Sustainable Island Living Resource Guide

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					Sustainable Island Living Resource Guide
Actions and Resources for a Sustainable, Secure, and Healthy Future The action-steps and resource links below can assist you and your community in searching for sustainable solutions. Immediate Actions Turn out the Lights Lower your Thermostat Spread the Word Conserve Water Be a Smart Shopper Recycle. But Reduce and Reuse First! Walk or Ride a Bike Compost Improve your Gas Mileage Be Creative about Energy Conservation Measure your Carbon Footprint Short-term Actions Unsubscribe from Junk Mail Share Educate Yourself and Others Insulate Grow Your Own Buy Energy Star Conduct a Home Energy Audit Invest in a Heating Cell or Solar Array Long-term Actions Recycle E-waste Learn about Eco-Friendly Business Consider Alternative Energy Use Sustainable Building Design Incorporate Sustainability into your next Comprehensive Plan

Immediate Actions Turn out the Lights –Keeping lights off when unused will reduce your energy bill and your carbon footprint! While you‘re at it, be sure to turn off the TV, computer and other unused appliances. Lower your Thermostat –Save big by lowering your thermostat while you‘re away from home or asleep! It‘s easy to do, especially because many thermostats have automatic settings. Resources Thermostats and Control Systems Spread the Word- Tell your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, and everyone else about what you are doing. Write a letter to your newspaper or to your government representatives. It‘s OK to brag sometimes and it encourages others, too. Resources: Maine Newspapers Senators Congressmen Conserve Water – Reducing the amount of water we have to treat or transport reduces our carbon footprint and ecological impact as well. Don‘t leave the faucet running and re-use water where possible! Resources: Water Conservation Tips, Calculator and Technology Be a Smart Shopper- Buy local, organic, fair trade or eco-friendly and buy products with less packaging and more recycled content. Start a buying club on your island and buy in bulk. Be a conscious consumer, there is a lot of ―green washing‖ of products to make them look eco-friendly. Educate yourself so you don‘t fall for the gimmicks. Resources: MOFGA- Maine Organic Farmers and Growers Association Crown of Maine Organic Cooperative Green Store-- Belfast, ME Protect Maine Farmers Food for Maine‘s Future Recycle. But Reduce and Reuse First!- Recycling is great, but don‘t forget that it is Step Three. Reduce what you use and reuse it first. The throw-away culture has got to end. Encourage smart design by using products that can be reused or recycled. Resources: Cradle to Cradle

Green Store Maine Recycles Week Walk or Ride a Bike- Get some exercise, spare the air of the greenhouse gases, and save money. Purchase a pedometer and see how many miles you can rack up in a day or week, either for personal knowledge or to compete with your friends. Resources: Bicycle Coalition of Maine How to Use a Pedometer Compost- Don‘t fill up the land fill with precious garden fertilizer! Purchase or make your own composting bin and use that energy you used to just throw away. If you already compost, try to compost more efficiently: add straw and maybe even some manure. Resources: Maine Compost School Worm Bin Tumbler Improve your Gas Mileage- Don‘t idle your engine, be sure your tires are inflated and don‘t carry extra unnecessary weight in your vehicles. If your car is going to idle for more than 30 seconds shut it off. It‘s noisy, bad for the environment and your health, and costs money. Reducing your highway speed from 75 to 55mph can improve your gas mileage by 25 %! Resources: Click and Clack‘s Eco-Tips Gas Mileage Tips Myths on Idling Goloco.org Be Creative About Energy Conservation –Energy savings can be as simple as reducing the set-point on your water heater, using draperies to insulate your windows during wintertime, planting native blueberries in unused lawn space to reduce mowing, or baking multiple items at once rather than one at a time. Measure your Carbon Footprint- Measuring your carbon footprint is fast and easy. Doing so not only tells you how much carbon you use compared to others, but can also act as an eye-opener. The average American produces 19 tons of CO2 a year. How much do you produce? Consider what it would take for you to reduce your footprint. Resources: EPA‘s Carbon Calculator Nature Conservancy Calculator

