Late February E-Newsletter

Healthy People, Healthy Planet Discussion Groups

While six Healthy People, Healthy Planet groups are now wrapping up, a second batch of groups will start in March and April. The next groups begin Feb. 29 at the Fairlee Library and March 1 at the Abbott Library in So. Pomfret and the Thetford Elementary School. These are followed by two noontime groups: March 6 at the Women’s Health Resource Center on the Lebanon Mall and March 15 at the Upper Valley Land Trust, Buck Road, Hanover. Three more are scheduled for Corinth (March 15), Newport (April 3), and Canaan (April 4). Most of these groups have discussion guides on loan. Books are also available at the Hanover Co-op service desk for $15. Program information and contacts for the venues are available at Contact [email protected] if you are interested in organizing a group in your town, faith community, workplace, or with your book group. Although we strongly recommend joining a discussion group, if you’d like to check out the Healthy People, Healthy Planet discussion guide (which is called A World of Health), the Howe Library in Hanover has two copies available on loan. The 6-session series topics include preventive medicine, food issues, our chemical legacy, simplicity and consumption, and healthy natural systems.

 “Like” Catamount on Facebook and read comments about groups’ conversations.

Take Action by Feb. 27 asking the USDA not to approve GMO corn that is genetically modified to survive repeated spraying of the herbicide 2,4-D.

The information comes from the Center for Food Safety. The Center’s website has a petition you can email to the USDA urging the agency not to approve Dow Chemical’s genetically engineered corn (DAS-40278-9) designed to survive repeated spraying of the toxic herbicide 2,4-D. As the letter explains, the herbicide 2,4-D is a major component of Agent Orange, the chemical defoliant used by the U.S. military in Vietnam and that “Numerous studies link 2,4-D exposure to major health problems such as cancer, lowered sperm counts, liver toxicity and Parkinson’s disease.” The documentary A Chemical Reaction, highlighted below, which Catamount will show on April 4 explains the dangers of the herbicide 2,4-D. Act now!

Take Action to get GMO’s labeled in Vermont:
The VT Right to Know Genetically Modified Food Act (H.722) would give Vermont consumers information as to whether the food we buy is genetically engineered. food products sold at retail outlets in the state of Vermont. Click here for more information and to sign a petition organized by NOFA-VT, Rural Vermont, and VPIRG. According to these organizations, “Over 70% of all packaged foods sold in the United States contain genetically engineered ingredients.”  House bill H.722, Vermont’s genetic modification labeling law, require food processors to label foods that have genetically modified ingredients.

Lawn pesticides and herbicides programs complement Healthy People, Healthy Planet
Catamount Earth Institute, the League of Women Voters of the Upper Valley (LWVUV), and Howe Library will present “Lawns Without Chemicals” on March 28 at 7pm. The program features Will Allen, co-manager of Cedar Circle Farm in E. Thetford and Paul Sachs, founder of North Country Organics of Bradford, VT. Will Allen will discuss the intended benefits, unintended consequences, and long-term effects of pesticides and herbicides. Paul Sachs will explain ecological lawn care and the dynamics of a natural soil system.

On April 4 Catamount, LWVUV and the Sierra Club will present the documentary A Chemical Reaction about health risks of lawn chemicals, how the town of Hudson, Quebec banned the use of chemical lawn products, and how similar bans were adopted in five Canadian provinces. This is also at the Howe Library at 7 pm. The LWVUV will present additional programs addressing storm water and integrated landscaping on April 11 and 25. More information will follow in the next newsletter.

Upper Valley Sustainability Events Calendar

Thursday, Feb. 23, 7pm, Norwich Public Library
Landscaping for Wildlife Using Native Plants
Presentation by gardener Henry Homeyer

Friday, Feb 24, 7:30 pm, Hartland Public Library, 153 Rt 5, Hartland, VT  05048
State of the World Film: Living Without Money
The film portrays the life of 68 year old Heidemarie Schwermer, a German woman who made a deliberate choice to stop using money 14 years ago. She cancelled her apartment, gave away all of her belongings and kept nothing but a suitcase full of clothes. Living without money – imagine it if you can!
Free + including popcorn
Info: 802 738-0215 or

Monday, March 5, 6:30, Colatina Exit, Main St. Bradford, First Monday Film Series
Growthbusters: Hooked on  Growth
This documentary examines the deleterious effects of economic growth, populationgrowth, urban growth and over-consumption.
Come at 6pm to order food and drink. Sponsored by the Bradford Conservation Commission. Donations welcomed.

