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Greater Portland Sustainability Council
June 4, 2013 Mini-Conference Presentations 
    
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FOOD AND AGRICULTURE

      Urban Edible Landscapes: Fruits, Nuts and Berries -- Edible landscapes use food plants as design features for aesthetic value as well as production of food in a landscape. Learn what other cities around the U.S. have done, what works and what doesn't, and how we can do it here.

Urb A Farm Grows in the City? Urban Agriculture in Portland-- We'll look at the Mayor's Food Initiative, case studies from other cities, a 5-step method to create an urban farm in Portland, and examine the question "Should there be a farm in Portland, or should the city continue to trade with the country?"  

A   USM Food Forest Garden-- Using permaculture techniques to create a demonstration project on the USM-Portland campus.  

           Grocery Stewardship Certification (GSC) --The GSC is the nation’s first and only supermarket sustainability certification. The Manomet Center launched a pilot version of the program with Hannaford in September 2012. So far, 93 Hannaford Supermarkets have been certified. Learn about the ways that the GSC helps groceries reduce their environmental footprint by addressing energy consumption, water use, waste management, product sourcing and other sustainability measures.  


       INFRASTRUCTURE - TRANSPORTATION, BUILDINGS & ENERGY

·         Cyclovia: Thinking of Downtown Space as People Space -- When several streets or portions of a city are closed to motor vehicle traffic, it can promote new definitions of who belongs in the street. What steps did cities take to make these a reality? How can we do more here? 

·        Public Transit - Doing it Differently with Transportation Management Associations (TMAs) -- TMAs are public-private partnerships that provide transportation services in a particular area, such as a commercial district, mall, medical center or industrial park. Click here for examples. GPCOG will discuss its work with this approach that may be particularly suited to our medium-population-density region.

·        Transportation Equity in the Portland Region -- Learn about the results of a survey of low income individuals on the specific transportation needs and barriers they face, the resulting models of the relationship between accessibility and poverty in the Portland region, and strategies to address these issues. 

·         Greening the Maine Mall (Part 1Part 2) -- The Long Creek Restoration Project, the City of South Portland, the Manomet Center, the Maine Mall management, and others are looking at various aspects of sustainability in the shopping district including and surrounding the Maine Mall. We'll learn about the upcoming projects to install trees and bioswales on Gorham Road and Maine Mall road, the performance of the pervious pavement already installed that allows rainwater to filter into the ground, and we'll explore what this area might look like 10, 20 or 50 years down the road. 

      Cumberland County Energy Plan -- We will hear about the work underway to prioritize and implement the County Energy Plan.

      Peaks Environmental Action Team -- As many as 100 of the Peaks Island's 500 year-round homes and cottages are being weatherized through Efficiency Maine's Air Sealing Promotion and a collaboration between the Peaks Environmental Action Team and the Island Institute; the program includes community-constructed storm window inserts. FMI click here.


     GETTING INVOLVED - ACTIVITIES, EDUCATION & ENGAGEMENT

           Youth Green Teams: Supporting the Next Generation -- Environmental sustainability could be part of the “new civics” in our schools. Students involved in Green Teams and Environmental Clubs are leading the way. How can we better support their efforts and the teachers, parents and school staff that assist them? How can we leverage the just-released Next Generation Science Standards and the Maine Environmental Literacy Plan?   

Portland Green Festival -- The Greater Portland Sustainability Council is working with local partners and the organizers of Boston Greenfest to create a Portland Greenfest. We'll discuss how we're proceeding to create an exciting event in downtown Portland showcasing green practices, green businesses,  local food, music, and diverse cultures. 


      Portland HS - Global Sustainable Communities Project -- Students from Portland High’s Global Sustainable Communities Project traveled to Russia and Sweden in April to study sustainable practices and to connect with international peers. 

      USM Student Energy Tour of Denmark -- USM students participated in an energy study tour this May of Denmark, which has embraced a goal of being fossil-fuel free by 2050. Read their blog here.

      Green-up Portland -- Portland recently hosted its first “Start-up Weekend” a weekend-long frenzy of entrepreneurial energy. Read about it here. We’ll explore ways to apply this problem-solving model to sustainability.  

        

      UNIVERSITY SUSTAINABILITY

      From Climate Goals to Sustainability Strategy -- Actionable strategies to translate USM's Climate Action Plan into a Campus Sustainability Strategy; developed in the Muskie School's Sustainable Communities graduate course. 

      Incorporating Climate Action Plans into Campus Master Plans -- Case studies, best practices, and implementation plans for the University of Southern Maine; developed in the Muskie School's Sustainable Communities graduate course.    

         

      GREEN PRACTICES

      Green Funerals & Burials -- Awareness is growing about making final arrangements that are as earth-friendly as possible. Learn about the impacts and issues involved with funerals and burials and the sustainable methods available. 



Sponsored by the Greater Portland Sustainability Council and hosted by the University of Southern Maine. 
FMI contact Jeff Edelstein at edelstein@psouth.net