Thu, 2 April 2015
According to a recent article in the Washington Post, Americans throw away nearly $170 billion dollars of food every year. That's an astounding figure when nearly 50 million Americans live with the reality of food insecurity.
Why is this happening? What can be done about it?
How does food waste impact our water supply? Greenhouse gas emissions?
In this Sustainable Ventura Podcst, City of Ventura Environmental Specialist Jill Santos talks to Sustainable Ventura's Maryann Ridini Spencer who helps shed some light on this critical issue. Jill also shares helpful green tips and green living ideas.
UPCOMING EVENT: On Friday, April 24 from 6-9pm at Ventura's Bell Arts Factory, 432 Ventura Avenue, Environmentalist Rob Greenfield will screen his documentary focusing on how to prevent food waste and other green topics.
Mon, 2 March 2015
Beginning Saturday, March 7, 2015 from 10:00am-11:30am, Ventura Water, The City of Ventura Environmental Sustainability Division, Ewing Irrigation and Green Thumb International/Ventura, present FREE Water Wise Classes.
Water wise classes, which are FREE and open to the public, will be held at the City of Ventura’s Sanjon Public Works Maintenance Yard (336 Sanjon Road) or at Green Thumb Nursery (1899 South Victoria Avenue).
This year’s array of exciting classes presented by esteemed industry professionals, promote efficient water use in landscapes, protection of our local water supply, reduction of green waste production, and information and appreciation of climate-appropriate, native plants. Attendees also have the opportunity to mix, mingle, network, and enjoy complimentary refreshments before and after all class presentations.
March 7: Water Wise Gardens (Sanjon) – Rethink the traditional American lawn when you learn about gorgeous turf alternatives and native, climate appropriate plants. In this class, you’ll also find out how to convert your spray irrigation to drip! RSVP: https://waterwisegardens.eventbrite.com
April 11: Composting & Vegetable Gardening (Green Thumb) – Find out how to create a healthy biology for your lawn in order to encourage water CPR (conservation, permeability, retention). Discover how to create a potent compost tea and the many ways to encourage beneficial insects into your garden. RSVP: https://compostingvegetables.eventbrite.com
May 2: Graywater & Rainwater Harvesting (Sanjon) – It’s so easy. Learn how to set up a laundry-to-landscape graywater system as well as how to install a rain garden (and rain barrel) to capture precious water. RSVP: https://graywaterrainwater.eventbrite.com
June 6: Control Your Controllers (Sanjon) – Irrigation Scheduling 101 – Everything you always wanted to know about how to set and operate your smart controller and keep up with the latest water compliance codes and restrictions. RSVP: https://irrigationcontrollers101.eventbrite.com
Space is limited, so RSVP for your place TODAY!
For more information, call (805) 652-4501 and ask for Jill Santos and/or to REGISTER for the FREE classes, visit: CityofVentura.net/Water/Landscape
Tue, 17 February 2015
If you haven't already recognized the "new normal" California landscape, shifting from resource intensive, turf-centric landscapes to something truly "green," such as an Ocean Friendly or Native Garden, there are a number of things you can do to drought-proof your landscape and make it mores sustainable. In this PODCAST, Sustainable Ventura News' Maryann Ridini Spencer talks to City of Ventura Environmental Specialist Jill Santos about water wise gardens. Visit: SustainableVentura.TV and CityofVentura.net/water/landscape
Mon, 16 February 2015
Thinking “Green” when it comes to renovation and building is a thoughtful approach to how everyday decisions impact the sustainability of our environment, economy and community. One way of thinking green is to reuse and repurpose building materials and home accessories and appliances. Habitat for Humanity ReStores, nonprofit home improvement stores and donation centers, do just that. Sustainable Ventura News' Maryann Ridini Spencer talks with guests Steve Dwyer, Habitat’s executive director, City of Ventura Environmental Specialist Tobie Mitchell and David Harrison, Sales Manager with E.J. Harrison & Sons. Visit: HabitatVentura.org, SustainableVentura.TV, CityofVentura.net/Environmental and EJHarrison.com
Mon, 30 June 2014
Homeowners interested in going solar should contact: Jefferson Litton (805) 963-0583 x105 or register at SolarizeVentura.org
When you turn on a light, work at the computer, watch television, or blend up your favorite fruit smoothie, you may not think about the fact that all these tasks require energy. The production and flow of energy to your home and work place requires complex infrastructure that requires ongoing maintenance. Over time, this upkeep of energy systems and operations translates into cost increases on your energy bill.
Moving forward, how can you possibly ensure your electricity costs will stay the same or even decrease over time? There’s a simple, affordable solution.
On April 17, 2014, underneath the solar panels at Patagonia’s downtown Ventura headquarters, Community Environmental Council’s (CEC) in partnership with the City of Ventura announced the new “Solarize Ventura” program.
The program, which educates and assists residents with residential solar installations, is based on a successful model used in other communities across the country.
