[Date Prev][Date Next][Date Index]

E-M:/ CACC Backyard Eco Conference 2004

Enviro-Mich message from Joseph Albert Badura <jbadura@nyx.net>

Please forgive cross and multiple posts.


NOTE: Feel free to print out the registration form below and submit
it to our registrar.

Backyard ECO Conference 2004

Good Neighbors-"Making This a Better and Safer World "

May 14, 15, 16
Mystic Lake YMCA Camp
Clare County, Michigan

Donele Wilkins: "Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice "

  Terry Swier: "Perrier vs. Michigan's Citizens-Round Two"

  Tom Huber: "Designing the Hobbit Home"

  Cheryl Graunstadt: "The Creation of an Activist"

  Michael Keegan: "From Nuclear Disrepair to Wind Hope"

  Rita Jack: "Pine River Citizen Empowerment"

  Gerard Grabowski: "Huge New Coal Burner on Lake Michigan?"

  Mike Ferner: "2004 Trip to Palestine and Iraq for Peace and Justice"

  Rich Vander Veen: "Bay Windpower, a Declaration of Energy Independence"

  AND The Artistic Talents of Victor McManemy, Tim Joseph, Gretchen
Michaels ,Connie Beauvais, Jamie Cartier and Many Others For More

For More Information Contact:
8735 Maple Grove
Lake, MI 48632-9511
ECO Registrar: Karen Locey (989) 426-5540( Evenings)
240 S. Bowery
Gladwin, MI 488624
E-Mail: kflocey@ejourney.com

Mystic Lake YMCA Camp
US-10, Lake, MI 48632
(989) 544-2844

"You Can't Keep Wringing Your Hands .... While You're Rolling Up Your Sleeves"


We have a wonderful schedule of presenters again this year. Over the
past 22 years our conference has been enjoyed by many, many hundreds
of novice and "seasoned" Enviro Veterans. I have strived, this year
especially, to find subjects and speakers with a positive "Can Do"
message. We deserve and need a break. With your participation, our
workshops this year can foster some great conversations, sharing and
learning. A more relaxed time schedule will let you have a later
breakfast on Sunday .

As I try to do each year, when especially energetic discussion or
special sharing is occurring, I will hold up the conference for a
little bit. In other words, each of you helps create this unique
weekend each year. Your participation makes this a very Special time
for young and old. But First -You have to show up! See you there !


John Witucki, For the CACC Board


Tom Huber has been employed as a counselor and adjunct instructor at
Southwestern Michigan College since 1990 and has taught courses on
renewable energy, organic agriculture and natural building methods.
He served as the project advisor for a state funded Energy Education
project in 2002-03 and coordinates the Southwest Michigan Solar Home
tour. He and his family live in a passive solar home on a small
organic farm in Van Buren County.

"Designing the Hobbit Home" -Even the Hobbits knew to face their
homes to the sun and shelter them from the winter winds. Taking a
page from the Hobbit Design Manual and other forms of Folk
Architecture, this session will highlight natural ways of building
and passive solar design principles for creating energy efficient
dwellings on moderate incomes. Case studies from the Southwest
Michigan Solar Home Tour and elsewhere will be featured to
demonstrate successful building projects that incorporate renewable
energy. You will enjoy Tom's intelligence and sense of humor. He even
quotes Tolkien!

Terry Swier is the President of the Michigan Citizens for Water
Conservation. MCWC's work started on a small scale at the local level
over three years ago when citizens learned of a plan by Nestle Waters
North America (Perrier) to withdraw, bottle and sell up to 720,000
gallons of spring water per day from a local spring that directly
feeds a tributary of Lake Michigan. The lawsuit has been waged for
over three years, and went to trial in May 2003. It has required a
great deal of expert testimony, legal work, and public organizing and
awareness. MCWC has accomplished this with grassroots education
workshops, letter writing, and fundraising. Almost solely through
MCWC's efforts, critical water policy and management issues have been
propelled into a very public arena.

