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March /April 2012

GREEN JOBS Natives Garden

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Publisher’s Letter

Our focus is on green jobs


ne of the most frequent questions we get from readers is about green jobs. Professionals want to shift careers. Students are looking for internships and entry-level positions. Businesses are looking for trained technicians. The unemployed are looking for immediate opportunities. In the process of listening to readers’ stories and offering referrals and advice, we decided we could do more to help. We’re excited to announce the launch of our green job matchmaking service. The new Greenability Job Network is a free online search service that allows job seekers a place to post resumes and search for targeted positions. For companies interested in posting jobs, the service is an easy and affordable way to target qualified applicants. If you are looking for a green job or searching for the perfect fit for your sustainable company, take a look at this issue’s stories on the local green job market and meet a few employees who have found their dream green careers. Then head to and begin your search. We also want to introduce you to another great feature that begins with this issue. Greenability now has an online edition of the magazine. It’s free for current subscribers, and adds a wonderful interactive medium to reading the magazine. Take a look at this page-turner at Both of these new services are part of our redesigned website, which offers more news and features not found in the magazine, plus the most extensive green calendar and resources in the Kansas City area. To kick off the gardening season, our Greenability Challenge story takes us down a native garden path into a suburban yard. Learn about native Kansas plants and a rebate that helps Johnson County residents get started with a rain garden or rain barrels.

Then read about the new Smithsonian Green Revolution exhibit coming to the Kansas City Zoo. This eco-friendly, minimal-carbon-footprint exhibit was created by the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. It features interactive exhibits on carbon footprints, composting and gardening, energy and waste. Local ”eco heroes” will be featured, including Greenability. It will be open in time for Earth Day, so be sure to check out the details for this and the other Earth Day events we found. If you are in the market for a new energy-efficient appliance, don’t miss the Show-Me Green Sales Tax Holiday, April 19-25. Qualified purchases are exempt from state tax, and in many cases, city tax, too. As we head into spring, now is the time to partner with an area farmer by signing up for a community supported agriculture (CSA) membership. We’ve found two dozen that will be offering farm-fresh food delivered weekly to a pick-up location near you. You can meet many of these farmers at the upcoming Eat Local and Organic! Expos. And finally, we’re especially pleased to announce that Greenability has been selected as Green America’s Better Paper Project 2012 Runner Up for the Aveda Environmental Award. This award recognizes Greenability as one of the top two magazines in the country for its sustainable practices! Greenability has also been nominated for the Kansas City Chamber of Commerce “Mr. K” Small Business Award for the fourth consecutive year. We are so honored!

Julie Koppen Publisher


Volume 6, Number 2 March/April 2012


Graphic Design

Julie Koppen

Kim Tappan/Tappan Design

Connie Saum




Mandy Stark

MANAGER Mary Lynn Coulson marylynn@ copy Editor Kim Broers

Cover Photography Cardinal flower by Mandy Stark Advertising Julie Koppen

Writers Benjamin Bachwirtz


Mary Lynn Coulson


Christopher Khan

Tim Gieseking

Peter Mussatto Michelle Strausbaugh

Copyright All contents of this issue of


Greenability are copyrighted by

James Gottsch

The Koppen Group Inc., 2012.

Johannah Waldo

All rights reserved.



Greenability March/April 2012 (ISSN 1938-5749) is published bi-monthly (6 times per year) for $24 per year by The Koppen Group, Inc., 3412 Coleman Road, Kansas City, MO 64111. Periodicals postage paid (USPS 2020) at Kansas City, MO and at additional mailing offices.

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Renewable Energy Credits (REC) equal to 100% of the electricity used to print Greenability were purchased through AmerenUE’s Pure Power Program.

Contents March/April 2012


12 13 31 35

Read Greenability online! 10 ways to party for the planet on Earth Day Partner with a farmer for fresh, local food

Green Jobs

19 Green job market is gaining strength 25 Meet green-job go-getters 29 Find a green job on new

Greenability Job Network

Business incubator to spur 30 green entrepreneurship

Get rewarded for greener appliances


4 34 37

From the Publisher Green Pages book reviews Greenability Directory


Kansas natives bring inspiration to suburban gardener


economical / responsible / clean /



Kansas natives bring inspiration to suburban gardener Story and photography by Mandy Stark

The author, Mandy Stark, and her fiancé, Brian Tosh, enjoy walking near the native prairie grasses at Lake Lenexa with their dogs, Toby, Riley and Darby.


he drive home is slow as I listen to the radio announcer’s reports. My mind drifts. I pull into the garage and walk inside to greet my three dogs, all of us focused on heading to the backyard.

As the dogs leap and chase in frenzied canine exuberance, I take a deep

breath. My eyes scan the yard to see what birds, butterflies and dragonflies are flitting around (they’re only slightly disturbed by the dogs, though squirrels and rabbits are another story). I tour what is blooming, and settle in a chair to enjoy the evening.


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Greenability Challenge

While it’s a bit cold for that ritual right now, in a few weeks, my yard will be my favorite place. During the spring and summer, and on warm autumn days, you can find me out there, with a book, a camera or gardening tools, enjoying my garden – comprised almost completely of native Kansas plants. Growing up, I found both of my grandmothers’ gardens inspirational. When I was young, they seemed like the essence of spring incarnate. My maternal grandmother could bring any dying houseplant to life and sprout any seed, while my paternal grandmother’s extensive vegetable garden was a maze of deliciousness. She always knew, too, where to find the birds, butterflies and interesting spiders. My love of gardening grew as I did. For me, peace is feeling dewy grass under my bare feet, listening to chirping birds and taking in the scents of flowers, vegetables, herbs, freshly turned earth and compost. I find that gardening relieves my stress and keeps me happy and healthy. It’s not just the beautiful flowers or fresh food I can grow. I harvest something more – peace and a connection to nature. I’ve always had some potted plants, and at a few rental places, I planted some much-loved perennials. I didn’t garden on my own, though, until I bought a home in the summer of 2009.

How I discovered native plants I discovered native plants one long, hot summer in college, when I worked on a research project at the Konza Prairie. I made two discoveries during that experience: First, I am not cut out to be a researcher; and second, native plants are amazing.



native gardening tips and tools

Johnson County residents could get up to 50 percent of their sustainable garden expenses paid for through a Johnson County Cost Share Program. Participating cities each have $10,000 to fund a cost-share program for residents and businesses to install storm-water best-management practices, including rain barrels, rain gardens, native plantings and swales on personal property. Up to 50 percent of the cost of material and labor is refundable. Get details from participating cities: Lenexa,; Olathe,; and Overland Park,


Grow Native, a Missouri Department of Conservation program, promotes the use of native plants and offers wonderful resources, including planting plans. Look for the GrowNative-labeled plants in local nurseries.


The Johnson County Library offers classes on stormwater management, including how to build rain gardens. Participants receive the Blue Thumb Rain Garden book.


The Overland Park Arboretum is a great local place to view native plants in the garden. Check for classes on native plants and rain gardens.

5 6

Powell Gardens has extensive native plant gardens and offers native gardening classes.

7 8

The Kansas Native Plant Society sponsors Wildflower Weekend and a native plant directory.

The Kansas State Research and Extension in Johnson County runs a Healthy Yards and Communities program offering homeowners an assessment and tips for greener lawn and garden care.

Butterfly milkweed is one of the first plants Mandy Stark added to her native garden in 2009. It attracts monarch caterpillars in the spring and sulphurs, monarchs, tritillaries and swallowtail butterflies throughout the summer.

The Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center is one of the most comprehensive authorities on native plants, with an extensive plant selection tool.


Greenability Challenge

Top Photo: Starting with two purple coneflowers, Mandy Stark now has 12 in her native garden. Some have come from seeds gathered in her fiancé’s grandmother’s garden. They attract butterflies and pollinators, and goldfinches in the fall. Bottom Photo: Liatris, or blazing star, was purchased from a local nursery and was labeled as part of the Grow Native program.