“Residential solar is a great source of clean renewable energy,” said Joe Yahner, City of Ventura Environmental Services Supervisor. “Selecting a qualified solar contractor for an installation can be a daunting task for a homeowner and this program really simplifies the process. Through rigorous interviews and a careful selection process, two reputable local contractors, REC Solar and California Solar Electric, were selected to be the program’s solar installers. The program offers below market price installations for Ventura residents that sign up for the program between April 17 – July 19, 2014.”
Purchase or Lease?
A typical residential solar system can range from $7,000 to $20,000 per home and take approximately 4-8 weeks to install. When purchasing a system, homeowners can often re-coop their investment within 5-7 years. Additionally, solar panels have a lifespan of approximately 25-30 years, and thus become an added value to any property. If a homeowner is reluctant to purchase a system, lease programs are available for no money down. With either method, homeowners will likely see immediate energy savings.
“Roof type and size, sun exposure, electricity demand, and the size of one’s home can impact whether solar installation is a good fit,” added Yahner. “If a homeowner’s bill is only $30-40, solar probably isn’t the way to go. However, through this program, free home assessments are given to interested parties to determine if solar is a viable solution.”
“Over the next three months,” said CEC’s Solarize Program Coordinator Jefferson Litten, “we’ll be hosting four free workshops in Ventura (listing times and locations at solarizeventura.org) to increase the public’s awareness of solar and how it functions so that residents completely understand the benefits of going solar and how going with a renewable energy solution positively impacts not only their pocketbook, but our community.”
“We believe strongly in the environment and doing everything we can to protect it,” said City of Ventura Mayor Cheryl Heitmann at the event. “Ventura has a tremendous track record with doing this at our own city buildings and now moving into the residences is really important. The fact that the program is vetted by this organization is and it’s very important that we can say with confidence, ‘here are two installers that you can trust. You can go to them and we know you’re going to get a very fair price and they’re going to do a good job.’”
“Energy costs are going to do nothing but go up,” said Ventura County Supervisor Steve Bennett who attended the event, “getting onto this earlier will allow people to save money, it brings Ventura green jobs and makes us less energy dependent and allows us to decrease the use of fossil fuels which has so many environmental benefits. It’s truly a great program and I hope people will embrace it.”
Several FREE Solarize Ventura workshops have been held during June to enthusiastic resident response.The program will run through July 2014. Interested residents should sign up on or before the end of July to take advantage of this program. Once signed up by the end of July, you will be able to book an installation date within the following 12 month period.
Homeowners interested in going solar should contact Jefferson Litton at (805) 963-0583 or register at www.solarizeventura.org.
Also visit: SustainableVentura.TV
Wed, 30 October 2013
On Thursday, October 24, 2013, SustainableVentura.TV went on location to the "Haunting at the Harbor Business Tabletop Expo" presented by the Ventura Chamber of Commerce. The event, held from 4:30pm to 7:30pm at the Four Point Sheraton Ventura Harbor Resort, featured 59 exhibitors, food vendors, raffle prizzes and three hours of fun, networking and mingling. The City of Ventura Environmental Sustainability and Ventura Water both had booths at the event and were promoting a number of green and sustainable practices.
Wed, 23 October 2013
On Saturday, October 12, 2013, from 10am-11:30am, Ventura Water, Aqua-flo and Green Thumb Nursery presented the second in a series of six Water Wise classes. The topic for the day was “How to employ Ocean Friendly Garden principles of CPR- Conservation, Permeability and Retention."
Ocean Friendly Gardens is a trademark of Surfrider Foundation and OFGs, as they’re also known, are beautiful, easy-to-maintain, and serve as vehicles to assist in the prevention of stormwater pollution.
Laura Bauer, BauerFineGardening.com, gave a talk and presented an informative slide show that took the audience through the concepts of an Ocean Friendly Garden, how it works, as well some examples of beautiful native plants. SustainableVentura.TV spoke to some of the attendees who took the class.
For more information on Green Events, visit: SustainableVentura.TV.
Thu, 22 August 2013
On August 14, 2013, Ventura Chamber of Commerce's Green Task Force and Friends of the Channel Coast State Parks presented a FREE Green Drinks Event from 5-7:00pm at San Buenaventura State Beach. Sustainable Ventura's Maryann Ridini Spencer talked to attendees.
For more information on Green Drinks and upcoming Green Events, visit: SustainableVentura.TV
Wed, 31 July 2013
In this "Sustainable Ventura" podcast host Maryann Ridini Spencer talks with City of Ventura Environmental Specialist Jill Sarick, about the upcoming FREE Waterwise Gardening Classes beginning Saturdays, starting September 14, 2013, 10:00-11:30am.
For more information on the classes and to sign up, visit: CityofVentura.net/water/landscape or call Jill at (805) 652-4501.
Also Visit: SustainableVentura.TV
Mon, 29 July 2013
In this "Sustainable Ventura" podcast host Maryann Ridini Spencer talks with Ray Olson, Manager, City of Ventura's Environmental Sustainability Divsion about grasscycling. Grasscycling is great for your lawn and the environment!
Also Visit: SustainableVentura.TV