MCWC's legal suit was initially successful as the State Court found
that Perrier would damage the local water supply if allowed to
continue pumping such huge quantities of spring water. Terry will
update us on the battle of their small village of 393 souls against
the world's largest multi-national food company - Nestle (parent of
Perrier). The Governor and the Chamber of Commerce of Michigan have
sided with Perrier at this point, to appeal the decision protecting
our groundwater from large scale spring water pumping. And the
struggle continuesŠ

Cheryl Graunstadt - How does one transform oneself from a mother of
two to a mother for an entire community? Cheryl did just that. She is
the mother of two daughters, works for an insurance agency, is an
environmental activist, and is the only woman serving on the Westland
City Council. Her story is similar to that of Erin Brockovich: a
mother with no formal education, making an impact in her town and a
difference in the lives of her children and many others.

In May 1991, Cheryl received a letter from the principal of Cooper
School, (the school attended by her two daughters and approximately
300 other children) that the school was built over a landfill. The
letter claimed that investigations had been made and there was no

Cheryl and a friend discovered glass and metal coming out of the
ground intermixed with the gravel and stone on the playground. Behind
the property, they found something even more alarming: orange ooze
coming out of the ground known as leachate. Leachate occurs when rain
soaks into the ground and mixes with chemicals. They went to the
Health Department and found a 2" thick file on Cooper School that
contained information about cancer statistics and the rate of cancer
in children exposed to certain chemicals and toxins. They presented
this information at a PTA meeting. While she had some supporters, she
was shocked to find she also had a lot of opposition. People shouted
out that she should "Just Move" if she didn't like the school. Other
concerned parents joined her to form a group to protest the School
Board's lack of action

Eventually, all 40 acres of Cooper School were fenced in, the school
was shut down and warning signs were posted. A high percentage of
children who attended Cooper School have learning and health
disabilities. The State never did a health study so there is no way
to know if these incidents are directly related to the landfill.

After the Cooper School incident, Cheryl became involved in other
environmental issues. In 2001 a friend suggested she run for City
Council. She received more votes than any other candidate in the
city. Cheryl will tell you of her own transformation and goals.

Michael Keegan has been actively engaged in opposition to nuclear
power and nuclear proliferation since 1980. He has testified in
hearings at County, State, provincial, U.S. Federal and Canadian
Federal levels providing expert testimony on nuclear power.

Michael began with his opposition to the Fermi 2. He was the Research
Director for The Safe Energy Coalition of Michigan. He currently
chairs The Coalition for a Nuclear Free Great Lakes. He is also a
founding board member of Don't Waste Michigan. Michael holds degrees
in the Social Sciences and has made his living as a Social Worker.

"From Nuclear Disrepair to Wind Hope: How Do We Get There From Here?"

This will be an Interactive workshop with Brainstorming/Seeking action!

Recapping all the Nuke Nastics (20 Min )
Up and Running Wind Power  (20 Min )
Brain Storming  (20 Min )
Action Plan for Michigan  (30 Min )

Rita Jack is the Water Sentinels Project Coordinator for the Sierra
Club of Michigan. That title is very much an understatement of all
the energetic and valuable contributions that Rita makes to
protecting and improving the environment of Michigan.

Rita will talk about the importance of public input in cleanup
decisions at Superfund Sites and other catastrophically polluted
sites. So far, the persistent and determined involvement by the Pine
River Superfund Citizens Task Force has been instrumental in getting
the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) and the USEPA
to even consider a cleanup at the Velsicol Chemical Superfund Site in
St. Louis, Michigan. Whether or not an actual cleanup or yet another
temporary-but-still-toxic solution is chosen continues to depend
largely on citizen input as the agencies move through the Superfund
remedy selection process. The PRSCTF is there watching, asking
questions, researching issues on their own, and demanding that the
agencies do their job - protect and restore the environment by
selecting a permanent remedy that is protective of human health and
the environment. They must, because it is their river - and the
future of the Pine River and its riverside communities hangs in the

Gerard Grabowski is a founding member of the Aurora Association, a
group formed specifically to oppose the building of the proposed
"Northern Lights" coal fired plant. He is a long time activist in a
variety of issues involving peace and justice, environmental and
agricultural issues. He and his partner Jan Shireman own and operate
the Pleasanton Brick Oven Bakery, an organic sourdough artisan bake
house located in Bear Lake, Michigan.

The "Northern Lights" company is proposing to build a large (425
megawatt) power plant in the city of Manistee that will be powered by
burning coal. In order to build this plant, Northern Lights need a
"special use permit" from the city of Manistee, since some of the
construction issues would violate current zoning requirements of the

While Bush was governor of Texas, that state led the nation in
violations of the Clean Air Act and Houston became the smoggiest city
in the nation.

