Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Weekly Sustainability Announcements, SUSTAINABILITY ACTION NETWORK, Lawrence Kansas, 30/March/2010

Tuesday, 30 March 2010, 12:00noon ¤ on Kansas City Community Radio
Listen at KKFI-FM 90.1, or on web-streaming at 

On EcoRadio KC this week, host Richard Mabion presents his latest "Two Men Talking" show, with guest John Burris.  They will be discussing green politics and social justice in Missouri, Kansas and the U.S. at large.

Stay tuned at 12:30 when the Bioneers radio series presents "The Trojan Gene: Genetic Engineering and the Future of Nature".  A handful of profit-driven biotechnology corporations are rewriting the genetic code of the tree of life, radically altering the composition of our food and releasing self-replicating genetic pollution into the natural world. Farmer Percy Schmeiser, technology expert Andrew Kimbrell, and Native American professor and farmer John Mohawk explore the implications of genetic engineering on the food we eat, the farmers who raise our food, the natural world and society.

Wednesday, 31 March 2010, 6:00-9:00pm  -  $$
East Lawrence Community Center, 1245 E. 15th St., Lawrence (15th at Brook St.)

Steve Moring of the Kaw Permaculture Collaborative 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 two weeks.  Interspersed with the lectures will be occasional field trips.

The lecture will be followed by a viewing of the film "Introduction to Permaculture Design" by Geoff Lawton.  A $30.00 admission fee will be requested at the door.  The fees will support both the K.P.C. and it's parent organization, Sustainability Action Network.  For more information contact Steve Moring at 785-691-7305 or

Wednesday, 31 March 2010, 7:00pm  -  FREE
The Commons in Spooner Hall, University of Kansas

A round table discussion with Dr. John Vandermeer and Dr. Ivette Perfecto of the University of Michigan, and Dr. Angus Wright of California State University (where Wes Jackson first taught).  All three panelists work on the cutting edge of ecology--the study of how plants, animals, insects, geochemicals such as nitrogen and phosphorous, soil, air, and water all work together to create our home--the environment which sustains us.  In particular, they do some of the most advanced research in the nation on how agriculture ecosystems can work with, not against ecology.  For more info go to The Commons at K.U.

released Monday, 22 March 2010, World Water Day

Some 30 years ago, one of the earliest companies around here to make home deliveries of bottled water was The Topeka Bottled Water Company.  As the story goes, when the owner retired in the 1980's a reporter asked him the secret of his profitable business.  He answered frankly that he had simply bottled the Topeka water.

It's no different today - 1/3 of all bottled water in the U.S. is just tap water slightly filtered, including Pepsi's Aquifina and Coke's Dasani.  Bottled water is less regulated than tap water, oftentimes is not as clean as tap water, but it costs 2000 times as much as tap water (at $6 - $8 per gallon, it also costs more than gasoline).  This information and more can be found in The Story of Bottled Water, and at Just Say No To Bottled Water.  Other disturbing facts about bottled water:  petroleum is used to make the single-use bottles, 25-50 billion per year in the U.S. alone; 80 percent of the plastic bottles are landfilled; and various plastic containers leach phthalates and Bisphenol A, both of which are endocrine disruptors. 

Alternatives?  Most tap water is of high quality, except for the mixed blessing of chlorine that kills water borne diseases, but is itself toxic.  So use an under-the-sink water purifier that easily removes chlorine.  The cost is pennies per gallon compared to bottled water.  And carry this purified water in a stainless steel bottle, but make sure it is not lined with plastic, which some are.

Saturday, 3 April 2010, 9:30am-2:30pm
Sermon Community Center, 201 N Dodgion St, Independence MO (near Truman & Noland Roads)

There will be local organic and free range producers selling their wares, including garden plant starts, as well as free organic gardening information and free 2009 Producers Directory.  There will be a free workshop on CSA's and Organic Farmers Markets, food preservation, and cooking demonstrations by two local restaurants  Local Burger and Justus Drugstore - Restaurant.

