SEEDS Newsletter • June 2020 Empowering Sustainable Communities
Surely by now, you have heard the term “We are all in this together.” I think that most of us are feeling the reality of this statement. But, some are feeling it more than others. I am not one of them. I am privileged. I am white. I have a home, mortgage paid up. I have a property on which to grow my food, room to wander, finding solace in nature. The birds build their nests, finding insects as best they can to feed their young. The pollinators soldier on despite roadblocks we put in their way (pesticides, habitat loss, etc.). The wind blows. Trees leaf out.
Those who live paycheck to paycheck, those whose jobs have gone, those who are homeless, those who face injustices because of their origins or the color of their skin, those with children at home wondering why their lives have changed so dramatically, are facing a different reality than I am. What is it about our society that causes such inequities? I like to think that our country is only as good as the least amongst us. This pandemic has shone a light upon the weaknesses of our health care system and community support systems, as well as political fracture-points. Are we intelligent and brave enough to address the inadequacies and injustices with compassion and creative thinking? To turn in new directions? Can we move beyond politics? Can we open our hearts and minds to new ways of doing? Can we be inclusive?
I think SEEDS followers are better equipped than most to do this. You see possibilities. You have imagination. You have a sense of justice. Do you think we can come together to put this imagination to work for a better world? Our mission to promote energy efficiency, renewable energy, and sustainable living in our communities is all about resilience which we desperately need during and after this pandemic.
My ask is to help grow us out of this pandemic in a way that compassionately supports everyone, that includes an environment that can provide a healthy future for all. Use your imagination, your sense of justice, your creative thinking, and share your ideas with SEEDS leadership. We look forward to hearing from you.
It is a wonderful time of year to get outside and enjoy the sunshine, but also the time of rain showers. If you are looking for information and entertainment, check out these documentaries that are FREE to stream!
Il Pescatore Completo | The Complete Fisherman (2020)
18:37 min https://youtu.be/GdXIHsGgIQM
A homemade four and a half metre long rod, a carefully braided line made from the tail hair of a stallion, simple flies tied by hand, without the use of a binding stick - this is the so-called Pesca alla Valsesiana. This wonderful form of fly fishing has been practiced on the small mountain streams in the north of Italy at least since the 16th century.
Led by Arturo Pugno, a deserving statesman of this sport, the Pesca alla Valsesiana is still practised today by a few followers on the same waters, using the same materials and techniques as back then. It is the most basic and at the same time the most refined form of fly fishing, and it is only mastered by those fly fishermen whom Arturo Pugno calls "accomplished fly fishermen".
The new Patagonia film The Perfect Fisher gives us an introduction to this timeless technique of fly fishing, portraying one of its masters and showing the special places where the Pesca alla Valsesiana is practiced with the same devotion and reverence as hundreds of years ago.
The Plastic Problem - PBS NewsHour Documentary (2019)
54:01 min https://youtu.be/1RDc2opwg0I
Over 9 billion metric tons of plastic have been produced since 1950. Where has it all gone? In the documentary "The Plastic Problem", the PBS NewsHour explores the scourge of plastic remnants in our oceans and lakes, their points of origin, and their ultimate impact to the health of both sea life and humans.
Our addiction to plastics is understandable. They have revolutionized everything from consumer goods to medical care. Their convenience and durability have transformed us into a disposable society.
The global recycling rate has reduced to just 9% in recent years. The production of fresh plastic waste continues to rise with no signs of dissipation. The film explores how the current system of recycling has not adequately impacted the crisis. Meanwhile, incineration could fill the environment with dangerous chemical pollution.
Utilizing the expertise of various ecologists and conservationists, "The Plastic Problem" diagnoses the worldwide crisis of plastic consumption and points the way to possible solutions.
