Shades of Green in Madison County!

February 27, 2012 § 1 Comment

This past Friday, I was fortunate enough to attend the Shades of Green in Madison County conference on sustainability. The conference took place at Morrisvile State College in Madison County, NY, and while the focus was on sustainability measures being implemented in Madison County and the surrounding areas, many of the messages and ideas transcended location. As described by the conference’s website, the purpose of the event was to:

“…help individuals, businesses, and communities advance green initiatives throughout Madison County to achieve more economically viable, sustainable and healthier places to live, go to school, work, shop, and enjoy!  Check out the agenda on the conference program page and register today! Shades of Green in Madison County: A Green Living Experience is an initiative of the Madison County Community Economic Development (CED) Committee.”

The day started off with a presentation by Peter Fleischer, the Executive Director of Empire State Futures (ESF), a coalition of over 50 organizations working towards a more sustainable and equitable New York State, promoting the idea of “Smart Growth” for land use and business expansion. Mr. Fleischer discussed how ESF works to promote sustainable development across the state. One particularly poignant example was ESF’s work with the food industry. According to Mr. Fleischer, New York State annually produces 4.5 billion dollars of food annually. Now, this seems like a huge amount of food, but compared to the $30 billion of food consumed by New York City alone each year, it is clear that New York cannot sustain itself, which led the speech in the direction of discussing what kind of things are done to make this consumption more sustainable.

The rest of the conference followed this discussion. It was a sustainability junkie’s heaven – discussions and presentations were available about a variety of topics, ranging from historical preservation to composting, sustainable gardening to retrofitting lighting systems, and had just about anything you would want to learn about in a sustainable context. This is in addition to the dozen or so exhibitors from around the state, including some local energy companies, NYSERDA, and my good friends at YouSave Green! As an inspiring finale to the day, SUNY ESF‘s President Cornelius Murphy gave a brilliant Keynote speech on how ESF (Not the same as the first Keynote speaker’s ESF) has changed the world of sustainability and environmental awareness.

I managed to rack up a bit of information during the conference:

Wow! So much knowledge!

Attn: Readers – Prepare for a knowledge infusion.

I plan on using all of this information, combined with what the presenters spoke about to bring a whole smothering of new posts over the next few days, starting with an overview of President Murphy’s speech, and continuing on to include:

  • Home Energy Efficiency
  • Geothermal Heating Systems
  • Shopping Locally
  • Home Gardens and their Sustainability Impact
  • Reusing Waste to Create Energy Sources
  • Effective Composting
  • Coordinated Transportation Systems

Check back often to see all of these awesome posts!

Anything specific you want to learn about? Let me know!

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