Both Food Expos are free admission with free parking and free music.  More information on the KC Food Circle and the two food expositions can be found at Kansas City Eat Local Food Expo  or  (913)334-0556 or email to  

Saturday, 3 April 2010, 9:00am-3:30pm  -  FREE
Discovery Center, 4750 Troost, Kansas City MO

Super Green Homes are called Passiv Haus (Passive House), NetZero, and Near NetZero, and the technology is feasible today.  There will be vendors of applicable building products, and speakers all day.  Some of the speakers will be: Bob Berkebile from BNIM Architects speaking on 21st Century Living at the community scale; Mark Grantham from Innovative Designs speaking on deep retrofit remodeling and sustainable living models; Dustin Jensen from Metropolitan Energy Center speaking on the energy rebates, incentives and the payoff times; Ryan Abendroth from Passive House Institute speaking on the Passive House concept, and Robert McLaughlin from McLaughlin Designs on The Greensburg NetZero Eco-Home.  Event is free but reservations are recommended.  RSVP Dayna McDaniel

Monday, 5 April 2010, 5:00pm
320 NE Industrial Lane, Lawrence, KS 66044

The Lawrence Earth Day parade and celebration will be on 17 April starting with the parade at 11:00am.  The celebration in the park features live music, food, vendors and children’s activities.  Vendor booths are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.  For more info go to Earth Day Celebration 2010.

Thursday, 8 April 2010, 4:00pm
City Manager's Conference Rm., City Hall 4th Floor, 6th & Massachusetts St.

At the April meeting, the task force will review it's working draft Peak Oil Plan consisting of the introduction and five chapters developed so far. 

Meetings are open to the public, and the public is encouraged to attend.  And the Peak Oil Task Force web page has developed an extensive list of resources (click on "resources") including other cities' action plans such as San Francisco and Portland, videos, advocacy groups like Post Carbon Institute and Transition Boulder County, and key data and reports.


China has surpassed Japan as the world's largest auto producer, and has easily topped the U.S. in auto sales.  With help from Japanese, German, and Italian designers, the Chinese are now producing sophisticated autos they plan to introduce to the U.S. market within a year.  These include Geely Automotive, Chery International, and BYD Auto - Build Your Dreams.  Chery is selling cars in this hemisphere in more than a dozen countries, and BYD already has on the market the BYD E6 Electric Vehicle, far in advance of any U.S. manufacturer.  With these types of autos in the works, it's no wonder the Chinese said "no" when GM tried to unload the albatross around their neck - the Hummer!  This Marketplace show a few months back - BYD E6 Electric Auto - provides a good overview on the car's capabilities, and points out that Warren Buffet owns 10% of BYD.

Thursday-Friday, 8-9 April 2010  -  $$
Independence Community College, 1057 W. College Blvd., Independence, KS  67301

This year's conference is sponsored by Labette Community College and Independence Community College.  Conference themes are: wind, solar, and geothermal energy; renewable energy cost accounting; energy auditing; green initiatives for businesses and schools; and greening school curriculums.  Speakers will include: Mr. Gary Hogsett, on building energy analysis; Mr. Bill Hanlon, on energy efficient and tight construction; and Dr. Ruth Douglas-Miller, on the Kansas wind industry.  For information or registration materials, contact Chenoa Bosch at (620)332-5621 or <>

Saturday, 10 April 2010, 7:00am-11:00pm
800 block of New Hampshire St., Lawrence KS

The Lawrence Farmers' Market is the oldest in Kansas, and is open on Saturday mornings, and Tuesday and Thursday afternoons (weekday markets will begin on 5 May).  This is a "growers' only market": all fruits, vegetables, and meats are raised by the vendor, and there are more than eighty vendors.  For more info go to Lawrence Farmers' Market.

