Call for Partners: NH Eat Local Month

Yarden of Eatin'

Eat-Local-NH-logoRGB_20101-300x198It’s never too early to start planning this year’s NH Eat Local Month, an annual event in August that celebrates local food and farming in our state.

This year, Monadnock Buy Local is collaborating with the NH Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food, Seacoast Eat Local, Seacoast Local and hopefully you to amplify the “Eat Local” message and empower more of us to celebrate the harvest.

We’re looking for partners to help us spread the word and energize all parts of the state to celebrate NH Eat Local Month.

Partners will:

  • Endorse NH Eat Local Month by sharing their business/organization’s name and website link with us
  • Provide us with links to any events or promotions they are organizing during NH Eat Local Month
  • Spread the word by sharing social media posts, adding a link to NHEatLocal.org on their own website and finding other creative ways to engage…

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Community Transportation Forums

The Monadnock Regional Coordinating Council for Community Transportation (MRCC) invites you to two Community Transportation Forums — one on April 17 in Peterborough and the other on April 18 in Keene.

Join this opportunity for a community conversation around:

How do people get around in rural NH?
If you don’t drive or have access to transportation- then what?
How does your town help residents who don’t drive?
What does the transportation future look like?

Also, learn about our 2018 Coordinated Plan for Community Transportation.

All are invited and encouraged to attend.

Community Members, Municipal Leadership, Elected Town Officials, Chambers of Commerce, Community Groups, State Senators, Representatives, Executive Councilors, Community Volunteers

 

Keene State introduces the Green Building Leadership Institute

From Keene State College Office of Continuing Education

ecovation hubIn response to the movement toward sustainable practices, the recently formed Ecovation Hub Education & Training Consortium is introducing an intensive, two-week program to be held on the Keene State campus from May 21 – June 1. Taught by industry leaders, classes will benefit students and working professionals, as well as community and institutional decision-makers. Courses are being offered in credit and non-credit options.  Learn more.

Village Roots Permaculture’s Barn Raising Crowdfunding Campaign

Yarden of Eatin'

The Local Crowd (TLC) Monadnock launched its sixth online crowdfunding campaign  called the Village Roots Barn Raising project. Village Roots is a family owned and operated, regenerative farm on the Orchard Hill Community in East Alstead, NH.

Learn more and support this campaign today!

Owners Marty Castriotta and Ellen Denny share, “The beauty of a barn raising is that it is a community endeavor. We’ll mill the wood and cut the timbers. You help by contributing to the campaign that will pay for our roof, siding, sight work, gravel, electric and much needed refrigeration. Then you show up on raising day, if you wish, and we raise the frame together. In return, we will offer you a variety of rewards to reimburse you for your contribution.”

Barnraising image

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First Friday Pilot Project in Keene

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On March 20, eight local organizations gathered to explore a collaboration to launch a First Friday pilot project in Keene, NH this summer.  The goal of this pilot includes developing a year-round First Friday program that strengthens the economic and cultural well-being of downtown Keene.

Inspiration

Current Partners

Next Steps

  • Form action groups around community engagement, funding, communications and pop-up galleries.
  • Plan for a soft launch in July or August.

Ways to get involved?

To learn more, please contact Carolyn Sweet at carolyns@machinaarts.org or 603-309-6339

 

 

City of Keene Highlights Efforts to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions & Increase Energy Savings during NH Energy Week

From the City of Keene Planning Department

During NH’s 2018 Energy Week, March 12 – 16th, the City of Keene will present both the results of its 20-year greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction initiative as well as provide an update on the substantial cost avoidance gains resulting from its 5-year Energy Services Contract with Honeywell Energy Solutions.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Initiative

According to Keene’s 2015 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Report, the City has achieved a 25% reduction in municipal GHG emissions from 1995 to 2015 as a result of the City’s ongoing energy efficiency, renewable energy and energy optimization projects. This number exceeds the original GHG reduction target of 20% set in 2004 as part of its Climate Action Plan. Keene’s landfill gas to energy system approved by City Council and installed in 1994 pushes this reduction figure even higher.  The system captures landfill gas, which is about 50% methane, and converts it to usable energy.  The methane gas reductions are particularly important due to the fact that methane is 28 times more powerful than carbon dioxide (CO2), according to the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report.

