SEE Expo 2009: Presentations

Friday, Aug. 21

Year-Round Local Foods, 12:30-1:30 p.m. Regional gardening expert Patryk Battle discusses the wide range of options and perspectives, from farmers markets to CSAs.

Biomass Electricity: Helping Our Economy & Ecology, 1:30-2:30 p.m. John Bonitz, farm outreach and policy advocate with the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, shares the facts, including actions you can take for a clean-energy future.

Agriculture Action: Economics and Local Foods, 3:30-4:30 p.m. John Swann, co-owner of Greenlife Grocery and owner of Maple Creek Farm, discusses the impact of local food production on local economies, trends in the natural-foods industry, marketing your goods and more.

Incubator Farms: Growing New Farmers in America, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Aaron Newton, co-author of A Nation of Farmers: Defeating the Food Crisis on American Soil, explains how gardeners can make the leap to market farming through affordable access to land, shared equipment and more.

The Carbon-Free Home: Retrofitting for Sustainability, 12:30-1:30 p.m. Stephen and Rebekah Hren, authors of The Carbon-Free Home: 36 Remodeling Projects to Kick the Fossil-Fuel Habit, detail how they renovated their 1932 house in downtown Durham, N.C., and how other homeowners can dramatically reduce fossil-fuel use.

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint: Appalachian Offsets, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Matt Siegel of the WNC Green Building Council covers simple techniques for immediately reducing your carbon footprint and going carbon neutral — including supporting the nation's only locally based carbon-offset program.

Improve Your Home's Thermal Performance, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Isaac Savage of Home Energy Partners describes a step-by-step process for assessing your home's thermal envelope, considering the variables and installing upgrades.

Investing in Third-Party Consultants, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Consultant Marcus Renner of Conservation Pros explains how a small investment in an unbiased expert can help with planning, scheduling and estimating projects.

Make Mine Electric: Electric Transportation From the E.A.A., 12:30-1:30 p.m. Dr. Jack Martin, member of the Electric Auto Association and the Triad Electric Vehicle Association, will outline aspects of clean air, peak oil, high-efficiency electronic controls, energy storage, regenerative power and AC/DC motors, with several models on hand.
Safe & Clean Water: The Right to Safe Water from Your Tap, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Hope Taylor, EPA Drinking Water Advisory Council member and executive director, Clean Water for N.C., discusses current drinking-water issues.

The Hows and Whys of Electric Vehicles, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Mike Moore of Ampmobile Conversions gives the first of three presentations, providing an overview and general discussion of emerging EV technology.
Ethanol in Action, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Richard Freudenberger, publisher of the Hendersonville-based BackHome magazine, will cover equipment, processes, permits and vehicle conversions.

Energy Efficiency on a Budget, 12:30-1:30 p.m. Amy Musser of VandeMusser Design discusses what works (and won't break the bank), what to tackle first and what you can do yourself.
Solar-Thermal Water Heating, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Bruce Wood of Sunstore Solar explores the range of applications available today, basic site analysis, and system requirements for maximizing savings while harnessing the sun's free energy.

Biomass Heat and Power, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Tomas Koenig of Advanced Thermal Solutions talks about avoiding fossil-fuel carbon emissions by using wood chips and other biomass sources for heating and cooling.
Institutional Renewable Energy, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Grayson Newell of Sundance Power Systems will share case studies of recent installations, including solar-thermal, solar-electric and wind-powered systems.

Saturday, Aug. 22

Passion Into Action: Policy Advocacy Skills (Nos. 1-5 below)The Western North Carolina Alliance presents a five-session workshop designed to impart the skills needed for taking action in a variety of situations, particularly policy development.

No. 1, Basic Citizenship, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Attorney and policy advocate Greg Kidd lays out the framework for putting your passion into action, explaining our governmental structure (federal, state and local), who makes what decisions and how, and ways citizens can become involved.

Save the Planet With Your Knife and Fork! 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Stewart David of Carolina Animal Action explores the links between eating animal products and a myriad of environmental problems.

No. 2, Written and Spoken Advocacy, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Attorney Jim Grode will focus on the basic methods and strategies for clearly communicating your message, from drafting a letter to the editor to making comments at a public hearing.

No. 3, Campaign Planning, 2:30-3:30 p.m. WNCA's Julie Mayfield and Ryan Griffith discuss the basic elements of campaign planning, collaborating, working with the media and more.

No. 4, Social Media, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Ryan Griffith of WNCA will cover how to use various social media outlets (Facebook, MySpace, blogs, Twitter) to communicate effectively with the public.

No. 5, Negotiation, 5:30-6:30 p.m. D.J. Gerken of the Southern Environmental Law Center explains how to structure negotiations, develop an effective negotiation strategy, move through obstacles — and when to withdraw.
Control Air Quality: Control Moisture, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Isaac Savage, Home Energy Partners, details the common sources of moisture and how to identify and fix them.

Household Energy Efficiency: The Best Investment, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Marcus Renner, Conservation Pros, explores the finances of energy-efficiency upgrades, such as payback periods.

Green Certification Programs: A Tool in Building Your Green Home, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Matt Siegel, WNC Green Building Council, reviews program requirements and short- and long-term benefits, including increased marketing, shorter time on the market, durability, health benefits and utility savings.

Building a Green Team: New Construction Projects, 2:30-3:30 p.m. Isaac Savage, Home Energy Partners, outlines the various consultants, trades, green programs, processes and more that can help you get the best results for the best price.

