Food Soverignty

A forum at the Park Street Complex on May 12, 7 to 9 PM…

“Food sovereignty is the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and agriculture systems. It puts those who produce, distribute and consume food at the heart of food systems and policies rather than the demands of markets and corporations.”
– From the Declaration of Nyéléni, Feburary 2007

Josephine Clearwater will take you through a brief food history from pre-industrialization to the present – covering changes to our food and food system. She’ll discuss important foodrelated
choices facing us here in NEPA.

A representative from the Weston A. Price Foundation will be on hand to share information about the benefits of nutrient-dense food.

We’ll wrap up with a talk from a member of Slow Foods USA, a movement that links the pleasure of food with a commitment to community and the environment.

The forum will be held at the usual time and place: Park Street Complex in Honesdale from 7 to 9 pm on May 12.


Here is what we’ve planned for the Spring 2009 growing season!

April 25: Visioning the Garden
Discussing siting, planning, and approaches to setting up the garden.

June 13: Weed Identification
Learn about a variety of weeds common in our area – beneficial and otherwise!

July 11: Insect Tour
A day to identify, discuss, and celebrate the wide range of insects around us.

October 17: Herbal Apothecary
Identifying beneficial herbs, and preparing them as tinctures and decoctions.

All of this year’s Home and Hearth workshops will be held at Clearwater Acres in Damascus, PA. Driving east on 371, turn left onto Galilee Road. Bear left immediately at the fork, to continue on Galilee Road. Drive 2 miles, and turn right onto Swago Road. Make your next right onto Diehl Road. The farm is the first house you’ll see on your right, surrounded by fencing. A $25 donation is suggested for each workshop. Each workshop will last two hours, beginning at 9am.

Thursday, April 21st, 2011 7pm-9pm Wayne Conservation District Office in 648 Park Street, Honesdale PA 18431

sfDo it yourself energy conservation; Solar PV training, Solar thermal training

Well, Spring is here and SEEDS is busy doing what SEEDS does. Here are a few of the exciting things we’ve got lined up:

Free Educational Forum on Do It Yourself Energy Conservation
April 21, 7-9PM
at the Park Street Conservation Complex in Honesdale

If you came in February to our forum, you’ll remember that the folks at PPL got carried away with giving us so much good information about their energy efficiency programs, that Cyril Mansperger, local green-minded resident, never got to give his in-depth presentation on the simple things you can at home to become more environmentally friendly and energy efficient.

In addition to Cyril’s talk, we will have an expert on hand to discuss possibilities for grants and funding for larger-scaled renewable energy projects you may want to do at your home, farm, or business.

As usual, there will be a free will offering, along with baked goods and refreshments.

Solar Thermal: Installation and Maintenance Training
May 6-9, $300

SEEDS will be offering a course on installing and maintaining a Solar Thermal system, in cooperation with the Wayne County Conservation office. The first two days will consist of classroom instruction; the final two days will be spent on-site installing a solar thermal system in a local home. Those interested should have some experience in plumbing, electricity, or HVAC.

The course will be taught by Chuck Marken, a New Mexico license plumber, electrician, and HVAC contractor. He has been installing and servicing solar thermal systems since 1979. Hundreds of hands on jobs include batch solar water heaters, thermosyphon systems, closed loop antifreeze systems, drainback systems, solar heating systems integrated into radiant floors, solar air collectors and solar pool heating systems. He is the Thermal Editor for Home Power Magazine. Chuck has taught solar heating and hot water workshops for Solar Energy International and throughout the US.

Registration is required and courses fill up quickly, so call or e-mail us as early as you can.

Solar PV Installation and Maintenance
June 3-5, $175

Roy Butler returns for our third Solar PV Installation and Maintenance Training. This course sells out quickly whenever we offer it, so please contact us early if you are interested in taking the course. Roy Butler is a NABCEP certified installer of Solar PV. His company is called Four Winds Renewable Energy.

The course will provide the participants with the basic knowledge of how to properly site, size, specify, install and maintain a residential PV system. The course is designed around the NABCEP Objectives and Task Analysis for the Solar Photovoltaic System Installer, the foundation document for the NABCEP PV Installer Certification program.

