Fireside chat with business alliance by leading Peak Oil educator

In this Sustainable Business Alliance speaker series,leading peak oil educator, Julian Darley talks with Bay Area business owners about the impact Peak Oil is having on their business and community, October 9, 2008. Click hear for this timely 83-minute discussion on video.

ST Economy Group

The Economy Group will meet Monday, Oct. 20, at 6 p.m. at Lotus Massage & Wellness Center, 2850 E. Grant Rd.

We’ll continue discuss of possible uses of a GIS mapping system, pick up the discussion that got started online about Walmart going in at El Con, and … in light of what’s happening in the world/national/local economy, open some discussion of what might/should/could be done to raise sustainability in (at least) the local economy.

Looking forward to seeing you next week.


ST’s Support Statement for Rainwater Harvesting Ordinance

Honorable Mayor, Councilmembers, and City Manager,

Members of Sustainable Tucson are here this evening on the dual occasion of the Council’s first rainwater harvesting ordinance and Sustainable Tucson’s anniversary celebration — beginning our third year of activities in the community.

Sustainable Tucson began in 2006 when people attending evening potlucks and community conversations realized that we needed to respond as a community to the coming inter-connected challenges caused by climate change, peaking energy and resources, and financial collapse.

Sustainable Tucson is happy to give full support to the Council’s decision to adopt this watershed legislation. The Rainwater Harvesting Ordinance will start the practice here of using rainwater as a vital resource for our landscapes, gardens, and other needs.

As expertise develops and information about its implementation comes in, we support the expansion of this ordinance over time until we treat each drop of rain in our region with practical, economically-sound applications, including the needs of our local ecosystem. This is an important step you are taking as our elected leaders toward better managing the only truly renewable water resource we have in Tucson.

While we are here today to talk about the importance of rainwater, it now appears that getting our financial systems and economy progressing forward is going to be our main challenge for the foreseeable future.

In all past speculative bubbles and collapses, another sector or industry emerged to drive economic growth forward, eventually followed by another speculative run up. The current housing bubble and collapse replaced the Information Technology/Dot Com collapse in 2000. Now we’re experiencing the subsequent financial free-fall.

So what happens next — after the current housing and financial crises?

The only emerging sector with the potential to drive prosperity in the future appears to be green technology and sustainable practices. Large-scale investment in a renewable energy-based sustainable economy may be the key to averting the three main threats of climate change; energy, food and water shortages; and long-term economic uncertainty and contraction.

Sustainable Tucson continues to support the Mayor’s call to the community to build a sustainable economy as expressed in his 2008 State of the City speech. Sustainable Tucson is committed to supporting the community’s efforts toward sustainability and resiliency by promoting open, inclusive dialogue about the interrelated challenges we face; helping build alliances among diverse groups; and providing useful sources of information via our website, listserv, monthly newsletter, and general meetings.

Sustainable Tucson’s strength is connecting diverse critical issues and promoting in all our work, a greater sense of urgency and the need to face a full range of scenarios, including those that may seem harsh. At the same time, we are reassured by the new range of opportunities that are possible for the community to move forward on.

Come to — and be part of the change.

Thank you for this opportunity to address you.

More information on the ordinance:
Recent Arizona Daily Star article
Council Agenda page (will have agenda and background information by October 9, click on “M&C Regular Agenda”)

Janos Celebrates Local Foods with Farm Dinner

Janos Celebrates Local Foods with Farm Dinner

What: Hors d’ Oeuvres and 4 Course Wine Tasting Dinner

The Event: Reception and dinner with the local growers along with a
sampling of Callaghan wines and beer from Nimbus

Where: Janos Restaurant
3770 E Sunrise Dr., Tucson, AZ 85718
on the grounds of the Westin La Paloma Resort and Spa

When: Sunday, October 19, 2008

Cost: $80.00 per person plus tax and gratuity

Reservations: By calling the restaurant at 520-615-6100

In a celebration of local foods and an homage to those who grow
them, Janos Restaurant will be holding a Locals Only Farm Dinner at
the restaurant on Sunday, October 19, 2008.