Short-term Actions Unsubscribe from junk mailings- The average adult receives 41 pounds of junk mail each year. Contact the companies and ask to be taken off their mailing lists. Resources: Reclaim your mailbox Share Share a ride, a meal, or even a vehicle or an appliance. Remember ‗Sharing is Caring‘? Well, it‘s true. Sharing with your friends can lead to less exploitation of natural resources. Pitch in and buy your next large appliance with a friend or neighbor. Resources: The Benefits of Fractional Ownership Goloco.org Educate Yourself and Others- Learn about climate change, peak oil, the exploitation of natural resources, or the fragility of the Earth‘s ecosystems. Find out something new every day and share that something with someone. Knowledge is contagious. Resources: Worldchanging.com Treehugger Al Gore on TED New Forest Institute—Brooks, ME Eco-Villages Peak Oil Insulate – Heating and cooling account for 50-70% of the energy used in the average American home, according to the Department of Energy. Insulating your home can be as simple as using draperies to reduce heat loss through windows in wintertime. Insulation reduces long-term home heating and cooling bills for a one-time investment! Resources: Department of Energy Insulation Fact Sheet Grow Your Own- Start a garden or make yours bigger. You can‘t get any more local that your own land. Don‘t let anyone fool you; the Maine coast is a fine place to have a four-season garden. Resources: Four Season Farm—Harborside, ME The Good Life Center—Harborside, ME MOFGA Buy Energy Star- Energy Star has taken the guess work out of buying energyefficient appliances. Just look for the little ―energy star‖ sticker the next time you are purchasing an appliance, and save big on energy costs.

Resources: Energystar Conduct a Home Energy Audit- A home energy audit can lead to energy savings of thousands of dollars a year! Hire a professional or get started on your own with the Home Energy Saver tool online. Resources: Home Energy Saver Maine Certified Energy Auditors Maine Home Performance

Long-term Actions Recycle E-waste- Maine has one of the only laws that make recycling electronic waste mandatory. Even still, consumers have to do their part. Reduce and reuse first. Also, encourage smart design by buying electronics that are upgradeable. Higher-end products tend to last longer, saving you money in the long run. Resources: E-waste in Maine Natural Resources Council of Maine Learn about Eco-Friendly Business- Any business can be ecologically friendly, even yours. Educate yourself and consider what it would take to make your business environmentally sound. Resources: Midcoast Green Collaborative Maine‘s Environmental Leaders Natural Capitalism Consider Alternative Energy -Wind power, solar power or hydropower could provide electricity, heat your home or help reduce energy costs for your community, business or home. Wind: Maine islands enjoy a strong wind resource. A community wind-power project is underway for the Fox Islands, and other islands are investigating wind power for their communities. See our vendor list for small-scale wind turbine vendors! Fox Islands wind power project Swan‘s Island wind power project American Wind Energy Association Solar: Solar power can provide electricity and heat for your home or hot-water system. Solar panels have a lifespan of 20-25 years. With a little effort, state and federal incentives are available. Resources:

Locate solar installer and experts with our list of vendors! Solar Panel Info. Maine State Solar Incentive Program RoofRay

Hydro: Hydropower is an emerging technology. Wave, tidal and offshore hydropower technology investigations are underway. Follow the link below to read about a study planned for Vinalhaven! Alexander‘s Marvelous Machine Use Sustainable Building Design- Green building is a way to build that increases efficiency of resources while decreasing negative impact on the environment and health. It can also save you money and isn‘t as complicated as it may seem. Things like siting your building to maximize the sun‘s potential and insulating better are green building practices. Resources: U.S. Green Building Council Sustainable Building Sourcebook Maine Green Building Supply Incorporate Sustainability into your next Comprehensive Plan- Consider talking about sustainability in the vision statement of your town‘s next Comprehensive Plan. Make it specific to your town‘s needs and keep it clear. The Natural Step Framework is a great place to draw inspiration from; it emphasizes needs-based solutions. Resources: Eco- Municipalities Natural Step Framework Sustainable Northampton Comprehensive Plan Berkeley Environmental Management Plan