I don’t think anyone can deny the beauty of the prairie. I hiked it often during my time at Kansas State University, even after my research summer. It touched me deeply, and was my encouragement to go native in my own gardening efforts. My passion for natives exploded further with my current job at the City of Lenexa. The city plans and builds green infrastructure, natural systems that mimic traditional infrastructure like pipes and concrete boxes. The systems utilize native plants because their deep roots infiltrate water at an amazing rate and filter out pollutants. Promoting the benefits native plants provide to water, such as rain gardens that reduce runoff and native plant buffers or swales that can redirect water flow, I became focused on gardening sustainably. My goal was to use native plants to treat and reduce storm water, conserve resources and create welcoming habitat for birds, butterflies, pollinators and other wildlife. I devoured books on the subject, read every blog I could find, attended classes and talked with experts. After a few months, I was ready. I just needed a place to plant my ideas. So, I bought a house and filled its garden beds with native plants that multi-task. They do more than sway in the wind and look pretty. They help infiltrate and clean water, reduce soil erosion and help the ecosystem by feeding and housing a myriad of birds, insects and animals.

The house and garden My Overland Park home has beautiful brick patios, stone benches and steps surrounded by garden beds. The front-yard beds were planted fairly extensively, but the back was untouched, aside from a few nonnative shrubs and ornamental grasses and one native gem – a large St. John’s wort. With the setting for my native plants in place, I couldn’t wait for spring. That fall, I planted two blue false indigo, as well as some rose verbena, showy evening primrose, butterfly milkweed, purple coneflower and black-eyed Susan. My planting list has grown from there, added to every growing season. I have more than 40 different native plants growing, an organic vegetable and herb garden, a compost bin and a rain barrel. Only organic fertilizers and amendments are used in my edible and herb garden. I rarely have any problems with pests in the perennial gardens. Pollinators and predator bugs are allowed to freely roam about, a natural means of eliminating pests. I find nature’s ability to care for itself remarkable once you eliminate 9

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Greenability Challenge

chemicals and lose anxiety about a few bugs eating some leaves. I fertilize my turf once a year with a non-phosphorus fertilizer. (Phosphorus is not typically needed on your lawn unless you’re starting new sod, and it tends to run off with storm water into our ponds, creeks and streams, causing algae blooms.) I mow high, and water the lawn for 45 minutes every seven to 10 days, but only if there’s not enough rain. Weeds that spring up are hand-pulled. Well-caredfor turf rarely allows any to come through, and mulch is an invaluable assistant in beds. I often make my own by grinding up leaves, though I’ve bought it on occasion. (Tip for dog owners: Never buy stained mulch, especially not the ones stained dark brown/ espresso. The dye contains theobromine, the chemical in chocolate that is harmful to dogs.)

Why I love native plants For me, growing native plants is a learning process. I am only beginning to figure it out, but each step is a joy. While native plants are my first choice, there are a few non-natives in my yard that I love. I’ve planted quite a few Oriental and Asiatic lilies and continue to collect new varieties. They’re my weakness, my nativeonly garden-planning kryptonite. Growing native plants makes it easier on the gardener. Natives thrive without the regular addition of fertilizers and chemicals because they evolved to grow in our climate and conditions. While any new plant needs a bit of extra attention and water at the beginning, once native plants are established, they don’t require extra water. I did water my plants during last summer’s brutal heat wave, but it was to keep them from turning brown and going dormant early, not because they were dying. Native plants also attract butterflies, birds and other wildlife. Doing less maintenance actually fosters better habitat. For instance, I stopped deadheading purple coneflower and black-eye Susan because goldfinches love the seed. I’ve seen as many as seven in my garden at the same time, swooping and feasting. I leave plants standing in the fall to savor all winter long. Birds benefit from the cover and spend lots of time finding both seeds and insects in the still-standing stalks. Many native plants have several seasons of interest. For instance, little bluestem grass has silveryblue foliage that turns a dark wine color in the fall and fades to an orangey-rust in the winter. In learning about native plants, I’ve definitely made some mistakes. For instance, I bought a cultivar of

Top Photo: Viewing Mandy Stark’s garden from the north, visitors can see the showy evening primrose and black-eyed Susan, which has not yet bloomed. Pale purple coneflower, coreopsis and lilies are tucked behind. On the far right is perennial lavender. Bottom Photo: Gray-headed coneflower grows in full sun.


Greenability Challenge

Joe-Pye weed that is actually quite aggressive. I’ve found new sprouts from it all over, even growing in grass. Before you buy, research. If you buy a small plant in a 4-inch pot, it will grow to its full 4-foot size, so leave enough space to avoid overcrowding. Read the labels of what you buy, and check the scientific name. I highly recommend the Missouri Department of Conservation’s Grow Native program, which lists places that sell native plants from this region. I also have to balance the activity of three large dogs with having a garden. They know not to walk through my plants, but sometimes forget in the chase for a squirrel or chipmunk. Ornamental fencing helps to a degree, as does using river rock. Often, I just plan a running route and move anything sensitive to the occasional jostling/stomping/crazy run.

The future 2012 will see a bit of change for my garden. I’m slowly replacing my turf with more natives. Last fall, I planted some ninebark and swamp mallow, shrubs that will serve as a screen and capture water that sheets across the lawn from the large church lot behind my house.

Mandy Stark’s cat, Finn, had a good time wrestling with a zucchini that grew to an enormous size.

I plan to add another rain barrel, too. They’re like eating potato chips – it’s hard to stop at just one. I need to divide some plants and will soon have seedlings to give away. I have started a nursery section just for that purpose. I plan to get my parents started on native gardening this year, and transplant a bunch of plants to the yard at my fiancé’s house, which is where I will live eventually (only after he’s put in a few more garden beds for me, though). Whatever happens, change is a constant companion in any garden. For me, the only thing that doesn’t waver is my love of native plants. 15% Off Your Landscape Design

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Read Greenability online!


eginning with this issue, Greenability magazine can be viewed online in a new page-turning, interactive format on the magazine’s new website at For several years, readers concerned about the environmental impact of paper have asked for a digital version. “We made the leap to digital when the technology could offer something that the paper edition could

March /April 2012

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10 eArth

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CSA fArmer

The interactive features of our online edition make

it a really accessible way to read the magazine without reducing its quality.

not,” said Julie Koppen, publisher. “The interactive features of our online edition make it a really accessible way to read the magazine without reducing its quality.” The new digital edition is identical to the paper magazine, but offers additional features to make it more interactive for readers. For starters, Greenability is readable full-screen on a computer, iPad or any device that has access to the Internet. It has a page-turning feature that makes it easy to read and search. An interactive feature allows readers to immediately search a website listed in a story or resources. (Advertisers will have the option of linking their ads directly to their websites, offering readers quick access to green products and services.) Once finished searching a linked site, readers simply close it to return to and continue reading the same magazine page at which they started. The new digital edition is free for Greenability subscribers and only $12 for those who want to be digital-only subscribers. It’s easy to access at Current subscribers already should have received email instructions for setting up their online account. Instructions also may be found on the website. Additional features on the new website include a new Greenability Job Network site to post and search for jobs and an expanded event calendar, with the opportunity to submit an organization’s green event. The site will feature regular news updates and an expanded Green in KC for links to resources on climate change, renewable energy, green businesses, recycling, sustainable food, transportation and more. Local organizations can also purchase advertising space to promote their own green efforts, products or events. As the magazine approaches its fifth anniversary, Greenability will continue to print one of the most environmentally friendly magazines in the country. It was runner-up for the 2012 Green America’s Better Paper Project Award, placing it among the top two magazines in the country for its sustainable use of paper. It has received local and state awards for production practices, news content and commitment to the environment. Greenability is printed on Forest Stewardship Council certified paper that is processed chlorine-free and is ancient-forest certified. Postconsumer recycled paper is used for the cover (100 percent) and inside pages (50 percent). The paper is manufactured in the United States using renewable energy offsets, and is printed with soy-based ink in Missouri, with renewable energy credits for all electrical use. “We appreciate the suggestions and many positive comments we receive from readers about Greenability, and hope the digital version enhances our subscribers’ experience,” Koppen said. View a sample digital edition of Greenability at For more information about online subscriptions, contact Mary Lynn Coulson, operations manager, at 816-960-4841, or For information about advertising, contact Julie Koppen, publisher, at 816-931-3646, or


Green Ideas


ways to party for the planet on

Earth Day

By Mary Lynn Coulson and Peter Mussatto

Enjoy spring flowers and learn about gardening practices at the Powell Gardens Earth Day celebration.


pril 22 marks the 42nd anniversary of Earth Day, an event Kansas Citians know how to celebrate. Earth Day activities span weeks, take place across the metro area and are fit for adults and kids of all ages.