Sunday, 11 April 2010, 9:00am-3:00pm (10:00am Earth Walk)
Volker (Theis) Park, Kansas City MO (just south of Nelson Gallery-Atkins Museum)

Sponsored by Bridging the Gap, this festival will celebrate the planet with ART!  A full stage of entertainment including StoneLion’s environmental puppet shows, make-and-take art activities, and environmental information to help make your life more green.  The walk is an "all species parade", and you are invited to dress as your favorite species, with prizes for the most creative costumes.  For more info visit

Sunday, 11 April 2010, 4:00pm
Teapouro Tea & Espresso, 712 Massachusetts St., Lawrence KS

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: 
  • plans for Transition Kaw Valley presentations
  • Finalizing our logo
  • Finalize our Challenge Statement and Mission Statement
  • web site design
  • Final draft of 501(C)(3) application
  • Lawrence Peak Oil Plan, suggestions for input 
Please join us

Wednesday, 14 April 2010, 5:30pm
Recycling and Resource Recovery Annex, 320 N.E. Industrial Lane, Lawrence KS

The April agenda will be available soon.  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

Wednesday, 14 April 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

Saturday, 17 April 2010, 10:00am-3:00pm
Shawnee Mission East High School (75th and Mission Rd)

At this 9th annual Earth Fair, there will be over 40 vendors from all types of environmentally focused organizations, and a farmers' market.  For more info contact
Katie Nixon, coordinator, at (816)809-5074.

Saturday, 17 April 2010, 11:00am parade, 11:30-4:00pm park festival

The Lawrence Earth Day Parade begins at the Train Park, and is sponsored by K.U. Environs -   The Earth Day Celebration will be held in South Park, and is sponsored by the City of Lawrence Waste Reduction & Recycling Department - Earth Day Celebration 2010The celebration in the park features live music, children’s activities and food vendors.  Attendees are invited to learn from exhibits about waste reduction, recycling, composting, alternative fuels and vehicles, energy conservation, land preservation, wildlife and habitat preservation, and more.

Tuesday, 19 April 2010, 6:00pm
Public Works Confr. Room, lower level, Lawrence City Hall, 6th & Massachusetts St.

The agenda for this month will be available soon.  The Committee works to improve bicycle safety and awareness through education of motorists and non-motorists, develops bicycle plans and maps, and advises the City and County Commissions on bicycle priorities and needs.  The agenda and information can be downloaded at Bicycle Advisory Comm | agendas & minutes.

Monday-Thursday, 19-22 April 2010, Cochabamba, Bolivia  -  FREE

In the aftermath of the failed Copenhagen climate conference, those who defended the widely condemned outcome tended to talk about it as a "step in the right direction".  But because it's not possible to compromise with nature, Bolivia believed that Copenhagen marked a backwards step, undoing even the progress since Kyoto.  That is why, against strong pressure from industrialized countries, developing nations refused to sign the Copenhagen accord, and why Bolivia is hosting an international meeting on climate change next month.  In the words of the Tuvalu negotiator, we are not prepared to "betray our people for 30 pieces of silver".

The best way to put climate change solutions at the heart of the talks was to involve the people.  So similar to the World Social Forum, this gathering is an initiative of civil society, not governments or corporations.  Unlike Copenhagen, there will be no secret discussions behind closed doors.  Moreover the debate and proposals will be led by communities on the frontlines of climate change and by organisations and individuals dedicated to tackling the climate crisis.  All 192 governments in the UN have also been invited to attend and encouraged to listen to the voices of civil society and together develop common proposals.

For more info and to register (free) go to World People's Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth.  Information about flights and courtesy visas for those coming from the U.S. (and Canada in some cases) contact the Embassy of the Plurinational State of Bolivia in Washington at  For information onhotels, send an email to including your name, country of origin, number of people in your party, contact information, and any other pertinent information. 

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

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 

To subscribe to this list, please send an e-mail to with the subject line reading “subscribe to Sustainability Announcements”.

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