Green Jobs Maine‘s coastal islands have an abundance of renewable resources, including consistently blowing winds; woody ocean residue (e.g. seaweed); forest biomass; tidal currents; geothermal heat; and solar radiation. This section lists examples and sources of ―green‖ jobs to help you think of long-term economic opportunities that will improve island sustainability. Algaculture- Cultivating algae for the production of bioplastics, dyes, pollution control, biofuels and possible food sources. Fuel prices are expected to rise over the next 10 years –with the number of diesel engines on the islands, it might not

be hard to start a successful biofuel business, especially given the amount of research going into alternative fuel sources. Resources: Algae as biofuel video Algaculture.org Biomass - Biomass energy refers to any power generated from the use of plants or plant-derived materials. The islands have a number of biomass fuel sources, including: Spruce tree blow-downs, food wastes, human wastes and municipal solid wastes. Islands with dumps or municipal sewer systems could harness gases released by the decomposition process to provide long-term island jobs and heat or electricity for island residents. Resources: Biomass resources for power Woody biomass removal Methane Bicycle Repair Shop- As gas prices continue to climb, bicycles are becoming more and more popular. Whether repairing old abandoned bikes to be put up for sale/rent or fixing new ones, this is a great way to influence a zero- carbonemission lifestyle in your community. Resources: Bicycle Maintenance and Repair Biodegradable chain and cable lubricants Energy Auditor- Rising energy costs and energy inefficiency in business and home residences are continually driving the need for trained, experienced energy auditors. Energy Auditors conduct comprehensive inspections of the energy efficiency of homes and are key players in reducing the energy consumption of our nation. Resources: See our list of vendors for Energy Auditors near you! Maine certified energy auditor training Home performance assessment Forester/Arborist- A forester creates and executes plans towards the selective, sustainable harvesting of trees for various objectives (fire reduction, forest health, biomass energy etc…). An arborist cuts, prunes and repairs trees in a public setting. They also diagnose and treat tree-nutrient deficiencies or diseases. Resources: The Forest Guild Maine Forest Service International Society of Arboriculture Biodegradable chain and bar oil Geothermal- Geothermal heating and air-conditioning is rapidly growing throughout the US. Heating and air contractors, drilling companies, and

excavators can expand their business opportunities with training in geothermal systems. Resources: Geothermal education and training Geothermal heat pumps Low temperature geothermal resources Green Construction Work- This industry is for workers with traditional construction skills who have, or are willing to obtain, up-to-date training on energy-efficient design and construction using newer technologies. Resources: US Green Building Council, Maine Maine State Housing Authority Green Building Standards Maine Energy Investment Corp Handouts Green Plumber- Plumbers can now take accredited courses to become educated in water conservation and new technology (tap valves, greywater recycling systems, solar water heating systems, etc…) Resources: www.greenplumbersusa.com Energy efficient water heating Hydropower- Hydropower systems are sustainable ways of harnessing energy in order to produce electricity from flowing water. The Electric Power Research Group (EPRG) has concluded that Maine has an excellent potential to produce competitive tidal power within the next 15 years. Resources: Maine Tidal Power Half Moon Cover Tidal Power Project Large-Sscale Green Waste Composting Center - Starting a large-scale compost center using organic wastes collected from the community is a great way to supply the community with a high-grade soil enhancer for gardening at competitive prices. Resources: Maine Composting Initiative Maine Compost School Worm Bin Tumbler Non-Toxic Residential Cleaning Service - People employed to clean houses can make their own, non-toxic cleaning substances or buy commercial non-toxic cleaning products as a healthier and more environmentally responsible alternative. Resources: Make your own household cleaners

Natural, non-toxic commercial household cleaners Solar Electrician- While Maine does not have as substantial a source of solar energy as the Southwestern US, depending on electricity prices it still can provide a fair amount of power. A solar electrician provides customer service, evaluation, installation, maintenance and repair to solar energy systems. Resources: Solar Power Calculator Efficiency Maine certifications Weatherization Technician- Many island houses are poorly insulated, causing winter heating fees to skyrocket. A weatherization technician is trained to make improvements by conducting various energy-saving measures such as spaceheater installation, weather-stripping, caulking and other safety-related repairs. Resources: Maine Weatherization Technician training course Keep ME Warm Wind-Power Technician- Experts in the energy industry consider Maine coastal wind resources to be exceptional (potentials over 2,000 megawatts). Wind Technician careers are growing rapidly as the expansion of wind energy grows. Resources: Wind Power Projects


				
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