Attendees: Dennis Derryberrry, David Dion, Sue Klein, Rob Williams, Jose Galarza, Chip Sawyer, Tara Hamilton, Jared Cadwell, Ginny McGinn, Tim Whitford, Kate Stevens, Liza Walker, Jill Arace, Gregor Barnum, and John Donaldson
1) Summary UVM Biomass Project – Tara summarized the current status of this three year project that started in August, 2008. The project is a collaboration between UVM, Vermont Family Forests, Northern Forest Alliance, other groups and the Mad River Valley towns, as well as 5 towns in Addison County, to enhance the sustainability of community-based biomass production and use for local energy.
Her September 2009 Project Update document is attached (“MRV Project Summary 9.09.09.doc”). There is a wealth of information in the written update on the current status, data collected to date, forest biomass production potential, forest harvest summary., household consumption survey summary, and next steps, as well as links to other sources of information.
2) Energy Working Group Update – Dennis and Stan discussed their major push which is to finish establishing an Energy Wiki for the Valley. This will be a Website created and maintained by the community which will be the go to resource for all things related to energy in the Valley. Stan is putting the skeleton site together and it should be “live” soon. He will be looking for feedback and more content in the near future.
This coming Monday at 4:30 the Waitsfield Town Energy Committee will be meeting with Waitsfield officials on Waitsfield specific projects.
3) Update on Local Community Initiatives Class taught at UVM – Chip teaches at UVM in the Community Development and Applied Economics area and also works at the Center for Rural Studies. This service learning class is being held this semester and has 5 grad students and 10 seniors. The class is partnering with VFN and has identified 3 specific projects.
A) Study of the VFN structure – the students will conduct SWOT analyses and
will also research and compare other models. They will then make
organization and structural recommendations.
B) Mad River Path – similar to the one above but will be focused on
C) Energy Committee – Students will locate renewable energy installations in
the Valley, will document them and conduct interviews.
There will be a dessert potluck kick-off meeting for the students and VFN participants from 6:45 to 9 at Knoll Farm, September 16. The students will break into project teams to refine their project goals.
The class will meet as a whole in the Valley two more times – November 1 at an afternoon VFN retreat at the Waitsfield Church and on December 2 or 9 they will be giving their final presentations.
3) VFN half day retreat – Ginny described preliminary plans for this retreat in the afternoon at the Waitsfield Church. It will probably start with a bag lunch and end with a potluck meal. It will include the UVM students, VFN “alumni” (i.e. prior retreat participants) and other active VFN participants and perhaps others. One of the objectives will be to work as a group and then break into smaller groups to think of how to intentionally engage members of the community who can’t or won’t participate in the more formal VFN retreats, events, etc. More information to follow.
4) Key events – Kate reviewed the weeklong 4th Annual Localvore Challenge that beings on September 13 – see www.vermontlocalvore.org. Jose promoted the inaugural Architecture & Design Film Festival, September 24 – 27 being held at the Big Picture which will benefit Yestermorrow – seewww.adfilmfest.com.
Next meeting is Friday 10/9 at the Green Cup.
Submitted by John Donaldson