelters nationwide yearly and that 31 percent of dogs that enter shelters nationwide are euthanized each year. Doane runs a rescue adoption for dogs in that she started in February 2011 due to the lack of support for dog adopters, vowing to start a community for them to connect with. Mary's Dog's seeks to find new permanent homes for dogs who have gone into shelters. Southern shelters are often overcrowded, raising the amount of dogs euthanized in that region. Doane works with several high-kill shelters in the south to help alleviate the overpopulation and reduce euthanizations.

Read the full story in Seacoast Online.

New England's Biggest Summertime Pest Meets Its Match

Jul 7, 2015

Originally Published in Seacoast Online.

By Craig Robert Brown

ELIOT, Maine – Rising from the backwoods and marshes, deer flies, horse flies and green-heads terrorize backyards and beach days, from the Cape up the coast of Maine, throughout the summer. But Tom Pray of Ecotech Pest Control Services in Eliot, Maine, developed a solution that could finally alleviate one of the summer’s biggest backyard woes. He calls it the Fly Cage, and he is giving one away this month to the first Sustaining Member of The Green Alliance.

“With the Green Alliance community, I’m essentially preaching to the choir,” says Pray about the like-minded businesses and individuals that make up the sustainable business and consumer union. “The Green Alliance has given a lot to my business in the form of education and exposure around issues of pest management in a safe and non-toxic way, and I want to give back with a free Fly Cage.”

Read the full story on Seacoast Online.

Eolian Renewable Energy Chief Executive Officer, Jack Kenworthy

Jul 6, 2015

Originally published in Foster's.

By Ken Johnson

PORTSMOUTH — Wind is a vast, natural, and renewable energy. Despite being used as a power source for centuries, it wasn't until 1888 that Charles Brush first harnessed its potential to create electricity.

Eolian Renewable Energy, in Portsmouth, carries on Brush's work on a much larger scale. Brush's first wind turbine powered one home. Eolian's current project, in Antrim, will power about 12,500 average New Hampshire homes when completed.

The Antrim Wind Project is a venture that Jack Kenworthy, CEO of Eolian, is incredibly proud of. Not just because of the clean, renewable energy that it will create for the state of New Hampshire, but also for the many other innovative elements built into the project including vast amounts of forestland that the project will permanently conserve.

“It's a project we believe is really the best sited wind project in the state of New Hampshire,” Kenworthy said. “It has enjoyed long standing support from the town of Antrim, which is difficult to achieve, and we are very proud of our ability to have garnered and maintained that support over so many years. And we continue to have a very strong and positive relationship with both the leadership and the residents of the town.”

Read the full article in Foster's.

Meet a Green Alliance Business: Proulx Oil and Propane

Jul 6, 2015

Originally published in the Portsmouth Herald.

For Newmarket's Proulx Oil and Propane, the goal was simple: offer an alternative fuel source to commercial vehicle operators to help reduce carbon emissions. Through Proulx Autogas, the company now converts vehicles to run on propane, a byproduct of natural gas processing that burns 70 percent cleaner than standard gasoline.

As more gasoline-powered vehicle's become propane-compatible, Proulx is determined to become the leading Autogas supplier in the region. Using the PRINS conversion system for vehicles, Proulx Autogas utilizes the same propane distributed through its home heating business.

To date, Proulx has helped outfit medium duty vehicles such as limousines and taxis, police cruisers, school buses, service vans and commercial lawn mowers and propane/diesel injection systems. The PRINS system, often referred to as the bi-fuel system, allows vehicles to run on both standard gasoline as well as propane, and allows drivers to switch between the two fuels while in operation without interruption.

Read the full article in the Portsmouth Herald.

Rejected Once, Regulators Decide Whether to Again Consider Antrim Wind Farm

Jul 6, 2015

Originally published on NHPR.

By Sam Evans-Brown

A wind farm that was rejected by a state panel in 2013 is asking for a re-hearing.

Antrim Wind is asking state regulators this week to take ultimate authority over whether the wind-farm gets built. Portsmouth-based Eolian Renewable Energy it has eliminated one turbine and shrunk a second from its initial 10-turbine proposal, and the new project is different enough that it should get a second hearing before the state.

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While the local board of selectman is in favor of the wind farm, the project faces from opposition from abutters and New Hampshire Audubon, which owns the Willard Pond Sanctuary.