Last fall when Bush came to Michigan to promote his energy plan, he
stood at Detroit Edison's coal burning power plant in Monroe - one of
dirtiest in the country - and praised it as an environmental and
economic model. According to the Environmental Protection Agency,
pollution from the Monroe plant causes nearly 300 deaths each year.

Standing cozily next to DTE CEO Anthony Earley, Bush suggested that
burning coal with less environmental regulation could improve
national security. (You'd think coal burning utility companies were
among Bush's biggest donors. They were.)

Ten days later Tondu - a Houston based Energy Corporation which
specializes, according to its website, in "creative destruction" -
applied to build a coal burning power plant in Manistee.

With an in-town industrial port and proximity to high power
transmission lines, Manistee is an obvious target for coal burning
energy corporations. Coal burning power plants cause more adverse
health and environmental impacts than any other source of pollution.

Lee Sprague, chief of the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians said
his group joined the coalition opposing the Tondu project because the
air pollution from the proposed plant would cover the band's entire

"They have created a false dichotomy of environment vs. jobs," said
Sprague. "They are not factoring in the impact on other jobs, on
health, on the image of Manistee."

As yet, the Northern Lights project is not a sure thing. The Manistee
City Commission removed city attorney Bruce Gockerman from the
planned use permit process after concerned citizens pointed out that
Mr. Gockerman's firm was also representing the Tondu Corporation.
With increased citizen participation new information is coming to

Rich Vander Veen

"Declaration of Energy Independence" There was a time when the demand
for environmentally friendly, or "green" energy sources came mainly
from activists. Times have changed. Now the demand is coming from
customers in the marketplace. I know, because as the demand grows,
I'm one of the people being asked to meet it.

New renewable technologies, based on solid science and market-based
economics are becoming more viable every day. Researching and
developing these new renewables could challenge our young people to
engineer our dependency on foreign and fossil fuel.

We could also document greater public health benefits achieved by
creating new innovative energy sources that will cut particulates,
sulfur dioxides, mercury, nitrous oxide and carbon dioxide emissions.

My own company's experience illustrates the market viability of Green
Power. Bay Windpower generates wind-generated energy certified by
Environmental Resources Trust, a national nonprofit company. See
www.ert.net. Michigan customers have signed up by making it available
for more Green Power than the 4,500,000 kilowatts being generated by
Bay Windpower I, our Mackinaw City Project. We sell our power to
Consumers Energy, which then offers it to the public. After working
for three years to finally create a Green Power program in Michigan,
our first two commercial wind turbines went up on time, on line and
below budget. Within a few months, all the power these turbines
generated had been sold through Consumers Energy's Green Power
Program. See www.consumersenergy.com.

The demand is there. There has been very little opposition. In fact,
we have enjoyed broad public acceptance of the new technology. The
neighbors love it and declare our project to be a blessing. Leading
businesses signed on because this is both good and good for business.
And the timing is perfect, with energy now emerging as a national
security issue.

Clearly, we remain too dependent on fossil fuels, particularly those
that come from foreign sources. And, we are spending billions of
dollars defending these bad habits - specifically our ability to
access these fuels around the world.

Ours is the only nation with sufficient resources to exercise
leadership in the areas of global economic development, environmental
policy and global security. America's decision to lead on these key
global issues is the only thing that can prevent the world from
becoming even hungrier, thirstier and angrier.

Certainly, renewables by themselves will never be the complete
answer. But, they are great and positive part of the equation -
reducing our dependence on more problematic sources.

Donele Wilkins has over two decades of experience in occupational and
environmental health as an educator, consultant, trainer,
administrator and advocate. She co-founded and currently serves as
the Executive Director of Detroiters Working for Environmental
Justice, a non - profit organization addressing urban environmental
issues in the City of Detroit. Ms. Wilkins is sought after as a
public speaker addressing local and national audiences on topics of
community driven sustainable development, environmental justice, and
occupational and environmental health advocacy.

Donele sits on The Detroit Brownfield Redevelopment Authority,
transportation advisory committee, board of education and many other
committees and forums. She is the recipient of several awards,
fellowships and special recognition for her contribution on behalf of
the community.

Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice (DWEJ) is a vital
organization in the fight to identify environmental hazards and
threats, educate the community at the local, state and regional
levels, advocate for public policy, and organize communities to clean
up and eliminate the hazards. Donele has led the organization since
it's inception in 1994.

The DWEJ board has defined five goal areas on which to focus the
organizations work:

-Educate the community on issues related to environmental justice
Provide information to policy makers, enabling them to make informed
decisions on issues related to environmental justice

-Assist individuals and communities wanting to organize and advocate
for environmental justice

-Build the capacity of organizations to accomplish their programmatic goals

-Play a leading role in EJ projects, partner with organizations,
support and network with organizations and individuals.

Youth Programs:

  The backyard ECO Conference Youth Program sets this gathering apart
from any other.  Activities have been designed to capture the
interest and involvement of teveryone. All young people, except for
the tiniest babies are expected to be enrolled in ECO's Youth
Programs for the duration of the conference. Unsupervised children
are not permitted as they are not only at risk for themselves but
lead to the disruption of planned activities.


The 2004 CACC Youth Camp is just around the corner. This year hopes
to bring new and exciting activities for all! These are just some
things that CACC Youth Camp will always have: Smores', hikes,
laughter, trees and various teachings about our greatest treasure,
Mother Earth. All the CACC Youth Camp Staff will be working hard to
invent new and very fun activities for all to enjoy, such as a
slideshow of past ECO camps, longer outdoor opportunities such as
canoeing, the "Wall Climb" and high ropes initiatives. We hope that
everyone is looking forward to another year of growth, memories and
new friends.

Hi, I'm Jamie K. Cartier, and have proudly served as the CACC Youth
Camp Coordinator for the last two years. I feel very fortunate to
have found this special connection, and look forward to coming back
each year. On a personal note, I am working towards the completion of
my Teaching Certification in Spanish and Outdoor Education, which
will be finalized in December of 2004! I am so honored to be a part
of such a progressive, yet grass roots organization and appreciate
everything from the friendships I make every year, the networking
that happens at ECO and ultimately seeing those young ones come back
every year.

Every year I seek new ways to accommodate every person who
participates in camp. I feel it is my personal responsibility to
bring together these young ones to provide a safe and comfortable
environment for everyone and to foster a rich appreciation for Mother

ECO Youth Friends will be led by Jamie and her talented staff. If you
are interested in playing with us or in leading an activity, call
(989) 6210619. Email: jahmme@hotmail.com

Electronic Communications:

Email, the Internet, and Beyond -

  Joseph Badura

      Building on similar sessions offered in previous years, Joseph
will offer one-on-one and small group assistance with negotiating the
resources of the word wide web, establishing an email account and the
basics of electronic communication.  A sign-up sheet will be
available at Registration to schedule times for individual
assistance. Small group sessions will be offered throughout the

  ECO Food:

The conference opens with a potluck supper Friday evening, so
remember to bring a dish to pass. We'll supply beverages and dessert.
Connie Beauvais and her talented team come to us from Lansing and
have planned a delicious menu of natural foods with an emphasis on
whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables.

Volunteer help is always appreciated in the kitchen. With prior
arrangements we can also have part of your conference enrollment fees
absorbed by CACC in exchange for a few hours help prepping meals.

ECO Auction:

The ECO Auction is an opportunity to bring something special to the
ECO Conference to donate to help support the work of CACC. A silent
auction will be held throughout the weekend, with individual items
being auctioned off before the group. Previous "prizes" have included
handmade cards, artwork, a water filtration kit, a bed and breakfast
weekend and many special books and surprises.

All contributions donated for this purpose are, of course, tax
deductible and will be acknowledged.

  ECO Arts and Music:

Victor McManemy

Victor will be back to ECO again this year with potent verses and
songs from the heart. Victor is devoting his life to developing and
sharing his message and his music. He appears at ECO sharing his
songs, his dreams and his love for all people.

Tim Joseph

Tim brings his warm style of Folk Music to ECO for another year. A
founder and organizer of the Spirit of the Woods Music Festival, June
19 th this year, in Brethren, MI. Tim has always had a love for the
people's music.  When not playing the guitar and banjo he's a
talented stonemason and carpenter from the Manistee County town of

Fine Arts Exhibit:

Gretchen Michaels, painter and art teacher will join us again this
year to work, play and remind us all that ART IS FOR EVERYONE.