Invite friends, family and neighbors to join you at these 10 events, then visit, the go-to calendar for all things Earth Day in Kansas City. Connect with Greenability on Twitter and Facebook for updates, and email your events to to be posted online.



1 Play with puppets

On April 21, take your family to the StoneLion Puppet Theatre’s Puppet Carnivale, where StoneLion’s larger-than-life puppets teach children what they can do to protect their environment and its inhabitants. Enjoy puppet shows, live music, arts & crafts and games. A variety of exhibitors will be on hand to educate visitors about making green lifestyle choices. The free event, organized in conjunction with Bridging the Gap’s Earth Walk, runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Carnivale will be held along Brush Creek at Theis Park, on 47th Street and Volker Boulevard, just east of the Plaza in Kansas City, MO. Go to or call 816-221-5351 for more details.

2 Walk, pledge and learn

It’s time again to take a walk for the planet. The 16th annual EarthWalk is a non-competitive walk that follows a three-mile route between Theis Park and the Plaza along Brush Creek. Funds raised from the event will benefit Bridging the Gap programs that educate and engage greater Kansas City in sustainability education. Participants who raise the most in pledges will be eligible to win prizes. Registration for EarthWalk is free and begins at 10 a.m. at Theis Park. The walk kicks off at 11 a.m. April 21. For more information or to register, visit

Top and bottom photos: The StoneLion Puppet Theatre’s Puppet Carnivale brings larger-than-life puppets to Theis Park for an Earth Day performance, live music and arts and crafts.

Earth Day in Prairie Village 3 Enjoy The Prairie Village Earth Fair is celebrating 11 years with its annual festival April 21. This year’s “Connecting the Dots”-themed fair is a collaboration between the Prairie Village Environmental/Recycling Committee and Shawnee Mission East High School’s Environmental Science Club, intended to celebrate and teach sustainability. Attractions include a used book sale sponsored by the Shawnee Mission East Library, live music and a display of electric and alternative fuel vehicles. Visit the fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 21 at Shawnee Mission East High School, 75th and Mission roads in Prairie Village, KS. For more details, email or call 816-809-5074.


5 Celebrate in Lawrence

The 12th annual Earth Day Celebration in Lawrence, KS begins with a parade at 7th and Massachusetts streets at 11 a.m., April 14, and ends in South Park, where the festivities continue with children’s activities, live music and food vendors. Attendees will learn about alternative fuels, land preservation, energy conservation and more. In addition, April Showers Water Towers: A Water Festival for Douglas County will offer educational activities about the importance of water to individuals, communities and the environment. Both events run until 4 p.m. at South Park at 11th and Massachusetts streets. For more information, contact the Waste Reduction & Recycling Division at 785-832-3030 or visit

The Lawrence Earth Day Celebration in South Park includes a parade, children’s activities, live music and exhibits on alternative fuels, land preservation and energy conservation.

4 Tour a historic green home

Ever wonder how a historic home can be turned into a green energy house? Take a tour of Project Living Proof, a renovated 100-yearold home with a wide range of energy-efficient and sustainable features, including a solar array, a geothermal heat pump, an electric-vehicle charging station and sustainable landscaping. See what green upgrades look like in an older house, and get ideas for your own home. The house is located at 917 Emanuel Cleaver II Blvd. in Kansas City, MO and is open for tours and workshops the week of Earth Day. Visit or call 816-531-7283 for tour hours and more details.

6 Sample fresh produce

Enjoy the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of nature at Powell Gardens on Saturday, April 21. Visitors will learn about sustainable gardening practices through entertaining activities that will engage all ages. Join a yoga class with Leah Morgan, owner of the Core Balance Yoga Center in Lee’s Summit, or attend a cooking demonstration by Craig Howard, chef/owner of Howard’s Organic Fare and Vegetable Patch in Kansas City. For more information about event details, visit Powell Gardens is located at 1609 N.W. U.S. Highway 50,Kingsville, MO.

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Nothing feels more rewarding than donating to a good cause. When you open a Count on More® Rewards Checking account, your normal every day purchases will earn points you can use toward donations to select environmental organizations like Bridging The Gap in Kansas City. Donation gifts are available in $50 increments. The feeling is much bigger.

7 Explore the natural world

Children and adults alike can get in touch with nature by visiting one of several nature centers in the area hosting Earth Day celebrations. Lakeside Nature Center features “What’s Out at Night,” where children and parents can make crafts, learn conservation tips and see the center’s nocturnal creatures up close. Lakeside Nature Center is located in Swope Park, just south of the Kansas City Zoo. Lakeside’s Earth Day festivities are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 14. Visit for more events around Earth Day. Also, enjoy the wildlife and walking trails at the Ernie Miller Nature Center at 909 N. K-7 Hwy., Olathe, KS (, or explore an urban nature oasis at the Discovery Center at 4750 Troost Ave., Kansas City, MO (

8 Get your grow on

Learn how to start your own vegetable and fruit garden this spring. The Kansas City Community Garden (KCCG) holds many workshops throughout the month of April, including programs on raised-bed gardening and vegetable garden basics. For specific event details and more happenings at KCCG, 6917 Kensington, Kansas City, MO, visit or call 816-931-3877.

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9 Tour a green winery

Celebrate Earth Day April 21-22 with an outing to Jowler Creek Vineyard & Winery. Winery owner Colleen Gerke will lead guests on a tour of the sustainable features of the site, including integrated pest management practices, sheep that graze to take care of weeds and a solar system that offsets a percentage of electricity used at the winery. The free tours begin at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. each day. Space is limited, so call 816-858-5528 to reserve a spot. The winery is located at 16905 Jowler Creek Rd., Platte City, MO. Visit for more details.

10 Recycle your shoes

Take old athletic shoes to the North Recycling Center April 21 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. to give them new life. Shoes will be collected and recycled into cushioning for athletic facilities. The first 100 children who donate their old sneakers will receive free redbud seedlings to plant for Earth Day! The recycling center is located at 1951 NE Douglas St., Lee’s Summit. MO.

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Join the GREEN REVOLUTION at the zoo


The KC Green Revolution is being created from re-used, recycled materials found locally, with local youths on the Roots and Shoots Team carefully selecting and crafting each component of the exhibit.



he Kansas City Zoo will debut Green Revolution, an eco-friendly exhibit that addresses critical environmental issues concerning the future of our planet, just in time for Earth Day. The exhibit was created by the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago and is distributed across the country by the Smithsonian, with exhibit plans and templates that cities use to give it a local focus. Divided into sections ranging from composting and gardening to carbon footprints, the exhibit aims to build awareness of environmental issues and present solutions that individuals can implement to protect the natural world. The KC Green Revolution is being created from re-used, recycled materials found locally, with local youths on the Roots and Shoots Team carefully selecting and crafting each component of the exhibit. Creative,

educational displays will inspire children and adults to be part of the Green Revolution. Youth involved in the creation of the exhibit have selected and will interview local “ecoheroes� who work in our community for the benefit of the environment, and Julie Koppen, publisher of Greenability, has been selected to be featured. Most traveling museum exhibits have large carbon footprints, since they load large items into trucks and travel to museums across the country. The Green Revolution, however, has virtually no carbon footprint since all necessary design files and planning templates are sent digitally. This allows local venues to construct their own exhibits from locally found recycled materials. The exhibit is set to open April 12 at the Kansas City Zoo, 6800 Zoo Dr. in Swope Park, Kansas City, MO. Find more information at or call 816-513-5800.


Green job market gains strength By Michelle Strausbaugh


few years back, getting a clear picture of the green jobs scene in Kansas City was like trying to spot an anthill from a rooftop.