The chair of the Antrim board of selectmen, Gordon Webber – who favors the proposal – says the changes were made to address concerns over visual impact that led the state’s Site Evaluation Committee to reject the project.

Read the full article on nhpr.org.

Local Insurance Company Focuses on Economic and Environmental Sustainability

Jul 2, 2015

Originally Published in Seacoast Online.

By Katelyn Monroe

PORTSMOUTH – Jon Merwin started his business by following in his father’s footsteps. A decade ago, Merwin was fresh out of college and set out to start his own insurance agency focused on providing reliable insurance and customer service to its clients. Today, not many insurance agencies are known for their sustainability efforts and community giveback. But in the seacoast, Merwin’s Portsmouth Atlantic Insurance (PAI), who celebrated their tenth anniversary in June, remains ahead of the industry.

Merwin graduated from the University of New Hampshire, and soon passed the Property & Casualty exam, licensing him to become an insurance agent. He began his career by opening a branch location in Laconia, New Hampshire under Insurance Express in June 2005 and was the sole employee for the company, sharing a small office space with another business.

Starting with a blank slate and no clients, Merwin worked his way up and began writing home and auto insurance for family and friends. As Merwin’s reputation grew, client referrals slowly trickled in. It wasn’t easy going in those early days, according to Merwin.

“Over the course of a few years I learned the ins and outs of the insurance agency business, often times by learning from my own mistakes,” he said.

That education, however, helped Merwin take the Laconia branch of Insurance Express to a new level. As he became more successful, Merwin decided to move forward and became independent of the company. With the help of his mother Cathy, who joined the business, and a new roster of employees, Merwin moved to the seacoast and opened Portsmouth Atlantic Insurance.

Read the full story in Seacoast Online.

 

Building 'High Performance'

Jul 2, 2015

Originally Published in New Hampshire Business Review.

By Michael Mccord

Ethan Korpi, co-founder of Eco Sound Builders in Portsmouth, has custom homebuilding in his DNA. Or at least it seems that way. His father, Roger, was a builder for decades before starting Eco Sound Builders with Ethan in 2007. The legacy of Roger’s work can be found throughout New Hampshire’s Lakes Region, while Ethan runs the southern division of the company, with partner, Peter Robie, creating a new legacy on the Seacoast.

What sets Eco Sound Builders apart, Ethan Korpi said, is the company’s drive to build homes that are as individually unique as they are environmentally responsible. According to Korpi, energy conservation and construction waste management are key elements for all their new home and restoration projects.

“We seek to create high-performance homes for the next generation of efficient energy use,” Korpi said. “We believe that homes new and old should stand for generations; to come and perform at the highest level of energy efficiency as possible.”

Not limited to new buildings, Eco Sound will renovate existing older structures to bring them up to the company’s high standards of performance. Recently, the company renovated an older building in Portsmouth’s historic South End, keeping within the city’s tight regulations for work on historic properties, while making the home green and energy efficient.

Read the full story in New Hampshire Business Review.

Big Solar Project Proposed For Franklin

Jul 2, 2015

Originally Published in the Concord Monitor.

By Susan Doucet

For the past half century, two plots of land along River Street in Franklin have been used to grow feed for Daniel Webster Farm. The land could soon have a new purpose – one that would usher in a new era for the city.

The land is among the sites of a major solar development, that if approved, would be larger than all of New Hampshire’s current installed capacity combined.

The seven community solar garden projects throughout the city would total 8.5 megawatts. That’s more than the total megawatts of residential and commercial solar projects installed across the Granite State in the past seven years. And it’s more than eight times the size of the state’s current largest solar development in Peterborough.

Andrew Keller of New Hampshire Solar Garden, the company responsible for the projects in Franklin, said each proposed project in Franklin is 1.2 megawatts, which is capable of powering about 150 homes.

New Hampshire has 8 megawatts of solar energy currently installed, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Community solar gardens allow for shared energy through group net metering, which is in place after the passing of a state law in 2013. Group net metering allows for the sharing of proceeds from surplus electricity generation among group members. The New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission was responsible for establishing rules to correspond with the law, which were finalized in January.

It has taken the last two years “to take it from a signed law to something that is functional in the marketplace,” he said.

“We’ve definitely had energy instability in our state,” Keller said. “This is one component to the solution we see.”

The community solar gardens and group net metering allow communities to generate a new source of income, utilize their land and create a new tax base.

Read the full story in the Concord Monitor