Catamount Earth Institute Late-April E-Newsletter

Healthy People, Healthy Planet Celebratory Potluck

            On April 17, members of seven Healthy People, Healthy Planet groups celebrated friendships, concerns and ideas around environmental and human health. Common concerns are fighting for GMO labeling in VT, reducing and cleaning up plastics, composting, and restoring the riparian zone damaged by Hurrican Irene. For more information from the discussion see Catamount’s website.
One of the news items was that Saturday, April 28 is the National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Here are the local participating police departments that will take your drugs on 4/28: Thetford, Hartford, So. Royalton, Woodstock, Enfield, Canaan, and Grantham..
Thanks to all the participants and organizers of the Healthy People, Healthy Planet groups. Check out for other Northwest Earth Institute (NWEI) courses that you’d like to participate in. NWEI just published a new two-session program on energy called Powering a Bright Future. The readings consider what changes need to be made in order to create a sustainable energy future and examine ways to address energy issues in one’s personal and professional life. The blog Nourishing Words tells about second NWEI course about food called Hungry for Change. Please let us know what NWEI programs or other discussions you’d like to have in the fall. We usually don’t have discussion groups in the summer.

GMO Update
This news comes from VPIRG, NOFA-VT, and Rural Vermont. On Friday, April 20 the Vermont House Agriculture Committee voted 9-1 in favor of H.722, the bill that would require labeling of genetically engineered foods sold in Vermont. “The bill will now move to the House Judiciary Committee, where it will be examined before it can reach the floor. It is not likely that the Judiciary Committee will have time to consider the bill, because the legislative session is slated to end in less than two weeks.”
Another group that is petitioning the FDA to deny approval of 2,4-D-resistant GMO crops is The petition reads, “The USDA should keep in mind the dangers that 2,4-D and the dioxins it contains pose to both ecosystems and individuals and deny approval for Dow’s 2,4-D-resistant GE corn.” 2,4-D is a major component of the chemical Agent Orange.

Upper Valley Sustainability Events Calendar

Tuesday, April 24, noon- 1pm, Tucker Foundation Living Room
Supporting Local Farms:  A conversation with Andrea Stander, Director of Rural Vermont, who will discuss their work advocating on behalf of Vermont farmers and consumers to promote vibrant rural economies and communities by supporting small, sustainable farms. Program also includes soup, salad, and bread.
            Rural Vermont, a Vermont statewide grassroots organization, works to support an economic policy for Vermont that serves agriculture, natural resource based industries, and small rural business, and provides good jobs, fair wages, decent health care, and housing and transportation for all rural citizens.
Sponsored by the  Tucker Foundation. Info: Kate Petcosky, 603-646-3778

Tuesday, April 24, 5:30 – 7:30, 6 pm, Montshire Museum, Norwich, Porter Community
Panel Discussion: Decommissioning: A Future Without Vermont Yankee
Deb Katz, Executive Director of the Citizens Awareness Network
Chris Williams, Organizer for Vermont Citizens Action Network
Robert Stannard, Citizen Lobbyist for the Vermont Citizens Action Network
Come learn more about the current status of the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant in Vernon, VT: the lawsuits and appeals, the Public Service board process; public engagement and the inevitable nuclear power plant decommissioning.

Wednesday, April 25, 4:30pm, Montshire Museum, Norwich
Following Nature’s Lead: Integrated Landscaping
Marilyn Wyzga, Wildlife Educator, New Hampshire Fish and Game Department and co-author of Integrated Landscaping:  Following Nature’s Lead will speak about choosing plant systems that increase biodiversity, benefiting both wildlife and habitat.
Sponsored League of Women Voters of the Upper Valley and the Montshire Museum

Thursday, April 26, 7 p.m. Thetford Elementary School Cafeteria
Reading the Forested Landscape: A program by Tom Wessels
Tom Wessels is an ecologist and founding director of the master’s degree program in Conservation Biology at Antioch University New England. A great speaker, his books include Reading the Forested Landscape, The Granite Landscape, and Forest Forensics: A Field Guide to Reading the Forested Landscape.
Sponsors: The Thetford, West Fairlee, and Corinth Conservation Commissions

Thursday- Sunday, April 27-29, White River Junction
White River Indie Film Festival

Friday, April 27th at 7:30 pm, Hartland Public Library Community Room, Hartland Three Corners
Free film screening “SEEKING THE CURRENT
“Seeking the Current” depicts the voyage of the filmmakers Boisclair and Alexis de Gheldere, canoeing the entire course of the pristine Romaine River one year before Hydro-Quebec started construction on a new $8 billion complex of hydropower projects there.  Along the way, the filmmakers examine the history and economics of hydropower in Quebec and explore the renewable alternatives to more hydropower projects.
Sponsored by: State of the World Films, Info: [email protected]

Saturday, April 28, 10-12, Upstairs, Upper Valley Food Co-op
Sewing Class for Children
Cost: $20/co-op member, $25/non-member
Please register: [email protected]   802/295-5804

Saturday, April 28, 2012, 3:00 pm, Hartland Public Library, Hartland Three Corners
“Fukushima Daiichi – Truth And The Way Forward, ” A Presentation by Arnie Gundersen
Since the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident last year, the nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen has provided some of the most accurate analyses of the unfolding situation at the power plant.
Sponsored by Hartland Energy Committee and the Hartland Public Library
Info: Chiho Kaneko ([email protected] ); Mary Danko, Library Director  ([email protected]) or Karl Kemnitzer, Hartland Energy Committee ([email protected])

Monday, April 30, 5:30-7:30, Upstairs, Upper Valley Food Co-op
Basic Sewing Class for Adults
The class covers the basics of sewing machines and how to operate them; the basics of fabric; and how to pin and sew seams. You will make a simple project.
Cost: $20/co-op member, $25/non-member
Please register: [email protected]   802/295-5804

Tuesday, May 1, 11:30-6 pm, City Hall, Montpelier
Bernie Sanders and Bill McKibben, 1-2 pm
Occupy Vermont: Bringing Capitalism to trial! (3-4pm) Statewide General Assembly (4-6pm)
Sponsor: Vermont Workers Center, 350.VT and dozens of social and climate justice groups, register here

Tuesday, May 1, 3-7 pm, Lebanon Green
May Day Celebration
We will have music, free food, educational speakers and tables from local farms and organizations.  Laura Simon will be performing with her “full band” Mark Vogel and David Indenbaum.
Info. or to volunteer, contact Laura Simon [[email protected]] or Patricia [[email protected]]

Saturday, May 5, 1 -3:30 pm, Flemer Field, Waitsfield Connect the Dots -Climate Impacts Day
Bill McKibben and other local leaders will explore how climate change is affecting Vermont today.
Register here

Monday, May 7, 6:30 pm, Colatina Exit, Upstairs
1st Monday Film: SPOIL” – a movie about the Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia, Canada under threat from tar sands oil. Beautiful photography and celebration of the natural world. Come early, if you wish to order food or drink.
Sponsored by the Bradford Conservation Commission. Donations welcomed, but optional.

Tuesday, May 29, 7 pm, Vershire Town Center
Four Rivers Food Center Project, presents Ben Hewitt of Hardwick, author of The Town that Food Saved and Making Supper Safe. We’ll also present our final report on the prospects for regional food centers in this area, and open the floor to responses. Come with ideas or to listen. Snacks of local origin will be provided.
Info: 802-439-5324.

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) 802-333-3664 (May 1- Oct. 31) [email protected]
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