Greening Our Community: Panel Discussion, The state of the Environment in Newton and Massachusetts
Greening Our Community: Present and Future of Renewable Energy in MAwith Ann Berwick and Larry Chretien
Theme: “2014 Green Olympics”
Submission deadline: Friday, February 28, 2014
- This year’s theme: “2014 Green Olympics”
- Open to all school students in grades 1 – 5 living or attending school in Newton, including home-schooled and after-school programs.
- Enter your artwork as a 2-dimensional poster (12" x 18" max) or video (3 minutes max)
- Register on-line as an individual or as a team of 2 students
- Awards Ceremony: Tuesday April 1, Newton City Hall War Memorial Auditorium
- Find out more at Environmental Art Contest
Newton Unplugged & Connected 2014
Monday, March 17, 3:30 - 5:00pm
“Spring in My Backyard” Workshop 3:30–5:00 pm
Celebrate Spring with us by planting seedlings, making a bird feeder from pinecones and discovering how to compost with wriggling red earthworms and meeting animal friends!. Ages 5 and up.
Co-sponsored by the Green Decade, Newton Community Farm and the Newton Free Library
GREENING OUR COMMUNITY SERIES
Monday, March 24, 2014
Co-sponsored by Green Decade/Newton, the League of Women Voters and the Newton Free Library
Join us on Monday, March 24 at 7:00 pm for an important panel discussion on the state of the environment in Newton and Massachusetts. Green Decade/Newton and the League of Women Voters Newton will cosponsor. The panel, moderated by Newton resident Brooke Lipsitt, will include:
- Mayor Setti Warren
- Senator Cynthia Creem
- Representative Ruth Balser
- Representative Kay Khan
- Alderman Deb Crossley
- Rob Garrity, Newton's Director of Sustainability
At the city level participants will hear about steps being taken by Mayor Warren and the Board of Aldermen to promote sustainability. Examples include opportunities in major school construction projects and improving water/sewer infrastructure.
Legislators will speak about their personal priorities and how Newton residents can help at the state level. Learn about environmental issues on Beacon Hill and get a status report on issues of concern to Newton such as:
- Controlling toxics in the environment
- Funding for infrastructure repairs
- Potential action on the bottle bill prior to a ballot question
Film Screening: "Chasing Ice"
Thursday, March 27
Co-Sponsored by Green Decade/Newton and the Newton Democratic Committing
In the spring of 2005, acclaimed environmental photographer James Balog headed to the Arctic on a tricky assignment for National Geographic: to capture images to help tell the story of the Earth’s changing climate. Even with a scientific upbringing, Balog had been a skeptic about climate change. But that first trip north opened his eyes to the biggest story in human history and sparked a challenge within him that would put his career and his very well-being at risk.
Chasing Ice is the story of one man‘s mission to change the tide of history by gathering undeniable evidence of our changing planet. Within months of that first trip to Iceland, the photographer conceived the boldest expedition of his life: The Extreme Ice Survey. With a band of young adventurers in tow, Balog began deploying revolutionary time-lapse cameras across the brutal Arctic to capture a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers.
As the debate polarizes America and the intensity of natural disasters ramps up globally, Balog finds himself at the end of his tether. Battling untested technology in subzero conditions, he comes face to face with his own mortality. It takes years for Balog to see the fruits of his labor. His hauntingly beautiful videos compress years into seconds and capture ancient mountains of ice in motion as they disappear at a breathtaking rate. Chasing Ice depicts a photographer trying to deliver evidence and hope to our carbon-powered planet.
If Carrots Could Talk: How well do you really know your food?
Monday April 7
In today’s world we are disconnected from the food we eat. What do we really know about the produce we buy from the grocery store? People’s desire to know more about the sources of their food has fueled a growth both in local agriculture and home gardening. Farm Manager Greg Maslowe will talk about the role Newton Community Farm plays in helping people find answers to their questions through providing food to its community, promoting home gardening, and offering a variety of educational programs.
Greg has been the Farm Manager of Newton Community Farm since its inception in 2006. He has a Masters of Theological Studies from Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary and a Masters in Science, Philosophy and Religion from Boston University where his work was on the ethics of genetically modified food crops.
GREENING OUR COMMUNITY SERIES
Monday, April 22, 2014
Co-sponsored by Green Decade/Newton and the Newton Free Library
Join us for a presentation by two leaders who help shape the future of renewable energy in Massachusetts. Ann Berwick will talk about why we need to decarbonize the economy and how we can do it. Larry Chretien, Executive Director, Mass Energy Consumers Alliance, will address the topic of renewable energy in Massachusetts: where we are now, and what the prospects are for growth. After Ann and Larry’s presentations, Green Decade’s Jay Walter will speak briefly about Solarize Newton. Then the speakers will answer your questions.