Then and now, a detailed aerial view would be ideal. But the reality is down on the ground where the green-job explorers are creating their own maps – charting territory, drawing in roadways and highlighting new resources. Slowly, prospects are improving for those seeking jobs in businesses that produce goods or services benefiting the environment, and businesses making established production processes more environmentally friendly. Top photo: There is increasing job growth in the renewable energy field. In the Kansas City area, Brightergy Solar has created 15 jobs in the past year. They have a total of 30 employees in K.C., St. Louis and Boston. Right photo: Larsen & Associates, a geothermal installation company, hired two employees last year and plans to add one full-time and one part-time position this year. The Lawrence-based company currently has 12 full time and three part-time employees.

“I am convinced that green careers are the future in architecture and design.” — Bob Berkebile, BNIM Architects



All-N-1 Landscaping of Lawrence employs two full-time landscape architects and one architect to design sustainable landscapes like this edible garden. The company will be interviewing soon for a sustainable engineer with experience in green roofs and water management.

By that definition, according to Victoria Ogier, Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) Workforce Development project manager, green jobs can be found in countless occupations – from farming to accounting to civil engineering. Sustainabilitydriven businesses, like renewable energy and energy auditing companies, are creating new jobs that are all green. One of Ogier’s tasks is to convene and manage the Green Jobs Task Force formed early last year. “I think the potential lies in the fact that there are a lot of programs in the region right now that can support the development of green jobs,” she said. MARC is currently focused on workforce development as a subcontractor to the city’s EnergyWorks KC program, which originated with a $20-million grant from the Department of Energy. “We are really doing some neat stuff,” Ogier said. “We now have funds to work with six organizations who are developing and/or strengthening training programs in three specific areas: energy efficiency, water conservation and deconstruction.” Those six include the University of Central Missouri, Metropolitan Energy Center, the Full Employment Council, Metropolitan Community College (MCC), Kansas City Kansas Community College and Johnson County Community College (JCCC). JCCC, for example, is developing a new sustainability hospitality internship program that will train students to conduct sustainability audits that assess how restaurants

rate on energy and water consumption, reuse of materials and recycling. Ten restaurants signed on to participate, and the first seven interns are enrolled. The program could lead graduates to large companies that are assessing their own stores, or provide entrepreneurs with the background to start a small business serving individual clients. MCC is creating a deconstruction program in partnership with the City of Kansas City’s new East Patrol Division Station and new Regional Crime Lab Campus, to be located on a site with houses that will be taken down. Rather than simply demolishing houses, those trained in deconstruction learn to dismantle buildings so the materials can be donated and resold through Habitat ReStore. In addition to individual contractors and laborers gaining deconstruction skills, a partnership with the UMKC Innovation Center’s KCSourceLink and FastTrac NewVenture will support new or existing small businesses in the field of deconstruction.

Greener building design creates new jobs Deconstruction projects are on the increase; greener standards, and therefore greener jobs, are developing in the design of new buildings as well. “I think the LEED program has helped create professionallevel green jobs,” said Bob Berkebile, principal with BNIM Architects, who helped develop the Leadership in Energy


Left and Center: Green jobs were created throughout the Green Impact Zone to install new sidewalks like these at 39th and Prospect Avenue and 42nd and Paseo Boulevard in the Green Impact Zone. Right: The Metropolitan Energy Center offers green job training in energy efficiency and deconstruction of buildings.

and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program for the U.S. Green Building Council. When the General Services Administration and a host of other federal agencies embraced it as the standard for decision-making, engineers and contractors who wanted to work for the federal government had to understand the LEED system and begin to integrate its guidelines, Berkebile explained. As a result, today it’s much more important to know where building materials come from and to project their upstream and downstream environmental performance, Berkebile said. “So there are, and will be, more jobs responding to that need.” New companies and entirely new industries are being created as a direct result of embracing LEED requirements. One small, local company emblematic of that shift is PlanetReuse, whose founder, Nathan Benjamin, developed a system to facilitate selling and shopping for used materials through an electronic database. It is a service that has helped BNIM purchase materials its staff would never have had the time to track down otherwise. Back to the future: The most profound change instigated by the shift to LEED standards is education of the industry, Berkebile said. “We now have buildings, on average, being designed for high performance; so that improves quality of life and human health and productivity, plus it reduces energy and water consumption,” he said. “You’re raising performance in all categories and reducing costs.” While that may seem indirect, Berkebile believes it’s a difference that can create more jobs. If their costs are less,



companies and institutions are left with more profit which can be invested elsewhere, and that usually means hiring more people. “I am convinced that green careers are the future in architecture and design,” and will be integral to the process, Berkebile said. “We are currently just redefining the job to high-performance standards. I think architects who don’t embrace that thinking will gradually become obsolete.”

Look to alternative-fuel transportation and energy efficiency According to Bob Housh, executive director of the Metropolitan Energy Center in Kansas City, 23 people were hired at MEC after the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 was introduced and the green jobs sector became more popular because of the recession. MEC primarily has added jobs in two programs: building energy efficiency and alternative fuel transportation, funded by both federal and private dollars. Most of the positions were added because of demand created on the building energy-efficiency side, since workers are now needed to process utility rebates and homeowner rebates, most of whom MEC trained in the specifics. That spurred hiring in MEC’s training division as well. Five salaried staff members were hired, and five long-term, temporary contractors were added as trainers. On the fuel transportation side, a $14.9-million Department of Energy (DOE) contract for the Clean Cities Program administered by MEC paid for the purchase of vehicles run

on alternative fuels for use in public and private fleets. Housh said Kansas City is a leader in using biodiesel, compressed natural gas, electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids. MEC also managed a contract and found partners to participate in the Electrical Power Research Institute’s research (funded by DOE and the Environmental Protection Agency) to develop protocol for emissions testing of the new technology. This stands as one example of a development that can lead to jobs, as workers are needed to do the testing. The cycle started when MEC’s building division began working with the EPA’s Home Performance with Energy Star guidelines. The focus on energy efficiency in existing homes requires energy audits before and after efficiency improvements. That has increased demand for auditors. At first, only a handful signed on for certification through MEC. Now, more than 60 auditors in the metro area are participating. Housh estimated at least another 100 auditor jobs were created by contractors with increased business in that area. In January, Jerry Shechter, sustainability coordinator for the City of Kansas City, MO, reported that 31 jobs had been created or retained since December 2010 through a federal grant for EnergyWorks KC. Eight of those positions were administrative, nine were in-the-field customer relations jobs and 14 were deconstruction jobs in the Ivanhoe neighborhood. He is optimistic about reaching the program’s long-term target of 180 jobs by mid-2013. In general, the demand for green jobs appears to be increasing, Shechter said, particularly in solar installation, ground source heating and energy efficiency. Several subgrants of the original grant to EnergyWorks KC also are expected to create jobs here. A second deconstruction

worker training is planned for March, adding to the 14 workers already trained. Shechter called attention to work being done by Blue Hills Community Services, which is renovating and retrofitting a building in the Green Impact Zone that will house a green business incubator program. Located at 50th and Prospect, the small business incubator should translate into job opportunities for east-side residents, although not exclusively for them. While job creation is a primary goal of EnergyWorks KC, long-term market transformation is also crucial, Shechter said. Deconstruction, water conservation and business incubation are three areas in that category. “We’re just trying to seed the market,” he said. Warren Adams-Leavitt, MEC’s director of training programs, said MEC is focused on educating workers in the area of residential energy conservation. Twenty-five unemployed or underemployed trainees started class in January with a goal of becoming environmental remediation workers. The six-week course features skills and certifications in hazardous waste management and emergency response, lead and asbestos abatement, mold remediation, first aid/ CPR and OSHA construction safety. “The training is not for everybody,” said Adams-Leavitt. “It’s a rough field,” requiring physical stamina and the willingness to work in gritty environments. “These are certainly marketable skills,” he affirmed, giving the trainees an edge in the job market. Formidable challenges may accompany these training classes. Some workers struggle just to attend classes while trying to maintain part-time jobs and cope with crises like

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Green Dirt Farm, which produces grass-fed lamb and sheep dairy products in Weston, plans to add employees this year for a total of 12.

having their home utilities cut off for lack of income. “A lot of them feel like they’re just hanging on by their fingertips,” he said.

