Leadership Seacoast’s Environment Day Examined Critical Balance of Preserving the Environment and Convenience

Portsmouth, New Hampshire, June 3, 2013 –  Local non-profit Leadership Seacoast, an organization committed to developing informed and active community leaders, explored the balance between preserving and protecting our environment and convenience – and the role that balance has on our quality of life – during its recent Environment Day held at New Hampshire Public Television in Durham.

Tom Kelly, director and chief sustainability officer, UNH Sustainability Institute, described the importance of a shift from a “sustainability” mindset to a better overall understanding of what we need to flourish as communities.

He explained that sustainability is greater than just the environment.

“Unprecedented transformation requires an equally unprecedented response,” said Kelly in his presentation to the class. “It’s a complex tapestry of initiatives, woven together.”

A “Business Case for Sustainability and Environmental Responsibility” was presented by Mike Bellamente, executive director, Climate Counts, a program affiliated with the Sustainability Institute at UNH; Atlanta McIlwraith, senior manager, community engagement, Timberland; and Rian Beddard, owner, Ecomovement.

Program participants also learned about the impacts on water quality to the Seacoast region and sustainability initiatives. Local water quality and conservation experts made the case for water as the “Seacoast’s Most Important Natural Asset.”  Session presenters included:  Rachel Rouillard, executive director, Piscataqua Region Estuary Partnership; Dean Peschel, environmental consultant, City of Dover; and Alison Watts, research assistant professor in civil engineering at UNH and a water quality expert.

Leadership Seacoast’s Environment Day was sponsored by Unitil Corp and hosted at New Hampshire Public Television in Durham.

To learn more about Leadership Seacoast and its dynamic, experiential program, please visit www.leadershipseacoast.org or contact Jennifer Wheeler at 603-334-6063. To learn more about UNH sustainability initiatives and experts, visit sustainableunh.unh.edu. 

About Leadership Seacoast

Based in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, the Leadership Seacoast program provides existing and future community leaders the opportunity to engage with the people and organizations that shape the Seacoast’s economic structure and social fabric. Affiliated with the National Community Leadership Association, Leadership Seacoast offers its participants unique insight into how business, community, and politics integrate to create successful societies and how small actions can have a significant impact on the greater global good. Leadership Seacoast alumni make a difference in their communities through networking, active involvement, and personal action. Since its inception in 1988, Leadership Seacoast has created a strong foundation that values diversity of opinion and consensus building to find solutions to challenges affecting the Seacoast’s community and its future. For more information about our programs please contact us at jwheeler@leadershipseacoast.org or check out our website at www.leadershipseacoast.org.