Walking the Talk in 2012
TerraPass let us walk the talk in 2012 in a big way! They enabled us to offset 10 Metric Tons of energy we used that was from conventional energy sources with renewable energy. Check out the amazing projects they have Fight Climate Change with Energy Offsets! and how you can make a difference in your home, your office and your business - Make a Difference!
Other green initiatives for 2012:
Composted our food waste through Save that Stuff!
Go Green Solutions, Inc. provided us with clearly marked waste/recycle containers and serviced them regularly - a special shout out to Jim Kelly! Your company or town can take advantage of these terrific containers by adding your advertising and logo to them and placing them in strategic locations.
Recycled all bottles, cardboard boxes, plastic and paper with the help of Save that Stuff!
Used pedal power to help operate the EcoStage and Main Stage thanks to Melodeego.
All lights were efficient - either CFLs or LEDs thanks to NSTAR!
MassBike set up a Valet Bike Parking Area.
Mass Water Resource Authority (MWRA) again set up a temporary fountain to provide fresh water for all!
Walking the Talk in 2011
What we are doing already to green Boston GreenFest!
1. No bottled water! MWRA will return with the portable water fountain and allow us to reduce plastic water bottles from landfill.
2. Pedal power for our EcoTent: The local band, Melodeego, has offered to provide pedal power for our stage.
Melodeego - Biking for Music!
3. Greening the Plaza with 25 trees from Blueview Nursery, flowers from the city and living walls from Green Living Technologies.
4. Energy offsets. Our festival cannot be run without using electricity. We do our best to keep this to a minimum. We ask everyone to come by public transportation, bicycle, walk or carpool. We ask our exhibitors to go "low-tech" and truly consider whether they need to use electricity. Most of our lighting is done by LED lights. Mass Energy will offset the energy used on the Family Stage. Brighter Planet will offset the remainder of our event.
5. Recycling and composting is a top priority for Boston GreenFest.
6. All of our performers have a commitment to being green.
7. E-waste will be collected.
8. People can learn about how to donate books to More than Words, a special used bookshop that employs youth who were turned out of the foster care system at age 16 and are left homeless. More than Words helps the youth make it through high school while getting work experience and targeting their goals.
9. Recycled materials. All materials and supplies used for marketing the festival, in our office and banners on site, will be from recycled paper or other eco-friendly sources.
10. Efficient eco-friendly ads. Our ads are done with minimal ink to reduce the energy and ink to print.
11. Exhibitors are asked to limit their printed and reduce their waste.
12. Eco-friendly food vendors. We work with our food vendors to be sure they are using eco-friendly supplies, local or organic food supply to the extent possible, and a mix of vendors that include vegan and vegetarian fare.
Walking the Talk in 2010
Boston GreenFest 2010 was Bottled Water Free! In 2010 we set a precedent for outdoor festivals in our city, and particularly at Boston City Hall Plaza. With the help of our friends at Corporate Accountability International and MWRA, we found a solution to provide drinking water to everyone who came to Boston GreenFest 2010 and now again, for 2011. Using a portable sink/fountain and a chiller, MWRA provides fresh water for anyone who is thirsty. So...look for the MWRA Water Tent! Bring your canteens and water bottles. You will be able to fill up for free. This is a very important step for us!
Plastic bottles are an enormous burden to our planet. Read here to get a better understanding about why you should stop drinking bottled water. By the way, did you know that quite often the water inside the bottle comes from the tap (just not yours?) and they charge 10 times the amount for it?
Portable Drinking Fountain at Boston GreenFest 2010
Drink Tap Water!
Massachusetts residents drink a staggering amount of bottled water - more than 300,800,000 gallons in a year, making us the 6th in the U.S. in overall consumption. If all the water bottles consumed each year were laid end-to-end, they would circle the globe more than 11½ times. The worst part is that less than 20% of all those bottles are recycled. The rest end up in our landfills or on the roadside as litter. This isn't even to mention that bottled water is up to 2000 times more energy intensive to produce than our tap.
Why our thirst for bottled water?
Nestlé and other bottlers have manufactured demand for an essential resource that flows practically for free from our taps. Through tens of millions of dollars of clever marketing and tricky labels, the bottled water industry has convinced us to pay more per gallon for water than we do for gasoline.
