“Greening Our Community” articles are publications coordinated and facilitated by Sustainable Tallahassee and published in the Tallahassee Democrat newspaper as both online blogs and print articles. They are written by Sustainable Tallahassee and by partner organizations that have a community wide sphere of influence in making our local community more sustainable.
2020.09.02 Greening Our Community: Citizens for a Sustainable Future In her article, Johana-Marie Williams talks about the effects of racism on social and economic sustainability often hamper their ability to respond to various threats? Citizens for a Sustainable Future works tirelessly in seeking ways to advance sustainability practices and environmental justice through strategic partnerships and creative collaborations.
2020.08.19 Greening Our Community: Permaculture - Farming for a Sustainable Future In his article, Henry Gwynn, discusses how permaculture is not only used to grow food for profit, but rather growing a real sustainable culture around intelligently designed food systems and energy efficient architecture.Whether it is stripping soil life for faster profits, contributing to fertilizer run-off in our waterways, or disturbing essential wildlife corridors, conventional farming practices don’t consider the bigger, long-term picture.
2020.08.05 Greening Our Community: Intersectional Environmentalism Comes to Tallahassee In her article, Salome Garcia talks about Intersectional environmentalism and how marginalized communities and the earth are interconnected. This article touches on the impacts of climate change in the panhandle. Learn about what the CLEO institute is doing alongside many other groups and organizations in the Tallahassee community to recognize social inequalities as a crucial factor in the climate crisis.
2020.07.22 A Pandemic of Sorts Devastates a Florida Native Tree. In his article, Stan Rosenthal describes how the unintended consequences of invasive and exotic species can impact our environment. Stan writes about how the Asian ambrosia beetle spreads a fungus, Laurel Wilt, which causes species of native Florida trees to decline. Stan calls attention to this solutionless problem in hopes of spreading awareness.
2020.07.08 Solar Takes Giant Climate Action Steps. In this article Steve Urse describes the many steps our Tallahassee community has taken to support and expand solar energy - where we have been, where we are going, and the events that have impacted our journey. Steve is a founding board member of Sustainable Tallahassee and has chaired a number of committees over the years.
2020.06.23 Going Vegan for the Planet. Linda Oaksford, retired educator and Sustainable Tallahassee member, writes about her journey toward a plant based diet and provides excellent resources we can use for inspiration and guidance. “There is something we can do every day and it impacts the environment more than any other factor. . . . The food choices we make can help slow climate change by modifying what we eat,” says Linda in her article.
Trailahassee – a Blueprint Greenways Update. Cascades Park, Lake Ella,
Miccosukee Greenway, and the Pedestrian Bridge crossing Monroe are part of our
community’s 1,630+ miles of extensive greenways and trail system. Learn more
about our award-winning greenway facilities in this article by Autumn Calder, Director
of our local Blueprint Intergovernmental Agency.
Saving the Environment and Saving Lives.
Leon County continues to evaluate how to reduce emissions in all its
county operations. In this article,
Tobias Raether, Sustainability Programs Coordinator in Leon County’s Office of
Sustainability, writes about new technology being outfitted in ambulances to
reduce idling time with rechargeable battery auxiliary power units for life
support and communication systems.
2020.05.13 Piecing Together The Climate Puzzle. In this article Jeremy Owens, Assistant Professor in FSU’s Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science, describes how we measure climate factors today compared to the research that is required to measure climate factors millions of years ago and determine the earth’s climate history. He concludes that the changes occurring today could have similar long-term ecological effects and consequences to those occurring in the Mesozoic era.
Reuse at its Best – the Furniture Bank of Tallahassee. The Furniture Bank repurposes donated
furniture for neighbors in need, free of charge. Jon Hinkle’s article describes
the furniture needs and how to donate. The
Furniture Bank is “. . . reuse at its simplest and best, going directly from
one home to another, and making a difference in people’s lives.” Jon is the Manager of the Furniture Bank and
is a member and former Board member of Sustainable Tallahassee.
Earth Day 2020. As we honor the 50th
anniversary of the first Earth Day, we are in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The coincidence of Earth Day, April 22, 2020, occurring in the middle of a
global response to a world-wide pandemic, is an abrupt reminder that our
presence is profoundly altering our environment,” Meta Calder tells us in this
Greening Our Community article in which she draws a comparison and shakes our world
to the reality that lies before us . Meta
is a member of Sustainable Tallahassee and the editor of Sustainable
Tallahassee’s Greening Our Community articles.
2020.04.01 From Bags to Masks. With the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, Sustainable Tallahassee’s Rags2Bags team has switched temporarily from making reusable shopping bags to produce face masks, in response to receiving requests for more than 1000 masks. Written by Peggy Sanford, Sustainable Tallahassee’s immediate past president, and a current board member of Sustainable Tallahassee, and the spearhead of our super R2B team .
2020.03.18 RideOn – Be Green. Save Green. Feel GREAT! In this article, Pat Maurer, Commuter Programs Manager for RideOn Commuter Services, tells us how RideOn can help both individuals and businesses reduce our personal transportation pollution in our local 16-county area it serves. This coronavirus epidemic has taught us that we can reduce our carbon footprint by reducing our car trips, and Pat’s article gives us some excellent options. A very timely message.
2020.03.04 Go Native and Become a Hometown Biodiversity Hero. We know we should choose native plants over exotics (think azalea, crepe myrtle, camellia, nandina, and others), but what makes that so important? Kathryn Ziewitz, Executive Director of the FAMU Sustainability Institute, gives a compelling case for biodiversity in own yards and provides valuable resources to help us get there.
2020.02.19 Reflections of a North Florida Organic Farmer was written by Aaron Suko, who co-manages Full Earth Farm in Quincy with his wife Katie Harris. He writes about the challenges sustainable farmers in Florida face to manage nutrients, water, and soil to minimize environmental disturbance, the impact of fertilizers and pesticides on water and wetlands, and maintaining a balance between long term resilience and profitable yearly harvests by using natural fertilizers, compost, and cover crops.
Sustainable and Resilient Today and Tomorrow. Adam Jacobs, the Sustainability and
Resilience Manager for the City of Tallahassee’s Department of Sustainability
& Community Preservation, has written this article to give us the City’s perspective
on sustainability and clean energy for the future. He encourages our
involvement and to learn about the City’s Strategic Plans that includes a Community
Resilience Plan https://www.talgov.com/publicsafety/resplan.aspx)
and a Clean Energy Resolution (https://www.talgov.com/Main/News/4394.aspx).
2020.01.22 Following the Path to Plastic Waste Reduction asks the questions, How many of the things you used today and then threw away did you use only once? And how many of those things were plastic? In his article, Tobias Raether, the Sustainability Programs Coordinator in Leon County’s Office of Sustainability, challenges our knowledge and shares how progressive our County is in striving to “green” its operations and our community.
2020.01.08 Get Ready for More Sweaty. We in Leon County know that climate change is giving us more hot and humid days in recent years, yet our Leon County average temperature has risen only one half of one degree in the past 100 years. How can that be? Dr. James Elsner explains this in terms we can understand. He is the Earl and Sophia Shaw Professor and Chair of Geography at Florida State University and teaches applied spatial statistics and climatology.
2019.12.24 Happy New Year from Sustainable Tallahassee. Building on our achievements in 2019, Sustainable Tallahassee faces the challenges of the 2020s and looks forward to partnerships that will help to make our future bright for all. This article was written by Mike Mitchell, Sustainable Tallahassee’s incoming president for the 2020 year.
The Tallahassee Green Faith Alliance Inspires Sustainability at Houses of
Worship. The Tallahassee Green Faith Alliance formed this year to connect
people of faith who are implementing earth-friendly practices to share with
each other. Cara Fleischer, an organizer
of the Tallahassee Green Faith Alliance and the Creation Care leader at Saint
Paul’s United Methodist Church, writes about this new group and about the
sustainable features and practice that four area churches have implemented.
2019.11.24 Carbon Free by 2035. By encouraging the use of electric cars and using their batteries for energy storage, the city could transition the two main sources of greenhouse gas emissions, transportation and electricity, to renewable energy in a financially viable way a lot sooner than 2050, says Munir Humayun, Professor of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Science at FSU. Read his article to find out how.
2019.11.14 Carbon Free by 2050. Kim Ross, Executive Director of ReThink Energy Florida and Lauren Corey the Coordinator of the Tally 100% Together Coalition, describe our local government’s decision to be carbon free by 2050 and the creation of the “Tally 100% Together” coalition of organizations and individuals concerned about climate change and desiring a community-wide, urgent, and just transition to renewable energy.
2019.10.31 Food Choices and Sustainability. In her article Sally Sanders answers the question, what do our breakfast, lunch, and dinner choices have to do with deforestation, climate change, species extinction, water pollution, resource use, or ocean dead zones? She serves on the TalVeg Board of Directors and is a presenter about the impact of food choices with the Educated Choices Program.
