Cliff Chiet and Dave Feldman at the Maryland Gone Green event

Cliff Chiet and Dave Feldman shake hands at the Maryland Gone Green event.

Today’s Gazette of Politics and Business features a special “Maryland Gone Green!” insert section, highlighting 35 companies and organizations that have gone green, provide environmentally friendly services, or educate people about environmental sustainability.

Representatives from most of those businesses showed up early—8 a.m.—at Bethesda Green, March 31, for an appreciation breakfast sponsored by the Gazette and Bethesda Green.

Cliff Chiet, publisher of the Gazette of Politics and Business, thanked everyone for participating in the special publication.

“It’s the first time ever we’ve published something showing off all the green things in the county,” he said. “You already see it,” he told the crowd, “how important this movement is. Montgomery County is really leading the charge, and what’s really exciting is this publication proves it.”

Chiet noted that all the legislators in Annapolis will get a copy, as will the 20,000 businesses that subscribe to the Gazette of Politics and Business.

Bethesda Green’s Executive Director Dave Feldman added, “We applaud that there are economic benefits to being green. You’re all companies that recognize that.”

Firms featured in the publication include large international companies such as Marriott International, Inc., and Lockheed Martin, as well as local outfits such as All Eco Center, and Sustainable Design Group.

The Bethesda Green Business Incubator also received a mention, with a sidebar about Aquabarrel.

Chiet noted he hopes to publish this section every year, and, referring to everyone in the room, said, “We have to be ambassadors.”

The Gazette has also gone green in one way, by using a color printing press that produces high-quality, color copies of the paper sooner in the printing process, thus reducing waste copies that cannot be distributed. Chiet said the press saves them 2,500 tons of paper per year.

If you don’t subscribe to the Gazette of Politics and Business, you can read the “Maryland Gone Green!” section here.

Here are some of the latest green news stories and events for Bethesda and Montgomery County, Maryland.

  • Restaurants Brace for Gulf Oil Spill Fears: Potential customers want to know if seafood is available and whether it is tainted or not, according to this article in the Montgomery Gazette.
  • Some BP Stations See Drop in Sales Due to Oil Spill Backlash: Local station owners say anger is misplaced; some endure reduction in business up to 50 percent. AAA says sales have fallen across the nation.
  • Grass-roots Gripes About Artificial Turf Gain Traction: After being pushed by concerned parents and environmental groups, the Montgomery County Council has asked three county agencies to conduct a study of the costs, risks and benefits of artificial turf fields versus natural grass fields.
  • How to Conquer the Invasive Lionfish? Eat It Until It’s Gone: The relentless invasive predator is decimating coral-reef ecosystems in the Atlantic, Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico. The solution for this endangered species, according to a Washington Post story: Catch and sauté it, until it’s gone from its non-native range.
  • Goldman, Bethesda Green Among Washington’s Green Giants: Washingtonian Magazine has a “Green Giants” online feature that includes Bethesda Green co-founder Seth Goldman. The print edition (May issue?) also mentions BG Executive Director Dave Feldman.

Local Green Events

  • July 13, 6:30 p.m. — RePower at Home Meeting in Bethesda: Montgomery County Kick Off meeting of RePower at Home at the Bethesda Library, 7400 Arlington Rd. Learn how to make energy improvements in your home a breeze.  RePower at Home explores ways to reduce home energy usage. Repower at Home is project of the Alliance for Climate Protection, a national nonprofit group. RSVP to Brenna Muller, brenna.muller (at) climateprotect.org.
  • July 13, 7-9 p.m. — Green Night Out with Green DMVThis fundraiser for non-profit group Green DMV features Van Jones and will be hosted by NBC4’s Wendy Rieger. Green DMV promotes clean energy and green jobs in low-income communities across America as a pathway out of poverty. Takes place at the Longview Gallery, 1234 9th Street, NW.
  • July 14, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. — RainScapes Overview Program Class: This class will be a general overview of the RainScapes program with special emphasis to landscape contractors but all are welcome to attend to learn more about the program. Class highlights will include Rainscapes techniques design criteria, how to earn and properly fill out a Rebate application as well as an introduction into program opportunities in the Targeted Neighborhoods in the County.
    The class will be held at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center in Bethesda at 4805 Edgemoor Lane, 2nd floor from 9am-1pm.  Pre-requisite: Must have attended a previous training course to attend.  To register and get info, e-mail Rainscapes.application@montgomerycountymd.gov.
  • July 27 and 28, 7-8:30 p.m. — Help Shape the Future of Parks and Recreation in Montgomery County! Montgomery Parks, M-NCPPC, and the Montgomery County Recreation Department are hosting public meetings to share the results of Vision2030 research, and to seek public feedback on how best to address key issues and needs identified through our survey and focus groups. Input will help guide the long-term planning for our county’s parks and recreation services, facilities, and programs.  For more information go to:  http://visionmontgomery2030.org/.  There will be two sessions:
  1. Tuesday, July 27, 7-8:30 pm, Park and Planning Headquarters, 8787 Georgia Ave., Silver Spring
  2. Wednesday, July 28, 7-8:30 pm, Upcountry Regional Services Center, Room A, 12900 Middlebrook Road, Germantown

We’ve all had to sacrifice in order to comply with the mandatory water restrictions WSSC has instituted while it replaces part of a water main in Potomac. They want us to cut water use by 30 percent; so far, customers used 5 percent less water on July 2 and 8 percent less water July 3. So there’s a long way to go.

For many people, one big issue is how to keep gardens and plants thriving. Well, WSSC has a huge list of Tips on Keeping Your Plants Happy During Mandatory Restrictions.” The advice includes collecting shower water as you’re waiting for it to heat up, dumping cooking water in the garden (from pasta or veggies), using dehumidifier water, and even mulching your plants. Reusing water in these ways is okay.

Plus, they have a reminder that native plants need less water, so in the future plant them and you won’t have to worry.

WSSC also has this list of year-round Water Conservation Tips; just remember WSSC has banned outdoor water use until they lift the restrictions. [Reusing water as mentioned above is okay.]

These restrictions truly test our ability to conserve water, get by only with what we need, and waste nothing (or very close to it). Now’s the time for all of us to do our part; there’s nothing “greener.”

Remember, by using less water, you’re ensuring that fire departments in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties have an adequate supply to fight fires.

*Note*: For the latest water restriction updates, visit wsscwater.com.

– – – – – – – – –

Do you have more water-saving tips? Share them here!