Green Impact Zone brings opportunity and challenges Margaret May, executive director of Ivanhoe Neighborhood Council, works with the Green Impact Zone (GIZ) on housing redevelopment, energy efficiency and job creation projects. The zone received American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding beginning in 2009 for the Ivanhoe, Blue Hills, 49/63, Manheim and Town Fork Creek neighborhoods. “We’re convinced that to have the perfect situation, you need to incorporate life-skills training with job-skills training,” May said. In the Green Impact Zone, many young applicants need education on the values of dependable attendance, punctuality and attitude, she explained. Without a comprehensive list of green jobs available in Kansas City, May’s organization works with the Full Employment Council to apprise them of opportunities that arise in the area, specifically the half of Ivanhoe located within the GIZ boundaries. A job creation example in the Green Impact Zone included a partnership with MARC and EnergyWorks KC to provide training for 14 individuals to learn to deconstruct houses.



Several teams completed that work last fall on seven houses. “We’re hoping deconstruction is really going to catch on here in the city,” May said, given that it makes so much more sense than the traditional demolition-to-landfill route. May sees potential for those jobs in such places as the city’s dangerous buildings list. The potential is there, she believes, but the money may not be, since the budget remains static while the number of buildings on the list keeps increasing.

Rep. Emanuel Cleaver still sees a bright green job future Congressman Emanuel Cleaver II, representing Missouri’s Fifth District, shared his thoughts on the future of green jobs in the Green Impact Zone. “We don’t yet know the full potential of job growth within the Green Impact Zone as we keep developing projects and creating new and innovative ways to improve this portion of the urban core that was deteriorating and suffering from disinvestment,” he said. “This first-of-its-kind initiative has not even made it to the seventh-inning stretch yet. Our long-term goal of creating a thriving, stable and sustainable neighborhood is a work in progress and reaching milestones each month. The best days are still ahead.” Cleaver said the availability of federal funding for green job creation “is decreasing daily” because stimulus spending will be concluding soon.

“We are so fortunate here in Kansas City that the Green Impact Zone has received millions of dollars for projects and that money is working as we speak,” Cleaver said. “We can see it in smart grids inside thousands of homes, solar panels on top of an area school, improvements in curbs and sidewalks, bridges, rehabbing and weatherization of homes, job training and job creation.” Asked whether there are other green-job creation programs on the horizon for Kansas City, Cleaver said, “We are always looking for new and innovative ways to expand the job market and put more people back to work. It is a top priority of the Green Impact Zone. It is a national model of place-based investment, and the possibilities are endless.”

U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II announced in November that the Mid-America Regional Council would receive a Sustainable Communities Grant for $403,432 from the Department of Housing & Urban Development. The funds will be used in part to connect housing with good jobs.

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Stacia Stelk, Ripple Glass Stacia Stelk, Ripple Glass executive director, learned about her future green job through a chance meeting at a Costco

Meet Green job go-getters

warehouse. But she readied herself for her current position the way her father always told her: Be willing to start at the bottom and work your way up. She started her career in environmental advocacy in 1993, and over the years gained the experience she needed to land a job that wasn’t even around back then. She’s worked

By Michelle Strausbaugh


at Ripple Glass for three years as its first executive director. After graduating with an ecology degree from the University of Kansas, Stelk took on her first paid staff position

n researching job opportunities in Kansas City, we found four local green-career innovators. Discover how they created their jobs and use their skills to help the businesses they work for become more sustainable.

as volunteer coordinator for Bridging the Gap. That included 20 hours every weekend at a recycling drop-off center -- for 10 years. That’s where she learned a great deal about the field, working side-by-side with hundreds of passionate volunteers dealing with thousands of patrons who care about the same things. It was both exhausting and exhilarating. “It really inspired me to stick in the field,” she said. Stelk earned a master’s degree in nonprofit management and was promoted up through the ranks to director of programs and development. That’s how she became the right person to run into entrepreneur and Boulevard Brewery founder and president John McDonald at Costco while he and his partners were investigating a way to turn their waste glass into raw material (cullet) for Owens Corning in Kansas City. It started with a casual, “We’re doing something you might be interested in.” As executive director at Ripple Glass, Stelk’s first task was convincing 50 businesses to host collection bins in their parking lots. Today, she stays in touch with all 100 volunteer bin hosts in the community, promotes the company on Facebook, and on occasion jumps into a pile of glass to nab a stray jar inappropriate for the cullet recipe at the company’s processing facility. The cullet can be used to make products such as fiberglass insulation, reflective paints, abrasives and aggregates. As of 2011, it is being sold to Master Marble in Holden, MO, to use in the process of making recycled glass countertops, which are then sold locally at retail locations like Elements of Green.



“You have to embrace innovation and start the fire.”

Kurt Gerdes, Lafarge Kurt Gerdes has been called a “disruptive innovator,” and in his position, that’s a good thing.

“It’s really great work. And it’s fun to recycle at the volume we do it.”

It’s an appropriate label for his work at Lafarge of North

Gerdes recently attended a company goal-setting meeting

America. Based in Kansas City, Gerdes is officially known

in Tulsa, OK, where seven new byproducts were identified for

as director of raw materials for the largest manufacturer of


cement and concrete in the world.

His engineering degree is not as relevant to his job as is

Gerdes’ job is all about getting the leftovers. He wants

a personal aptitude for the work. He gets bored easily and

ashes and dust, sand and sludge. He wants wastewater

wants to move on to the next thing. An entrepreneurial mind

treatment filter cakes or other byproducts that contain the

and skill set is the ideal combination for his type of job. It

alumina, silica, calcium or iron that go into cement.

helps that he’s not afraid to ask people and organizations to

“I’m just kind of a bird dog out there looking for materials,” he said. Bottom ash from Kansas City Power & Light Company’s coal-burning power plant, whose previous destination was a landfill, is now 100-percent recyclable. Last year, Lafarge

do things they’ve never done before, even when it makes them uncomfortable. Roadblocks are to be expected until you get others to understand where you’re headed, Gerdes said. “You have to embrace innovation and start the fire.”

recycled 120,000 tons of the stuff.


Malenda Shahane, UMB Malenda Shahane’s position as sustainability manager at

“I really like it,” Shahane said of the job she created. “I’m really happy that I can work doing something that is one of my greatest passions.”

UMB may have been unplanned, but it was not unintentional.

Getting the work in the first place may not be simple, but

While working as a graphic designer there, she was

Shahane ranked volunteering for environmental organiza-

investing energy in helping her department go greener.

tions and networking as two important factors. She belongs

One day, she overhead Mariner Kemper, UMB CEO, talking

to the International Society of Sustainability Professionals

to her department director about the financial institution’s

and joined LinkedIn Green Professionals to keep up with

sustainability efforts.

national and international issues. Locally, she is a board

It was (almost) as simple as saying, “I’d love to be involved.”

member of Keep Kansas City Beautiful.

She said the words, and things started to snowball. Her job now entails promoting sustainability to UMB employees. She works with the property manager to create more recycling opportunities on site. She develops educational venues including an internal online GreenWorks web page and lunchtime programs featuring experts such as an energy auditor. She promotes participation in Bike to Work Week and the Mid-America Regional Council’s Green Commute Challenge, and mans the drop-off/pickup site the company provides for employees participating in the Good Natured Family Farms Community Supported Agriculture program.



“I’m really happy that I can work doing something that is one of my greatest passions.”