2019.10.17 Trash and Trophies. This article invites runners to our 2019 Trash Dash 5K Cross Country run on October 26, and invites neighborhoods to submit their entries to win our 2019 Sustainable Neighborhood of the year award. It was co-written by Demian Pasquarelli, Sustainable Tallahassee’s Executive Director and Becky Parsons, board member.
Environmental impact of Oyster Farming. This article by Bob Ballard, the
Executive Director of the Tallahassee Community College’s Wakulla Environmental
Institute, describes how oyster habitats benefit our coastal areas and restore
the seafood economy. The work pioneered
by the Oyster Aquaculture program also demonstrates that oysters clean water by removing nitrogen and other nutrients that fuel harmful algal blooms. Be sure to watch the video linked in his article.
Solar Power Under Your Feet. In this
article you will learn from Ed Oaksford, Sustainable Tallahassee member, about the geothermal heating and
cooling system he installed at his house.
With fourteen years of experience with his system, Ed has the history
and expertise to be a great resource on this technology. The benefits of a geothermal system are
impressive and vastly superior to the HVAC heat pumps nearly all of us
2019.09.05 Tallahassee’s 2nd Annual Electric Vehicle Expo. Sustainable Tallahassee invites the public to our second annual Electric Vehicle Expo, celebrating National Drive Electric Week, September 14-22, a nationwide celebration of plug-in vehicles. Tom Cordi, Sustainable Tallahassee board member, writes about this unique gathering of EV plug-in owners and local dealers, and an opportunity to showcase the benefits of all-electric and plug-in hybrid electric cars, buses, trucks, bikes, motorcycles, and more to the Tallahassee community.
2019.08.22 Butterflies and Biodiversity. Sally Jue is an active member of the local Hairstreak Chapter of the North American Butterfly Association. She writes about the Florida Panhandle as a unique global biodiversity hotspot in which an unusually high number of plant and animal species live. In particular, she writes about butterflies and why we need to pay attention to our lawns and provide habitat that can be both beautiful and nourishing. Fall is the best time to plan our yards for support of butterflies.
2019.08.07 Capital Area Sustainability Compact. Sustainable Tallahassee has been selected to be the facilitator of the newly formed Capital Area Sustainability Compact, which is dedicated to developing a joint strategy to mitigate climate change, reduce community greenhouse gas emissions, and drive sustainability actions in the Capital Area. Its members include Capital Regional Medical Center, the City of Tallahassee, Florida A&M University, Florida State University, Leon County, Leon County Schools, Tallahassee Community College, and Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare. This article was written by Jim Davis, former Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee who is currently serving as administrator of the Compact on behalf of Sustainable Tallahassee.
2019.07.25 Mid-Summer Gardening Ideas: Low Impact Development. Courtney Schoen is coordinator of the City of Tallahassee’s TAPP program (Think About Personal Pollution). Her article focuses on things we can do in our own yards to reduce water pollution. Because Florida’s groundwater is so close to the surface, the health of our groundwater is directly connected to the health of our surface waters. Every yard and neighborhood is connected to a body of water.
2019.07.11 Wakulla Environmental Institute. Tallahassee Community College’s Wakulla Environmental Institute not only teaches “green”, it lives “green” with its structure, operations, and focus. Thanks to Bob Ballard, Executive Director of the Wakulla Environmental Institute, for this article that describes the facility and programs and updates us with some of the successes of the programs.
Four Ways to Celebrate July Fourth and Save the Earth. In this article Stew
Parsons asks, “To honor the creation of our founders, what is the most
significant thing we can do to assure our children and grandchildren and those
living during the next 243 years will have the same opportunity for a free and
bountiful life?” He is a member, former board
member, and former Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee.
2019.06.13 The Road Trip of the Future. This article brings the reality of EV cars of the future right into the present! Read about Mike Mitchell’s experience making a long trip in his EV, and gain lots of tips to make your own current and future EV road trips a possibility. Mike is Vice President of Sustainable Tallahassee, a member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Electric Vehicle Club, and a graduate student at Florida State University, researching EV adoption.
2019.05.30 Living a Happier, Healthier, and Greener Life Downtown. Leighanne Boone makes a case for the benefits of living downtown, with no commute. Do it for your physical and mental well-being, do it for the planet! Someone who lives downtown contributes a fraction of the carbon emissions of someone who lives in suburbia. Leighanne is the Co-chair of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Renewable Energy and Sustainable Transportation Committees, and past board member of Sustainable Tallahassee; Coordinator of the Electric Car Club; President of ReThink Energy Action Fund; Vice-President of the Plaza Tower Condo Board; and board member of the Downtown Business Association.
2019.05.15 A Business Model to Emulate. Jack Diestelhorst, Sustainable Tallahassee board member and owner of Notary Public Underwriters, walks the sustainability talk in his business. Not only does the business have a large solar PV system, recycling, and smart controls, the employees are inspired and on board to be sustainable in all areas of work and home life. This article was written by Arnie Rogers, who is our Sustainable Tallahassee Green Links Newsletter Editor.
2019.05.02 Invest in Efficiency and Save - PACE for Businesses! A local resource for businesses that want to increase energy efficiency and lower utility build is the PACE program provided by Leon County. This article to inform about the program was written by Tessa Schreiner, Recycling and Sustainability Manager in Leon County’s Office of Resource Stewardship.
2019.04.18 Honoring Earth Day with Steps You Can Take. In this article Becky Parsons, member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s board of directors, says it is time to recreate the momentum of the first Earth Day 49 years ago. This month we can take sustainable actions by entering the “Sustainable Neighborhood of the Year” competition and by helping to green the LeMoyne Chain of Parks Art Festival.
Earth Day 2019. In celebration of
Earth Day, Maya K. van Rossum, an environmental attorney, strategist, community
organizer, and author of “The Green Amendment, Securing Our Right to A Healthy
Environment”, will give a talk on April 22, at Temple Israel Synagogue. This article
was written by Liz Holifield, Ph.D.
2019.03.21 Tallahassee Standing On Its Pedals. All over the country people are talking about and advocating for “walkable and bikeable” cities and communities. Tom Clark, a member and recent chair of Sustainable Tallahassee's Sustainable Transportation Committee, has written this article to describe why this has become important and what is actually happening here in Tallahassee.
2019.03.07 Leon County 2019 Sustainable Community Summit. Every two years Leon County hosts a Sustainable Community Summit. This year’s Summit, to be held on March 23, is described in this article written by Annya Shalun, Sustainability Programs Coordinator for Leon County’s Office of Resource Stewardship.
2019.02.21 The Father of Environmental Justice. We know that communities of color are, by far, burdened with more environmental hazards than white communities. Jamie Valentine, Partnerships Coordinator for FSU’s Sustainable Campus, has written about a March 6 program featuring Dr. Robert Bullard who will speak on “Building Just and Sustainable Communities in the Era of Climate Change”.
Tallahassee’s Recycled Wedding Market.
Sustainable Tallahassee is excited to bring the Recycled Wedding Market
back for a second year! It’s about
having a sustainable wedding and passing on wedding décor, tableware, clothing and more to make the next person's wedding just as sustainable!
Last year’s event saw over 400 buyers walk through the doors. And some
of last year’s buyers are this year’s sellers! Thanks to Jodi Wilkof, chair of
the event, for this article.
2019.01.24 Seven Days of Local Delights. The Red Hills Small Farm Alliance’s signature event, “7 Days of Local Delights” will be held February 3-10. Cari Roth, President of the Red Hills Small Farms Alliance, contributed this article about the week long celebration of local food with workshops and restaurant specials. There isn’t a better mid-winter celebration than a celebration of our local farmers and the wonderful bounty grown in our North Florida area!
2019.01.10 Sustainable Tallahassee – an Exciting Year in Review. This article, by Jim Davis, our Executive Director, is an excellent summary of what Sustainable Tallahassee has accomplished during the past year. We’ll build on all this as we dive into a new year, which will have serious challenges for our environment, our state, and our community.
Reasons to Get Outside. From high
obesity rates tied to lack of exercise and poor nutrition, to the impact of our
modern society on natural resources, our lifestyles are affecting our health - and
our planet’s health. Mark Tancig, horticulture
agent with UF/IFAS Leon County Extension, says it’s time to get outside, smell
the roses, gain healthy gut microbes, reduce anxiety, and improve our mood and
2018.12.12 Leon County Schools Florida Farm to School Grant. Find out what Leon County Schools is doing with a grant from the Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services’ Florida Farm to School Initiative for the 2018-2019 school year – you will be impressed with what our kids are learning about foods. This article was written by Allie Baker, Dietitian for Leon County Schools’ Nutrition & Food Services.
2018.11.29 On Being the
Sustainability Person. When you practice
sustainability and preach to your friends and family, do they hold you to a
higher standard? Cyndel Brunell is the Program Coordinator at Florida State
University’s Sustainable Campus Program.
As a Sustainability Person yourself, you may see yourself in her article!
2018.11.15 – Because It Is Too Darn Hot. Pam McVety, writing for Sustainable Tallahassee’s Community Carbon Fund, asks us to attend the Alternative Christmas Market on December 1 and 2, and to donate to our Carbon Fund which uses donated funds to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that are warming our planet and state.