But the fact is:
1. Bottled water is less regulated than the tap.
2. Nearly half of all bottled water, including Nestlé's Pure Life and Coke's Dasani, come from public water systems.
3. Bottled water undermines confidence in our public water systems at a time when they're in dire need of funding. Nationally, our public water systems face a $22 billion annual funding gap. Meanwhile, consumers spend $15 billion a year on a non-essential use of our most essential resource!
That's why tens of thousands of people are starting to Think Outside the Bottle and opt for tap water over bottled water. Just last week, there were further signs the winds are turning as a result of Think Outside the Bottle and other public education efforts. A new poll shows that about 40 percent of Americans are eschewing bottled water for tap water in refillable bottles. New reports show sales fell an additional five percent last year.
Boston Greenfest is leading by example by going bottled water free, and the MWRA will be serving delicious Boston tap water. So bring your reusable water bottle to the following water-related events:
1. The Think Outside the Bottle table
2. The MWRA exhibit
3. The FLOW film screening.
For more about the campaign, visit Think Outside the Bottle!
The Pacific Institute estimates that in 2006:
--Producing the bottles for American consumption required the equivalent of more than 17 million barrels of oil, not including the energy for transportation
--Bottling water produced more than 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide
--It took 3 liters of water to produce 1 liter of bottled water
It Takes Petroleum and Energy to Bottle Water:
--The Pacific Institute states that according to the Beverage Marketing Corporation, Americans bought a total of 31.2 billion liters of water in 2006, sold in bottles ranging from the 8-ounce aquapods popular in school lunches to the multi-gallon bottles found in family refrigerators and office water coolers.
--Most of this water was sold in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles, requiring nearly 900,000 tons of the plastic. PET is produced from fossil fuels--typically natural gas and petroleum.
--According to the plastics manufacturing industry, it takes around 3.4 megajoules of energy to make a typical one-liter plastic bottle, cap, and packaging.
--Making enough plastic to bottle 31.2 billion liters of water required more than 106 billion megajoules of energy.
--Because a barrel of oil contains around 6 thousand megajoules, the Pacific Institute estimates that the equivalent of more than 17 million barrels of oil were needed to produce these plastic bottles!
It Takes Water to Make Bottled Water:
--In addition to the water sold in plastic bottles, the Pacific Institute estimates that twice as much water is used in the production process. Thus, every liter sold represents three liters of water.
Carbon Dioxide Emissions from Consumption of Bottled Water:
--The manufacture of every ton of PET produces around 3 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2). Bottling water thus created more than 2.5 million tons of CO2 in 2006.
Walking the Talk in 2009
Boston GreenFest 2009 worked hard to be as green as possible. Here's what we did:
--Used as little paper as possible to advertise the event. Instead we used social networking, virtual ads and email.
--Distributed flyers on foot, by bike or by T.
--Made an efficient website that takes less time loading.
--Kept our logo simple so it would not require lots of ink.
--Printed all materials that we did need on recycled paper with a local company. Red Sun Press is a worker owned coop and prints everything eco-consciously.
--Used Jet-a-Way, a local company to manage our waste. They recycle waste, compost food waste and dispose of the remainder.
--Used Dave's "green" porta potties.
--90% of the exhibitors and performers did not travel more than 500 miles to participate in Boston GreenFest.
--95% of the staff and volunteers used public transportation.
--Urban Adventours set up and ran a valet bike parking area.
--Used solar energy to run the Inconvenient Truth PowerPoint Presentation.
--Ran an efficient office - no air conditioners; minimal electricity use; compost; reuse, reduce and recycle; reduced use of printers, only used recycled paper
--Brighter Planet offset our electricity needs.
Walking the Talk in 2008
We "walked our talk" at Boston GreenFest 2008 by:
--Recycling all of our trash (with Waste Management);
--Providing green porta-potties (with Dave's);
--Using water bottles and NOT bottled water;
--Powering our slide show presentations with solar energy (provided by SolarOne Solutions);
--Powering some of our concerts with bicycle power (with Rootfriends);
--Keeping flyers to a minimum;
--Asking exhibitors to use low-tech presentations;
--Providing bicycle racks; and
--Covering the plaza with trees and plants for shade and oxygen (with Blueview Nurseries and City of Boston Parks Department).
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