Sustainability Announcements - Greater KC via Kaw River Valley (Lawrence, KS)

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WEEKLY ANNOUNCEMENTS
12 October 2010


ECO RADIO KC ¤ WEEKLY ECOLOGICAL ISSUES RADIO SHOW
Tuesday, 12 October 2010, 12:00noon-1:00pm ¤ on Kansas City Community Radio
Listen at KKFI-FM 90.1, or on web-streaming at http://www.kkfi.org/

On Eco-Radio KC this week, host John Kurman will talk with Russ Rudy of Rethink Energy about how to upgrade the energy performance of your home before Winter sets in, and the money saving benefits you can reap.

On Friday at 9:30am, listen as the Bioneers radio series presents "Where Angels Fear to Tread: Making Art that Heals the Broken Places". How do w e transform a vicious cycle into a virtuous circle? How do we move from environmental degradation and the deterioration of human relations to restoration? From war to peace - from hatred to compassion - from isolation to community? How can one person make a crucial difference? Painter and professor Lily Yeh’s approach to community healing takes that which is broken and creates something whole and wholly new and beautiful through public art. From Philadelphia to Rwanda, broken places are her canvases. People’s stories are the pigments. People’s talents and creativity are the tools. At the heart of her work is the transformation of human heart.
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NATIONAL ORGANICS BOARD ON VERGE OF PERMITTING NANOTECH FOODS
Public comments due by 12 October 2010, 5:00pm EST

Organic is under threat yet again. This time it’s by the use of nanomaterials and nanotechnologies in organic production systems. Nanotechnology is the engineering of the atomic and molecular structure of materials. It is a platform technology that will work hand-in-hand with genetic engineering and pesticides to further entrench our current industrial agricultural systems. There is strong evidence of health and environmental risks from some nanomaterials, and overwhelming public sentiment that use of the technology, like genetic engineering, goes against the core principles of organic.

If you wish to comment to the USDA, you may use the petition at the Food Safety web site - Nanotechnology proposed by National Organic Standards Board. Comments are due today.
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TRANSITION KANSAS CITY ¤ TOWARDS A LOWER-CARBON COMMUNITY
Tuesday, 12 October 2010, 6:00pm
Waldo Library, 201 East 75th St., Kansas City MO 64114

The Kansas City Transition Initiative is addressing climate disruption and peak oil inflation at the local level, a relocalization effort similar to hundreds of others around the globe. Architect Jerry Sargent will discuss "Using Empty School Buildings in Revitalizing Neighborhoods".

The Transition movement was begun by Rob Hopkins in Great Britain Transition Towns, and in the U.S. is coordinated by Transition US based in Sebastapol CA. They help local initiatives with resources and publications, and they have 22 trainers traveling to conduct local training sessions. For more info, or to get on the Kansas City e-mail list, call (816)767-8873, or contact them at <bkjelshus@sbcglobal.net>
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LAWRENCE CITY COMMISSION ¤ SMART GRID REPORT FROM WESTAR ENERGY
Tuesday, 12 October 2010, 6:30pm
City Hall, 6th & Massachusetts St., Lawrence KS 66044

In March of this year, Westar Energy was approved by the U.S. Department of Energy for a $40 million grant to develop a smart grid SmartStar - Westar Energy. Westar will report to the City Commission about their progress. A smart grid uses digital technology that monitors grid condition by means of sensing, measurement, and control devices with two-way communications to electricity production, transmission, distribution and consumption parts of the power grid. The purpose is essentially to achieve greater energy efficiency.

According to Westar, "Smart grid technology is a state-of-the-art approach to managing electricity systems. In the event of a power outage, for example, Westar will more easily determine the cause and restore power more quickly. Westar will be able to implement smart meters throughout the company’s entire service territory. Customers with smart meters and internet access will be able to daily monitor how much electricity they use and how much it costs." Westar's report is Agenda Item #1 - Lawrence City Commission agenda - 12 October 2010.
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SUNFLOWER COAL-FIRED ELECTRIC PLANT ¤ 2ND PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD
Written comments: Thursday, 23 September - Saturday, 23 October 2010
Public Hearing: Monday, 25 October 2010, 2:00pm
Capitol Plaza Hotel (Sunflower Ballroom), 1717 SW Topeka Blvd., Topeka KS 66612
You may send comments more than once, if they're about different aspects.