Steve Kidwell, Lafarge Steve Kidwell, environment and community relations manager for Lafarge of North America, also values the green impact of his efforts. He knew midway through college that he wanted to do environmental work, and has spent his entire career in the field, including consulting work. When the plant began considering alternative fuel sources, they looked at methane first, Kidwell said. “I pushed that project through.” Kidwell is currently chairman of Bridging the Gap’s Environmental Excellence Business Network (EEBN). It was during an EEBN event at the plant that the topic of methane’s uses originated. “The idea ballooned right there,” he said. In Kidwell’s experience, it’s the connections made one at a time that really make things happen. A nearby landfill now generates a portion of the methane gas Lafarge uses. Kidwell’s company gets the fuel it needs from a local source, he explained, while the landfill gets a new stream of revenue for what was previously burned as waste. Photo courtesy of Lafarge

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ob seekers now have a local resource for





sustainability within business, government






Greenability Job Network is a free online search service that allows job seekers a place to post resumes and search for targeted positions. For companies interested in posting jobs, the service is an easy and affordable way to target qualified applicants. The site focuses on local and regional positions, but also provides posting opportunities





includes educational and training opportunities available for job seekers wanting to update or enhance their skills.

clean air

I walk for ______________.

pure water

The site can be expanded to add job

my children

categories requested by companies posting positions. Some of the job openings include positions in conservation, renewable energy, research and education, farming and food service, fundraising, recycling, energy auditing, architecture, urban planning, engineering, clean fuels, nutrition and construction/deconstruction. Greenability is working within the community to promote the site to area businesses, nonprofit organizations, com-munity colleges and universities. To begin your search or post a job, go to The site also is linked to the Greenability magazine site at For more information about job posting or advertising on the site, contact Julie Koppen, publisher, at 816-931-3646.



Bridging The Gap’s 16th Annual

a healthy planet


theis park / april 21, 2012

EarthWalk 2012 April 21 – Theis Park Walk start 11:00 AM

Sign up to walk at

Renovated building will house green business incubator


vacant building on Prospect Avenue in Kansas City,

will be affordable, at less than $2 per square foot. Training

MO will soon be transformed into a green business

and curriculum programs will be held in the facility on topics

incubator that will integrate green practices and

such as green materials and installation, weatherization, green

jump start businesses in the neighborhood.

products and Energy-Star certification.

“The 5008 Prospect renovation will not only bring new life

The building will be renovated to comply with Leadership

to a vacant building on Prospect, but also bring new energy to

in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver standards,

efforts to support small business and create jobs in the Green

and will feature a ground-source heat pump, solar panels,

Impact Zone,” said Anita Maltbia, Green Impact Zone director.

native landscaping and water conservation techniques. These

Blue Hills Community Services plans to invest $3.1 million

improvements will help to make the facility affordable by

to repurpose the existing building at 5008 Prospect Ave. The

reducing energy consumption, and will serve as an example of

center will provide green career development and training

green building practices.

and business development for small business contractors, and

The project is funded by $2.2 million from the City of Kansas

serve as a focal point for community programs and services for

City MO EnergyWorks KC grant, and $430,000 from the U.S.

the neighborhood. It is scheduled to open in the fall of 2012.

Department of Housing and Urban Development. The Greater

“This development will provide a catalyst for ongoing

Kansas City Local Initiatives Support Corporation has financed

transformation of the Prospect Corridor and bridge existing

more than $900,000 for initial property acquisition and pre-

residential development and community services in the

development costs.

neighborhoods,” said Joanne Bussinger, executive director of Blue Hills Community Services. Low-cost furnished office space will be available in the facility to local green businesses and small business contractors. Rent

“The city is pleased to be able to support this important initiative to promote small business development, job creation and energy efficiency in the urban core,” said Kansas City Mayor Pro Tem Cindy Circo.


Partner with a farmer for Fresh, local food By Benjamin Bachwirtz and Christopher Khan

The farmers at Red Ridge Farm harvest beans for members of their CSA and deliver them each Saturday morning with other vegetables and flowers to their stand in the Farmers’ Community Market in Brookside.


his growing season, get wholesome, locally grown food by joining a local grower’s community-supported agriculture (CSA) program. Being a part of a CSA ensures you a share of the harvest throughout the season, while helping the farmer who is growing your food. To become a member of a farm’s CSA program, you typically sign up at the start of the season and pay a fixed price, which helps farmers with early-season expenses. In return for joining for the season, CSA members get a share of food, including

fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, eggs, dairy products and possibly end-of-season canned goods. The food is often organic, and meat products are free-range. Members pick up their food from the farmer at a convenient location in or around the city. Farms may offer basket-style shares, in which the food in each share is selected and bagged by the farmer, or market-style shares, which allow members to pick and choose their produce when the farmer comes to a market. Most CSA terms run during the spring and summer months. Still, many farms also offer a session in early fall, and some farms offer year-round meat CSA shares. Besides the convenience afforded to CSA members, the programs help farmers. “We know how much to grow and what’s spoken for,” says Ami Zumalt, owner of Red Ridge Farms, which offers summer CSA shares. “We’ve found doing a CSA is a good way to go for the farm.” To select a CSA, refer to the list below. Shares can be limited, so contact farms as soon as possible. An updated CSA list, farmer profiles and more CSA information is available at the Kansas City CSA Coalition website,

Farms offering CSAs in 2012: Benedict Builders Farm

Fair Share Farm

Growers’ Alliance CSA

Knob Noster, MO 660-563-3309

Kearney, MO 816-320-3763

More than 100 Good Natured Family Farms at local Hen House Markets

Blue Door Farm Kansas City, KS 816-805-0362

Crum’s Heirlooms Bonner Springs, KS 816-304-8724

Fahrmeier Farms Lexington, MO 816-289-2496



Fruitful Hills Farm Trenton, MO 816-217-8115

Gibbs Road Community Farm Cultivate Kansas City Kansas City, KS 913-831-2444

Heritage Acres Farm Fort Scott, KS 620-857-4275 620-235-9444

Homespun Hill Farm Baldwin City, KS 785-979-3077

J-14 Agricultural Enterprises

Red Ridge Farms

Kansas City, KS 913-307-6982

Odessa, MO 816-690-7161

JJ Farms Raytown, MO 816-356-3938

Karbaumer Farm Platte City, MO 816-270-2177

Moon on the Meadow Lawrence, KS 785-749-1197

eaT local aNd orGaNIc! eXPos

Rolling Prairie Farmers Alliance


ick off the growing season at the 14th annual Eat Local and Organic! Expo and meet local organic farmers through the Kansas City Food Circle. Two expo events allow you to meet local organic farmers, learn about their growing practices, sample and purchase some of their products, and sign up for 2012 CSA shares. You can also improve your eat-local know-how with a series of workshops on such topics as cooking with local food and food preservation. Local chefs from area restaurants will show how they use local ingredients to create delicious dishes.

Lawrence, KS / Overland Park, KS 785-842-5697

Root Deep Urban Farm Kansas City, MO 816-924-3523

Schenker Family Farms McCune, KS 620-632-4470

New Roots for Refugees

Share-Life Farms

Kansas City, Kansas 913-620-2080

Marshall, MO 660-886-3936

Parker Farms Natural Meats

Find a CSA farm at

The 2012 expos dates and locations are: • March 31: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Shawnee Civic Center 13817 Johnson Dr., Shawnee, KS

Spring Creek Farm

Richmond, MO 816-470-3276

Baldwin City, KS (Lawrence pick-up location) 785-633-5292

Peacock Farms

The Herb’n Gardener

Higginsville, MO 660-584-2526 816-726-3405

Kansas City, MO 816-842-4432

• April 7: 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Metropolitan Community College – Penn Valley (Gymnasium) 3201 Southwest Trafficway, Kansas City, MO Both expos are free and open to the public. More information can be found at or by calling 913-620-8427.

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Greenability wins national environmental award Greenability joined the ranks of national magazines with a second-place, runner-up distinction for the 2012 Aveda Environmental Award. The award by Green America’s Better Paper Project and Aveda recognizes the accomplishments of magazines that are achieving the best sustainability practices in the country.

