Is Sustainability on Your Agenda This Winter?

by Amanda Kuhnert

We may be spending more time indoors these days, but that doesn’t mean the environment should be out of sight, out of mind. Mark your calendars for these upcoming sustainability-related events in our area.

“BURNED: Are Trees the New Coal?”

Saturday, Nov. 17, from 3 to 4:30 p.m.
at Billings Farm and Museum

Part of the Woodstock Vermont Film Series

Tickets: $11 for adults, $6 for children

To purchase:

Vermont filmmakers Alan Dater and Lisa Merton’s feature-length documentary takes an unwavering look at the latest energy industry solution to climate change. The film tells the story of how woody biomass has become the fossil-fuel industry’s renewable, green savior, and of the people and parties who are both fighting against and promoting its adoption and use.

Through interviews with activists, experts, and citizens, along with vérité-style footage shot across the US and in the EU and UK, the film interweaves the science of climate change, the escalating energy-policy disputes, the dynamics of forest ecology, the biomass industry practices, the conflict between jobs and trees, and the actions of activists and citizens who are working to protect their own health, their communities, the forest, and the planet’s climate. Woven together, the various stories present an intimate and visceral account of what is — at this moment in time — a critical, yet mostly unknown, national and international controversy.

“Burned reveals the shocking destruction of our forests for fuel and the resultant rise in carbon emissions that exceed those of coal-burning.” ~Audience Choice Award, American Conservation Film Festival Committee

“Toxic Garbage Island”

Tuesday, Nov. 27, at 6:30 p.m.
at Woodstock Town Hall Theater

Free documentary screening brought to you by Sustainable Woodstock and Pentangle Arts. Donations go to support Pentangle.

“Toxic Garbage Island” is an hour-long documentary that shows how the increasing use of the ocean as a garbage dump is slowly destroying ecosystems. Come aboard as the VICE crew takes a cruise to the Northern Gyre in the Pacific Ocean, a spot where currents spin and cycle, churning up tons of plastic into a giant pool of chemical soup, flecked with bits and whole chunks of refuse that cannot break down in nature and that accumulate into massive islands of trash.

“Slash Your Energy Bill” Workshop

Thursday, Dec. 6, from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
at Woodstock Town Hall Theater, second floor
Free event

Come to this informal, introductory workshop on reducing energy bills through low-cost efficiency improvements, weatherization, heat pumps, and solar energy. This workshop will provide an overview of a broad range of actions you can take that cost little or no money, as well as extensive energy improvements. Participants will also learn about financial resources available, such as the low-interest Heat Saver Loan Program.

The workshop will be led by Jen Severidt, residential energy consultant. Doors open at 5:45. Food and drinks will be provided. The workshop is co-sponsored by Efficiency Vermont in partnership with Sustainable Woodstock. For more information, contact:  Zach at 802-457-2911, or

Vital Communities 25th Anniversary Celebration Open House and Conniption Fits Show

Friday, Dec. 7, from 5 to 10 p.m.
In the  Engine Room at 188 S. Main St., White River Junction

Celebrate 25 years of Vital Communities serving the Upper Valley at our enhanced annual “open house.” Get to know our staff, board, and other supporters while you enjoy wine and abundant refreshments from great local businesses. Volunteer of the Year, Super Quest grand prize, and door prizes awarded! Remarks at 6 pm. Followed by a FREE concert by local favorite The Conniption Fits starting at 8 pm (21+)!

Vital Communities is a nonprofit organization based in White River Junction that brings together citizens, organizations, and municipalities in the Upper Connecticut River Valley of Vermont and New Hampshire to take on issues where an independent voice and regional approach are essential. Working together, we make our region a better place to live, work, and play every day. For more info:

Woodstock Energy Committee Meeting

Monday, Dec. 10, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Woodstock town hall, second floor
Open to all

The Woodstock Energy Committee is an action group of Sustainable Woodstock. The group holds informational sessions for Woodstock area residents on many aspects of energy use. Its mission is to promote energy efficiency, conservation and the development and use of renewable energy sources among the town’s residents, businesses, educational and municipal affairs. To view this month’s agenda, visit Contact us at





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