June 2015 Update


A hearty welcome to those who joined in the past month:
You can find out more about these groups and individuals, including what sustainability products, services, interests and ideas they have, by viewing their profiles on the Network website.

Remember, Network membership is 100% FREE and open to families & individuals, businesses, non-profit organizations and community groups, and institutions & government departments.  As a general rule of thumb, members are welcome to join from Bridgewater AND area – that means anywhere in Lunenburg County.

Upcoming Events
Know of any relevant events to add to this FREE calendar? This is your chance to inform people about all the great things going on around here!  Posting an event is easy: go to the Events section of the website, click on "submit an event", and fill in the form. One of our moderators will review the information and post the event if it meets our general criteria.  If you have any questions about what kinds of events you can post, please contact us.

Local Prosperity Conference: We Brought the Conversation Home

We had an excellent turn-out at our CSN members' meeting on May 20th. A number of our members brought their reflections and learnings from the Local Prosperity Conference earlier in the Spring, and we were lucky to be joined by Robert Cervelli, one of the conference organizers.

Robert took the opportunity to unveil a new section on the conference website that contains extensive video coverage of the keynote speakers, as well as all the presentations made by the speakers.  This is an exciting collection of resources for everyone to use - please take a moment to check it out, especially Michael Shuman's first and second keynote talks, and Anders Hayden and Susan Witt's talk.

There was clearly a lot of interest in this topic of new, community-centred economics, and how it relates to prosperity and to sustainability. Among other things, members discussed some of the following themes, with some specific ideas identified as bullets, along with links to Conference materials and other resources:

Local Food: even a small (i.e. 10%) shift to local food can have a huge impact on the local economy. Local farmers can be more successful in selling to supermarket chains if they coordinate their efforts to produce sufficient quantities.
  • In NB, a group of farmers formed a cooperative that now has a contract to supply the province’s school cafeterias. 
Local Investment: promote local investment mechanisms such as FarmWorks and equity crowdfunding programs.
  • Use story telling approach and videos, as was done in the Why Here? videos, to promote investment in local small businesses. 
  • Share local success stories, such as the Port Grocer and The Hub South Shore
  • Community Economic Development Investment Funds (CEDIFs, eg FarmWorks) are eligible for RRSPs. You can move your RRSP into it from another fund.
  • Lobby provincial government to require investment of some percentage of pension plan dollars in the local economy. 
  • Host a CSN meeting promoting local investment opportunities.
Entrepreneurship: support the development of local entrepreneurs. Examples: The Hub South Shore, Mashup Lab, Growth Starts HereThe Space, and the Acadia Entrepreneurship Centre.
  • Monthly drop-in events for sharing and networking. 
  • Empty storefronts on King Street in BW are a golden opportunity, but too expensive for small businesses. One storefront could be shared by a group of small entrepreneurs. 
Education: educate the public about the concept of import replacement and the importance of keeping dollars in the community (eg. Slow Money).
  • Create a video. 
  • Ask Lighthouse Now to publish a series of graphic pieces on the concept, as was done for democracy. 
Local business opportunities:
  • The Bridgewater Marina has potential to bring tourist dollars into the town, however, it is currently not being promoted. 
  • One person could rent a store front and subdivide it, renting out kiosks to various craftspeople and small entrepreneurs.

Thanks to the CSN Events & Engagement Team for assisting with the event and for compiling these meeting notes.  

Province Launches Sustainable Transportation Grant Program

On Tuesday May 26, the Nova Scotia Department of Energy launched Connect2, a new sustainable transportation grant program that helps connect you to everything you do.

Connect2 is based on the vision that all trips under two kilometres to key community destinations in rural and urban areas of Nova Scotia could be made using sustainable modes of transportation. The availability of multiple modes of transportation helps turn communities into places people want to live, work, and play, and encourages healthy, active lifestyles, affordable travel, and accessibility.

This program will support projects that allow residents to more easily move between community hubs like schools, medical centres and business districts.

Connect2 is now accepting applications from communities, municipalities and organizations that are working on innovative solutions to sustainable transportation issues in Nova Scotia. The deadline to submit your complete application is June 30. We are accepting expressions of interest now.

Sustainable transportation projects that are focused on infrastructure and design are eligible for up to 50 per cent of eligible costs to a maximum $150,000. Enabling projects with a focus on public education, engagement, marketing, maps and online resources will be eligible for up to 50 per cent of costs, to a maximum $30,000.

For the full project description and to submit an expression of interest please visit: www.novascotia.ca/sustainabletransportation


In this series, we introduce one of our CSN members to the rest of the community. This month, Janice Kenefick from Riverport shares a bit about herself.

Janice and her husband Brian moved to Riverport in 2007. They both volunteer for the Lunenburg branch of the SPCA and go to St. John’s Anglican Church in Lunenburg. Janice writes, takes photos and has a large garden which keeps her very busy. She takes Chair Yoga in Mahone Bay. She rides a bike (slowly!) and goes snowshoeing to enjoy nature while exercising. Some of her Sustainability practices are:
  • Removed oil furnace and pellet stove, installed Geothermal heating (also water tank)
  • Fully insulated the house (walls and attic)
  • Replaced toilets with low flush type
  • Upgraded electrical cables etc. and replaced incandescent light bulbs with LED or compact Fluorescent bulbs
  • Upgraded plumbing and saved old copper plumbing to make slug resistant barriers in the vegetable garden
  • Replaced large sections of lawn with native bird and butterfly friendly plants along with shrubs and ornamentals
  • Keep a personal compost bin for the garden
  • Installed rain barrels
  • Grows vegetables in a large covered (hence deer resistant) garden with raised beds
  • Shops at farms
  • Is replacing meat with high protein, non-animal foods
  • Ensures paper is used on both sides and uses the back of mailings and envelopes to make lists
Thanks for sharing, Janice!  Any CSN members who would like to tell us their story and share some of their sustainable practices through this series can contact us at any time.

Best wishes!
Leon de Vreede, CSN administrator

Community Sustainability Network - Bridgewater & Area

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