News : December 2015

Is the Christmas Goose Making a Comeback?

Dec 23, 2015

Sarah Brown, Director of the Green Alliance recently completed her second story on the rising popularity of the 'Christmas Goose' for National Geographic's 'The Plate'. 

A hundred years ago, a golden-browned goose was a familiar delicacy on December 25th. Scrooge thought it essential to add to poor Bob Cratchet’s table in A Christmas Carol, and a goose who lays golden eggs was a prize in the Jack In the Beanstalk story. But good luck finding one at your average American supermarket today.

The Christmas goose actually traces its roots back to the medieval European feast of Martinmas. St. Martin was revered in Roman times as a spiritual leader and patron of children and the poor. As legend goes, one evening, having learned of his consecration as Bishop, he hid in a barn to avoid what he saw as a title above his humble station, only to be revealed by the loud squawking of geese. Their punishment? Feast fare for centuries to come. But as farming life waned, so did the goose—an animal that requires a long maturation time, much grazing area and time and effort to cook. One New Hampshire farmer is working to bring them back.

Read the full story on The Plate

A Sustainable Approach to Golf Course Management

Dec 14, 2015

Originally published in the New Hampshire Business Review

The terms sustainability and golf don’t easily mix well. Golf courses have been known for decades for their excessive use of water and pesticides to create pristine green playing conditions. But Richard Luff, the president and co-owner of Sagamore Hampton Golf Club in North Hampton, is part of a family tradition stretching back to the late 1920s that set itself part – so much so that Luff co-authored book on using ecologically sound methods pioneered by his father Peter.

Global Warming Pushes Maple Trees, Syrup to the Brink

Dec 2, 2015

Sarah Brown, Director of the Green Alliance recently completed a story on climate change and its impact on the maple syrup industry in the Northeast for National Geographic's 'The Plate'. Check out the full story on 'The Plate'.

The polar bear is a powerful symbol of the effects of climate change in the Arctic. Here in New England, our symbol may soon be the sugar maple tree. Tapped for syrup for centuries and famous for its fall foliage, the sugar maple is stressed to the point of decline and many scientists studying this beloved tree believe rising temperatures are the cause.

Maple syrup’s use as a food was first recorded in the early 1600s, when French writer Marc Lescarbot noted that Native American tribes “get juice from the trees and distill it down into a very sweet and agreeable liquid.” The syrup lore goes like this: A chief threw a tomahawk at a tree and noticed the rich syrup dripping from it. His wife cooked that evening’s venison in the sweet syrup, and the rest is history.

Read the full story on The Plate.

Conservation, Construction and Community

Dec 2, 2015

Originally Published on Patch.com and Seacoast Online

By Kristyn Lak Miller

NEWMARKET – “For many years, people built their homes on two or more acre lots,” says Steve Fournier, Newmarket Town Manager. “People wanted privacy and green space around them. The problem is that, by doing so, people did not know their neighbors. Rockingham Green creates the neighborhood atmosphere again.”

A few miles from downtown Newmarket, adjacent to Rockingham Country Club, Rockingham Green is a lifestyle community designed and built by Chinburg Properties, the 30-year-old development and construction firm based in Newmarket.

Set on 25 acres, with 40 acres of conservation land, this expansive space might have become a Wal-Mart if the town hadn’t stepped in. “We wanted to preserve our natural resources and wetlands,” says Diane Hardy, Newmarket Town Planner. “We asked Chinburg if they’d be interested in working on a community. Thankfully, the answer was ‘yes’.”

Comprised of 52 lots, none bigger than .47 acre, Rockingham Green’s custom homes are inspired by classic craftsman style; each, sized up to 2,300 square feet, is conceived in collaboration with project architect Wendy Welton of Art Form Architecture.

Read the full story on Patch.com and Seacoast Online

Giving Energy Efficiency a Number That Matters

Dec 1, 2015

Originally published on Seacoast Online and Patch.com

By Michael McCord

Since its founding in 2008, Yankee Thermal Imaging has helped hundreds of residential and commercial clients reap maximum benefits from energy efficiency efforts. Recently the New England based company has been working on compiling hard numbers to quantify their financial and environmental effectiveness.

The numbers are in, and the carbon footprint reduction they have helped their customers achieve is impressive. “Collectively, we’ve saved our customers about 1.6 million pounds of CO2 emissions annually since we’ve been in business and counting,” said Cara Eisele, Yankee Thermal Imaging’s business development manager. “We started compiling the data about six months ago, and we are really excited to let our customers know the impact they are making.”

Eisele said the money savings for their customers who follow through with enhanced insulation upgrades and energy saving measures have also been significant. Depending on current fuel prices, she explained, “we estimate customers have saved on average $850 annually on their utility bills, some are higher, some lower.” Translated into a pollution saving metric, Yankee Thermal Imaging estimates the combined CO2 savings achieved is the equivalent of taking between 220 and 240 automobiles off of the road each year.

Read the full story on Seacoast Online and Patch.com