The first-place award went to Dirt Rag, a mountain bike magazine, and the third-place finalist was Grist, an environmental news publication. Past winners and finalists include Fast Company, Utne, Mother Earth News and Shape. “It’s incredible that Greenability ranks second among national magazines for its sustainability practices,” said Julie Koppen, publisher. “We’ve had high standards from the beginning, and it’s gratifying to be recognized for paving a more responsible way of printing.” Of the roughly 17,000 magazines in the United States, only two percent regularly use recycled paper, according to Frank Locantore, director of Green America’s Better Paper Project. “Your decision to use 50-percent post-consumer recycled paper that is Process Chlorine Free (PCF), Forest Stewardship Council Certified and Ancient Forest Friendly distinguishes Greenability as a true leader in sustainable publishing,” Locantore wrote

in the award letter. “We were also impressed by your work with advertisers to encourage eco-friendly business practices.” A print publication requires the use of many resources, including energy used throughout the process – from paper manufacturing through printing and delivery. Greenability uses paper that is manufactured with wind-energy offsets in California and printed with renewable-energy offsets in Missouri. In each issue, Greenability publishes an environmental benefits statement outlining the resources saved by its paper practices alone and based on information provided by the Environmental Defense Fund to Greenability through New Leaf Paper. Since it began publishing in 2007, Greenability’s paper practices have saved: 476 trees 211,512 gallons of water 140 million Btu of energy 43,904 pounds of greenhouse gases “Though Greenability lacks the purchasing power of the mega-publishers, they have a commitment to environmental sustainability that is clearly embedded in how they produce their magazine,” Locantore said. “I hope other large and small publishers take note and follow the environmental leadership of Greenability.”

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The Green Pages

Book Reviews

By Mary Lynn Coulson

Urban Pantry By Amy Pennington Urban Pantry will encourage you to create a sustainable kitchen with tips and recipes for cooking with local produce, reducing kitchen waste and making use of what’s already in the kitchen. You’ll learn how to stock the kitchen pantry with produce and essentials that will allow you to create healthy, delicious meals with what’s on hand. Written by chef and gardener Amy Pennington, this guide provides city

dwellers with directions for growing a kitchen garden, even in small spaces, as well as preserving produce from a home garden or local growers. Pennington combines her love of gourmet cooking and gardening with practical, concise advice. Creative recipes accompany hints and instructions for pickling and small-batch canning. Both homeowners and apartment dwellers will find practical information on shopping, food storage, canning and gardening.

Eco-Chic Home: Rethink, Reuse & Remake Your Way to Sustainable Style By Emily Anderson Spring cleaning begins with Eco-Chic Home. Author Emily Anderson lays out the benefits of changing the way we view materials. Instead of disposable or even recyclable, plastic bottles and old newspapers become reusable. Learn how to take items from the home and refashion them into decorative and useful treasures. Anderson provides directions on how to turn old clothes into a hand-knotted rug, CD cases into a bookshelf light and an old ladder into a clothes rack. How-to guides

are paired with eco-tips to help reduce wasteful practices and inspire repurposing. Eco-Chic Home encourages readers to rethink their relationship to material goods by considering the value of items our consumption-driven society usually throws away, and imagining new uses for them. Readers will be spurred to shop at consignment stores and create their own DIY projects with things on hand to cultivate their own personal eco-design style.

The Urban Farm Handbook: City-Slicker Resources for Growing, Raising, Sourcing, Trading and Preparing What You Eat By Annette Cottrell and Joshua McNichols This handbook is a complete guide to eating outside the industrial food system. Urban dwellers will discover new ways to make and grow what they eat, while weaning themselves off the commercial supermarket. The Urban Farm Handbook provides step-by-step guides for planning, planting and maintaining an urban garden, making cheese, raising chickens and goats, curing meat and more. The authors are “city slickers” who have learned how to achieve food security for

their families. They share how to collaborate with neighbors by forming a buying club, how to manage family schedules to incorporate more homegrown foods, and ways to organize kitchen and meal planning by the seasons. Solutions range from ways to shift your buying to a more sustainable market, to raising your own dairy goats. With personal stories, recipes, grocery lists and tips, this primer gives the resources and inspiration needed to start producing food in urban neighborhoods.


Get rewarded for greener appliances If you are in the market for a new appliance, choose an energy-efficient one for extra upfront savings during the Show-Me Green Sales Tax Holiday April 19-25. Qualified purchases will be exempt from Missouri sales tax on new Energy Star-certified household appliances purchased in state during that time period. Energy Star-certified appliances are designed to be more energy efficient than standard versions, providing energy cost savings over the life of the unit. A number of items qualify, including: n Clothes washers & dryers n Water heaters n Dishwashers n Ranges & stoves n Air conditioners n Furnaces n Refrigerators & freezers Qualifying items include purchases of up to $1,500. Certain local metro cities, including Kansas City, also have chosen to exempt sales tax. To determine the status of a specific city, check directly with the municipality or store location, or consult the list of the Missouri Department of Revenue website at

Getting a new one? We'll take the old. We accept new and used appliances and furniture that are in good, useable condition. For large, pre-approved loads we offer a free collection service. Or drop off your tax-deductible donation at ReStore KC. For a complete list of acceptable items visit or call (816) 231-6889.



SUBSCRIBE TO GREENABILITY Get the new digital edition FREE Go famoild natur y ed s chu farm rch g roc s C stock

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GREENABILITYDIRECTORY BUILDERS/REMODELERS Bennett Home Improvement & Building 708 NW R.D. Mize Road Blue Springs, MO 816-564-1251 cell 816-229-4711 office

Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) 600 Broadway, Suite 200 Kansas City, MO 816-474-4240


MARC is a non-profit association of city and county governments and the metropolitan planning organization for the bi-state Kansas City region.

Bennett Home Improvement installs “green” technologies that will enhance your home’s value while saving you money and protecting our environment.

ENERGY EFFICIENCY cfm Distributors, Inc.

EDUCATION Johnson County Community College Center for Sustainability 12345 College Blvd. Overland Park, KS 913-469-8500

1104 Union Ave. Kansas City, MO 816-842-5400 Cfm Distributors is the Midwest’s employee-owned provider of sustainable heating, cooling, and refrigeration solutions for home, office and industry. Want a new “green” career? Explore JCCC’s sustainability programs and train for a career11:40 in the growing “green” Dan-AD-Final 4/5/10 AM Page 1 industry.

Looking for a greener home? If you’re selling or buying, choose an agent who can help you find or market your energy efficient, sustainable, green home.



Your school, church or scout troop can use GREENABILITY magazine to raise money for your green efforts.

IT’S EASY. Your group makes money on each subscription it sells, while educating your community about green issues in Kansas City.

AND WE DELIVER IT FOR YOU! DAN MARTIN National Association of Realtors Green Certified




Need more information, or want to get started? Call Mary Lynn at 816.931.3646

EnergyWorks KC

Heartland Utilities for Energy Efficiency (HUEE)



EnergyWorks KC provides resources to help you make smart, easy, energy-efficiency improvements to your home or business to save energy and enhance comfort.


HUEE promotes energy efficiency through Atmos Energy, Independence Power & Light, Kansas City Board of Public Utilities, Kansas Gas Energy, Platte-Clay Electric Cooperative and Metropolitan Energy Center.

Metropolitan Energy Center

816-461-8877 Residential & commercial energy audits, spray-foam insulation, air sealing, efficient HVAC & duct system design, geothermal GSHP, solar PV power, solar thermal.

3810 Paseo Kansas City, MO 816-531-7283



The mission of the Metropolitan Energy Center is to help create resource efficiency, environmental health and economic vitality in the Kansas City region.

The Hayes Company Kansas City, MO 816-444-6352

Missouri Gas Energy The Hayes Company offers Home Performance services for energy efficiency through energy audits, insulating, duct sealing, weatherization and HVAC balancing.

Missouri Gas Energy offers an energy efficiency rebate for customers who purchase a qualifying energy-efficient, tankless natural gas water heating system.

Anyone can say they are “GREEN”

We have proven it. We are Kansas City’s only audited & certified electronics recycler!

Solar Technology Certificate and Degree Program The Solar Technology Assocate’s Degree and Solar Technician Certificate at JCCC prepares students to sit for the NABCEP entry level exam and provide the design and fieldwork experience to qualify to take the installer exam. The program’s foundation is rooted in courses that apply to a wider range of job opportunities in industrial maintenance and electrical work. For information, call Dan Eberle at 913-469-8500, ext. 3388, or visit

Johnson County Community College

The Surplus Exchange 518 Santa Fe, Kansas City, MO 64105 (816) 472-0444 • www.surplus

SurpExchange_Nov11.indd 1

11/18/11 8:37 AM

12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66210


Small Step Energy Solutions

Habitat ReStore

Shawnee, KS 913-708-8004

4701 Deramus Kansas City, MO 303 W. 79th St. Kansas City, MO 816-231-6889 Small Step Energy Solutions specializes in home energy auditing and green energy building consultations for both new and existing homes.