2018.11.01 A Wakeup Call from Michael. The devastating hurricane we just experienced, the fourth worst in Florida’s history, was greatly intensified by the very warm Gulf of Mexico. Our takeaway? Time to get serious to lessen the impacts of climate change, says Stew Parsons, writing for Sustainable Tallahassee.
2018.10.18 Run for
Sustainability, Run for Your Health, Run for Fun. Sustainable Tallahassee’s annual Trash Dash
5K Run fundraiser will be on Saturday, October 27. Jim Davis, Sustainable Tallahassee’s
Executive Director, asks the community to come out for a great cross country
run at the Apalachee Regional Park.
2018.10.04 Expanding Our Sense of Home Can Mean a Greener Future. Kathryn Ziewitz, PhD, Executive Director of the Sustainability Institute at Florida A&M University, asks us to expand our concept of “home” beyond the four walls of our dwellings to include our entire community. It will take that vision to truly improve our common future, to assure a quality, sustainable future for our community.
2018.09.20 Lake Jackson on the Water Clean-up. Lake Jackson is one of our most important local treasures. Annya Shulun, who is the Sustainability Programs Coordinator in Leon County’s Office of Sustainability, entices the public to help to keep it healthy and pristine by participating in a community clean-up event of Lake Jackson scheduled for September 29.
2018.09.06 Go Electric – Go Green. Sustainable Tallahassee's Renewable Energy Advocacy committee is hosting an Electric Vehicle Expo on September 15th. This article by Tom Cordi, Sustainable Tallahassee board member and Expo coordinator, is about the Expo and all the right reasons to own an electric car. Just think: no oil changes, tune-ups, spark plugs, or tailpipe emissions! Internal combustion engines are so old-technology.
2018.08.23 Education: A Launching Pad for Developing Sustainability Problem Solvers. “Clearly, working toward a more sustainable climate and world should not be viewed as only an environmental necessity, but also an economic and social imperative for current and future generations. But how do we create a culture of sustainability?” This challenge is raised by Bakari McClendon, Coordinator for Engagement and Communications at the Sustainability Institute of Florida A&M University.
2018.08.09 Building Community Resilience. Abena Ojetayo, the City of Tallahassee’s Chief Resilience Officer, writes about surviving and thriving in the face of natural disasters, climate change, and socio-economic disparities. These create particular challenges to vulnerable residents, including our growing population of those 55 and older and the fact that the Tallahassee metro area is one of the most economically segregated in the U.S.
2018.07.26 Working Together to Make Our Roads Safer. This article contains a wealth of information about bicycling safety and resources that are available to the public, for both cyclists and vehicle drivers to learn about how to ride the roadways together. Thanks to Alberto De Los Rios, a recent Environmental Studies graduate from FSU, who contributed this article.
2018.07.12 Social Capital: A Pre-Requisite for Resilience. In this article Dr. Bruce Strouble, Coordinator for Research with the FAMU Sustainability Institute, discusses climate-change related stressors. Heat waves, increased frequency and severity of storms, flooding, and human resettlement due to sea level rise and inland migration will be felt in Tallahassee, along with the ensuing economic disruptions that result from these activities. To mitigate these shocks to our system, it will be increasingly important to focus on social capital to enhance resilience of vulnerable neighborhoods.
2018.06.28 Sustainable Neighborhood Champions. Congratulations to the Indianhead Lehigh neighborhood, our 2018 Sustainable Neighborhood of the Year! Read about how Indianhead Leigh and our other three finalists neighborhoods are promoting sustainability. This article is by Becky Parsons, Sustainable Tallahassee board member.
2018.06.14 What Does It Take to Move 20 Tons in Just Four Days? A Whole Lot of Help! This year FSU celebrates 10 years of Chuck it For Charity – 10 years of collecting student discards from dorms at the end of each semester, sorting, storing, and donating to charity. Elizabeth Swiman, Director of Campus Sustainability challenges parents to save these items from being discarded and ruse them next semester or at students’ first grown up apartments.
2018.05.31 FAMU Farm Fest 2018 Celebrating Agri-STEM and Showcasing Innovations in Sustainable Agriculture. Bakari McCLendon, Coordinator for Engagement & Communications with the FAMU Sustainability Institute, invites the public to this year’s FAMU Farm Fest that will demonstrate the research being done to grow fresh produce year-round in our hot, humid climate.
2018.05.17 Leon County Schools Serves Fresh Fruits & Veggies. How many smiles can you get from trying Brussels Sprouts? Allie Baker, Dietitian with Leon County Schools, writes about the innovative ways that Bond Elementary is giving students a fun and educational experience with fresh fruits and vegetables.
2018.05.10 How Much Carbon Dioxide Do We Produce in Leon County? We’re improving in electricity production and in our homes and businesses. But we’re not improving in transportation, our biggest source of carbon dioxide, says Richard Hopkins, writing for Sustainable Tallahassee. Read his article, then read his study linked here: A Community Carbon Dioxide Scorecard for Leon County, 2001-2017. Richard's study is an update of the one he prepared a year ago.
2018.04.19. Leon County Spring Home Expo: Creating a Sustainable Home. Leon County current or future homeowners are invited to this year’s Expo to be held on April 28. It will provide homeowners with skills, resources, and knowledge to create a more sustainable and resilient home. Tessa Schreiner, Leon County’s Recycling and Sustainability Manager, authored this article and is coordinating the event.
2018.04.05 Loving Your Community. This year Sustainable Tallahassee is giving a first-ever award for “Sustainable Neighborhood of the Year” as part of the annual CONA/Leon County/City of Tallahassee Neighborhood of the Year program. This article was written by Bryce Frohlich, Sustainable Tallahassee’s executive assistant.
2018.03.22 Creating a Culture of Responsible Recycling at FSU. Read how FSU enlists the help of the 40,000+ students, faculty, and staff to create a culture of responsible recycling on campus in order to increase the percent of recyclables from 40% to 75%. It was written by Fernando Ritzinger, FSU student staff member at Sustainable Campus with the Garnet and Gold Goes Green tailgate recycling program.
2018.03.08 Be The Change. Every individual achievement we make in sustainability contributes to the global good. In this article Becky Parsons, Sustainable Tallahassee board member, describes things we can do to reduce our carbon footprint and help to reduce the effects of climate change.
2018.02.22 What Does it Mean to be a Green Business? Sustainable Tallahassee is launching a new program, Green4Tally, to recognize businesses that pledge to support sustainable practices. The first group of businesses in the program will be restaurants. Joseph Petty, chair of ST’s Green Business Committee, organized this program and is the author of this article.
2018.02.08 Real Rattlers Recycle. “Recycling is just one simple thing that we can do. It’s not going to solve all environmental issues, but it heads in the direction of conservation.” Here’s one great milestone: FAMU’s recyclables increased 65% from 2016 to 2017. Learn more about how FAMU is increasing recycling in this article by Bakari McClendon, Coordinator for Engagement and Communications at FAMU’s Sustainability Institute.
2018.01.18 Too Good to Waste. Every time we throw away food we are creating methane gas - a much worse greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Molly Jameson, Sustainable Agriculture and Community Food Systems Extension Agent with UF/IFAS Leon County Extension, gives us the facts and shares how we can reduce food waste in our homes.
2018.01.12 Tallahassee’s First Ever Recycled Wedding Market. Jodi Wilkof, member of Sustainable Tallahassee's Three Rs Committee and owner of Green Party Events, is teaming up with Aveda Institute and Madison Social Catering and Events to create an event where people can buy and sell wedding and large party items, with ticket sales to be donated to Sustainable Tallahassee. The Recycled Wedding Market will take place on February 25, 2018.
2017.12.28 My Fresh From Florida Plate Day. What a wonderful way to start a brand new year - with news about how Leon County Schools is ramping up fresh foods while serving over 20,000 meals a day! Thanks to Allie Baker, Dietitian for Leon County Schools, for this enlightening article.
2017.12.14 2018 Resolution? How About a Sustainable Yard? Green-up your green thumb and resolve to have a sustainable yard in 2018. Mark Tancig, Horticulture Agent with UF/IFAS Leon County Extension, gives us some great places to start. Leon County Extension is a wealth of knowledge about sustainable yards and gardens.
2017.11.30 Celebrating Ten Years. Sustainable Tallahassee celebrated our Tenth Year Anniversary this year, with a commemorative event on October 30 at our Annual Meeting. This article, written by Becky Parsons, board member, is a look back at how we started as Greenovation, where we've been, and what's in our future.
2017.11.16 FSU Students Run a Food Recovery Program. FSU student leadership is leading our community in food recovery, having recovered over 25 thousand pounds in food over the past three years for donation. Gabrielle Maynard, the student director of the program, wrote this article to describe the program and its accomplishments.
2017.11.02 Neighbors Making a Difference in Tallahassee. In this article, John Baker, Manager of the Neighborhood Affairs Division of Parks, Recreation & Neighborhood Affairs for the City of Tallahassee, tells us about two recently launched city initiatives to improve and strengthen neighborhoods: Neighborhood Plan for Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) and Neighborhood Public Safety Initiative.
