Posts tagged sustainability

The Truth About Energy Security

By Gay Nicholson, Ph.D., President of Sustainable Tompkins

The theme of our recent Energy Fair was community energy security. Real energy security.

Most of us associate “energy security” with fossil fuel industry lobbyists who try to convince Americans that we will be more secure if we stop relying on imports of foreign oil and just let them expand drilling offshore or in the rural lands of America.

But is that really a plan that will make us more secure?  Consider this:

Energy efficiency has never polluted the Gulf of Mexico or slimed the shores of Alaska.

Solar panels never gave a child asthma or blew off a mountain top.

Wind turbines have never threatened millions with cancer-causing radiation.

Energy conservation has never polluted drinking water supplies or destroyed a rural landscape.

We’ll never be really secure if we continue to base our economy and our way of life on fossil energy.  We know it’s a tightening noose with constantly rising prices and amplifying environmental damages. Read the rest of this entry »

Performing Arts Center NY-CHPS Project

The Performing Arts Center at the Ithaca City School District has recently been chosen as a candidate to pursue NY-CHPS verification. The NY-CHPS program is designed to support sustainability efforts in K-12 schools with a focus on energy reduction. There are currently an estimated 300 CHPS projects underway nationwide, 12 in NY, and of those twelve, 2 are in the Ithaca City District.

Alternatives Federal Credit Union’s “Green Team”

Alternatives Federal Credit Union’s “Green Team” tackles projects to make their business more sustainable. One of their internal projects was reducing electricity use, which so far as produced yearly savings of 26,800 kilowatts.


IthaCan is a web-based social network that connects food enthusiasts, supporters of local agriculture, and people with an interest or question about food and sustainability. IthaCan especially focuses on teaching about and supporting the preservation of food at home. IthaCan organizers hosted a number of events in the last year educating people about how to make the most of our local food bounty.

Get Foodie

A new show, ‘Get Foodie’, is sponsored by GreenStar Co-op. Carisa Fallon is the creative energy behind the show, which is carried on the Pegasys Network. In each episode, Fallon and her two daughters visit a local producer or farm, discuss what food is being served or grown, and then she and her daughters return home to prepare a dish using that food. The focus of the show is in teaching local families about the sustainable and delicious food options that are in their backyards. The episodes air locally and can also be found on

Garden 4 Humanity

Gardens 4 Humanity, a project of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County’s Whole Community Project, is a community driven effort to promote sustainability through urban gardening and local farm connections. In the last year, a number of these community gardens have been created, and plans for more community gardens in the city are in the works.

Sustainable Passion Boutique

Sustainable Passion Boutique opened, specializing in sustainable sex toys and other erotic items. Sustainable Passion focuses on providing a sex-positive, relaxed and women-centric ambience for its customers. The store focuses on products which are not only better for the environment but safer for the health of the users.

Waffle Frolic

The waffles at Waffle Frolic are made entirely from scratch using local and organic ingredients. Also offered is a full espresso bar, featuring Coffee Labs Roasters coffee which is Fair Trade Certified and Bird Friendly; Coffee Labs maintains an overall commitment to sustainability. Waffle Frolic offers a book exchange program for its patrons.

Ithaca Alternative Gift Fair – December 4

Tompkins Weekly – November 23, 2010
By Christian Nielsen
Once more, it’s time for the Ithaca Alternative Gift Fair. Read the rest of this entry »

Encore for Beaming Bioneers

Finger Lakes Bioneers will be offering a repeat performance of this year’s keynote speakers from the Bioneers “headwaters” conference in California last month.  For those who missed Breakfast with the Bioneers at Cinemapolis during this year’s We Make Our Future conference, we will be showing these videos of presentations by leading thinkers and activists such as James Hansen, Jane Goodall, and Mallika Dutt on Tuesday evenings from 7-9 pm, starting November 16 and ending December 21, at the Sustainable Tompkins office at 109 S. Albany St.  Seating is limited to 15 and will be offered on a first come, first served basis. Read the rest of this entry »