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Climate/ Ecosystem Mitigation/ Remediation – Role of Halophytes



Climate/ Ecosystem Mitigation/ Remediation – Role of Halophytes

Dennis M. Bushnell

Chief Scientist

NASA Langley Research Center

Briefer Halophyte Activities….

  • Presentations at International Climate and water Forums
  • Extensive “Futures” briefs and publications explicating, advocating, extoling such
  • Through the tech advisor to Sec State, Halophyte site near Aswan, Egypt
  • Adviser to Boeing, their halophyte production of aviation fuels in the UAE
  • Worked with the Netherlands Plenipotentiary for Aruba, food, fuels from Halophytes on their desert eastern portion
  • Interactions with “Angel” investors, advisor to small Halophyte startups
  • Serve on the Advanced Power and Energy working group for the National Intelligence Council, where I explicate/ advocate Halophytes
  • Tried to interest The senate/ house energy committees, DOE/Golden, Dept. of Ag., The Academy – No joy….Things were just not bad enough quite yet

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NASA Langley Research Center



Hearts of Island People/CLT Roundtable



Boats off the coast of the island of Martha’s Vineyard, MA.

By their very nature, islands have a limited land mass. The allocation of use of that land raises heightened public debate pitting social, economic, and environmental interests against each other. Community Land Trusts stand as an arbitrator of these concerns. On Friday, April 30th, we will hold the third in a series of Community Land Trusts Roundtables focused on island CLTs. Register here.

Lopez Community Land Trust serves the 2,200 residents living on the thirty square miles of land of Lopez Island, one of the San Juan Islands in the Pacific Northwest. Founded in 1989 by a group of residents concerned with rising home costs intensified by demand from summer residents, the original objective was to create secure housing options for year-round residents.

As an island community, members of Lopez CLT understood that resources were limited. They would build simply, sharing labor and designing for energy efficiency.

Common Ground, completed in 2009, is a sustainable net zero energy project which has received numerous design awards. Features include straw bale construction with earthen plaster, rainwater catchment, solar hot water and a grid-tied solar electric system. Common Ground is a mixed-income development of 11 homes, 2 rental units and an office/resource center.

Island residents also recognized the necessity to save the limited farmland on the island to address food security issues. Lopez CLT responded with the Lopez Island Farm Trust (LIFT) project. LIFT promotes buying fresh produce from island farms; it sponsored purchase of a mobile processing unit to facilitate more island-raised meat; and it provides training for new farmers. In 2017 Lopez CLT purchased the historic Stonecrest Farm, leasing it to a young family so the land stays in active food production.

Hay harvest at Stonecrest Farm, a Lopez Community Land Trust property.

Lopez CLT holds land in multiple neighborhoods for a total of 39 homes reserved for year-round residents. Organizers boast that when housing is secure, folks engage more actively in their community. Indeed, over the years, CLT home owners have opened nine new small businesses on the island. By 2018 the benefits of the organization were so broadly recognized that Lopez CLT received its first gift of land. Two more followed in 2019.

Started around a kitchen table in 1989, Lopez CLT is now understood as providing a tool for island residents to shape the future use of their land. Watch a video about the organization.

Martha’s Vineyard is an island off of Cape Cod in Massachusetts. Its 87 square miles is home to over 15,000 year-round residents, but its population swells during the summer months as a well-heeled vacation home community moves in. Land prices are exceptionally high. The need for housing for essential workers is so broadly understood on Martha’s Vineyard that merchants are donating a percentage of monthly sales toIsland Housing Trust(IHT) thereby taxing themselves to build homes for fellow community members. Annabelle and Simon Hunton, owners ofNobnocket Inn, were so touched by IHT’s depiction of island neighbors facing a crisis in locating stable housing that they donated 2% of all the Inn’s income in the month of April to IHT. And others are doing the same.

IHT is good at leveraging state and federal funding to build rental and ownership housing that meet funding criteria. But more was needed and the organization has learned to be creative.

In just one of its many innovative projects, IHT partnered with the local hospital to solve an island crisis. Many critical hospital employees live off-island because they cannot find island housing and so cannot reach their posts if weather delays the ferry. IHT bought a former inn and renovated it to include multiple two-bedroom apartments, now called Hanover House. Through a master lease, the hospital took on all the units at market rates so IHT can repay its upfront investment. The hospital then rents to individual employees at subsidized rates, securing a critical workforce.

Hanover House was converted from an inn to workforce housing through a unique partnership with Island Housing Trust and the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital.

Working with a local bank, IHT created three investment funds to support short term construction, finance longer term mortgages, and capitalize an opportunity fund to move quickly if property becomes available. Local residents – both year-round and seasonal – invest in these funds, providing added community support for an organization addressing the needs of the island.

Homes at Jenney Way, an Island Housing Trust neighborhood.