2017.10.19 Sustainable Tallahassee Invites Runners to Seventh Annual Trash Dash. The Trash Dash Is more than just another 5K run. We’ll be collecting donated running shoes to donate to storm victims, as well as used t-shirts to make into re-usable produce bags for a local food bank. For the first time, the Trash Dash is a 2017 Grand Prix race certified by Gulf Winds Track Club.
2017.10.05 The Sharing Tree – the Growing Dream. The Sharing Tree grew out of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Recycling Committee in 2010. In this article Carly Sinnadurai, its director, tells us about big changes for the Tree, including a change in location and a party to kick off the new location. The Sharing Tree's website is: http://thesharingtreefl.org/.
2017.09.21 Lake Jackson Volunteer Clean Up. Thanks to Leon County for coordinating this event and seeking volunteers for a Lake Jackson clean-up. This article was written by Annya Shalun, the Sustainability Programs Coordinator in Leon County's Office of Sustainability.
2017.08.24 A Carbon Dioxide Scorecard for Leon County. If we're going to know how well we do in lowering CO2 emissions, then we need to have a benchmark - a place to start. Richard Hopkins, member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Renewable Energy Advocacy Committee, has created that for us, including trends for the past several years. A summary and full copy of this document an be found HERE on this website.
2017.08.10 Designing a Sustainable Campus. At FSU, buildings can be good stewards of the environment. The emphasis is on designing buildings that will be sustainable for a lifetime, as well as being beautiful, efficient, and functional. This article was written by Savannah Rodrigue, Communications Assistant in FSU’s Sustainable Campus office.
2017.07.27 Waste Reduction Tips for a Low Waste Lifestyle. With a little dedication, creative problem solving, and help from available resources, we can ALL reduce our waste. This article, written by Tessa Schreiner, the Recycling and Sustainability Manager for Leon County, has some waste reduction tips to get us started.
2017.07.13 Slowing the Tide of Plastic Bags. Peggy Sanford, member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s board of directors, writes about what a small group of Tallahassee citizens is doing to call attention to and reduce our use of plastic bags. Peggy's Rags2Bags team of dedicated sewers has made and given away over 2,000 shopping bags to replace our use of plastic bags.
2016.06.29 Moving Forward with a Water Wagon. We now have a mobile Water Wagon in Tallahassee for water bottle refills at festivals, and it was the winner of ReThink Energy Florida’s 2017 Energy Innovator Award. Read about it in this article by Becky Parsons, member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s board of directors.
2017.06.16 FAMU Farm Strengthens the Connection Between Farm and Family. The Farm Fest theme, “Connecting Farm to Community,” reflects its mission to build community connections to food and agriculture. Written by Amelia Davis, the Florida A&M University Cooperative Extension Program’s Communications Liaison and Cooperative Extension’s Coordinator of Publication and Information Services.
2017.06.01 Celebrating Solar. After today’s announcement that our country has withdrawn from the Paris Climate Accord the message is clear: We must ensure that our transition to a clean energy economy continues for the future we want for our world. Read about the City of Tallahassee’s solar achievement written by Becky Parsons, member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s board of directors.
2017.05.18 Talking Sense: Communicating Sustainability. What is the most effective way to talk to others about climate change, hunger and poverty, depletion of our natural resources, and other serious issues that affect us today? Tessa Schreiner, Leon County's Recycling and Sustainability Manager, gives us valuable insight in this article: people are more likely to listen and be engaged if we talk about solutions and not just about problems.
2017.05.04 Sustainability. It’s What’s for Dinner. There’s a tremendous amount of food waste and trash in the food service industry. Read how a Florida State University dinner program has adopted sustainable practices, written by Angel Arrieta, a student employee in FSU’s Sustainable Campus.
2017.04.20 Leon County Schools Prepares for Harvest. Students are growing food gardens in several Leon County Schools – a huge milestone for nutritional health and sustainability! Written by Allie Baker, a Registered Dietitian with Leon County Schools.
2017.04.06 Two Green Festivals. For the second year, Sustainable Tallahassee is “greening” the LeMoyne Chain of Parks Art Festival – such a huge effort it takes to change how water is provided, and how food waste, trash, and recycling are managed at a large festival. The following weekend we’re co-hosting our local Earth Day event. This article was written by Jim Davis, Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee.
2017.03.23 Sustainability on Both Coasts. We tend to think the West Coast has us beat when it comes to sustainability. But Jamie Valentine, Program Coordinator in FSU’s Sustainable Campus office and a recent transplant from Portland OR, reminds us of the many sustainable attributes we have right here in our Tallahassee area. Sometimes we need to reinforce that message to ourselves and celebrate what we have.
2017.03.09 Enriching Our Community by Connecting and Empowering Neighbors. A Community Resource Expo will take place March 25 in South City, written about by Leann Watts-Williams, City of Tallahassee’s Parks, Recreation and Neighborhood Affairs Department.
2017.02.23 Spinning the Wheel of Solar PV Fortune. Everything you need to know about whether solar is right for your home or your business can be at your fingertips in this article and at a March 24 seminar. Will Sheftall is Extension Agent for Natural Resource Management with University of Florida IFAS Extension Leon County.
2017.02.09 A Free Energy Audit Now Savings Year-Round. The City of Tallahassee provides city utility customers free energy audits that include a structural analysis for energy efficiency and an evaluation of appliances and cost-saving tips. This article was provided by Sandra Manning, Director of the Office of Community Relations with the City of Tallahassee.
2017.01.26 Leon County’s Sustainable Communities Summit: Exploring Our Backyard. Tessa Schreiner, Recycling and Sustainability Manager in Leon County's Office of Sustainability, writes about the February 18, 2017 Sustainable Communities Summit that will be hosted this year by Leon County.
2017.01.12 Getting Passionate About Sustainability. “What can I do to be more sustainable?” is one of our favorite topics and one we could talk about all day. It's easier to adopt a sustainable behavior when we know it's "good to do" instead of when it's an "ought to do". Becoming passionate about sustainability makes all the right behaviors easier! It was written by Becky Parsons, board member of Sustainable Tallahassee.
2016.12.29. PV+EV=Flip Flops That Leave Low Trace. The Leon County Extension Center is an example of how linking together a solar PV system and an electric car equals a "twofer” in reducing our carbon footprint, and something that businesses and homeowners can do do a well. It’s written by Will Sheftall, Extension Agent for Natural Resource Management with University of Florida IFAS Extension Leon County.
2016.12.15 Leon County Schools Succeeds in Reducing Food Waste. While serving an average of 20,000 meals each day, Leon County schools has been able to reduce food waste by 65 percent. Manny Joanos explains how in this article. He is the Divisional Director for Purchasing, Energy & Nutrition Services for Leon County Schools.
2016.12.01. Greening the Season of Giving. During the holidays it is more difficult to keep up our “green” habits. This article gives us 5 easy inspirations. It was written on behalf of Sustainable Tallahassee by Carly Sinnadurai, local artist, master of "re-use", and Executive Director of The Sharing Tree.
2016.11.17. FAMU Researcher Tackles Peanut Allergies at Molecular Level. Plant proteins, such as peanuts, are much more environmentally sustainable than animal proteins, and successfully growing and consuming peanuts can provide food security and help to improve quality of life. The downside is the extent of peanut allergies. Kathryn Ziewitz, Ph.D., in the Sustainability Institute at Florida A&M University, writes about the progress FAMU is making toward conquering peanut allergies.
2016.11.03. Creating a More Waste Conscious Community Through Education. What can be recycled? And what happens to the stuff we recycle? Piper Miller, Communications and Outreach Coordinator for Leon County’s Office of Resource Stewardship, gives us the latest and greatest information. HERE is a link on our ST website where you can see Leon County’s new recycling video.
2016.10.20. Sixth Annual Trash Dash Hosted by Sustainable Tallahassee. October 29 is our sixth annual Trash Dash 5K Cross County Run, and the second year for our 1-mile family fun run/walk, written by Jim Davis, Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee.
2016.09.22 FAMU Partners with Metz for Healthy Foods and Sustainable Campus Dining. FAMU is striving to model a more sustainable approach in its campus food systems by taking lessons from the classroom and the field to its dining operations. Read more from Kathryn Ziewitz, Sustainability Program Coordinator at Florida A&M University’s Sustainability Institute.
2016.09.08 Greening and Cleaning our Community – Post Hermine. In the aftermath of Hurricane Hermine, Sandra Manning, Director of the Office of Community Relations for the City of Tallahassee, gives us timely information we can use in the clean-up process, including how Leon County and the City of Tallahassee will be handing storm debris in our neighborhoods.
2016.08.25 LCS Continues to Score Big with Energy Conservation Plan. The Leon County School System has achieved huge energy reductions that now save us taxpayers $1.8 million per year. Get the numbers in this article by Manny Joanos, Divisional Director for Purchasing, Energy & Nutrition Services for Leon County Schools.
