Kelly Ignace from American Waste is back again for more discussion of managing our communities waste stream. American Waste follows a different business plan than it's competitors: American does not bury its collected waste in a landfill, instead it segregates the waste stream into recyclable products of various grades and kinds, indoors! Burying our trash simply removes the value of all that we throw away from our economy. "Out-of-sight, out-of-mind" won't cut it anymore. We must learn to use our waste stream as a resource for local economic development.
Kelly Ignace joins Dave for this edition of ICR, talking about her employer's one of a kind waste hauling and disposal business. Kelly is Director of Marketing and P.R. for American Waste, a locally owned and operated waste disposal business that runs a one of a kind operation on the south side of Traverse City. American's collection area extends from Mackinac to Manistee and inland to about I-75. Almost all of its collected trash is brought to T.C. and dumped, not in a landfill, but indoors where a combination of mechanical and human separators divide the single trash stream into its constituent parts resulting in bales of marketable recyclables. Nearly 70% of the entire waste stream is segregated into re-usable product and sold to vendors, without first being buried in the ground. Watch this giant, one-of-a-kind machine do its job. Nothing else like this exists in the U.S.
Josh Wunsch is in on this discussion. Josh is a local fruit grower and experienced agricultural manager with clear views on agricultural trends. Localism is all well and good, says Josh, but their are 330 million mouths to feed each day. The demand of that, alone, will play into the balance between a fragile, corporate sized food system and a more resilient localized food system. How far localism goes will be determined by how much 'locals' are willing to pay for more local food and how deeply they support the development of markets. Farmers don't produce into a vacuum. They produce for a viable market that can sustainability pay them to produce.
Bob Russell joins the conversation on this show. The discussion reviews some of the latest writings/conclusions on the two built-in mechanisms forcing a changing future: climate change and resource constraint. Bob and Dave highlight the facts and resources. Once again, 'adaptation' stands out as a key ingredient of resilience. The future presents unforecastable challenges. Building the seeds of resilient strength determine a community's resilience.
This discussion shares the experience of Timothy Young and Chris Treter of the On The Ground non-profit that sponsored their recent Run Across Palestine. Chris introduced us to the groups first such effort The Run Across Ethiopia, last summer. Chris Treter's business is fair trade shade grown coffee and now, olive oil. The run in Ethiopia focused fund raising efforts to build schools in coffee growing communities; in Palestine, the run kicked off fund raising to plant olive trees. But in both locations the real work was in cross cultural communications and community building. Building communities of producers and consumers that span oceans. Linking our local community in NW Michigan to theirs no matter the distance between. Art is always a part of On The Ground's work. This show includes a performance by singer, song writer Josh Davis with a song he sang multiple places in Palestine.
Doug Luciani, Executive Director of the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce joins this conversation to detail a number of the local Chamber initiatives. From local food to energy policy this Chamber seems to 'get it' when it comes to understanding our difficult future and decisions that need to worked on, now, in preparation. Collaboration is the name of the game for this Chamber as it works with a wide range of community stakeholders.
ICR travels to the Farm Route To Prosperity Summit, the fourth annual event held recently in Traverse City. The summit is a networking conference for farm and food business specialists from NW Michigan offering the chance to look ahead at the changing economics of food production and the development of local food systems. The Michigan Good Food Charter, farm land protection, and farm financing are just a few of the topics in this selection of comments and presentations from the summit. The development of regional food hubs was a main focus of the speakers and some important follow-up discussions. Resilience is a term we heard multiple times at this conference.
This discussion turns to the theme of economics and the subject is Bay Bucks, the local currency circulating in the larger Traverse City region. Dave is joined by long time Bay Bucks advocate Sharon Flescher, discussing the reasoning behind the creation of a local currency, the seven year history of Bay Bucks and a look to future growth. Local currencies generate the full impact of their multiplier effect in the local economy. None of that economic value is exported to outside economic interests. The key to that success is to get more and more of the local currency in use. Bay Bucks is set to push for another round of expansion.
Dave is joined by three active participants in the Occupy TC efforts going on locally. The discussion highlights the 'message' problem facing both the larger Occupy effort and those working locally: how to have a decentralized movement with some coherency to the message. This talk also shares numerous web-site resources and access points for those wanting to keep in touch with what's going on. Check CommonsDreams.org for links to many occupy resources.
Beginning with this show OUTSIDE IN becomes ICR: Investigating Community Resilience. A new name reflecting a more direct link to our content. Bob Russell returns to look around at how the term is being used increasingly and to help clarify our focus. We also highlight web-based resources that showcase resilience work going on in other communities. This discussion also looks ahead at broad areas of success and need in resilience development locally.