“Keene was the first municipality in New Hampshire to join the Cities for Climate Protection campaign in 2000,” said Rhett Lamb, the City’s Planning Director and Assistant City Manager.  “Our goal has been to protect Keene’s quality of life and economic vitality and become a more sustainable city.  These same projects have reduced energy costs and strengthened Keene’s economic resilience in the face of a changing climate.”

At the broader community level, nearly 50% of Keene’s GHG emissions are on-road fuel use. Just over ¼ (28%) are from commercial and industrial uses followed very closely by 25% emissions from residential energy use.  A tiny fraction, 3% of Keene’s community GHG emissions are from solid waste generation and transportation.

Notable past projects which have contributed to the reduction in GHG emissions include the City’s Landfill Gas Capture (LFG) system, the City’s recycling program, hydroelectric turbines at the Water Treatment Plant, a geothermal HVAC system at the Public Works Department, the use of biodiesel for the City vehicle fleet and multiple energy efficiency projects.  Current projects include negotiations for a 1.2 megawatt solar array on the City’s municipal complex roof anticipated to reduce 1.8 million pounds of GHG emissions annually.  Additionally, a new 100% post-consumer vegetable oil (biodiesel) generator will begin generating 250 kW to power the City’s recycling center and transfer station this spring.

A summary document of the Greenhouse Gas Emissions 1995-2015 Report will be made available at the March 15th City Council presentation.  The report will be available for viewing and download at the City’s website. Keene’s Cities for Climate Protection Committee anticipates making their recommendations for a new GHG reduction target and additional renewable energy, energy efficiency and energy conservation initiatives to City Council later this spring.

Energy Services Contract Results

Also at this meeting, Honeywell Energy Solutions will update City Councilors on the cumulative cost avoidance gains from the City’s 5-year Energy Services Contract. It is anticipated that the lighting efficiency improvements, building envelope upgrades, energy management system and heating plant improvements along with the existing solar PV at City Hall will show that 683 tons of CO2 were saved per year with a total cost avoidance of $1,484,063.

Meeting Details
The Thursday, March 15, 2018 Keene City Council meeting will be held at 7 PM in Council Chambers on the 2nd floor of Keene City Hall at 3 Washington Street, Keene NH.

Additional Information
For more information on the City’s Energy and Climate Change Program, please visit the Cities for Climate Protection Committee webpage.

To learn more information about NH Energy Week, including the Monadnock Region Energy Forum scheduled for Monday, 4:30 – 6:30 PM, March 12th at Scores Sports Bar &  Grille, please visit Eventbrite.com.

Green Energy Options Seventh In State To Earn B Corp Certification

Originally published in the Monadnock Shopper News

GEO1-b1ce9c89Co-owners Valerie Piedmont and Pablo Fleischmann have announced that their business, Green Energy Options, recently earned B Corp certification, making it the seventh Certified B Corporation in New Hampshire. Using business as a force for good, Certified B Corps create higher quality jobs, improve the quality of life in their communities, address challenging environmental problems, and inspire others to measure what matters most. Over 200,000 businesses globally use the B Impact Assessment to assess, compare, and improve their impact.

Green Energy Options is an outgrowth of a vision of building a life in harmony with nature that Piedmont and Fleischmann share. They opened their business a decade ago after more than two decades of living off the electrical power grid on their eight-acre homestead in Gilsum. The business initially focused on providing solar energy system design, installation and technical support and selling energy-efficient appliances. Green Energy Options has since developed expertise that led it to expand its business to include alternative home heating products – the best available brands of wood, pellet, and gas stoves; fireplaces, and inserts.

Piedmont, director of human resources, said, “Our five employees work as a team to give customers the knowledge they need to make fully informed energy decisions. We’re passionate about the impact that our business has on improving air quality in our region and increasing the amount of renewable energy produced and consumed. We’re a small business encouraged that, with the support of the wider B Corp community, we can be part of the big change in how energy needs are met more responsibly.”

1555416_10151873746682546_1941514848_nFleischmann added, “It’s not so much about the certification itself; it’s about continually measuring ourselves against its high standards, and those of other Certified B Corporations, so that we continue to develop a better business.”

Green Energy Options draws its customers from Keene and Peterborough, Brattleboro, VT, and the surrounding towns and counties. It recently moved from its 79 Emerald Street location to 37 Roxbury Street, where it occupies a larger space in a renovated building in a revitalized area of Keene. For more details, visit www.GreenEnergyOptions.com or call 603-358-3444.