2016.08.11 School Supplies: Reduce and Reuse. Every new school year it's exciting and fun to get new school supplies. Wait – let’s re-wind that thought, says Elizabeth Swiman in this article. Elizabeth is the Director of Campus Sustainability at Florida State University, and in her role she manages FSU’s sustainability programs and the Chuck It For Charity program. She knows exactly what students use - and discard - each year.
2016.07.28 Student Researches Risk of Exposure to “Red Tide” for People Eating Fish and Shellfish. FAMU PhD candidate Krystal Pree is researching environmental contamination and natural resource issues, particularly the effect of Red Tide algae bloom toxins that can cause Neurotoxic Shellfish Poisoning in humans. Her research is described by Kathryn Ziewitz, Sustainability Coordinator, and Dominique Roy, Public Relations student, of FAMU’s Sustainability Institute.
2016.07.14 Free Leon County Resources You Didn’t Know Existed. Free paint, free mulch, free vegetable seed packets, free sustainability and recycling presentations for your group or event! This and more is available to us by Leon County to support sustainability in our community. This article was written by Tessa Schreiner, Recycling and Sustainability Manager, and Piper Miller, Communications and Outreach Coordinator, in Leon County’s Office of Resource Stewardship.
2016.06.30 Moving Forward Together: Social Sustainability. Preserving and promoting our cultural values is an important element of social sustainability, contributing to quality of life for those living and their descendants. As told by Leann Watts-Walker, of the City of Tallahassee’s Office of Community Relations, the City has brought us an important remembrance of our local Civil Rights Movement and its heroes. An excellent documentary is linked in the article.
2016.06.16 Tally’s New Art Alley. Art Alley is a gem of a place that brings together art and repurposed materials to give life and ambiance where once was a neglected, dirty, crumbling place. Find out how it happened and the magic it brings to the All Saints district, written by Lisa Galocy, in the City of Tallahassee's Office of Community Relations.
2016.06.02 FAMU Extension Showcases Sustainable Living Solutions. Amelia Davis, FAMU Cooperative Extension Project Coordinator and Communications Liaison, invites all beginning and seasoned farmers, gardeners, and anyone who likes to eat farm-grown food to its 2016 Farm Fest at the FAMU Research and Extension Center in Quincy, Florida. This year’s theme is “Sustainable Living Solutions”.
2016.05.19 Making a Festival Green. Can there be festivals without Styrofoam containers? Without single-use plastics? We say, "Yes!” Other cities do it successfully, and we can too. In fact, we've already made a good start. It's all here in this article written by Becky Parsons, member of Sustainable Tallahassee's board of directors.
2016.05.05 Getting from Here to There in a Sustainable Way. "What methods do we use in Leon County to produce usable energy, and how do we use it?" This article by Richard Hopkins, member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Alternative Transportation Committee, underscores the important path this committee is taking to examine approaches for how land use planning, zoning, and building permitting can support and advance sustainable transportation.
2016.04.21 Red Hills Small Farm Alliance. The Red Hills Small Farm Alliance is a unique local treasure that provides us with the Red Hills Online Market. Last month it was recognized nationally by Farm Credit as being one of 100 visionaries, selected from over 1100 nominees, for the Farm Credit 100 Fresh Perspectives Program. Georgia Ackerman, writing for Sustainable Tallahassee, tells us about how it is a unique treasure in our personal lives.
2016.04.07 Sustainable Tallahassee Partners with LeMoyne Center for the Visual Arts to Green the Chain of Parks Art Festival. Sustainable Tallahassee’s plans for the Art Festival on April 16 and 17 have us reaching out to the expected 50,000 attendees and bringing them a message of sustainable and environment friendly living. In this article Jim Davis, ST's Executive Director, gives details of our initiatives and asks for volunteers.
2016.03.24 Earth Day Abiding Lessons. Matthew Kopka, a Sustainable Tallahassee board member, uses the 2013 Pulitzer Prize winning book “Tom’s River”, by Dan Fagin, to remind us that “Sustainability is what it will take to save us, not just what light bulbs we choose or how we sort trash.” The Tom’s River chemical pollution is a strong example of why the first Earth Day in 1970 was important, and now even more so. More about Earth Day is HERE.
2016.03.10 The Good News About Going Green. We don’t need negative news about climate change, depletion of resources, and plastics in our oceans to overwhelm us into inaction. Tom Taylor, on the Sustainable Tallahassee board of directors, writes about opportunities and resources to "green" our lives, homes, and communities. All that we do, combined with others, really does make a difference.
2016.02.25 Sustainable YOU Conference. This year the City’s biennial Sustainable YOU Conference is March 22-23. The theme is “Business of Green – Restoring Human and Natural Environments to Build Resilient Communities”. Sandra Manning, Director of the Office of Community Relations with the City of Tallahassee, contributed this article that describes the conference speakers and programs.
2016.02.11 FAMU Honors Tradition as it Plans for a Sustainable Future. Dr. Kwasi Densu, assistant professor of political science, and Dr. Fran Close, professor of Behavioral Science and Health Education, both with Florida A&M University, wrote this article about an upcoming campus wide brainstorming session about sustainability for the university's future - a collaboration of students, faculty, and staff working together.
2016.01.28 The City of Tallahassee – A Partner for Sustainable Living in 2016. Many aren’t aware of the services and programs the City provides that support energy home improvements, recreation, community gardens, and the quality of life we enjoy in our community. John Baker, the Policy and Program Development Administrator in the City of Tallahassee’s Office of Community Relations, writes about these programs that can support a more sustainable lifestyle.
2015.12.31 Ring in the New Year with Sustainable Action in your Workplace. FSU’s Sustainable Campus Office has successfully inspired the various university departments to get on board with adopting sustainable practices, with very encouraging results overall. In this article Kristen Lee, Program Coordinator with FSU Sustainable Campus, assures this process can be applied to any business.
2015.12.17 Florida A&M University Students Grow a Global Ecological Consciousness by Examining Ecological Footprints. Kathryn Ziewitz, Sustainability Program Coordinator at Florida A&M University’s Sustainability Institute, wrote this article. Students were tasked with researching facts on resource consumption, population, biological productivity of the planet’s lands and waters and its extent of habitable land, resulting in a measure of an “ecological footprint”.
2015.12.03 Unconventional Ways to Go Green this Holiday Season. Tessa Schreiner, Leon County’s Recycling and Sustainability Manager, gives us common-sense ideas for gift giving that are sustainable, non-consumable, and better for the environment and our wallets – guaranteed to be very much appreciated by our gift recipients.
2015.11.19 Sustaining This Holiday Season. It’s possible to bring joy to yourself and others without stress and without adding more stuff to the landfill. Becky Parsons, Sustainable Tallahassee board member, writes about the Alternative Christmas Market and Sustainable Tallahassee’s Community Carbon Fund’s participation.
2015.11.05 Do It For Sustainability. Three important ways to participate that will help to promote sustainability: ST’s annual Trash Dash 5K Run fundraiser, this year with a One Mile Family Fun Run/Walk, FAMU’s Art in Sustainability exhibit with beautiful art made of recyclables, and Sustainable Tallahassee 8th Annual Celebration and Annual Meeting. Written by Becky Parsons, Sustainable Tallahassee board member.
2015.10.22 FAMU Study Looks to Empower People in Addressing Food Deserts. Dr. Ivette Lopez enlightens us about the obstacles to consumption of healthy foods in our community's local “food deserts”. She is an Associate Professor of Behavioral Science and Health Education at Florida A&M University’s Institute for Public Health who serves as the principal investigator for the USDA funded study on Food Deserts.
2015.10.08 Dollars and Common Sense: Bottled Water Is Money and Resources Down the Drain. If you haven’t given up drinking bottled water by now, read this article by Matt Kopka, board member of Sustainable Tallahassee, which should convince you to give it up. Sustainable Tallahassee is working to greatly reduce the consumption of single-use disposable plastic water bottles. The research on corporate marketing, cost, fossil fuel use, and waste is compelling.
2015.09.24 FAMU Making Strides on Saving Energy and Saving Money. Energy conservation is one of the most impactful energy investments one can make. Read about the steps Florida A&M University took with energy conservation improvements that has cut its utility bill by $1 million over the past year. Written by Kathryn Ziewitz, the sustainability program coordinator at Florida A&M University’s Sustainability Institute.
2015.09.10 The Future of Green is an Education-conscious Business. For nearly 80 years, Tallahassee Nurseries has been an integral part of our community, evolving from just providing plants, to providing education about healthy ecosystems, pollinators, invasives, and more. Michelle Gomez is writing on behalf of Sustainable Tallahassee, Leon County, and the City of Tallahassee to promote the production and consumption of locally-sourced food.
2015.08.27 Sustainable Indianhead-Lehigh Neighborhood. Peggy Sanford, retired attorney and member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Board of Directors, writes about her progressive neighborhood’s initiatives to devote the year to achieving significant sustainable milestones. This neighborhood is creating an amazing synergy that can inspire us all.
