Monthly Archives: March 2009

Seeding the Solidarity Economy

solidarityeconomyThe Center for Popular Economics (CPE) recently hosted the first Forum on the Solidarity Economy at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst — home of Sea Change Radio.  CPE Executive Director Emily Kawano explains the theory and practice behind the solidarity economy, and discusses strategies and next steps for the US Solidarity Economy Network in cultivating a socially and environmentally sustainable economy.  And Chilo Villarreal of the Coalición Rural in Mexico illustrates solidarity economy concepts through story.   Finally, the News Analysis examines the business of water.

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The Business of Water


Sea Change Host Francesca Rheannon brings us the Sea Change News Analysis examining the sustainability of water as a business proposition.  The News Analysis draws on content from the News Alert by Sea Change Host Bill Baue.  For information not included in this version, check out the post on

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Village to Reinvent the World – Creating a Sustainable Community


Journalist Alan Weisman talks about his book GAVIOTAS: A Village to Reinvent the World, reissued late last year by Chelsea Green Publishing on the 10th anniversary of its first edition.  And in the News Analysis, Rob Weissman of Wall Street Watch talks about its new report, Sold Out: How Wall Street and Washington Betrayed America. And support Sea Change in the Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Changing Climate Change Contest by clicking here.  Finally, Sea Change is on Twitter — we’ll tweet you if you tweet us.

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Washington Sells Out to Wall Street

robweissmanWe’re all watching the dance unfold between Wall Street and DC these days, with a grim fascination. But one organization has formed to put watching into action. It’s called Wall Street Watch, and its a product of several partner organizations, including the Consumer Education Foundation and Essential Actiona corporate accountability group. Co-host Francesca Rheannon spoke with Essential Action Director, Rob Weissman about WSW’s new report,  Sold Out: How Wall Street and Washington Betrayed America.

2 Clicks to Help Sea Change Combat Climate Crisis

grnmtnclimatecontestgrnmtncoffeelogoPlease take 3 minutes to support Sea Change Radio in the Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Changing Climate Change Contest.

The award:  A $200,000 grant over 5 years.

Our proposal: It’s Happening Here: Climate Change Dispatches from Local Communities (click to vote for us — deadline is March 21!)

We’re partnering with OurRenewableNation, a “cross-country eco-video adventure” — Colin McCullough and his family, including Carrick, who’s been nominated for a Presidential Environmental Youth Award.  They will be interviewing experts and everyday people alike on location in regions across the country, seeking their ideas and opinions about building the grassroots political will needed to combat the climate crisis.

We’re also exploring an exciting idea for reaching out globally, to get ideas and opinions in the areas most vulnerable to a climate catastrophe.

“The overall results of the comments and views expressed on JustMeans will be taken into account, along with other posted criteria, in selecting finalists,” say the contest organizers, so please add your comments and send us cool ideas!

Also, please consider supporting our good friends Chris Landry and Kristen Chamberlin, who are producing the film The Great Turning on the work of Joanna Macy that has been popularized by David Korten.  They are in a different category, so a vote for their proposal doesn’t compete against ours.

Building Green – LEED and Passive Survivability

alexwilson founder Alex Wilson discusses the history, current state, and future of the green building movement. Erin Gorman, CEO of Divine Chocolate USA, welcomes the move by Cadbury to source Fairtrade cocoa from the Kuapa Kokoo cooperative in Ghana that owns Divine, and Bama Athreya of the International Labor Rights Forum also applauds Cadbury’s move.  And Karl Frisch of Media Matters brings us the ViewPoint on how the mainstream media is dropping the ball on covering climate change.

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ViewPoint: Covering Climate Change? Not!

karlfrischAs the climate heats up, the press treatment of climate change is cooling down. Karl Frisch of Media Matters says it used to be that the press treated climate change as a debate between 2 equal partners — on the one hand, the overwhelming majority of scientists who said climate change was happening–and on the other, the miniscule minority of climate change deniers. That’s gone by now, Frisch says — but the press is still dropping the ball on covering solutions to climate change.  Frisch discusses why. He also talks about a column by George Will in the Washington Post that sparked a storm of protest from environmentalists.  Andy Revkin of the the DotEarth blog at the New York Times — a reporter who usually gets climate change right — compared Will to Al Gore, embroiling him in controversy.

Fairtrade Cocoa Goes Big League


Cadbury, the popular British chocolate maker, just agreed to source Fairtrade cocoa for Cadbury Dairy Milk, the top-selling chocolate bar in the UK. The move effectively triples sales of Fairtrade cocoa for farmers in Ghana, where Cadbury sources from Kuapa Kokoo.  It was one of the first cooperatives there to be Fairtrade certified in the ’90s.  In the late ’90s, Kuapa Kokoo also started its own brand, Divine Chocolate, to keep more of the value that typically gets skimmed by middle-men and big chocolate companies.  Erin Gorman, CEO of the Divine Chocolate USA, welcomes the move, which validates its model of Fairtrade sourcing.   Bama Athreya, executive director of the activist NGO International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF), also supports the development

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The Mindful Path to Sustainability

stephaniekazaStephanie Kaza links buddhism and sustainability in her new book, Mindfully Green: A Personal and Spiritual Guide to Whole Earth Thinking.  Sea Change Co-Host Francesca Rheannon covers coal protests at the Mount Tom Power Plant in Holyoke, Massachusetts, where she interviewed local activists Glen Ayers and Tina Clarke.  And finally, this week’s ViewPoint comes from Business for Social Responsibility CEO Aron Cramer, who proposes three corporate reforms.

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Protesting Coal

mttompowerplantPeaceful protesters gathered at the Mount Tom Power Plant in Holyoke, Massachusetts, on March 1, a chilly Sunday. They were demonstrating against coal, the fossil fuel that spews global warming carbon dioxide and toxins such as mercury into the air.  They were piggy-backing on the Capitol Climate Action coal protests happening the next day in Washington, DC.  Sea Change Radio spoke last week with that event’s organizer Bill McKibben.   Continue reading