Like Lopez CLT, IHT is committed to green energy design. The 2010 Jenney Way project set the standard with a pocket neighborhood of 9 single family homes and a community building, all meeting LEED standards. The project was built by South Mountain Company, a local worker-owned company. At the ribbon cutting ceremony one of the future residents spoke for the group:

“The hearts of Island people are focused on personal responsibility, thriftiness, kindness and neighborliness. And we felt very strongly about helping these connections continue to survive on the Island, where more and more people are transient.”

In its eleven years, IHT has created 60 home-ownership opportunities and 80 rentals for full-time islanders. Watch “It Takes an Island” here.

Join us on April 30th to hear from the dynamic executive directors of these two island CLTs — Sandy Bishop of Lopez CLT and Philippe Jordi of Island Housing Trust. This conversation will be moderated by Natasha Hulst, European Land Commons Program Director at the Schumacher Center and co-founder of the Dutch Community Land Trust Grond van Bestaan.

Register for the CLT Roundtable

Wishing All Well,

Staff of the Schumacher Center

On March 18th, the Schumacher Center hosted a European Community Land Trust Roundtable with Tom Chance, Calum MacLeod, Geert de Pauw and moderator Natasha Hulst. The recording can be viewed on our YouTube channel and above.

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As an island community, members of Lopez CLT understood that resources were limited. They would build simply, sharing labor and designing for energy efficiency.


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Earth Day, Save for Your Future: Contribute to your IRA by May 17 to invest in climate action and fossil-free portfolios



Due to the pandemic, the IRS extended the
Personal Taxes Deadline to May 17

Some of us have been vaccinated, others are waiting to do so. We are starting to glimpse the end of quarantine and isolation. This pandemic has impacted many of us, yet we still need to plan for a more sustainable, resilient, and impactful future.

Our economy is evolving, extractive industries need to innovate or be left behind, and regenerative approaches are necessary for survival of our planet and people. This tax season consider investing in portfolios positioned for our future.

Consider contributing to your Individual Retirement Account (IRA) to reduce your taxable income and allocate to higher impact, more sustainable investment strategies and portfolios up to $7000 for IRA contributions, depending on your age.

Here are our partners with HIP Investor in The Impact Community (TIC) that may serve your goals for investing and impact — available online, in an investing app, or through local financial advisors:

of High-Impact Portfolio Managers
and Impactful Investment Firms

ETHO® Climate Leadership US ETF (fund ticker: ETHO)
ETHO® is a leading diversified index ETF that avoids fossil fuel companies while selecting equities based primarily on full Scope 1, 2, and 3 carbon emissions and ESG alignment.

Change Finance US Fossil-Free ETF (ticker: CHGX)
Change Finance operates this fossil-fuel-free diversified ETF, and actively engages companies to do better in environmental, social, and governance issues.

Nia Impact Capital invests at the intersection of social justice and environmental sustainability, including the Nia Global Solutions and the Nia Dividend Strategy, available as a separately managed account. Nia seeks firms that pursue an inclusive, just, and sustainable economy. Nia applies a gender-lens and a commitment to racial equity – and is a women-led team of activist investors.

Sonoma Private Wealth (SPW) brings personalized investment advisory services, combined with decades of expertise in investing and planning. SPW Portfolios allocate to sustainable, responsible, impactful investments – including ESG and fossil-fuel-free portfolios, the UN SDGs, dividend-yielding blue chips for income and impact, and reporting to show how impactful your investments can be.

NewDay’s impact-focused investing is aligned and benchmarked with the United Nations’ Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, with investment strategies pursuing fresh water, sustainable agriculture, animal welfare, climate action, ocean health, and sustainable capitalism – as well as faith-based portfolios (Catholic, Islamic, Halakhic) and good governance strategies, on the Newday app.

Why should you contribute to an IRA account?

Contributing to an IRA (Individual Retirement Account) allows an individual to save for retirement with tax-deferred growth. With HIP’s Great Place to Work strategy, or HIP’s Fossil-Fuel Free Diversified Portfolios, your investing can be allocated towards a more positive sustainable future. For IRAs, you can invest $100 and up at OpenInvest, and $1000 and up at Newday.

Contribute To Your IRA Today

Saving for Your Future with an IRA

Did you contribute to your IRA previously?

Only 14% (or 1 in 7) of households contribute to an Individual Retirement Account in any given year.

Typical IRA contributors compared to non-contributors are more likely to be white, have a college education, and contribute to a 401(k) workplace retirement plan, according to a Center for Retirement Research at Boston College study

Through the OpenInvest app ($100 and up) or the Newday app ($1000 and up), it is easier for you to participate. If you can contribute, you can allocate to impact investing to potentially reduce your taxable income.

Too many American families are ill-equipped to deal with their financial needs during retirement. If younger people begin saving for retirement earlier, they can be better prepared as they approach their retirement years.