2015.08 13 It All Adds Up. In 2010 Floridians and our visitors generated more than 32 million tons of garbage and our state’s recycling rate was only 30%. Tessa Schreiner, Leon County’s Recycling and Sustainability Manager, writes about where we stand today in the path to the state’s recycling goal of 75%, and what it takes to reduce the amount of garbage we create.
2015.07.30 Back to School – or the Landfill! How do we start a new school year without backing down on our values for sustainability? Carly Sinnadurai has solutions, for both parents and teachers. She is the Executive Director of The Sharing Tree, a Board Member of Sustainable Tallahassee, and chair of ST's Three R's Committee (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle).
2015.07.16 Moving Forward with Sustainable Tallahassee. Jim Davis has been Sustainable Tallahassee’s Executive Director for the past nine months, since October 1, 2014. In this article he updates us on Sustainable Tallahassee’s current initiatives, as well as giving some background on our organization.
2015.07.02 Creating a More Sustainable Workplace. In the workplace we often see much unnecessary use and waste of disposable plastic, paper, and Styrofoam that contribute to our waste stream. Tessa Schreiner, Recycling and Sustainability Manager in the Office of Resource Stewardship for Leon County, gives us ideas that can make a significant difference.
2015.06.18 Bag it Up Carly Sinnadurai is the Executive Director of The Sharing Tree, as well as a board member and chair of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Three R’s Committee (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle). Her article is about an amazing neighborhood and community collaboration to create reusable bags and give them away.
2015.06.05 FAMU Invites Visitors to tour Quincy Farm for June 13 Farm Fest. This twice yearly farm fest allows the community to come out and see what FAMU Cooperative Extension has to offer. Adults and children will enjoy the health and nutrition awareness displays and screenings, vegetable gardening plots, exhibits, farm tours, door prizes, and food sampling. Written by Amelia Davis, FAMU Cooperative Extension Communications Liaison.
2015.05.28 Drink Locally: Stop Buying Commercial Bottled Water, written by Matthew Kopka, an Interdisciplinary Ecologist and a member of Sustainable Tallahassee's board of directors and our committee to kick bottled water. This article sets the stage for Sustainable Tallahassee’s campaign to kick bottled water. Read his article and think about the masterful marketing job the bottled water companies do to influence our behavior.
2015.05.06 Pollinators Need Our Protection. What are we doing, and more importantly, what more must we do, to protect the pollinators of our food and wildflowers? The author is Priscilla Hudson, expert on this topic and winner of an Aveeno grant to raise awareness of the importance of pollinators, as well as a home gardener, hobby beekeeper, and permaculture practitioner.
2015.04.23 The Tallahassee Leon County Enterprise Zone Supports Economic Vitality. Ben Pingree is Vice President of Business Retention/Expansion & Public Policy for The EDC of Tallahassee/Leon County, Inc, of the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce, and the Enterprise Zone Administrator of the Tallahassee/Leon County Enterprise Zone Development Agency.
2015.04.16 Celebrate Earth Day with the Healthy Communities Festival. Our community’s celebration of Earth Day will be April 25 at Cascades Park. Koren Taylor, the Environmental Programs Coordinator for Environmental Policy and Energy Resources (EPER), with the City of Tallahassee, provides the events and activities in this article.
2015.04.09 Fun Ride to the Arts. Sustainable Tallahassee will host free bus rides, courtesy of StarMetro, from five locations for a fun ride to LeMoyne’s Chain of Parks Art Festival and The Southern Shakespeare Festival to introduce the public to bus riding. This was written by Stew Parsons, Chair of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Alternative Transportation Committee.
2015.03.26 Developing a Food Conscience Can Save the Planet. Michelle Gomez is working on behalf of Sustainable Tallahassee, Leon County, and the City of Tallahassee to promote the production and consumption of locally-sourced food. The availability of local food is one of the most important features of a sustainable community.
2015.03.12 Breaking Silos for Sustainability. FAMU established a Sustainability Institute in the summer of 2014. This article is our opportunity to learn more about the institute and its focus. It was written by Abena Ojetayo, Chief Sustainability Officer at Florida A&M University and the Executive Director of the FAMU Sustainability Institute.
2015.02.26 All That Stuff. Elizabeth Swiman, Director of Campus Sustainability at FSU, shares details learned from successfully managing tons of discarded furniture, clothing, and other items as dormitories are vacated each semester. We can apply many of these in our own spring cleaning initiatives. Reducing what we’ve accumulated can be a big help to others less fortunate.
2015.02.12 Let the Sun Shine In. Only ¼ of one percent of the City of Tallahassee’s electricity generation capacity is currently from solar. Sustainable Tallahassee and the Tallahassee Chapter of the League of Women Voters want to see that change. In this article Stew Parsons, Chair of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Renewable Energy Committee, describes steps that we, and our local electric utility, can take to make that happen.
2015.01.29 Cleaning Green. This article tells us how we can make better choices in cleaning products without harming our air, our water, and our pocketbooks. It was written by Lisa Galocy who is an Environmental Regulatory Compliance Coordinator for the City of Tallahassee’s Department of Environmental Policy and Energy Resources.
2015.01.15 It’s All Connected. This year’s "Sustainable Communities Summit – Food For Us – We’re All at the Table Together” features growing a sustainable local food system in our community, what is happening in the food movement, and how to help shape its future. This article was contributed by Robert Mills, Director of the Leon County Office of Resource Stewardship.
2015.01.01 Florida’s Changing Climate. Becky Parsons, Sustainable Tallahassee board member, writes that money, science, politics, and citizen advocacy all have a role in how our state approaches the issue – or doesn’t – of climate change. Let’s get energized in the New Year to make climate change our most important focus in 2015.
2014.12.04 Too Much Food – Too Little Consumed. Elizabeth Swiman, Director of Campus Sustainability at Florida State University, submitted this article written by two of her students, Gabrielle Maynard and Allison Young, who have started an FSU Chapter of the Food Recovery Network, a national organization that promotes donation of unused campus food to non-profit charities in the community.
2014.11.21 Christmas can be Stress-Free and Sustainable. This week coming up is not only Thanksgiving, it's also the Black Friday shopping extravaganza, even on Thanksgiving Day. Debbie Gibson's article will inspire you to enjoy the holidays differently this season. Debbie is a retired teacher with a long history of community service. She is the Chair of Sustainable Tallahassee's Community Carbon Fund, and she's volunteered with the Alternative Christmas Market since its beginning 28 years ago.
2014.11.06 Celebrate Sustainability. What do you know about how Sustainable Tallahassee got started? Becky Parsons, ST board member and chair of the Membership Committee, writes about what led her to Sustainable Tallahassee just as it was being established, and invites us to attend ST’s Seventh Year Anniversary Celebration and Annual Meeting on November 13.
2014.10.23 Be a Trend Setter for Sustainability. Bottled water, plastic bags, Styrofoam containers – the use of these is entirely within our individual control. In this article Becky Parsons, a Sustainable Tallahassee board member, challenges us to rethink and change our behaviors and to join up with like-minded people in Sustainable Tallahassee to be trend setters for sustainability.
2014.10.09 Downtown Fun Ride. End the love affair with your car and find out first-hand the many things you'll appreciate about riding the bus. Sustainable Tallahassee and StarMetro are sponsoring a get-acquainted-with-the-bus Downtown Fun Ride from three different stops on Oct 25, 2014. This article was written by Stew Parsons, chair of Sustainable Tallahassee's Alternative Transportation Committee.
2014.09.25 The City of Tallahassee, A Green Workplace. John Baker, a Policy and Program Development Administrator for the City of Tallahassee’s Department of Environmental Policy and Energy Resources, writes about the City’s green practices in building and maintaining its facilities, and its practices in reducing waste and providing a healthy workplace for employees.
2014.09.12 We Dig Our Garden. Angela Breza-Pierce, environmental science teacher and the school garden and recycling coordinator at Chiles High School, tells us how school gardens have been shown to improve math, science, writing, social studies and attitudes toward learning. She says, “Gardens represent a pure and direct experimental, inquiry-based approach to learning.”
2014.08.28 Celebrating 10 Years of Garnet and Gold Goes Green. Florida State University has achieved a sustainability milestone – 10 years of successful waste reduction and recycling at campus events. Learn about this impressive accomplishment from Elizabeth Swiman, Director of Campus Sustainability at FSU.
2014.08.14 Living, Working, Playing in a Truly Sustainable and Vibrant Tallahassee. This article emphasizes the many sustainable focuses of our community made possible by our citizens and local government. It was written by Ben Pingree, Vice President, Business Retention/Expansion & Public Policy, Economic Development Council of Tallahassee/Leon County Inc., Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce.
2014.07.17 A New Occasion to B-Y-O-B. At this time we aren’t able to ban plastic bags in our community, but we do have options and we need to understand the importance. This article was written by Patience Gaia, who is on our Sustainable Tallahassee Board of Directors and also the Chair of our “Three Rs” Committee (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle).
