|Farm Microloans Big in 2014|
National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition - 12/18/2014. The NSAC analyzes USDA Farm Service Agency’s new loan program that targets the credit needs of smaller farms – including those just starting out and those selling to local and regional markets.
|Irving Certification Valuation|
Maine Environmental Policy Institute - 12/18/2014. Mitch Lansky, founder of the Maine Low-Impact Forestry Project and author of “Low-Impact Forestry: Forestry as if the Future Mattered,” recently submitted a paper called “Irving Certification Valuation” to the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a global, multi-stakeholder forestry organization with a mission to "promote environmentally sound, socially beneficial and economically prosperous management of the world's forests." Certification by FSC of wood products, traced through chain of custody to "sustainable" forest practices, is required for many "green" building and paper programs. In the United States and Canada alone, FSC certifies nearly 173 million acres. Yet, says Lansky, J. D. Irving Ltd. – whose forestry practices in Maine are FSC certified – uses short rotations “that look suspiciously like plantations” rather than natural forests; uses more herbicides than all other forest landowners in Maine combined; is managing for stand structures that are vulnerable to spruce budworm; was cutting more than its forests were growing; and was not treating its contractors in socially responsible ways. Read and download Lansky’s in-depth analysis (Word document) at http://www.meepi.org/lif/Irvingrecertification.doc.
|Citing Health Risks, Cuomo Bans Fracking in New York State|
The New York Times - 12/18/2014. By Thomas Kaplan - Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s administration announced on Wednesday that it would ban hydraulic fracturing in New York State because of concerns over health risks, ending years of debate over a method of extracting natural gas.
|Food Tank's 2014 Winter Reading List|
Food Tank - 12/18/2014. Whether you are sitting on the beach, stuck at the airport, or cuddled up next to the fire this winter, these 18 books can help satisfy your mind, soul, and stomach.