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|Energy Current: Carbon Negative!|
Let’s face it – the news on environmental protections, regulations, and social justice and climate initiatives has been discouraging as of late. It seemed like time for some good news. I found this Ted Talk This country isn't just carbon neutral - its carbon negative to be the perfect listen to lift my spirits.
Creating a country that not only honors the land and resources and future generations but also prioritizes the well-being and happiness of its citizens is not only possible, it has been done.
Deep in the Himalayas, on the border between China and India, lays the kingdom of Bhutan, which has pledged to remain carbon neutral for all time. In this Ted Talk, Bhutan’s Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay shares his country’s mission to put happiness before economic growth and set a world standard for environmental preservation.
Tshering Tobgay went from civil servant to politician to prime minister in one of Asia’s most progressive emerging states, all the while maintaining his star social media profile. As the second democratically elected Prime Minister of Bhutan, Tobgay continues to emphasize his country’s core value of happiness while also seeking to solve Bhutan’s great challenges: unemployment, poverty, gaps in education and infrastructure.
We’ve been listening to this Ted Talk and Sundance and we feel that it has the potential to lift your spirits as it has lifted ours and to inspire you to be a part of creating the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible. (Thanks to Charles Eisenstein for that last thought.)
|Employee Spotlight: Ryan Dalton|
Our featured employee this month is Ryan Dalton. Ryan is a field technician, doing the beautiful work of getting solar installed, each day.
Ryan is new to the Asheville area but a long time North Carolinian, born in Greensboro and having studied at UNC-Chapel Hill, Appalachian State and CCCTI. Ryan lives with his wife, Elena, a graduate student studying non-profit management at UNCG and his 16 month old daughter, Ava.
Ryan has been with Sundance since August of 2015 and is inspired to work in the renewable energy field by both the growth of the industry as well as the possibility of a sustainable energy future for all.
We’ll move on to the list now:
Currently listening to: Beck
Reading: The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
Favorite scent: Coffee, possibly bacon. Steak ranks pretty high too. All of the frontrunners seem to be food related …
Favorite pastime or hobby: Outdoor activities, family time, cooking, the occasional brewing of beer.
Favorite meal: the full-on southern breakfast
Last movie watched: Blazing saddles
Favorite quote: Ryan’s favorite quote comes from J.R.R. Tolkien and was spoken by Gandalf ~ “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.”
|Community Connections: Asheville Yoga Festival|
Our community connections section of the newsletter is generally a place where we give a shout out to the many nonprofit efforts happening in our area, the relentless and dedicated people and organizations working on their own corner of a better world for all. Occasionally, we also feel compelled to give a shout out to ventures that are not nonprofit but are working to further the agenda of a better way of life.
This month, we’d like to give a shout out to the The Asheville Yoga Festival. The festival is under new ownership and all set for the unfolding in the heat of summer during the old Bele Chere weekend- July 27-30th, right in the heart of downtown Asheville. The vision for AYF is to create a space for connection, adventure, play, relaxation and healing. With more than 30 different presenters and 70+ offerings including yoga, music, outdoor activities and a vendor village, we are putting this offering on our calendar!
Close to the heart of Sundance is any offering that seeks to make the world a better place and while traditions of wellness like yoga and meditation offer that through personal effort, the festival is taking this up a notch with an emphasis on yoga offerings from those yogi’s that have dedicated their practice and their teachings to uplifting others – through their message, actions, efforts and / or music. Some of the keynote offerings for this summer’s festival include Michelle Johnson, Carrington Jackson, Kerri Kelly, MC Yogi, 10,000 Buddha’s, Chelsea Roberts, PhD as well as numerous local and well-loved teachers, including Sundance co-founder Sierra Hollister, Joe Taft, Cat Matlock, Stephanie Keach, Michael Johnson, Luna Ray and more. Workshops in yoga as social justice and social action, music as message, outdoor activities and more will happen in multiple locations downtown including Pack Square Park, YMI Cultural Center, The Block off Biltmore, The Hyatt Place and The Masonic Temple.
The Asheville Yoga Festival has taken on supporting area nonprofit Light a Path with a percentage of proceeds from the festival. This nonprofit brings tools of wellness, including yoga and mindfulness into prisons, high schools, middle schools, recovery centers and facilities for the unhoused.
The festival will offer something for everyone with classes accessible to many different levels of ability. Early purchase of tickets is encouraged as the weekend is sure to sell out. Learn more about the festival here and purchase tickets here. And, consider this an invitation to community, an invitation to share well-being with others and most importantly, an invitation to reacquaint yourself with the beauty within your own heart.
|Contact us at:|
11 Salem Hill Road
Weaverville, NC 28787
1200 Woodruff Road, Suite A3
Greenville, SC 29607
Be sure to check out our website for more information and resources~
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|The action on behalf of solar this month is pretty easy. North Carolina’s largest utility, Duke Energy, has publicly stated that it wants to reduce the amount of credit that its customers receive on the electricity bills for solar power. If you follow this link you can sign a petition that has been started by Vote Solar to urge Governor McCrory to stand strong against Duke Energy’s rooftop solar power grab in North Carolina.|
The text of the petition reads:
Dear Governor McCrory:
We, the undersigned, are North Carolina electricity customers. We urge you to stand strong for North Carolinians like us against Duke Energy's attempts to weaken rooftop solar rights.
North Carolina ranks among our nation's top solar states, but unlike other leaders, that solar power is overwhelmingly in the hands of the utility rather than the rooftops of homes, schools, and businesses. Now Duke Energy has publicly stated that it wants to weaken North Carolina's net metering program for rooftop solar. The utility is working to keep its own monopoly grip on electricity by reducing the amount of credit that its customer receives on their electricity bills for valuable solar power. North Carolinians deserve better.
Rooftop solar power delivers numerous economic and health benefits to North Carolina. Private investment in local power reduces the need for expensive and polluting conventional power plants and transmission infrastructure. Recent analysis found that these direct grid benefits outweigh the costs by 30 percent. The state's growing solar industry supports more than 5,600 local jobs throughout the state. And, perhaps most importantly, rooftop solar gives North Carolinians control over their electricity bills and energy resources like never before.
As Duke Energy takes its fight against rooftop solar rights to the Utilities Commission, we hope you'll stand strong for North Carolinians and do what you can to keep rooftop solar shining with strong net metering.
North Carolina Solar Supporters