Because Kansas Gov. Parkinson and the Legislature cut an inside deal that took from the Kansas Department of Health & Environment power to act on behalf of Kansans, the KDHE is now acting on behalf of the EPA. Several months ago, the KDHE held public hearings on the Sunflower Electric Power permit application, and received over 4,600 comments. But Sunflower Power had submitted faulty data on air pollution dispersion, so the KDHE has opened a second public comment period.

However it is URGENT that the EPA keep the process fair. Coal proponents have pressured the KDHE to shorten the 45 day comment period to only 30 days, even though this permit cycle has resulted in nearly six times the comments as the 2006/2007 cycle. The Sunflower coal supporters want the permit issued rapidly so they can avoid multiple federal greenhouse gas regulations that come into play on 2 January 2011.

Fortunately the EPA has, so far, held the political maneuvering in check. To ask the EPA to protect the integrity of permitting process, first go to http://action.sierraclub.org/SunflowerLeak.

To submit a comment specifically about the permit request by Sunflower to build a coal-fired electric generating station in Holcombe, submit it between 23 Sept. and 23 Oct. Use one of the following options:
  • Send e-mail to sunflowercomments@kdheks.gov
  • Mail written comments to: KDHE Bureau of Air, Attention Sunflower Comments, 1000 SW Jackson St., Suite 310, Topeka KS 66612-1366
  • Present comments verbally or in writing at the hearing on 25 October, 2:00pm
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KANSAS ENERGY CONFERENCE
(formerly KANSAS WIND & RENEWABLE ENERGY CONFERENCE)
Tuesday-Wednesday, 12-13 October 2010 - $$$
Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center, Wichita KS

Even though the name change seems to imply the "all of the above" energy policy of BP (coal, nuclear, oil, wind, solar, natural gas), the program seems to focus on wind, solar and efficiency as in the past. The only program detail now available is that the keynote speaker will be Mike Revak, Vice President of Sales for Siemens Energy, Inc. - Kansas Energy Conference 2010
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LAWRENCE SUSTAINABILITY ADVISORY BOARD
Wednesday, 13 October 2010, 5:30pm
Recycling and Resource Recovery Annex, 320 N.E. Industrial Lane, Lawrence KS

The October agenda is unavailable to date. The S.A.B. meets monthly to discuss any and all aspects of furthering sustainability policies and practices by the City of Lawrence government and private persons. The public is welcome. Minutes are finalized in about a month after each meeting http://www.lawrenceks.org/wrr/envadvisoryboard
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KANSAS CITY ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT COMMISSION
Wednesday, 13 October 2010, 4:00-6:00pm
Mid America Regional Council, Rivergate Center 2nd floor, 600 Broadway, KC MO

The Environmental Management Commission promotes environmental awareness and resource efficiency to the City's leader and staff, to assist the progress of Kansas City toward sustainability. Members of the general public are encouraged to attend and observe meetings and to join and participate in its efforts. More information and the EMC April 2009 minutes are available at http://www.kcmo.org/manager.nsf/web/emc
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THE WORLD PEACE DIET ¤ PRESENTATION BY WILL TUTTLE, PhD
Wednesday, 13 October 2010, 7:00pm (6:00pm pot luck dinner) - FREE
Ecumenical Christian Ministries, 1204 Oread Ave., Lawrence KS 66044

Dr. Tuttle is a Dharma Master in the Zen tradition, devoted to cultural healing and awakening. He has written The World Peace Diet. Are you aware of the HUGE environmental benefits that come with a shift towards a plant based diet? Did you know that widespread vegetarianism could eliminate 80% of global warming, end world hunger, and reduce health care costs? The World Bank reports that 90% of the Amazon deforestation is related to meat industry.

Dr. James Hansen, the chief climate scientist at NASA, has said "There are many things people can do to reduce their carbon emissions, but changing a light bulb and other things are much less effective than changing your diet. Because if you eat further down on the food chain rather than animals which have produced many greenhouse gases, and used much energy in the process of growing that meat, you can actually make a bigger contribution in that way than just about anything. So in terms of individual actions, it is the best thing you can do."