ENVIRONMENTAL ADVOCATES Bridging The Gap 435 Westport Rd. #23 Kansas City, MO 816-561-1087 Bridging The Gap works to make the Kansas City region sustainable by connecting environment, economy and community. Habitat ReStore collects quality, new and used building materials and sells them to the public at a discount. Proceeds benefit Habitat for Humanity home building.

LAWN & GARDEN ALL-N-1 Landscape 2350 Franklin Rd. Lawrence, KS 913-814-9200 (KC) 785-856-5296 (Lawrence)

FINANCIAL SERVICES First Affirmative Financial Network 913-432-4958 First Affirmative Financial Network is an independent, fee-only, fiduciary investment management firm specializing in socially and environmentally responsible investing.

UMB Financial Corporation 1010 Grand Boulevard Kansas City, MO 816-860-7000 UMB offers complete banking, asset management, health spending solutions and related financial services to personal, commercial and institutional customers nationwide.

GREETING CARDS Posty Cards, Inc. 1600 Olive Street Kansas City, MO 816-231-2323 Featuring Sustainable SentimentsÂŽ locally grown, green greeting cards. Build client and employee relationships with environmentally inspired cards for birthdays, holidays and other occasions.

HOME IMPROVEMENT Elements of Green 1919 Wyandotte Kansas City, MO 64108 816-842-0500 Kansas City’s source for sustainable building, remodeling and finishing solutions like cabinets, countertops, flooring, tile, paint, solar and cleaning supplies.



ALL-N-1 Landscape specializes in designing and creating affordable, low maintenance, beautiful, healthy and sustainable landscapes, customized to your needs and dreams.

Eco Fertilization and Lubrication Tom Gorby, Aggrand dealer 913-593-5797 Aggrand is an all-purpose natural fish/kelp fertilizer available at Grass Pad and Rolling Meadows Garden Center in Olathe and Planters Seed in Kansas City.

Missouri Organic 7700 East 40 Highway Kansas City, MO 816-483-0908 Missouri Organic offers a convenient and affordable facility for customers to drop off green waste and purchase quality compost, topsoil and mulch.



Conveniently Natural

Reece & Nichols

3711 Southwest Trafficway Kansas City, MO 913-475-8004

Dan Martin – Green certified realtor 816-686-3959

Whether selling or buying, choose an agent who can help you find or market your energy-efficient, sustainable, green home.

Conveniently Natural is Kansas City’s premier organic and vegan meal delivery service. Finally – a convenient and affordable way to eat healthy.

RECYCLING Deffenbaugh Industries

Farmers’ Community Market at Brookside

2601 Midwest Drive Kansas City, KS 913-631-3300

63rd & Wornall Kansas City, MO

Local farmers offer organic vegetables, pastured and free-range meat, eggs and cheese, fresh-baked goods and organic coffee.



Good Natured Family Farms is an alliance of more than 150 family farms that raise animals humanely and care for the Earth in a sustainable way.


The Surplus Exchange




Good Natured Family Farms

Deffenbaugh is Kansas City’s hometown hauler for more than 50 years and the first to launch weekly residential and business recycling.

518 Santa Fe Kansas City, MO 816-472-0444

LOCA The Surplus Exchange responsibly recycles electronics locally and offers pickup from metro commercial locations. Visit the Tech Shop and furniture showroom.

PHOTOGRAPHY Blixt Photography


210 W. 5th St., Suite 102 Kansas City, MO 816-442-7389

Brightergy Blixt Photography is the boutique-style studio of Chad Hickman and Ryan Hill, specializing in editorial, wedding and portrait photography.

15209 W. 99th St. Lenexa, KS 816-866-0555 Brightergy is the region’s most experienced solar design, installation, financing and leasing firm with hundreds of commercial and residential installations across the Midwest.

Sustainable Investment Solutions™ We help socially and environmentally conscious investors manage their money to make a positive impact on their own lives and our whole world. Investment Advisory Representative

• Fee-only services from an Accredited Investment Fiduciary™ • Focused exclusively on SRI financial planning for over 15 years • Customized screening, shareholder activism and community investing

Email or call today for your free one-year subscription to our quarterly newsletter on socially responsible investing, Affirmative Thinking.

Jim Horlacher MBA, AIF® | 913.432.4958 | First Affirmative Financial Network, LLC is an independent Registered Investment Advisor registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Jim Horlacher is an Investment Advisory Representative of First Affirmative Financial Network.


Cromwell Solar

Larsen & Associates, Inc.

825 Vermont, Suite B Lawrence, KS 785-749-6020

785-841-8707 Contact: Jessica Pryor

Larsen & Associates provides geothermal installation services including loop installation, line purging and charging, pressure grouting, thermal fusion and drilling.

For the past 12 years, Cromwell Solar has been Kansas and Missouri’s leader in the design and installation of solar energy.

WINERY FreeEnergy

Fahrmeier Family Vineyards


9300 Mitchell Trail Lexington, MO 816-633-2150 FreeEnergy is a full-service sustainability company. We design and install solar PV, solar thermal hot water and geothermal GSHP. Established in 1947, Fahrmeier Family Vineyards handcrafts unique artisanal wines of uncompromising quality in the fertile hills of Lexington, MO.

GeoEnergy Source Systems Noland Road & Walnut Independence, MO 816-777-1223 816-914-3560

Do you want your green business or service to be seen by environmentally conscious readers? List it in the GREENABILITY DIRECTORY. GeoThermal done right! For more than 20 years, Kansas City’s only totally integrated geothermal company. See recent projects at

For information, contact Julie Koppen 816-931-3646 or

Albert Tamm Lumber Co. Roberts & Dybahl American Fire Sprinkler Anthony Plumbing Heating and Cooling Applied Ecological Services, Inc Black &Veatch Heritage Cast Stone BNIM Brookside Building Performance Central Fiber CFM Distributors JE Dunn Construction Construction and Abatement Services Cromwell Environmental Decent Energy,Inc. Urban Mining Homewares Brigid Greene Demilic USA LLC E&K of Kansas City Kohler ECS Geothermal Elmwood Reclaimed Timber Environmental Works, Inc EPA Region 7 Green Light Ground Source Systems, Inc James van Eman Architects Grundfos Metropolitan Energy Center Hendrickson Tree Care Company effi cie nt comfortable sm a r t r e n e wa ble h isto r ic

Henderson Engineers Key Lighting Roberts & Dybahl, Inc. Illumination Sales Elements of Green The Hayes Company The Jeske Company Trex KCP&L Smart Grid Habitat For Humanity Kansas City Restore Loma Vista Nursery MARC Solid Waste Management District PPG Industries Missouri Gas Energy WaterFurnace International Missouri Department of Conservation Missouri Department of Natural Resources LaFarge Patti Banks Associates Heartland Utilities for Energy Efficiency Rothers Design-Build Hermes Nursery Platte Clay Electric Cooperative Solar Solutions of Kansas City Vanderford & Assoc. University of Missouri-Kansas City United Heating and Cooling University of Kansas School of Architecture Aggrand Mark One Electric SFE Enterprises York International UPG 41


Enjoy a sEason of local, farm-frEsh food Join the Growers’ Alliance CSA for a summer of good food from more than 100 Good Natured Family Farms.

2012 Growers’ AlliAnce csA sign-up begins May 20 at Hen House for June 16 – september 29 sign up for a weekly bag of local food and receive a special selection of fresh food from an alliance of more than 100 Good natured Family Farms. Your Growers’ Alliance CSA will include a weekly selection of

Good nAtured FAMily FArMs: • • • • • •

All-natural beef Free-range chicken Pastured pork Bison Free-range, brown eggs local honey

• • • • •

Farmhouse cheese certified-organic tofu Farm-fresh milk chef Marks’ sauces & seasonings seasonal fruits, vegetables and herbs

March/April 2012  

march/april 2012

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