Wed. March 21, 6:30 – 8pm, Porter Community Room, Montshire Museum, Norwich, VT.
Dirty Energy: From Fracking to Tar Sands
Vermont Law School professors Pat Parenteau and Jack Tuholske will discuss legal and environmental concerns related to shale gas hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and tar sands extraction, including the proposed Trailbreaker and Keystone pipelines, water pollution, impacts on climate change, Vermont legislation restricting fracking and the relationship of these dirty fuels to local efficiency and renewables efforts.
This presentation is free and open to the public.
Light refreshments contributed by the Coop Food Stores and the Upper Valley Food Coop.
Sponsors: Sustainable Energy Resource Group, Thetford and Norwich Energy Committees, Catamount Earth Institute, League of Women Voters of the Upper Valley, Sierra Club, Coop Food Stores, Upper Valley Food Coop
Info: [email protected] or 802-785-4126.

Wednesday, March 28, 7pm, Howe Library, 13 South St., Hanover
Lawns Without Chemicals
Will Allen, co-manager of Cedar Circle Farm in E. Thetford and Paul Sachs, founder of North Country Organics of Bradford, VT will discuss the effects of long-term exposure to lawn chemicals and strategies for building a healthy lawn.
Sponsored by Catamount Earth Institute, League of Women Voters, Howe Library
Refreshments served, Will and Paul will have their books for sale.

Thursday, March 29, 9-4pm, Vt. Technical College,
6th Annual Vermont Organics Recycling Summit
View complete agenda here. Attendee (Early Bird Price: $35.00 on or before March 15

Thursday, March 29, 7pm, Howe Library, 13 South St. Hanover
Green Fire, a thought-provoking new film about the life and legacy of legendary conservationist Aldo Leopold, which proposes a land ethic for the 21st century.
Sponsored by the Hanover Conservancy and the Upper Valley Sierra Club

Saturday, March 31, Co-op Food Stores Annual Meeting Expo, White River Junction Elementary School
9:30-10:30 am annual meeting; 11- 3 pm Expo., 3-6, Weatherization Skillshop by CVCAC (Central Vermont Community Action Council). The Expo will offer dozens of displays and booths about how people all over the Upper Valley are working toward a more sustainable world.

Tuesday nights from 6:30-8:30 for 5 weeks, April 3-May 2.
Lebanon College: Gardening: A Practical Workshop. Garden writer Henry Homeyer will teach you the basics of organic vegetable and flower gardening. From garden design to seed-starting , planting, watering, weeding, mulching, and harvesting, this course will give each student practical knowledge of gardening. Contact Lebanon College to reserve a spot for this 5-part workshop or call 603-448-2445.

 Three AVA Gallery, workshops with Henry Homeyer, Lebanon
Sculpting the Living Landscape: Starting Flowers from Seed 
Attend one or all of these workshops with Henry. For more info. call 603-448-3117
April 9; Monday, 6:30–8:30pm; One 2-hour class

Sculpting the Living Landscape: Perfect Perennials for the Upper Valley Garden,
April 23; Monday, 6:30–8:30pm; One 2-hour class

Sculpting the Living Landscape: Organic Techniques for Enriching Soil and Managing Pests
May 7; Monday, 6:30–8:30pm; One 2-hour class
Thanks to SERG, UV Localvores, UV Food Co-op, Chris West, and Bradford Conservation Commission for event info.

To receive the UV Localvores e-newsletter, contact [email protected].
For Sustainable Energy Resource Group (SERG) info. see
This Upper Valley Sustainable Living Network update was written by Barbara Duncan.

Catamount Earth Institute, POB 470 Hanover, NH 03755
603-643-0328 (Nov. 1-April 30)  [email protected]
Contact [email protected]  if you do NOT want to receive these occasional updates.


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