According to Greenpeace, It takes up to 10 pounds of grain to produce just one pound of meat. In the US, we feed more than 70 percent of the grains and cereals we grow to farmed animals. It can take up to 15 times as much water to produce animal protein as it does to produce protein from plants. Up to 220 square feet of rainforest are sacrificed to produce just one pound of hamburger - Go Vegetarian | Greenpeace USA
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INTRODUCTION TO PERMACULTURE DESIGN ¤ 4TH LECTURE
Thursday, 15 October 2010, 6:00-9:00pm - $$$
Matt Ross Community Center, 8101 Marty St., Overland Park KS 66204

Steve Moring of Vajra Farm Permaculture Center will describe how we can learn from the natural patterns of living systems to mimic nature in creating sustainable landscapes and food production. We will explore the basic design principles as taught by David Holmgren and Bill Mollison, and will outline the basic steps in planning a permaculture site, assessing land resources, and designing and implementing projects, including earthworks and swales. This lecture is the fourth in a nine-session permaculture lecture series, presented every week. The lecture will be followed by a viewing of the Geoff Lawton film "Introduction to Permaculture Design". Preregistration is required, and a percentage of the fees will support the Kaw Permaculture Collaborative and it's parent organization, the Sustainability Action Network. For more information contact Steve Moring at (785)691-7305 or <smoring@grasshoppernet.com>
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BIONEERS ¤ CELEBRATING 21 YEARS OF BREAKTHROUGH SOLUTIONS
Friday-Sunday, 15-17 October 2010 - $$$
San Rafael CA

The Bioneers are social and scientific innovators who develop solutions that mimic nature's operating systems. They are visionaries who, in their own communities, are creating a healthy, diverse, equitable and beautiful world. With phenomenal effectiveness, the Bioneers reach tens-of-thousands of people at their conference and simultaneous satellite conferences, through their year-round radio show, by their professional intensive seminars, in their Eco Schools program, and by their Democracy School training. For conference info, schedule, and registration go to the 2010 Bioneers Conference.

There are dozens of simultaneous regional conferences with speakers and workshops and major speakers beamed live from the San Rafael conference - Bioneers beaming to regional conferences. The nearest ones to the Kansas City/Lawrence area are: Bluegrass Bioneers | 2010 in Louisville KY (22-24 October), Northland Bioneers - 2010 in St. Paul MN (23-24 October), and Colorado Bioneers - 2010 in Boulder CO (5-7 November).

Revolution From the Heart of Nature
It's all alive; it's all connected; it's all intelligent; it's all relatives
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BURROUGHS CREEK TRAIL & PARK DEDICATION CEREMONY
Saturday, 16 October 2010, 11:00am
15th St. at the trail (near Parnell Park), Lawrence KS 66044

Initiated by the neighborhoods of Brook Creek, Barker, and East Lawrence, and built by the City of Lawrence, this community-uniting trail has been in the making for seven years. The Burroughs Creek Trail extends from Hobbs Park on 11th Street south to 23rd Street where it connects with the Haskel University rail-trail. It is located on the historic railroad bed built in 1867-68 by anti-slavery publisher, John Speer, and partners, and abandoned by BNSF RR in 1988. The trail plans call for it to continue north to a bicycle-pedestrian bridge across the Kaw River, and south to connect with the Wakarusa Wetlands and on to the Wakarusa River. At both ends it will link to major segments of a City-wide bicycle-pedestrian trail network.
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SUSTAINABILITY ACTION NETWORK - MONTHLY MEETING
Sunday, 17 October 2010, 11:00am
Community Mercantile Cafe, 901 Iowa St., Lawrence KS 66049

Local Solutions for Transition to a Sustainable Economy
S.A.N. organizes societal scale action for ecological sustainability both in our personal lives, and through public policy changes. "Be the change you want to see". The S.A.N. meeting agenda will include:
  • Transition Kaw Valley power point trial run
  • Kansas Permaculture Institute possible merger
  • Ducks in a row: how to focalize our actions
  • community workshops - FOCALIZER?: solar food dehydrator, cold frames, rain barrels, etc.
  • S.A.N.web hosting options - FOCALIZER?
  • develop an annual events schedule - FOCALIZER?
Please join us
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DOUGLAS COUNTY FOOD POLICY COUNCIL
Monday, 18 October 2010, 7:00pm
Rocking H Ranch: 198 N. 1250th Rd, Berryton, KS 66409

In existence for one full year now, the Food Policy Council seeks to identify the benefits, challenges and opportunities for a successful, sustainable local food system. By advising the Douglas County Commission on public policies that will support local producers, preserve local agricultural resources and land, and create more local jobs, the F.P.C. hopes to improve the community’s access to a local food supply and distribution networks. For more info go to Douglas County Food Policy Council.
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FOOD NOT LAWNS ¤ COMMUNIVERSITY CLASS #2305A
Wednesdays, 20 & 27 October and 3 & 10 November 2010, 7:00pm - $$
UMKC School of Medicine, Theatre C, 2411 Charlotte St., Kansas City MO 64108