Local growers who provide produce, fruit, dairy, meat and poultry for
the restaurant will be the guests of honor at the reception which will
begin at 6:00pm with hors d’oeuvres, beer from Tucson’s Nimbus
Brewery and wines from Sonoita’s Callaghan Vineyard.

The growers, winemakers, and beer makers will join restaurant
patrons at large communal tables for a dinner prepared by the Janos
Culinary Team showcasing the bounty of the region.

“For the last 25 years we’ve been the beneficiary of the delicious
foods our growers produce. It’s time to turn the tables and celebrate
the growers, the food and food culture that they’ve helped to create,”
explained chef-owner Janos Wilder.

Among the farmers and ranchers who will be participating in the
dinner will be John and Young Rueb from Forever Yong Farms, Stuart
and Lauren Loew from Agua Linda Farms, The Chicken Ladies – Jane
Evans and Laurie Clark, Briggs and Eggers Orchards, Paul
Schwennesen from Double Check Ranch, Dennis Morney from 47
Ranch, San Xavier Co-op Farms, Native Seeds / SEARCH, and
Avalon Organic Gardens.

Cost for the dinner is $80.00 per person plus tax and 20% gratuity
and includes reception and dinner with the grower along with a
sampling of Callaghan wines and beer from Nimbus.

Addressing the Health Effects of Climate Change Presentation

Friday, November 14, a free public presentation on “Addressing the Health Effects of Climate Change” will be offered at the DuVal Auditorium at the University Medical Center, 1501 N. Campbell Ave, from 7PM until 9PM.  This area related to climate change is under reported and inadequately addressed in our communities.

Jeremy Hess, MD, MPH representing the Center for Environmental Health of the CDC (U.S. Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, Georgia) will address the background of global warming and the ensuing health effects of climate change. A follow-up discussion will address the needed public health response to these challenges and a call for adaptation and organization in our communities to help prevent health problems of climate events.

An all day continuing education conference on 11/15/08 at DuVal Auditorium will focus on health professionals’ and public officials’ responsibilities to become better educated about and plan for a preventively oriented response to the impending community health challenges of climate change.  Registration for this event will soon be available on line.

The Pima County Health Department, Sierra Club, the Mayor of Tucson, several City Council members, Defenders of Wildlife, and Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom are among community endorsers of this event.

Sustainable Tucson October General Meeting

Dear Friend of Sustainable Tucson,

We are pleased to announce a special agenda for our October General Meeting on Tuesday, October 14:

At 6pm, we invite you to join us at Tucson’s Mayor and Council meeting in support of a proposed rainwater harvesting ordinance for commercial developments,  This ordinance is a common-sense first step towards managing our water more sustainably, and would be the first of its kind in the nation.  It is by no means a given that the City Council will approve the ordinance, so our voices are crucial at this meeting.

In a generous adjustment, city staff have placed the rainwater harvesting ordinance at the top of the evening’s agenda (after other standing business), so please come by 6pm.  Location: 255 W Alameda St., 1st floor, east side of the building.

More information on the ordinance:
Recent Arizona Daily Star article
Council Agenda page (will have agenda and background information by October 9, click on “M&C Regular Agenda”)

After the ordinance is addressed, we’ll adjourn to La Cocina restaurant (186 N Meyer Ave) to celebrate two years of hard work and play with Sustainable Tucson. We invite you to come whether you were there at the very first living room brainstorming sessions, or whether this is your first meeting!  The plan is to socialize, celebrate, and eat La Cocina’s excellent food–a buffet will be available for $6.  We need a head count to know how much food to order, so please RSVP by Oct. 13 to Vera Lander via email, veralander *at* (include your phone number in the email).

We hope you’ll join us for these events!