2014.07.17 Citizen Involvement – Key to the Success of Sustainable Communities. We as citizens, along with local government, all have an important role in making our community progress in a sustainable way. This article was written by John Baker, Policy and Program Development Administrator for the City of Tallahassee’s Department of Environmental Policy and Energy Resources.
2014.07.05 Get Crafty and Creative with Reuse. Kathryn Ziewitz tells us how to how to keep more stuff out of the landfill and have fun doing it. As the Sustainability Coordinator for Leon County, Kathryn gives us resources we can use, including The Sharing Tree, Leon County’s Swap Shop, and the Trashtranaut Community Music Circle.
2014.06. 20 For Our Kids. In this article Daniel Parker, Sustainable Tallahassee's EcoTeams Coordinator, writes that the ability to return to more sustainable thinking and living is well within reach. He encourages taking the summer to foster and encourage sustainable activities and behaviors for our kids.
2014.06.05 My Carbon Footprint. Sustainable Tallahassee’s Community Carbon Fund is a local way to offset our carbon footprint. This article describes how the Fund is a multi-pronged benefit to our community that impacts social services, environment, and local economy. Written by Becky Parsons, board member of Sustainable Tallahassee.
2014.05.22 Green Your Gatherings with Earth Friendly Choices. As we head into a summer season of pool parties, barbecues, and outdoor entertaining, how do we host a crowd outdoors in a sustainable way? Read this article full of ideas, contributed by Maggie Theriot, the Director of Resource Stewardship for Leon County, overseeing Sustainability, Solid Waste and Cooperative Extension services.
2014.05.08 Environmental Education in Leon County Schools. This article tells us about the environmental curriculum in our school system, and also ways in which Leon County Schools is making sustainable practices a focus in its facilities operations. It is written by Robin Oliveri (secondary science developer and 2014 Leon County Teacher of the Year) and Anicia Robinson (Assistant Principal at Sabal Palm; she oversaw the development of a clean energy curriculum for grades K-12).
2014.04.24 With Sustainable Tallahassee. Sustainable Tallahassee wants to lower the rate at which we are tearing through our natural resources, depleting and degrading our water supplies upon which life depends, and warming the planet – all of which produce weather extremes, threaten food production, and increase the possibility of life threatening diseases. This article by Stew Parsons, ST’s Executive Director, is about ST’s initiatives to make a difference in our community.
2014.04.11 EarthCare – Your Actions Count. Earth Day is April 22 and the City of Tallahassee is honoring this special day with a month-long focus on sustainability and our earth. Read about how our City helps us be able to live more sustainably. This article was contributed by Cynthia Barber, Director of Environmental Policy & Energy Resources for the City of Tallahassee. More about Earth Day is HERE.
2014.03.27 Take Back the Tap. FSU has a very active Sustainable Campus group. This article was written by Prathyusha Pamidi, FSU student coordinator of the “Take Back the Tap” program at FSU, under the leadership of Elizabeth Swiman, director of Campus Sustainability. The program aims to increase campus awareness of how the choices we make every day affect global water issues.
2014.03.13 Take It Lite on our Lights this Earth Hour. On March 29 this year Earth Hour takes place. Earth Hour is now a global movement and last year was acknowledged in 159 countries. This article tells us why it’s important. It was contributed by Cynthia Barber, the Director of Environmental Policy & Energy Resources for the City of Tallahassee.
2014.02.27 What’s So Special About the Red Hills Region? Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy has created a new program, “The Greater Red Hills Awareness Initiative” to increase our understanding of the Red Hills region. Georgia Ackerman is the program’s Project Manager and the author of this article where she describes the uniqueness of this area.
2014.02.14 Family Reduces Waste to Near Zero. Even though we may have more recycling than trash each week, the Wiley family’s experience shows us how we can reduce the garbage bin even more – and it’s easier than we think. This article, written by Kathryn Ziewitz, Leon County’s Sustainability Coordinator, gives us the recipe for even more recycling success.
2014.02.03 Community Has 110 New Live Oak Trees. For Tallahassee’s Arbor Day on January 25, 2014 Sustainable Tallahassee’s Community Carbon Fund provided 110 live oak trees for community planting. Bob Henderson, a member of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Board of Directors, Community Carbon Fund committee, and a former Leon County Commissioner, wrote this article about the beauty and carbon sequestration the trees will provide.
2014.01.16 Sustainable YOU 2014 Conference: The Power of Collaboration. This year’s local Sustainability Conference is presented by the City of Tallahassee. National and local speakers will share emerging trends in creating sustainable communities, including three well-known keynote speakers and 24 breakout sessions under the following conference tracks and mobile tours: The Green Economy, Town & Gown Collaborations, Green "Hands-on" Learning, and Partners of Change.
2014.01.02 Help “ReNew” Leon County: Bring Your Unused Paint to Leon County’s Hazardous Waste Center. What to do about those accumulated leftover paint cans that are gathering cobwebs and rust? This article by Kathryn Ziewitz, Leon County’s Sustainability Coordinator, tells us about a great resource that enables you to clear them out and at the same time help others. And did you know that Leon County has a Swap Shop?
2013.12.19 What Will You Do in 2014?. Another year is ending and as we look ahead to 2014 it’s a good time to evaluate our stress, our time, and our consumerism by becoming more sustainable in our values and our activities. This blog, written by Daniel Parker, the Ecoteam Project Coordinator for Sustainable Tallahassee, is a good place to start.
2013.12.06 School District Takes Big Conservation Strides. Leon County’s public school district has had a strong focus on conservation for the past seven years, and the results have paid off in huge electric and fossil fuel cost savings - meaning more funds for education and a lower carbon footprint – a very impressive record. Thanks to Bill Berlow, Policy Coordinator for Leon County Schools, for writing this article and sharing these accomplishments.
2013.11.21 Walk Softer on the Earth this Holiday Season. Debbie Gibson, Chair of Sustainable Tallahassee’s Community Carbon Fund, wrote this article about the Alternative Christmas Market which will be on December 7 and 8 this year. This year will be Sustainable Tallahassee’s second year to participate. The Community Carbon Fund and over 30 other non-profits are encouraging your gift giving to have deeper meaning for you and others.
2013.11.07 A Very Chill Building. Our community continues to be progressive in pursuing advanced energy efficiency in construction methods. Kathryn Ziewitz, Leon County’s Sustainability Coordinator, contributed this article about the new Public Service Complex, a joint venture of our City and County, which has achieved a LEED Silver certification. Read this article to learn about the impressive innovations implemented in this building.
2013.10.24 Run for a More Sustainable Community. Sustainable Tallahassee is gearing up for our Third Annual Trash Dash 5K Run – our annual fund raiser that will be held on November 16th. The article is an appeal to runners: it includes a description of the event and location, a link to register, and a summary of what we want to accomplish in the coming year. It was contributed by Becky Parsons, ST Board member.
2013.10.10 Innovating for the Economy and the Environment. As part of the 2013 Earth Day events, the City of Tallahassee organized a competition for students to develop innovating ideas to address sustainability issues faced by businesses in an evolving green economy. This article about the process, contributed by Cynthia Barber, Director of Environmental Policy & Energy Resources for the City of Tallahassee, includes the winning entries.
2013.09.26 Sustainability Lessons From A Concrete, Electric, Solar Powered Sailboat. An amazing demonstration solar sailboat making a trip from Alabama around Florida is docked in our area for a month. Read Tony Murray’s article to learn more. Tony is a biologist with the City of Tallahassee and the Director of the Big Bend Coastal Conservancy. He addresses natural resource conservation and sustainability issues.
2013.09.12 Greening Our Community with FSU’s ReCycle Bike Program. What a great community we live in, with leadership in sustainability happening in so many areas. Read this article by Mark Kaster, who is the student coordinator of FSU’s reCycle Bike Program. The more we and students are inspired to adopt sustainable practices in their lives, the better their future can be.
2013.08.29 Greening Our Community with EcoTeams. In this article Daniel Parker, Sustainable Tallahassee’s Ecoteams Project Coordinator, encourages everyone to join an EcoTeam. By participating we will learn how to live more sustainably in our community and we’ll have quality interactions with others. EcoTeams are sponsored by Sustainable Tallahassee and co-funded by Leon County and the City of Tallahassee.
2013.08.15 The Goodness of Dirt. Much of what we need comes from dirt, says Kathryn Ziewitz, Sustainability Coordinator for Leon County. Not only does Kathryn tell us how we benefit from dirt, she also tells how we can get gardening help from the County - from resource information to mini-grant funds for Community Gardens! Read her article and you’ll be ready to dig your hands into some good dirt!
2013.08.01 The Red Hills Region – A Local Example of Ecological and Economic Sustainability. Neil Fleckenstein, Planning Coordinator for Tall Timbers Research Station & Land Conservancy, writes about a comprehensive economic impact analysis conducted of Red Hills’ working rural lands. Tall Timbers’ survey of owners of 110 properties spanning nearly 400,000 acres across the Red Hills reveals the significant economic impact we can appreciate of this region.