Always check with your tax expert or accountant, but here are some things to keep in mind*,

Current IRA Rules

  • The annual contribution limit for Traditional IRAs for both 2020 and 2021 tax years is $6,000 (or $7,000 for those 50 and older to help catch up).
  • There is an IRS penalty for withdrawals prior to age 59 1/2 with limited exceptions. Here is a link to the IRS website. (IRS)
    • For example, new parents are allowed to withdraw up to $5,000 without a 10% early withdrawal penalty as long as funds are withdrawn within a year of the birth or adoption of a new child.

Invest responsibly while saving for your retirement.

  • Contribute to your IRA for 2020 before May 17th, 2021, and follow up with a direct contact so you can fill out an electronic form to affirm your tax year of 2020.
  • Contribute to your IRA for 2021 all year
  • Open an IRA account if you don’t have one yet to invest impactfully, including HIP Strategies
  • There may be additional fees if you close your IRA account.

Contribute To Your IRA Today

*These are the current regulations. The IRS rules may change and you should check with your tax adviser, and learn more here. (IRS)

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Equality in 2021: In The HIP Investor book and methodology, the Equality Pillar is one of 5 categories necessary for investments to build a better world. By investing in companies and municipalities that are supporting equal rights and opportunity, you are owning part of the solution. And knowing what you own and the impact your investments have is not only financially more responsible, but also the right thing to do — for everyday investors, investment advisers, fund managers, 401(k) managers, and any innovator or leader today.

Read and share the HIP Investor book (text book, e-book, audio-book) today.

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HIP Investor Ratings LLC — which produces 127,000 impact investment ratings and licenses them to investors, advisers, wealth managers, fund managers and retirement plans, including 401(k)s and 403(b)s — is an independent limited-liability company based in California.

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Book Review by Hazel Henderson: “THE CODE BREAKER”



Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing, and the Future of the Human Race

Walter Isaacson, Simon & Schuster, 2021

©Hazel Henderson 2021

“Walter Isaacson has exceeded all his previous best-selling biographies with “THE CODE BREAKER: Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing and the Future of the Human Race” (2021). As a science policy advisor, I was deeply engrossed in this superb framing of newly-minted 2020 Nobelist Jennifer Doudna and her deeply ethical work on developing the CRISPR gene-editing tool.

Isaacson describes in this richly-illustrated, engrossing account of all the scientific collaboration and global collaborators in the evolving field of gene-editing, as well as the often corrupting role of money and patents in the market-dominated individualistic culture in the USA. Isaacson describes how deeper motives of sheer love of nature, reverence, and curiosity which drives most scientists clashes with venture capitalists’ motives and the lure of big wins for biotech stocks on Wall Street.

I recalled my own involvement in the public debates in the USA of the 1970s and 1980s on whether any life form could be patented, and my many discussions with my friend Jeremy Rifkin, who wrote with Ted Howard “Who Shall Play God? (1977). I was at that time a member of the Technology Assessment Advisory Council (TAAC) of the US Office of Technology Assessment, a member of the National Science Foundation’s Research Applied to National Needs (RANN) Committee and on the Committee on Public Engineering Policy (COPEP) of the National Academies of Science and Engineering. We were following these genetic engineering issues closely, at the famous Asilomar Conference in 1975 and our own TAAC follow-up at the Aspen Institute.

I was aghast at the US Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision in 1980 to recognize patents on life forms. Isaacson brings all these debates to life and updates them for their even greater importance for 2021 and our common human future. He recounts in Chapter 36 Jennifer Doudna’s battles over patents for CRISPR in 2014, and her nightmare, where a prominent researcher asked her to meet someone who wanted to learn about gene-editing. “When she went into the room, she recoiled. Sitting in front of her was Adolf Hitler with the face of a pig.” I want to understand the uses and implications of this amazing technology you’ve developed “he said. Doudna was jolted awake“ (page 283).

Today’s science policy world is still thrashing out these momentous issues, after the renegade Chinese scientist actually used CRISPR to change the genes in two Chinese embryos which resulted in the first two CRISPER babies (page 290). Chinese authorities sentenced him to 3 years in jail. hese babies forced societies to face the issues of such germline editing, which introduces changes in every succeeding generation. Should parents be allowed to design their children and enhance traits they deem desirable? In market-dominated societies like the USA, how much additional inequality would this create, since only richer parents could afford to buy such services? Isaacson recounts all these ethical dilemmas and the rich literature that frames these questions.

This book will become required reading by all those in science and technology, as well as political and business leaders and all concerned citizens facing the current state of our species on this endangered planet Earth.

~Hazel Henderson, Editor“

“Walter Isaacson has exceeded all his previous best-selling biographies with “THE CODE BREAKER: Jennifer Doudna, Gene Editing and the Future of the Human Race” (2021). As a science policy advisor, I was deeply engrossed in this superb framing of newly-minted 2020 Nobelist Jennifer Doudna and her deeply ethical work on developing the CRISPR gene-editing tool.


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