Ann Berwick was appointed Chair of the Department of Public Utilities in June, 2010. The Department of Public Utilities regulates all of the Commonwealth’s investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities. Prior to that, Ann was the Commonwealth’s Undersecretary for Energy and also served as Acting Chair of the Energy Facility Siting Board. As Undersecretary, Ann helped develop the Green Communities Act, the governor’s signature energy legislation. In her current position, she contributes to implementation of the Green Communities Act.
Larry Chretien leads the Mass Energy Consumers Alliance which enables consumers to purchase affordable and environmentally sustainable energy, while catalyzing renewable energy projects throughout New England.
Earth Day Event: Charles River Cleanup!
Saturday April 26
sponsored by the Charles River Watershed Association
The 15th Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup is approaching! It will be help Saturday, April 26th this year from 9am to noon. Groups are forming now so get together with your neighbors, your girl scout troupe, your colleagues, etc. and join us for this important environmental day of service. Go to www.charlesriver.org/cleanup.html to register your group or contact Elaine Vildzius at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download the flier (pdf)
Solar Smart Workshops
Wednesday, March 12
The City, in collaboration with the Newton Ecoproject is delighted to announce the Solar Smart Newton program. This six-month program is similar to the Solarize Mass program that ended last year, with the same goal of installing 300 KW of photovoltaic (PV) electrical power in Newton. The program promotes PV solar panel installations on residential and small commercial properties.
Our “Solar Smart” program offers homeowners a substantial 30 percent savings from current market rates for solar panel installations. The program will expire at the end of June.
If you would like to find out if your home or small business is ‘solar ready’, with the roof area, orientation and exposure to install a solar array, we can assess the property by a satellite image for free. Just go to the website www.Solarflair.com, follow the Solar Smart Newton tab and plug-in your address. If the building appears to be a good candidate, Solarflair, our program installer, will schedule a free site visit for further evaluation.
Solar Smart Newton is holding a number of public events to educate residents about the program. We are holding workshops on the second Wednesday of every month through June at the Durant/Kenrick Homestead, 286 Waverley Ave, Newton Corner (Please park on Waverley Ave or Kenrick Road). All are welcome, e-mail Jay Walter at email@example.com with questions or to RSVP.
We will also have solar open houses in the spring so you can visit Newton residents who have added solar.
Energy Smart Newton Challenge offers incentives!
The goal: 500 no-cost home energy assessments and 120 heating and cooling assessments by 12/31/13. Green Decade’s partner group, Next Step Living provides $10 and $25 gift certificates to Newton residents to use at one of six restaurants after completing a Mass Save home energy assessment or heating and cooling assessment with Next Step Living by the deadline. Participating restaurants include O’Hara’s, Paddy’s, Rox’s Diner, Terry O’Reilly’s Pub, Cabot’s Ice Cream and Restaurant and The Local.
Next Step Living will also:
- Contribute $400 to support Green Decade’s education projects and award a $100 Whole Foods raffle prize for every 100 Newton home energy assessments completed by 12/31/13.
- Contribute an additional $400 to Green Decade and another $100 raffle prize to use at Whole Foods for every 50 Newton heating and cooling system assessments completed during the Challenge.
Visit nextsteplivinginc.com/gdn or call 866-867-8729. Please mention Green Decade Newton!
Newton Indoor Farmers Market
Sponsored by the Newton Parks & Recreation Department
Join us at the Newton INDOOR Farmers Markets this year at the Hyde Community Center gym! Vendors have farm fresh fruits and vegetables, beef, fresh fish, cheese, eggs, spices and seasonings, olive oil, coffee,baked goods, popovers, jams, jellies, plants and flowers — plus live music! We have information on green living, children's activities, program information, and more — sometimes our caterpillar and/or turtle friends!
Volunteers of all ages also welcome: contact firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com.
Newton Eco-Team Project
Eco-Teams, groups of 5-8 people from different households, meet three or four times to work through a fun, easy-to-use workbook called The Low Carbon Diet, which shows, step-by-step, how to dramatically reduce CO2 output in just a month's time. You learn to:
- Calculate your CO2 footprint with an easy-to-use online carbon calculator.
- Create cool household systems that save the earth while saving you money.
- Take on cool lifestyle practices to reduce CO2 emissions.
Form an Eco-Team with friends, neighbors, colleagues, or your faith community! With simple changes to actions you take every day, you’ll learn how to reduce your annual household CO2 output by 25%.
Visit the Newton Eco-Team Project website for more information on the project, to see the list of participating partners/organizations and more!