2013.07.18 The City of Tallahassee Sets Example with Internal Waste Reduction. Reducing waste and recycling at the office have a different set of variables than reducing waste in our own homes. This article tells us about how the City of Tallahassee has set up internal waste reducing practices and gotten employees on board. It’s contributed by Cynthia Barber who is the City’s Director of Environmental Policy & Energy Resources.
2013.07.04 Baking Ourselves Into Extinction? Our atmosphere has crossed an important - and dangerous – milestone for climate change: we reached 400 ppm of CO2 for the first time in several million years. In this article Bob Henderson, Board Member of Sustainable Tallahassee and a former Leon County Commissioner, gives an illustration of the impact of climate change we can all relate to.
2013.06.20 Go Green With Leon County Libraries. Certainly we would all like to reduce our impact on the environment, but beyond replacing light bulbs and recycling more, it’s often hard to know what to do next and how to do it. Kathryn Ziewitz is the Leon County Sustainability Coordinator and her article is just the place to start. She’s included some excellent resources we can all use.
2013.06.06 Chuck it for Charity. At the end of the semester students empty dorm rooms and dump the contents at the curb without a thought of what happens to it. This article was written by Elizabeth Swiman, FSU’s Director of Campus Sustainability, about the Chuck it for Charity program she coordinates and how it increases sustainability and helps our community charities. Don't miss the video that's included.
2013.05.23 Real-Time Lessons in Energy Conservation and Education. In this article Bill Berlow, policy coordinator for Leon County Schools and co-chairman of the District Conservation Committee, writes about Leon County Schools’ latest initiative in the conservation of energy resources, reduction of utility costs, innovation in energy monitoring technology, and clean energy curriculum for our students.
2013.05.09 Help Protect Native Plants and Animals, Starting in Your Backyard. Brian Pelc, with the Nature Conservancy, and Tony Murray, with the City of Tallahassee’s Environmental Policy and Energy Resources, have jointly written this article about the impact of invasive species and what we can do to combat the spread. This article is full of very valuable website links – save them for your reference.
2013.04.25 The Case for Renewable Energy in Tallahassee. Sustainable Tallahassee believes there is a case for diversifying our fuel sources that produce electricity and we’re launching a new initiative for exploration. This article by Stew Parsons, Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee, describes this new initiative of our Renewable Resources Advocacy Committee. (Learn more about this committee HERE.)
2013.04.11 Earth Day 2013: The Business of Green. The City of Tallahassee's Earth Day celebration is a green business expo entitled "The Business of Green: Innovating for the Economy and the Environment” that will be held on April 23rd. This article was contributed by Cynthia Barber, the Director of Environmental Policy & Energy Resources for the City of Tallahassee. More about Earth Day is HERE.
2013.03.29 Plant a Smile. Bill Berlow, a former newspaper columnist and editorial writer, and one of the originators of Sustainable Tallahassee, wrote this March 29 article from his personal perspective as a member of “Talla-Happy Sunflowers”, a brand new initiative to increase sustainability, beauty, - and smiles - in our community.
2013.03.14 Isn’t My Lawn Beautiful? – A Parable. How do you feel when your neighbors pour fertilizers, pesticides, and tons of water on their lawns? Bob Henderson, who is a Board Member of Sustainable Tallahassee and former Leon County Commissioner, tells us what we’d love to say to those neighbors!
2013.02.28 Increase Convenience and Reduce Paper Waste with Smartbill. Sandra Manning, the City of Tallahassee’s Utility Marketing Administrator, contributed this February 28 article. She inspires us to give up paper utility billing and receive and pay our utility bills electronically, and she backs up her appeal with solid facts about paper waste and the loads of trees saved.
2013.02.14 A Green Side of Workforce Training. Tallahassee Community College is on the cutting edge in providing our community with alternative energy and sustainability oriented career training. Marc Dick, Program Specialist with TCC’s Division of Workforce Development, describes TCC’s Florida Green Academy and the training programs that are currently available.
2013.01.31 Nature’s Value in Dollars and Cents. What a precious area we in North Florida live in – and there’s an economic incentive to protect it. In this article Neil Fleckenstein, the Planning Coordinator for Tall Timbers Research Station & Land Conservancy, enlightens us about the value of protecting our Red Hills area, for both environmental and economic reasons.
2013.01.17 Let’s Get Growing – Plan Now, Plant Later. Leon County has a commitment to local food production and community gardens. This article, contributed by Maggie Theriot, Director of Resource Stewardship for Leon County, is about two upcoming workshops on how to start a community garden. Most importantly, Leon County has a mini-grant program to provide startup funds for new community gardens!
2013.01.03 Simple Changes Make a Difference. Most New Year's resolutions end up failing, but we can all make simple changes in this new year that will bring a big difference to our lives, to our community, and to our environment. Take up Sustainable Tallahassee’s challenge for the new year, given to us by Barbara Shapley, retired teacher, education consultant, longtime Tallahassee resident, and author.
2012.12.20 Non-Profits: Apply to Reduce Energy and Save Money. Non-profit organizations that serve the poor, the disadvantaged, or the disenfranchised in our community may apply to our Community Carbon Fund for cost efficient energy improvements. This article was contributed December 20th by Rosa Morgan who actively serves on Sustainable Tallahassee's Community Carbon Fund Advisory Committee. (Check our Carbon Fund page.)
2012.12.6 Team Up for a Sustainable Future. EcoTeams are a great way to get together with family, neighbors, friends, co-workers, or other small groups to learn about and take action on sustainability issues in our lives. The program, funded by the City of Tallahassee and Leon County and administered by Sustainable Tallahassee, will begin in January 2013 and run through late spring. This article was written by Rachel Walsh, the Project Coordinator for Sustainable Tallahassee’s EcoTeams program.
2012.11.21 Alternative Gift Giving. Sustainable Tallahassee will be hosting a table at the Alternative Christmas Market on December 1 and 2, 2012 for gift donations to the Community Carbon Fund. Gift donations to the Community Carbon Fund can also be made on our Sustainable Tallahassee website. This article about alternatives to commercialism at Christmas was written by Debbie Gibson, recently retired teacher, member of Sustainable Tallahassee, and advocate for social justice. (Click HERE to see how this event turned out!)
2012.11.9 Fifth Year Anniversary of Sustainable Tallahassee. November 14, 2012 is the anniversary celebration of Sustainable Tallahassee's five years of existence. We'll celebrate by bringing back several of the ST founders for a "We Were There" panel presentation. This article by Stew Parsons Executive Director of ST gives a historical background of the origins and accomplishments of our organization. (Click HERE for photos and more about this event.)
2012.10.25 Be Fit and Green – Run the Trash Dash! Sustainable Tallahassee’s 2012 Trash Dash fund raiser is on November 10, part of America Recycles Day at the Leon County Solid Waste Facility. The race is on the site of the former Leon County landfill, formerly the site of the Miller Landing Bluegrass festivals, and formerly beautiful rolling farmland. Written by Stew Parsons, Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee. (Click HERE for race results & photos!)
2012.10.11 Vote for the Earth. We can vote with our dollars to benefit the environment, to improve our economy, and to promote local businesses. This article was written for Sustainable Talllahassee by Barbara Shapley, retired teacher, education consultant, longtime Tallahassee resident, and author.
2012.09.27 Sustainable Communities Summit. This year's "Leon County Sustainable Communities Summit 2012" on October 31, 2012 will focus on local food and local resources that can help us be more sustainable in our lives. Barbara Shapley, writes about her eagerness to attend the Summit to boost her knowledge. Barbara is a retired teacher, education consultant, longtime Tallahassee resident, and author.
2012.09.13 Going Green Saves Green. Cynthia Barber, Director of the City of Tallahassee’s Environmental Policy & Energy Resources, contributed this overview of some of the energy saving measures the City has implemented. We are fortunate to live in a city that has placed a strong priority on sustainability - not many cities in Florida can make that claim.
2012.08.30 Greening Your Game Day! Elizabeth Swiman, Director of Campus Sustainability at FSU, writes how 'Garnet and Gold Goes Green' expects to recycle and divert 100 tons of material from the landfill during this fall's football season! Don't miss the cool video that's included - made by a talented team of students.
2012.08.16 Reuse for Home Improvement Projects, Closing the Cycle with Freebies, contributed by Maggie Theriot, Director of Resource Stewardship for Leon County's Sustainability, Solid Waste and Cooperative Extension services. There are free materials from the solid waste facility that will help make your garden great!
2012.08.02 Students Reduce Lunch Waste, Save Energy, written by Anicia Robinson, Leon County Schools. Last year's efforts were major and students were inspired and very involved - read this to learn how to keep the momentum going in our schools and our homes!
2012.07.20 Initial Article Introducing CASC. In December 2011 Sustainable Tallahassee facilitated the creation of the Capital Area Sustainability Council to serve as a collaborative clearing house for organizations and entities that have a major influence on effecting sustainability in our community. These "Greening Our Community" blogs will be the vehicle by which members of CASC can communicate their sustainability focus and actions to the public. This introductory article was written by Stew Parsons, Executive Director of Sustainable Tallahassee.