March 10th from 7 to 9 PM
You are invited to hear about a new super-energy-efficient “green” school being planned for the Western Wayne School District. The program will be on Tuesday, March 10th from 7 to 9 PM at the Park Street Complex in Honesdale (the old Stourbridge School).
Western Wayne School District Superintendent Andrew Falonk will be there along with the architects of the new school, to explain its special features. The school will conform to the LEEDS silver certification as established by the US Green Building Council. The plans include stringent standards for indoor air quality, water efficiency, energy consumption, and materials and resources choices. This will be one of the few schools in the country to achieve this standard, serving as a model for other school districts.
This program is part of a continuing series of forums sponsored by SEEDS (Sustainable Energy Education & Development Support). It is open to all.
“We encourage representatives of other school districts to attend this program,” says Michele Sands, Chair of SEEDS. “This effort by Western Wayne is sending a message to the students and the community that the District takes environmental stewardship very seriously. What a great teaching tool!”
The school will use an on-site Living Machine® (Worrell Water Technologies) system to treat its waste. This “wetland in a greenhouse” mimics the natural filtering and purifying power of a wetland. Other features include a rooftop garden that saves energy, and passive solar design to take advantage of natural lighting, cutting energy use. A geothermal system will heat and cool the building.
Anyone wishing more information about this forum or about other SEEDS activities, may contact us at (570) 224-0052 or by e-mail at

Second Course Offered in Installing and Maintaining Solar Electric Systems
Facilitating Local power and Local jobs, from the Sun

A solar photovoltaic (PV) training course is being offered to contractors by the group SEEDS (Sustainable Energy Education & Development Support). It will run from Wednesday, March 25 to Friday, March 27 at the Park Street Complex in Honesdale, PA (former Stourbridge School). This three-day course is limited to15 attendees, and will run from 9 am to 4 pm with an hour for lunch. The cost will be $175. To register, interested persons may call 570-224-0052.
This is the second solar PV course being offered by SEEDS due to popular demand. The first course in January was quickly filled with a waiting list.
The course will include siting, sizing, installation techniques, codes, NABCEP (North American Board of Certified Energy Professionals) certification requirements, use of the Solar Pathfinder and its accompanying software, grid-tie and off-grid systems, and much more.
The instructor will again be Roy Butler, owner of Four Winds Renewable Energy in Arkport, NY. He holds a PV (photovoltaic) certification by NABCEP, and is a NYSERDA (New York Energy Research & Development Authority) eligible installer of wind and PV grid tie electric systems in NY State. He has more than 12 years of design and installation experience, covering grid-tie, and off-grid wind electric, solar electric and solar water pumping systems. He has installed over 200 renewable energy systems for home, farm and industry.
Butler is on the NABCEP Technical Review Committees for PV and wind installer certification, and a technical editor for Home Power Magazine. When he is not out designing and installing renewable energy systems for Four Winds, Butler is teaching at Ulster County Community College, Alfred State College of Technology, and at many workshops throughout the nation.
SEEDS is also implementing a mentoring program for solar PV graduates to obtain hands-on training under a certified installer. The group is also planning a solar hot water or thermal course for May.
“We are sponsoring all this training to ensure local jobs for local people in the renewable energy industry,” says SEEDS chair Michele Sands. “Unstable energy costs and unstable availability make renewable energy training a win-win choice for our community. We really need local people to install and maintain these systems.”
SEEDS is a local non-profit corporation committed to developing a renewable energy infrastructure and promoting more sustainable living in our area. The group is in the process of filing for federal non-profit 501c3 status. To further its aims, SEEDS is working with Penn State extension offices in Pike and Wayne, the Wayne Conservation District, the Pocono Northeast Resource Conservation and Development Council of the US Department of Agriculture, the Pike Wayne Conservation Partnership and the Northeast Pennsylvania Audubon Society.
Since July of 2008, SEEDS has sponsored a series of public forums on Wind, Water Power & Conservation, Forest Fuels, Energy Auditing for Home and Farm, Solar, Geothermal, Do-It-Yourself Energy Efficiency, and PPL’s Smart Metering program.
For more information about SEEDS courses and forums e-mail us at SEEDSGroup@gmail, or call Michele at (570) 224-0052.