Greening our way out of the Recession – AJ Update for October 2009

Grab your calendars and get ready to circle them. There are a tonne of entertaining events that Alternatives will be a part of this month and the next. Oh, and we have a new issue coming out, too. (where do we find the time?)

Work (issue 35.6) – coming soon to newsstands
From crises come new ideas. The current economic and environmental conditions have pushed contributor creativity to new heights in the upcoming issue of Alternatives. Martin von Mirbach envisions a smaller, more agile Canadian forestry industry that is decidedly greener. Stephen Hazell makes a case for government policies that support green-collar jobs, while Sally Lerner describes how we can benefit from a jobless recovery. Coming to newsstands and our paperless store the week of October 19.


Special Work issue preview – Join the food fight
Pay farm workers $50,000 per year. Work four days per week. Subsidize purchases of local food. These are just a few of the plans laid out by Wayne Roberts in his article “Eat This Recession.” Such creativity stirred controversy during Alternatives’ peer-review process. Find out what all the fuss is about by reading his ground-breaking article online before the new issue even comes off the press. Alternatives wants to know if you think that agriculture and food should be the basis of our 21st-century economy. Comment online and create the discussion.


350: the most important number in the world
We’re supporting Bill McKibben, founder of, environmentalist and author of 12 books, in his efforts to save the planet on October 24. Here’s a snippet of our exclusive online interview between
Alternatives‘ author Mark Brooks and McKibben. Only at

Mark Brooks: What is

Bill McKibben: 350 is the most important number in the world. James Hansen at NASA produced a paper saying that any amount of carbon in the atmosphere greater than 350 parts per million is not compatible with the planet on which civilization developed, or to which life on Earth is adapted. We’re already past 350 – we’re at 387 – and rising, which is why the Arctic is melting; it’s why Australia is on fire; it’s why we’re seeing historic floods and so on.

Our organization,, is planning a huge global day of action all around the world on October 24, six weeks before the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. It’s going to be the biggest day of environmental action the world has ever seen. …

Read the entire interview here to find out how you can take action.

Subscribe to Alternatives, Support Oakvillegreen
Oakvillegreen is hosting a talk with author and sustainability advocate Mike Nickerson on October 13 at the Oakville Town Hall. While you’re there, say hello to Alternatives‘ executive editor Nicola Ross and take advantage of a special one-night-only deal. For every one-year subscription purchased that evening, Alternatives will make a $10 donation to Oakvillegreen. A two-year subscription will garner a $15 donation. Contact Jennifer at or 905-849-3056 for further details. Read about Oakvillegreen president Liz Benneian, the winner of Earth Day Canada’s 2009 Hometown Hero Award, on our website.

Vandana Shiva comes to Waterloo
The University of Waterloo’s Hagey Hall is the place to be on October 21. Award-winning ecologist Vandana Shiva will deliver this year’s Hagey Lecture with a discussion on Earth Democracy. This free event takes place on Wednesday, Oct. 21 at 8 pm. Shiva will also address a student colloquium at 9:30 am the following morning with a talk entitled Soil Not Oil: Food Security in Times of Climate Change. Click here for locations. To read an excerpt from her book of the same name, get a copy of Alternatives‘ “Books from the Deep Green.”


Walk the green carpet with Alternatives
Can’t make it to Ottawa for the International Day of Climate Action? Show your support for a sustainable future by seeing the environmental films at Toronto’s Planet in Focus Film Festival. Alternatives is co-presenting the documentary Over Land at 1 pm on October 24 at the Royal Ontario Museum. Not to be missed, Steve Suderman’s film is an intimate and personal portrayal of how he coped with the end of his family farm. Chat with Alternatives‘ manager of development and social media geek Brian St. Denis and find out about our special subscription offer supporting the film festival.

Give Alternatives
The holidays are still a few months away, but if you want that gift subscription to arrive on time, take advantage of our great discounts now. One-year gift subscriptions are $29.95when you order two or more, and $24.95 when you order three or more – that’s $10 off the regular subscription price. Special rates are available for 10+ or 50+ gift subscriptions – your office, school or group will thank you. Order your gift online or call 1-866-437-2587.

Alternatives is on Twitter and we want you to tweet along with us. Stay in the loop with daily content and Twitter-only contests and prizes. You can also find us on Facebook. (We know you all use it!) Our resident Tweeter and Facebook-er would love to find out about what you are up to.

Alternatives chews the fat with Edible authors
On December 2, Alternatives’ executive editor Nicola Ross will be interviewing contributors to The Edible City. Come out to hear Wayne Roberts (“Where d
o we go from here?”) and Lorraine Johnson (“Toronto’s Victory Gardens, then and now”) exchange their ideas and views on Canada’s largest city. The discussion takes place bright and early from 7:30 to 9 am at the Sustainability Network, 215 Spadina Avenue, Toronto. Watch for more info.

Looking ahead to 2010
Watch ecollectual heavyweights Thomas Homer-Dixon, Stephen Bocking and Bob Gibson duke it out at our January 12, 2010 panel discussion. Location and time TBA.

So you think you can write
Alternatives will once again have a booth at the Guelph Organic Conference, January 28-31, 2010. We will also be hosting the Eco-Writer’s Intensive workshop there on Saturday, January 31. Alternatives’ executive editor Nicola Ross divulges valuable info on freelance writing opportunities and how to improve your chances of having your prose published in the Canadian magazine and newspaper market. Whether you’ve been published before or are writing for the first time, this workshop is for you.

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