Thursday, August 25, 2011

Your Environmental Road Trip Premier in Pittsburgh, PA September 20, 2011

Join this amazing adventure that starts and ends in the 'burgh! This will be an excellent event and I hope to see you there! Sustainable Monroeville is one of the sponsors so come on out and show your support. Elisa Beck

50 States. 1 Year. Zero Garbage? Called to action by a planet in peril, three friends hit the road - traveling America with hope, humor…and all of their garbage - to explore the good, the bad, and the weird across every state in search of the extraordinary innovators and courageous citizens who are tackling humanity's greatest environmental crises. As the YERT team layers outlandish eco-challenges onto their year-long quest, an unexpected turn of events throws the project for a loop in this award-winning docu-comedy. Featuring Bill McKibben, Wes Jackson, Will Allen, Janine Benyus, Joel Salatin, David Orr, and music by Ben Sollee, Daniel Martin Moore, Mark Geary and more.

Please join us for the Pittsburgh Premiere of the feature documentary "YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip" on Sept. 20th. Doors open and light refreshments begin at 6:30pm, with screening at 7pm at Chatham University's Eddy Theater, hosted by the Rachel Carson Institute in the School of Sustainability and the Environment at Chatham University. The screening will be followed by Q&A with filmmakers Ben Evans and Mark Dixon. This event is generously hosted by the Rachel Carson Institute in the School of Sustainability and the Environment at Chatham University. This event is sponsored in part by Parkhurst Dining and also by Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future (PennFuture) and their Black and Gold City Goes GreenThree Rivers Solar Source, andBreathe Easy, Stay Healthy campaigns. Additional sponsors include the Allegheny Group of the Sierra Club, Tree Pittsburgh, the Green Building Alliance, Venture Outdoors, Grow Pittsburgh, 3RiversBioneers, Transition Pittsburgh, Sust-Enable, Pittsburgh Student Environmental Coalition (PSEC), Peaceful Gathering of Hands (P.G.H.), Sustainable Monroeville, 1317 East Carson/Schwartz Market, and Evolver Pittsburgh. Ticket reservations are essential-- get yours at Learn more at


Friday, August 19, 2011

Visualizing Biodiversity in the Suburbs

I've been thinking about the potential. The potential of all of the lawn care companies that work on my block transforming the block into 25 homes of front yard food gardens. Imagine that! Imagine the companies that spray noxious and now some eco-friendly lawn and home chemicals morphing into creating and spraying compost teas to enrich the soils, planting fruit and nut trees and perennial food crops like asparagus and herbs, and re-creating biodiversity from the now mostly sprayed monoculture green grass lawns.
What am I also sensing? That our block can transform the western medicalized culture through our example of shifting our lawns to supplying food to our communities and ourselves. After all, there are a lot of medical professionals that reside here. Consistent with our legal drug based culture are the folks on my block that hire companies to spray their lawns. It is a certain aesthetic. The French court aesthetic carried over from the European settler days. Perhaps our permaculture landscape reflects my peasant utilitarian background...
Chemically treated lawn next to Permaculture landscape

The noxious chemicals that maintain the golf course monoculture look wipe out the biodiversity of soil systems. And why does that matter? It matters for the same reason that overuse of antibiotics is wiping out the ecosystem in our guts. And without the ingestion of probiotics and cultured vegetables to re-establish the bacterial flora in our internal ecosystems, we become ill. Digestion in our stomachs and intestines and the proper functioning of our immune systems and the immune systems of our soils are analagous. Let's take steps to heal ourselves, our internal and external ecosystems. Join us at our Sustainable Monroeville meetings and learn how!

Troy educating the Permaculture Design Class in his yard at the backyard pond, part of the home Permaculture landscape. Check out Pittsburgh Permaculture, Octopus Organics and Steel City Soils!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Peaceful Gathering of Hands in Pittsburgh, PA

The 2nd Peaceful Gathering of Hands - Global Peace DayAugust 14, 2011 from 2pm - 7pm
Schenley Oval Meadow, next to the Skating Rink
1 Overlook Drive (best to approach from Blvd of the Allies, exit beside Schenley Swimming Pool)
  • The Peaceful Gathering of Hands is a free and collaborative event to unite diverse groups and individuals who are working for a peaceful and healthy Pittsburgh and Planet.
  • A giant circle of holding hands every-hour-on-the-hour
  • Bring instruments, outdoor games, food to share, items to share, a blanket or tent, eating implements, plus your talents and your visions for Peace (open mic!)
  • Groups encouraged to bring their information for networking
  • At least 500+ at the last event. Come join us!
  • Pictured below is a partial green roof in Pittburgh's South Side

Sustainable Monroeville will have a tent along with many other individuals and groups. Three Rivers Permaculture will have an interesting composting demonstration. Come learn about the Integrative Design Process through the Schwartz Market project. See Join Us!

Invite friends to the Facebook event:!/event.php?eid=141362629280192

Feel free to post the Youtube movie trailer on Facebook: