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Marian Chertow | Yale’s Environment School

Marian Chertow | Yale’s Environment School



Marian Chertow

Associate Professor of Industrial Environmental Management, Director of the Program on Solid Waste Policy, and Director of the Industrial Environmental Management Program

Photo of Marian Chertow

Contact


Tel: 203 432-6197
Faculty Support 
Timothy De Cerbo, 203 436-4421
timothy.decerbo@yale.edu
Mailing Address
Yale School of Forestry &
Environmental Studies
195 Prospect Street
New Haven, CT 06511
USA
 

Degrees

B.A., Barnard College, Columbia University
M.P.P.M., Ph.D., Yale University

About

Marian Chertow is Associate Professor of Industrial Environmental Management and has been Director of the Industrial Environmental Management Program at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies since 1991. Her research and teaching focus on industrial ecology, business/environment issues, waste management, and environmental technology innovation. Primary research interests are 1) The study of industrial symbiosis including geographically-based exchanges of wastes, materials, energy, and water within networks of businesses. 2) The potential of industrial ecology to underpin ideas of the proposed Circular Economy law in China. 3) The application of innovation theory to the development of environmental and energy technology.
Prior to Yale, Marian spent ten years in environmental business and state and local government including service as President of the Connecticut Resources Recovery Authority charged with developing a billion dollar waste infrastructure system for the state. She is a frequent international lecturer and has testified on waste, recycling and other environmental issues before committees of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.
Marian is on the Editorial Board of BioCycle Magazine and the Journal of Industrial Ecology, the Board of the Eco-Industrial Development Council, as well as on the Advisory Board of the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund, which is developing renewable energy projects to increase the availability of green energy. Marian serves on the founding faculty of the Masters of Science in Environmental Management Program at the National University of Singapore where she teaches “Business and Environment” and is a Visiting Professor at Nankai University&rquo;s National Center for Innovation Research on Circular Economy in China.

Industrial Ecology: An Introduction

http://www.umich.edu/~nppcpub/resources/compendia/INDEpdfs/INDEintro.pdf

Industrial Ecology:
An Introduction
By Andy Garner, NPPC Research Assistant; and
Gregory A. Keoleian, Ph.D., Assistant Research Scientist,
 University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and
 Environment, and NPPC Research Manager

Sustainability Concepts: Industrial Ecology

Sustainability Concepts: Industrial Ecology



SD Features
Sustainability Concepts
Industrial Ecology
A. DefinitionIndustrial ecology conceptualises industry as a man-made ecosystem that operates in a similar way to natural ecosystems, where the waste or by product of one process is used as an input into another process. Industrial ecology interacts with natural ecosystems and attempts to move from a linear to cyclical or closed loop system. Like natural ecosystems, industrial ecology is in a continual state of flux.

B. Main Features

Industrial processes, from material extraction through to product disposal, have an adverse impact upon the environment. Industrial ecology aims to reduce environmental stress caused by industry whilst encouraging innovation, resource efficiency and sustained growth. Industrial ecology acknowledges that industry will continue operate and expand however, it supports industry that is environmentally conscious and has less burden upon the planet. It views industrial sites as part of a wider ecology rather than an external, solitary entity.

Within the industrial ecology concept, industry interacts with nature and utilises the wastes and by products of other industries as inputs into its own processes. Industrial ecology ranges from purely industrial ecosystems to purely natural ecosystems with a range of hybrid industrial/natural ecosystems in between. Covering both industrial management and technology, industrial ecology encompasses other sustainability concepts and tools such as material flows analysis; environmentally sound technologies; design for disassembly; and dematerialisation.

The principles of industrial ecology as defined by Tibbs (1992) are:

  • Create industrial ecosystems - close the loop; view waste as a resource; create partnerships with other industries to trade by-products which are used as inputs to other processes.
  • Balance industrial inputs and outputs to natural levels - manage the environmental-industrial interface; increase knowledge of ecosystem behaviour, recovery time and capacity; increase knowledge of how and when industry can interact with natural ecosystems and the limitations.
  • Dematerialisation of industrial output - use less virgin materials and energy by becoming more resource efficient; reuse materials or substituting more environmentally friendly materials; do more with less.
  • Improve the efficiency of industrial processes - redesign products, processes, equipment; reuse materials to conserve resources.
  • Energy use - incorporate energy supply within the industrial ecology; use alternative sources of energy that have less or no impact upon the environment.
  • Align policies with the industrial ecology concept - incorporate environment and economics into organisational, national and international policies; internalize the externalities; use economic instruments to encourage a move towards industrial ecology; use a more appropriate discount rate; use a more comprehensive index to measure a nation's wealth rather than GNP.
The benefits of industrial ecology include: cost savings (materials purchasing, licensing fees, waste disposal fees, etc); improved environmental protection; income generation through selling waste or by products; enhanced corporate image; improved relations with other industries and organisations and market advantages. Limitations to industrial ecology include: no market for materials; lack of support from government and industry; reluctance of industry to invest in appropriate technology; perceived legal implications and reluctance to move to another supplier.The formation of virtual or physical eco-parks arises from clusters of industry that agree to supply or sell waste to each other, thereby moving towards the industrial ecology concept. Most eco-parks are virtual due to the high cost associated with relocating facilities. However some physical eco-parks are being designed whereby certain industries are located on the same site.

C. Case Studies and Examples

1. Industry Partnerships
Since the 1970's several industries in Denmark have supplied or sold by products and wastes to other industries. Asnaes, the largest coal-fired power plant in Denmark, sold processed steam to Statoil (an oil refinery) and Novo Nordisk (a pharmaceutical plant). Some of Asnaes' surplus heat was supplied to the town's heating scheme, reducing the number of domestic oil burning systems in use. Surplus heat was also used to heat the water of Asnaes' commercial fish farm. Local farmers used sludge from the fish farm as fertilizer. By treating some of its waste, Novo Nordisk sold high nutrient liquid sludge to farmers. Statoil supplied cooling and purified waste water to Asnaes which reduced Asnaes' freshwater extraction. In addition, Statoil removed sulphur from its surplus gas and sold all of its cleaned surplus gas to Asnaes and Gyproc (a plasterboard factory). The removed sulfur was sold to Kemira (a sulfuric acid producer). By desulfurising its smoke, Asnaes sold the resulting calcium sulfate to Gyproc as an alternative to mined gypsum which was being imported.


These partnerships were formed voluntarily and negotiated independently. Initially for purely economic reasons, some of the later deals were made for environmental reasons.

D. Target Sectors / Stakeholders

The primary stakeholders are: business; industry; industry associations; engineers; research institutions; government; non-government organisations and economists.

E. Scale of Operation

Industrial ecology is best implemented within a reasonable transport distance between industries.

F. Links



 Return to Sustainablity Concepts
Return to the Sustainability Concepts Pages
Contact: Hari Srinivas - hsrinivas@gdrc.org

Tile ™ - the world's largest lost and found This invention was crowd funded.

What's growing in West Virginia's urban ruins? "Connecticut in ruins and it will only get worse, we must not rely on politicians to fix our economy.

Photo essay: What's growing in West Virginia's urban ruins?


What’s growing in West Virginia’s urbanruins?

BY JASON KANE AND ARIEL MIN  October 28, 2014 at 11:57 AM EDT
Farm manager Jocelyn Carlson waters freshly planted lettuce at Farm 18. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Farm manager Jocelyn Carlson waters freshly planted lettuce at Farm 18. Photo 
by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
WHEELING, W.Va. — When Danny Swan first broke ground on his West 
Virginia farm in June 2008, his rototiller hit a baby doll. Then some porcelain 
plates. Then a pair of pantyhose. It didn’t take him long to discover that 
pieces of an entire urban neighborhood were buried beneath the soil — 
“bricks and rocks and everything else contained in houses that used to 
be here,” he said. Perhaps just as surprising was Swan’s desire to build 
a farm in that spot in the first place. “Farm 18”, as it’s become known, 
is not only situated on 18th Street in one of the toughest neighborhoods 
in Wheeling, it also sits directly adjacent to the viaduct, or bridge, of a 
four-lane highway.
Ken Peralta and Jocelyn Carlson tend to the vegetables at Farm 18. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Ken Peralta and Jocelyn Carlson tend to the vegetables at Farm 18. Photo 
by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Local farmers warned Swan that it would all add up to spectacular 
failure — that if the neighborhood vandals didn’t kill the plants, the 
debris-strewn soil would. “And the first couple of years were a little 
scraggly and rough,” Swan said. But then the opposite happened. 
Crop yields grew by the year, along with community participation 
in the farm. By the end of the season, it’s expected that $20,000 
worth of produce will have been pulled from the vines of Farm 
18’s one-acre plot. And since 2008, roughly two dozen copycat 
gardens have popped up throughout this city in West Virginia’s 
northern panhandle. There’s a new weekly farm stand to sell the 
produce, and plans are in the works for an organic inner-city 
teaching farm and orchard.Eventually, people stopped rolling 
their eyes about the urban farm plot in East Wheeling and began 
talking about it as the start of a larger economic movement — 
one that might help reverse the fortunes of their long-suffering 
hometown and the health of its residents.
A wagon filled with garden tools and materials sits under the Route 2 viaduct. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
A wagon filled with garden tools and materials sits under the Route 2 viaduct. Photo by 
Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Under the viaduct, tomatoes break ground
On many mornings — especially during harvest season — farm manager Jocelyn 
Carlson has her hands in the dirt as early as 4 a.m., when the city streetlamps are 
all that’s lighting up the plants. But even after the sun rises, it can be hard to 
spot Carlson among all of the blackberry bushes, kale, Swiss chard, tomatoes, 
spinach, carrots, radishes, eggplants and Brussels sprouts — stretching from 
the fenceline of the row houses on 19th Street, past the chicken coops, 
straight to the edge of the Route 2 viaduct.
Jocelyn Carlson plants lettuce seedlings at Farm 18. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Jocelyn Carlson plants lettuce seedlings at Farm 18. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Swan usually joins her a little later in the morning — these days, with his 
newborn strapped to his chest.Now 27, he remembers when all that grew 
here were the 20 tomato plants he and some local children forced into 
the ground. He was a college junior at Wheeling Jesuit University at 
the time, living in the Mother Jones House: a university-affiliated 
residence in East Wheeling where students can stay for a year to “focus 
on prayer, community, simplicity and service.”For Swan, that translated 
to spending most of his free time either gardening in the backyard or 
volunteering at the Laughlin Chapel, an after-school center for inner-city 
kids. He thought there might be a way to combine those two things. “I 
wanted to figure out: How can we get these kids off of the concrete, get 
their hands in the dirt, have them start learning about food and bugs and 
growing stuff,” he said. “These kids had never seen a worm before.”
Left: Danny Swan picks blackberries at Farm 18. Right: Swan holds up a handful of the rich soil developed after years of composting and fertilizing the land. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Left: Danny Swan picks blackberries at Farm 18. Right: Swan holds up a handful 
of the rich soil developed after years of composting and fertilizing the land. Photo 
by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
The land across from the chapel, under the viaduct, looked like as 
good a spot as any. So Swan and the children wrote to the West Virginia 
Division of Highways and asked for permission to use it. The 20 tomato 
plants went in a few weeks later. By the time Swan graduated, neighbors 
had begun dropping by to get their own hands dirty. A farmer from Ohio 
brought hay to fertilize the ground. The fire station filled giant tanks of 
water to irrigate the plants. It looked like there might be a future for this 
project, and Swan didn’t want it to end simply because he needed a full-
time job that would pay the rent.
Danny Swan's dog Yukon keeps watch over the Swiss chard at Farm 18. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Danny Swan’s dog Yukon keeps watch over the Swiss chard at Farm 18. Photo 
by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Silent factories, rotting homes
His solution: A wigwam. He always had “a romantic notion” that he 
could live in one. “And I was a young, single guy, so I figured this was the time,” 
he said.Swan walked to the edge of town, then 45 minutes up a forest-covered 
hillside, to a spot where he could see much of the Ohio Valley. There, he built 
his wigwam: a teepee-like structure where he lived rent-free for a year while 
he launched Farm 18 in force.
A bird's-eye view of Wheeling, W.Va. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
A bird’s-eye view of Wheeling, W.Va. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
“And every morning I stepped out my front door and had a view of Wheeling 
and the Ohio River.”What Swan saw each morning when he looked out 
from his wigwam was a city hurting. In its heyday, this valley was a powerful 
place. A city that forged steel, glass, nails, tiles and pottery. A producer of 
toys, textiles, cigars, coal-fired power, and a nationally distributed country 
music radio show, “Jamboree USA.” Millionaires and mobsters thrived here 
— and for a while, so did the Lebanese, Syrian, German, Irish and Italian 
immigrants that filled its factories, theaters and night clubs.
An advertisement for country music radio show, “Jamboree USA,” rises from downtown Wheeling, as seen from the city's famous Suspension Bridge over the Ohio River. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
An advertisement for country music radio show, “Jamboree USA,” rises from downtown 
Wheeling, as seen from the city’s famous Suspension Bridge over the Ohio River. Photo by 
Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
But as manufacturing shifted overseas and the industrial bases in cities like 
Detroit, Pittsburgh and Cleveland crumbled, so did Wheeling. Today, most 
of the factories are silent. The towering department stores on Market and 
Main streets sit empty. Rotting Victorian homes have been known to sell for $1.
When Wheeling's economy crumbled and its population began moving away, many of its historic homes fell into disrepair. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
When Wheeling’s economy crumbled and its population began moving away, many of its 
historic homes fell into disrepair. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
From his view on the hillside, it all looked like opportunity to Danny Swan.
“What really excites me about Wheeling is what turns so many people off 
about Rust Belt towns or makes them feel sad and depressed: the vacant buildings, 
the vacant lots, the infrastructure that’s here for 80,000 people when only 30,000 
people live here,” he said. “Because what can you do with a vacant lot? You can 
take this piece of land that was basically an overgrown garbage dump five years 
ago, and you can produce $20,000 worth of food there. You can create something 
new.”
Left: A concrete stairway in East Wheeling leads to the site of the former Lincoln Homes public housing development on Vineyard Hill. Right: Lampposts still line the overgrown street that ran through the neighborhood. Photos by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Left: A concrete stairway in East Wheeling leads to the site of the former Lincoln Homes public 
housing development on Vineyard Hill. Right: Lampposts still line the overgrown street that ran 
through the neighborhood. Photos by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Nothing left but the lampposts
There’s a concrete stairway in East Wheeling that leads from the neighborhood in 
the valley to a crumbling asphalt road overgrown with weeds on the hillside above.
If the weather’s right and the weeds aren’t too high, it’s sometimes possible to follow 
that road to the post-apocalyptic scene that lies beyond. Telephone poles and rotting 
lampposts still line the street at regular intervals, along with the occasional fire hydrant. 
But on this day, Ken Peralta is most interested in the plants.
“There are a lot of non-indigenous plants here because this was a neighborhood,” 
said Peralta, as he pushed his way through a mass of bramble bushes. Peralta started 
working with Swan after he moved to Wheeling from New York City in 2011, and 
the two began eyeing the hillside and its potential for growth shortly after that. “The 
Rose of Sharon, daffodils and lilies usually wouldn’t be in a forest like this. But when 
the houses came down, the plants in everyone’s yards spilled out of the gardens and 
took over.”
Ken Peralta explores the hillside where the Lincoln Homes public housing development once stood. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Ken Peralta explores the hillside where the Lincoln Homes public housing development once 
stood. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Just over a decade ago, this entire hillside was the home of the Lincoln Homes 
public housing development — a series of low-rise, low-income apartment buildings 
that stretched from the stairway to the crest of the hill. It was a dense, bustling place, 
central to Wheeling’s black community.  But the city had others plans for this 
neighborhood. The population was “relocated,” the buildings demolished and 
promises made for new apartment buildings in the same area. The last part never 
materialized. The Housing Authority determined that the soil conditions 
“weren’t conducive” to new construction, bringing the entire project to a halt.
“And so it’s been abandoned for years,” Peralta said. “The way we see it, it’s a park-
in-the-waiting here in the middle of Wheeling.”
The meadow on Vineyard Hill that Ken Peralta and his team hope to convert into an organic teaching farm. Currently, the land is only used by the occasional camper. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
The meadow on Vineyard Hill that Ken Peralta and his team hope to convert into an organic 
teaching farm. Currently, the land is only used by the occasional camper. Photo by Ariel 
Min/PBS NewsHour
A park with an agricultural twist.
Peralta handles the business side of a new nonprofit he started recently with 
Swan. It’s called Grow Ohio Valley, and the idea is to do just that: develop this 
area as an incubator of best-practice urban farming techniques and then teach 
unemployed locals how to turn Wheeling’s vacant lots into plots of profitable 
farmland. Farm 18 will be a model.
To get to that place, Peralta and Swan are in the final stages of negotiations with 
the Wheeling Housing Authority to turn the former site of the Lincoln Homes 
neighborhood into a teaching farm. A flat meadow halfway up the hill will 
become a tiered field where anyone interested can learn agricultural techniques. 
The crumbling road will be converted into a walking path lined with signage about 
indigenous plants and the history of the area. And to top it off — literally — the 
crest of the hill will be planted with hundreds of apple trees in recognition of 
Johnny Appleseed’s famous trek through the valley. It’s what’s needed to take 
this idea of a local urban farming movement to the next level, Peralta said.
“Because we don’t want to be a nonprofit farmer. We don’t want to take money and 
customers away from farmers. We want to help create more farmers and more sales 
outlets so this area can become something of a ‘food hub’ — a place growing a lot 
of food and then selling it regionally to the big markets that are just a couple of 
hours away,” he said.
Much of Wheeling -- including Wheeling Island, as seen here from across the Ohio River -- contains rich soil that has not been used for large-scale agriculture for more than a century. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Much of Wheeling — including Wheeling Island, as seen here from across the Ohio River — 
contains rich soil that has not been used for large-scale agriculture for more than a century. 
Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Colorful crops in a food desert
When Peralta first moved here from New York, he conducted a study of the 
regional food shed funded by the Pittsburgh-based Benedum Foundation.
He was curious to find out where local food dollars were going and what the 
impact might be if a small percentage of those dollars — 10 percent, for example 
— were to be diverted to locally grown foods.
“We found that each year, $350 million dollars are spent in the metropolitan area,” 
Peralta said. “So if you’re shifting 10 percent of that into the local economy rather 
than sending it off to the corporate headquarters of the big box stores, that’s a pretty 
big new industry to arrive into the region. This represents the potential for a big 
economic opportunity.”
Grow Ohio Valley volunteer Lizzie Reiss helps customers at East Wheeling farm stand. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Grow Ohio Valley volunteer Lizzie Reiss helps customers at East Wheeling farm stand. 
Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
The next step will be convincing Wheeling itself to buy in.
Each Wednesday in the late spring, summer and fall, Grow Ohio Valley 
sets up shop at a farm stand outside of the massive former headquarters 
of the Hazel-Atlas Glass Company in East Wheeling. There’s usually not 
a whole lot happening on this block, so farm stand manager Kate Marshall 
brings in musicians and sidewalk chalk. She adds to the carnival-like 
atmosphere by rattling off the latest crop of produce from Farm 18 
when customers approach.“We have watermelon, potatoes, green beans, 
onions, tomatoes, carrots, celery, zucchini, red peppers, green peppers …”
Fresh produce sold at East Wheeling farm stand. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Fresh produce sold at East Wheeling farm stand. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
White-collar professionals make up one of the three tiers of Grow Ohio 
Valley’s core customer base. They’re the ones most interested in the “organic” 
and “local” piece of all this. The other two-thirds — the Food Stamp recipients 
and working-class people who live in this neighborhood — need the farm 
stand on a much more basic level. There’s no supermarket in downtown 
Wheeling, making most of the city a “food desert.” Nearby convenience 
stores sell a variety of high-calorie, processed foods, but the residents of 
this neighborhood have been hungry for easier access to fresh produce for 
years.
Lyric and Stella Turner eat blueberries at the East Wheeling farm stand. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Lyric and Stella Turner eat blueberries at the East Wheeling farm stand. Photo by 
Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
It’s such a novelty that East Wheeling residents like Damon Clark sometimes 
get flustered with the abundance of options suddenly available on the sidewalk.
“I just wish they had it more than one day a week,” he said. “I kept forgetting 
about things — like greens, then melons, and I would say, ‘Oh, they’re still there’ 
and hurry back over.”But even at its busiest, sales at the farm stand certainly 
aren’t enough to make up 10 percent of the local food economy. Marshall 
says that will take education, time and outreach.
Which is why Grow Ohio Valley is also taking its show on the road.
Grow Ohio Valley's mobile market. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Grow Ohio Valley’s mobile market. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Farm to highrise
Two days each week, a flatbed truck pulls up to one of the high-rise apartment 
buildings in downtown Wheeling. The sides fold down and buckets filled with 
corn, cucumbers, peppers, onions, potatoes, melons and cabbage spill onto the 
sidewalk.The set-up is one of Grow Ohio Valley’s outreach efforts — another 
chance to bring fresh produce to more neighborhoods downtown. But some 
seniors who live in buildings like Montani Towers are still trying to figure 
out this “group of hippies.” One woman saw the words “Fair Trade” on a 
poster advertising some of the imported items sold at Grow Ohio Valley’s 
mobile market and tried to barter her folding chairs for sweet corn.
Ken Peralta (left) and Danny Swan (far right) assist customers at the mobile market outside of the Windsor Manor apartment complex. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Ken Peralta (left) and Danny Swan (far right) assist customers at the mobile market outside of 
the Windsor Manor apartment complex. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
So Swan and his colleagues have been going door-to-door to explain that none 
of this is radical. It’s the same kind of farming that older Ohio Valley residents 
remember from their youth. And if some of that agriculture returns, it could bring 
some of Wheeling’s spark back.Already, there’s more fresh food and young 
people in the area. If the teaching farm takes off, there will be more growth. 
More business. More life.Bill Hogan, 85, believed the sales pitch so much 
that he convinced the board of the local Schenk Foundation to underwrite 
Grow Ohio Valley’s start-up costs. He says it’s the first time in decades that 
he’s felt excited about the prospects for his hometown.“It’s just refreshing. 
It’s a whole new culture — a whole new attitude. You’ve got people eating 
healthy food. There’s young people coming back into the area now — two 
of them my own grandnieces. It’s like a renaissance. A rebirth,” he said.
Wheeling resident Marshall Cumberlidge buys vegetables and fruits from Grow Ohio Valley's mobile market. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour
Wheeling resident Marshall Cumberlidge buys vegetables and fruits from Grow Ohio Valley's mobile 
market. Photo by Ariel Min/PBS NewsHour



READ THE REST, http://www.pbs.org/newshour/updates/farm-urban-ruins/#



Grantees | Greater New Haven Green Fund

Grantees | Greater New Haven Green Fund



LARGE GRANTS:
Solar Youth: A $10,000 grant from the GNH Green Fund allowed Solar Youth to expand its Citycology program to a third neighborhood starting in the spring of 2012. As the organization states in its letter of intent, “Citycology is a core program of, and main entry point into, Solar Youth’s ‘Cycle of Stewardship,’ a menu of programs through which youth from New Haven’s low income communities develop core personal and social developmental skills starting at a young age, build on their experiences, maintain relationships, progressively gain more leadership skills, become positive change agents in their environments, and then serve as role models for younger children. Like all Solar Youth programs, the main goal of Citycology is to nurture youth who are happy, healthy, community-oriented and environmentally conscious.”
New Haven Land Trust: A $10,000 grant from the GNH Green Fund allowed the New Haven Land Trust to restore full public access to its Long Wharf Nature Preserve by repairing stone dust paths through the preserve, rebuilding a footbridge washed away by Tropical Storm Irene, and developing new interpretive signs. The Land Trust used this project to strengthen ties to the nearby Sound School, involve a wider range of citizens in the upkeep of the preserve, and allow more people to use the preserve, both as a destination and as a connection between neighborhoods.
Common Ground High School: A $9000 grant from the GNH Green Fund helped Common Ground High School incorporate applied, community-based projects into upper-level courses.
Connecticut Fund for the Environment/Save the Sound: $9000 from the GNH Green Fund helped CFE/Save the Sound to develop an online guide to rain gardens. This set of tools will help homeowners and small business owners through the process of designing and intalling small-scale, on-site treatment for urban stormwater runoff generated by their rooftops, driveways, and parking lots. Runoff is the #1 source of water pollution in the United States. This program will help environmentally conscious New Haveners address their contribution to Long Island Sound pollution while serving as an example to their neighbors. In addition, CFE/Save the Sound has completed a webpage devoted to green infrastructure in New Haven. This will help to establish green infrastructure as a major component of our city's effort to reduce sewage overflows and discharges of polluted stormwater runoff into the Long Island Sound.
SMALL GRANTS:
Quinnipiac River Watershed Association: A $3000 grant from the GNH Green Fund allowed the Quinnipiac River Watershed Association to develop material for and host breakfast meetings to educate New Haven, North Haven, and Wallingford public works crews on what they can do to help protect the Quinnipiac River by avoiding damage to steamside vegetation.
West River Neighborhood Association: $3000 from the GNH Green Fund helped fund the construction of the hoop houses and several other components of the Little Red Hen Community Garden, near Barnard Environmental Studies Magnet School.
Quinnipiac University: $2130 from the GNH Green Fund supported research to measure levels of a common industrial-related organic pollutants at several sites along the Quinnipiac River.
New Haven/Leon Sister Cities Project: Transportation accounts for the lion’s share of greenhouse gas emissions in Connecticut. $2000 from the GNH Green Fund supported a public outreach campaign from the Sister Cities Project to assist New Haven residents in addopting more environmentally friendly commuting habits.

Crowdfunding Coming of Age in Cleantech

Crowdfunding Coming of Age in Cleantech

Code of the West - A film by Rebecca Richman Cohen

Code of the West - A film by Rebecca Richman Cohen



Film Synopsis

At a time when the world is rethinking its drug policies large and small, one state rises to the forefront. Once a pioneer in legalizing medical marijuana, the state of Montana may now become the first to repeal its medical marijuana law. Set against the sweeping vistas of the Rockies, the steamy lamplight of marijuana grow houses, and the bustling halls of the State Capitol, CODE OF THE WEST follows the political process of marijuana policy reform – and the recent federal crackdown on medical marijuana growers across the country. This is the story of what happens when politics fail, emotions run high and communities pay the price.

Update

Months after our world premiere in 2012, the lives of some of our film subjects took dramatic turns. In particular, a legal drama changed the life of one subjects forever, and inspired our filmmaking team to return to the camera and the editing suite to create a new version of CODE OF THE WEST that would bring our story up to the present day. We couldn't have created this new version of the film without the support of more than 500 backers on Kickstarter, whose passion for the issues and the human lives behind the film made our work possible. We released the new version to rave reviews during our New York theatrical run this spring and we continue to roll out the new version in cities across the country!

Director’s Statement
Rebecca Richman Cohen, Spring 2012

This is a film about the legislative process, but it is also the story of how different communities struggle to construct a universe of shared values. Nomos is an ancient Greek word meaning “human law.” The term is never uttered in our film, but its meaning underlies much of what our crew documented in Montana. Nomos refers not only to the formal laws that legislators draft as legal code, but also the social norms and unwritten codes of conduct that govern our daily life. CODE OF THE WEST is a film about what happens when there are conflicting codes: when our formal laws conflict with each other, when our social norms conflict with our laws, and when different segments of our society embrace divergent norms.

My team and I have tried to capture the human story behind the legislative process of state-level marijuana policy reform — a messy, tangled affair that has implications for policy reform in other states and for the democratic process in the nation at large. Though the federal government considers marijuana a Schedule I Narcotic (with no accepted medical use), an increasing number of states disagree. Today eighteen states and Washington DC have legalized medical marijuana use for people suffering from debilitating medical conditions including cancer, epilepsy, severe nausea, multiple sclerosis and chronic pain. But the way in which we regulate a drug that is also widely used by adults and teenagers who don’t suffer from these conditions — and that has become a powerful symbol in a much wider debate about cultural values — raises the hard questions that drove me to make this film.

As we followed the trajectory of three medical marijuana bills in Montana, we couldn’t help but notice another debate taking place in the Montana Capitol. Halfway through the legislative session, the President of the Senate proposed a bill that would memorialize an archetypal, cowboy-era “Code of the West” as the official Montana state code of ethics. But despite the pleasing nostalgia of the idea, the marijuana debate we chronicled revealed to us that a single code of ethics can’t begin to reflect the deep divisions at work in Montana’s society. And it forced us to wonder, “Who is more true to Montana’s pioneering spirit?” Is it those seeking to guard their communities against marijuana billboards that mar the view of the Rockies? Or is it the drug policy reformers seeking to keep medical marijuana legal?

The question, of course, is not whether Montanans — or any of us — should live by a common code, but rather whichcode, or whose code, we should adopt. The code of the pious? The libertarian? The entrepreneur? The local government? The regional tradition? The national law?

If Montana's medical marijuana debate tells us anything, it is this: There are many codes of the West. And the way in which they are reconciled — or not — has profound implications for the way we live.