Farmer’s Footprint | Regeneration : The Beginning (2019)
20:18 min https://vimeo.com/311972894
This film features the trials, learnings and victories of the four generation Breitkreutz family from Stoney Creek Farm transitioning from conventional farming to regenerative agriculture in Redwood Falls, Minnesota. Using conventional methods they saw their soils degrade and their input costs rise every year. Transitioning to regenerative practices has helped their row cropping operation and significantly reduced the input cost for their cattle.
Botanical animation "Story of Flowers" (2017) (popular on social media right now)
3:46 min https://youtu.be/vDpFyHmt0AE
Many different flowers are growing beautifully and strongly in this world. Taking their roots in the earth, sprouting, blooming, pollination by birds and insects, living on in spite of rain, wind and storms. They pass on the baton of life, rebirth and decay. Everything is so in a continuous, endless cycle… Katie’s delicate and lively illustration spreads to fill the screen and everybody, both kids and adults, can enjoy this 4-minute animation.
Earth's Ekko (2019)
20:27 min https://youtu.be/DyIkKHS0ZmE
Ekko has lived in the ocean with his family for millions of years. Only recently has their world become disturbed by something human made. Ekko goes on an adventure with three human friends to learn about the problems with plastic and how to solve it. Ekko learns that young people are natural problem solvers and together can protect the environment.
Some Sunny News!
Renewables Out-Generate Coal In US For First Time Since
The 19th Century. The United States consumed more energy from renewable sources than from coal last year for the first time since 1885, according to a new report from the U.S. Energy Information Agency. While coal still accounted for more electricity generation than renewables in 2019, renewables outpaced coal in electricity generation for a record 40 straight days earlier this year and the US EIA projects they will do so for 2020 overall. Despite Trump’s promises to revive the coal industry, coal’s decline and renewables’ growth are both expected to continue due to economic and environmental factors. The IRS extension of renewable tax credits and expansion of renewable portfolios by coal-heavy utilities like Southern Company and American Electric Power, all announced this week, along with the 13 coal plant closures already announced this year, are emblematic of that trend. “The longer this whole pandemic lasts, the worse it is for the coal industry,” Ben Nelson, lead coal analyst for Moody’s Investors Service, told the Wall Street Journal. “It encourages utilities to shut down more coal plants, and that takes out demand permanently.” (Wall Street Journal, E&E, Greentech Media,CNN, The Hill,OilPrice, Bloomberg)
We had a viewing and discussion of the video "Tossed Out" with our friend Sarah Corcoran of the Sierra Club. Click here to view the video on our Facebook Page!
Exciting News for Food Lovers!
There is a plethora of delicious food being made right here NEPA, and luckily there is a new way to access it! The Pike/Wayne Farms and Food Guide is here. The Agriculture Task Force of Wayne Tomorrow is working to create a source of information on the region's food producers and how to connect with them. They are making a local access-to-food directory for the following reasons:
Covid-19 has increased our awareness of our food supply chain and shown us that we need to tap into the local food system.
Currently, consumers wanting to purchase local food can find it difficult to find out who to buy from.
To give farmers a place to advertise, so that people can easily find them!
To view the interactive map click here and if you are a farmer who would like to be listed on the map, click here.
More Ways to Support SEEDS!
• Lake Region IGA Supermarkets donate 1% of your purchases to local charities through their Lake Region Community Dock Foundation.
Sign up for a new card, and choose SEEDS as your charity. Or visit www.lrcdf.org to link your existing Preferred Customer Card to SEEDS. • Have you “liked” us on Facebook? If not, click HERE.
If so, please “invite your friends” to like us too!
If you are not a member of SEEDS, please consider joining us today!
Our annual membership dues are only $10, and you will continue to receive our newsletters, invitations to our educational forums and other events. Please make your check payable to SEEDS of Northeastern PA and mail to SEEDS, 1030 Main Street, Honesdale, PA 18431.
You may become a more active member and join some of our project circles. If you are interested in hearing more about SEEDS and our programs, please contact our Executive Director at Olga@SeedsGroup.netor call 570-245-1256.