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.
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.
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.
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.
In this week's program Jan Shireman and Gerard Grabowski join us to tell their story of a business that is a shining example of the all-local, farm to business to consumer economic model so important to building local food resilience. These two created Pleasanton Brick Oven Bakery nearly two decades ago in search of a locally made, healthy bread and in the process became national leaders in the artisan bread movement. Pleasanton Bakery today employs nearly a dozen people in direct bakery jobs. Learn what makes their bread so different. Jan and Gerard share their dream of local sustainable agriculture and of ag-to-consumer businesses to support locally grown food. Only one of the grains they currently use comes from outside of Michigan, but the rest is grown on downstate farms. Gerard argues that northern Michigan needs to grow much more grain for local use, and develop its own milling facilities to turn the grains into flour.
Our second conversation with noted writer, economist, and historian Tom Greco continues with his major thesis: that our money system is built on a debt and interest structure that is corrosive and unsustainable. In this conversation Tom develops his view that the current money system mis-applies the three roles of money: to an instrument to transfer value, to be a measure of value, and to be an instrument holding value itself. The transfer value of money must separated from the other two, argues Greco, by the development of credit clearing associations built carefully on a regional basis among mutual needs of the participants.
Tom Greco author of THE END OF MONEY AND THE FUTURE OF CIVILIZATION joins us for two half hour discussions on the history of money and the debt building pyramid- scheme modern money is based on. In this first discussion Greco puts modern money in its historic context and traces its growth to contemporary times where money is controlled by political elites through a interconnected array of national central banks. New money is created by creating debt, and interest is charged on the debt. The debt imperative of money creates a growth imperative in the economy which is destructive of our social fabric and our environment. Greco argues for creation of credit exchange associations, free corrosive effects of interest charged on debt, the topic we pick up in part two.
This discussion comes in two parts. Zach Liggett of Goldeneye Asset Management returns to update the concept of local investment clubs. Zach and Dave both participated in a webinar sponsored by BALLE focusing on one successful model of a local investment club making micro loans to small agricultural businesses: The No Small Potatoes Club of Maine. The discussion outlines the rather straightforward process for establishing a club and micro loan model this club follows. Zach also outlines the opening discussion in the Local As Possible organization about following a different model, one of matching small local investors with local entrepreneurs in need of capital through an educational outreach program. Karen Browne, CEO of the TBA Credit Union comes in for the second half discussion about the role of credit unions, in keeping money local.
We wrap up our current discussion of placemaking and related issues with Harry Burkholder and Heather Seyfarth. Both are planners with Lands Information Access Association and involve in numerous community planning projects. Economic development surveys reveal that "an attractive place with lots to do" is the prime reason the key, youthful demographic age grades communities need to attract to strengthen local social capital. Designing a place for people, making a place that is attractive to live in, is critical to small communities as well as large. All communities in a region need to attend to their design for people for the whole region's benefit. Burkholder and Seyfarth report on their experiences trying to develop a future vision amongst local leaders.