Grow food not lawns! Increase local food security, improve your diet, beautify your surroundings, build community, reduce pollution and energy use (It takes 87 calories of fuel to transport one calorie of perishable fresh fruit from west coast to east coast). As supporters of the Food Not Lawns national movement, we will hold five sessions dealing with topics that include whole system design, garden preparation, permaculture, water-wise gardening, seed saving, planting, and free resources. Presenters include master and highly-qualified gardeners. Class fee is $18, plus $5 for materials. Register at Communiversity online registration. Bring a picture ID. Limit 30. More info at Food Not Lawns KC, or <steve@prairietrading.com>.
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TRANSITION TRAINING WORKSHOP IN OMAHA
Friday-Sunday, 22-24 October 2010, 6:30pm-9:00pm Fri., 8:30am-5:30pm Sat.-Sun. - $$$
Columbans Retreat Center, 1902 Calhoun Street, Bellevue, NE 68005

The Transition movement was begun by Rob Hopkins in Great Britain Transition Towns, and in the U.S. is coordinated by Transition US based in Sebastapol CA. The focus is for local communities to transition from fossil fuel dependency to local resilience by tapping into their citizens' own genius and creativity. There currently are 74 transition initiatives in the U.S., and hundreds around the world. This training in Omaha will be conducted by the founders of Transition Colorado, Lynette Hanthorn and Michael Brownlee. For more info and to register go to http://www.transitionomaha.org
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LAWRENCE ELECTRONICS RECYCLING EVENT
Saturday, 23 October 2010, 9:00am to 1:00pm
Free State High School (north parking lot), 4700 Overland Drive, Lawrence KS

Electronics devices typically contain toxic heavy metals like lead and mercury and cadmium, and precious metals like silver and gold. If recycled properly, these metals can be materials feed stock for new industrial processes, not to mention saving production costs, and keeping them out of the landfill.

This one day event will provide Lawrence residents and businesses a way to conveniently recycle old, unwanted electronics equipment. Items accepted for recycling are computer monitors, desktops, laptops, keyboards, printers and other peripherals, televisions, copiers, scanners, telephones, cell phones, pagers, fax machines, VHS/DVD drives, hand held devices, and small appliances like micro wave or toaster ovens. There is a recycling fee for computer monitors ($10.00) and televisions ($15.00). There are no charges for other electronic equipment. Items not accepted are large appliances such as refrigerators and AC units. Fees may be paid by cash or check.

Electronic recycling will be provided by Extreme Recycling, Inc. http://www.extremerecyclinginc.com/ recycling the E-waste in accordance to Federal and Kansas Electronic Waste Processing Regulations. The event is sponsored by the City of Lawrence Waste Reduction & Recycling Division http://www.lawrencerecycles.org/



The SUSTAINABILITY ACTION NETWORK, Inc. is a Kansas not-for-profit organization. DONATIONS ARE APPRECIATED, and checks can be mailed to P.O.Box 1064, Lawrence KS 66044. Our mission is to advocate and organize societal scale action to address sustainability issues. The triple crises of Energy-Ecology-Economy are building so rapidly that large scale action is needed immediately and methodically to overcome institutional barriers and advance public policy that preserves ecological sustainability. Our focus is to build a relocalized economy-ecology in concert with the Transition Town movement occurring in many other communities. To join the Sustainability Action Network please contact us at <paradigm@ixks.com>

Our current projects include:
1) Transition Kaw Valley - initiating transition to a relocalized post-carbon economy, and municipal level Peak Oil response planning.
2) Kaw Permaculture Collaborative - developing skills and resources for poly-cropping sustainable food production.
3) Energy Conservation & Renewables - advancing a green economy through decentralized technologies and regulations, for conservation and renewable energy.
4) Land Consortium - organizing interested stakeholders to acquire prime farmland in the urban fringe for land-based economic development and regional food security.
5) Water Rights and Watersheds - protecting the water commons, the source of all life, from privatization and contamination, and restoring our watersheds.
6) Electric & Human Powered Vehicles - promoting neighborhood electric vehicles and utility tricycles, including infrastructure and pro-active regulations.
7) Weekly Sustainability Announcements - informing and encouraging others to become active in the Sustainability Action Network, or other action driven groups.
8) Collaboration with sister organizations - such as: The Light Center eco-village; Kaw Valley Food System farm-based economic development; Citizens for Responsible Planning; Films for Action; Kansas River Valley Growers fighting for local water rights; national efforts by the Sustainable Energy Network; KC Metro groups like the Kansas City Food Circle and the All Species Project, etc.


We welcome suggestions for items to be included. Please send items to <paradigm@ixks.com>

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