Geothermal at Home, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Tomas Koenig, Advanced Thermal Solutions, discusses this viable alternative to conventional forced air.
Building a Zero-Energy Home, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Phelps Clarke of Sundance Power Systems reviews several case studies for achieving zero grid consumption through efficiency, active solar-thermal systems and electric systems powered by sun, wind and water.

Simplify Your Local Drive, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Susan Webber of Murdoch Golf and Specialty Vehicles outlines the ever-increasing models and options for street-legal EVs, as well as new developments in AC motor drives.

Water, Water Everywhere: But Not A Drop to Drink, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Author and social activist Cecil Bothwell gives an up-to-date look at the problems we face in providing everyone with fresh water.
Climate Policy Action: Options and Opportunities for the Southeast, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Jennifer Rennicks of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy discusses the options and opportunities facing the region and how to get involved for a clean-energy future.

Electric Vehicle "How To": Construction Practices for DIY! 2:30-3:30 p.m. Mike Moore, Ampmobile Conversions, explains battery boxes, control boards, electric-motor installations and more.

N.C. Save$ Energy, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Hope Taylor, Clean Water for N.C., offers an update on this proposal, designed to create thousands of jobs, save households hundreds of dollars, stave off the construction of new power plants, reduce pollution and cut climate-changing emissions.

Writers' Roundup: New Society Publishers, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Managing Editor Ingrid Witvoet offers an informal discussion of the company's mission: publishing books that contribute to building an ecologically sustainable and just society.

Powering Your Business: Profiting With Renewable Energy, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Dave Hollister, Sundance Power Systems, discusses incentives and economics of commercial renewable-energy systems.

"Smart Grid": Modern Energy Distribution, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Bobby Simpson of Progress Energy provides an in-depth look at the various facets of smart-grid technologies and applications in the utility's service area.
Living Off-Grid, Really! 1:30-2:30 p.m. Aur "Da Energy Mon" Beck of Advanced Energy Solutions shares real, fun, interesting and low-cost ways to start living off the grid.

Solar Thermal and Home Heating, 2:30-3:30 p.m. Ole Sorensen, Solar Dynamics, gives an overview of all types of hot-water heating systems for new and existing homes.

Practical Photovoltaics, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Bryan Walsh of Solar Connexion takes questions about anything in the PV spectrum.

Sustainable Action for Business, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Eric Henry of T.S. Designs describes what's happening at his company and how your business can also take a leadership role in focusing on the three "Ps": people, planet and profits.

Sunday, Aug. 23

Leap of Faith: Taking Action to Care for God's Creation, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Tom Sineath of T.S. Designs leads this exploration of our roles and responsibilities as environmental stewards.

Across the Generational Universe, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Russell Anderson, Southern Energy Network, and Mary Olson, Nuclear Information and Resource Service, offer simple options for bridging the generation gap.

Faith in Action, 1:30-3:30 p.m. A panel of diverse faith-community leaders share their experiences and successful efforts at "greening" their congregations.

Ecologically Sensitive Landscape Design, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Landscape architect David Tuch of Equinox Environmental discusses how sustainable landscapes create self-renewing, regenerating landscapes without depleting resources or damaging the environment.

Sustainable Home Finishes: Is that Paint Toxic or Not? 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Earthpaint founder Tom Rioux offers a look at truly nontoxic, sustainable finishes.

Building with Tradical® Hemcrete®, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Greg Flavell of Hemp Technologies shows how this building method creates an energy-efficient, affordable and unique structure.

Designing a Green Home, 2:30-3:30 p.m. Steve Linton of Deltec Homes highlights key steps in the holistic approach to creating green homes.

Citizens' Guide to the Stimulus Package, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Marcus Renner, Conservation Pros, talks about tax rebates for energy-efficiency upgrades, such as weatherization, renewable energy and equipment.

Miracle Broadcast, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Solar Jim and Sustainable Jack of the "Home Power Hour" radio show help you overcome your addiction to oil.

N.C. Energy Regulations: Navigating the Renewables Ocean, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Paul Quinlan of the N.C. Sustainable Energy Association offers a comprehensive overview of legislation and regulations.

Electric Vehicles: Your Questions Answered! 2:30-3:30 p.m. Mike Moore, Ampmobile Conversions, answers your questions.

Get Started in PV For $1,200 or Less! 10:30-11:30 a.m. Bryan Walsh, Solar Connexion, explains how cutting-edge, grid-tie technology makes it easier than ever to get into solar for less and then "grow" your system.

Solar Evolution: Solar Thermal Advances, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Tomas Koenig, Advanced Thermal Solutions, shares the latest technologies for providing hot water and heating/cooling your home.

The Joneses Go Solar, 1:30-2:30 p.m. Grant Gosch of First Light Solar describes the choices made by two different-minded neighbors, exploring their motivations, financial considerations and more.

Gridbeam: A Fast, Easy and Affordable System for Constructing Almost Anything, 2:30-3:30 p.m. Jack Martin explains how ordinary folks can tackle projects ranging from furniture and shop benches to wind turbines, truck racks, small buildings — even electric vehicles.

For more information on the presentations, visit

About Margaret Williams
Editor Margaret Williams first wrote for Xpress in 1994. An Alabama native, she has lived in Western North Carolina since 1987 and completed her Masters of Liberal Arts & Sciences from UNC-Asheville in 2016. Follow me @mvwilliams

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