The interactive art project for ECO 2004 will consist of mobiles and
murals that celebrate our fresh water supply and its importance to
all living things. Philip Lane Tanton has offered his time, talent
and supplies as well. Between Gretchen and Philip we are bound to
create some colorful and unique art that will convey a heart felt
message of protection and respect for the abundance of water in our

Whether your H2O ideas are realistic or abstract, there will be lots
of paint, cloth, sand, sponges, drywall sections and enthusiasm to
spark creative action in each of us.

Gretchen will be asking for words, ideas and input to complete the
final phase of this project. CACC will use this artwork to promote
dialogue with our Governor, Jennifer Granholm, regarding crucial
aspects or our environmental well-being.

Thank you to the many Backyard ECO folks at last year's conference
for making this collage a powerful, yet beautiful statement.

The ECO Fine Arts Program is partially underwritten by the generous
support of the Wheatland Music Organization, Remus. They are the
sponsors of the annual Wheatland Music Festival in September and the
Traditional Arts weekend in may of each Year.




State/Province __________________Zip______

Telephone Day ( )____________________

Telephone Evening ( )____________________

List the persons registered with this form.

Please give complete names and information on

each person. Attach additional sheet if needed.

Name                                 Adult(M/F) Child Age       (M/F)

Name                                 Adult(M/F) Child Age       (M/F)

Name                                 Adult(M/F) Child Age       (M/F)

Name                                 Adult(M/F) Child Age       (M/F)

Conference Fees

Adult Registration  $50.00 x            = $________

Student (with ID)  $25.00 x              =$________

Youth Program       $25.00 x            =$________


Meal Pass - 5 meals    $25.00 x         =$________

Single Meal Ticket       $5.50 x          =$________

Child's Meal Pass       $12.00 x          =$________

Single Child's Meal      $3.00 x          =$________

(Child 8-14, free below 8, 15 + adult)
Saturday Evening Supper
Number in your group attending


Cabin (per person)               $15.00 x   =$_______

Rough camping (tent /site)   $5.00    =$_______

RV Parking (no hookups) /site $7.50 =$_______

CACC Membership

Individual              25.00      $_______

Family                   30.00     $_______

Organization          50.00     $_______

Donation                            $_______

Total Amount                     $_______

Send with your check made out to CACC

Eco Conference Registrar
240 S. Bowery
Gladwin, MI  48624

Full refunds granted prior to May 5,

No refunds thereafter.
Attention College Students - A discounted registration fee and free
camping is offered to students with college/university
identification.  Please bring your ID with you to the conference to
confirm your discount.

Early Registration Bonus! - All adult registrations
postmarked by May 5 will receive a Backyard Eco Conference tote bag
featuring the CACC logo.  Registrants after that date will have the
opportunity to purchase a bag at Eco.

Scholarships - A limited number of work scholarships are available.
Call the Eco
Registrar at 989-426-5540 for details.

Or email kflocey@ejourney.com

  Conference Schedule

  Friday May 14

  3:00 - 8:00      Registration

  5:30 - 7:00      Potluck Dinner

                          (Please bring dish to pass!)

                           ** Beverages/Desert provided

  7:00 - 8:00      CACC's Annual Meeting

   8:00  - 9:30      Tom Huber

                                "Designing the Hobbit Home "

  9:30 -11:00      Informal Reception (Music, Socializing)

                           Victor McManemy, Tim Joseph and friends

Saturday May 15

  7:00 - 8:30      Breakfast

  8:45 - 10:00      Terry Swier
                             "Perrier vs. The People of Mecosta - Round Two"

  10:00 - 11:45         Cheryl Graunstadt
                                  "The Creation of an Activist"
     Noon - 1:00      Lunch

    1:15 - 3:00      Mike Keegan
                     "Nuclear/Alt Energy Update"

     3:00 - 4:00      Rita Jack

                             "Pine River Citizen

     4:00 - 5:00      Free Time / Group Discussion

     5:00 - 6:30      Dinner

     6:30 - 7:30      Gerard Grabowski

                             "Dirty New Coal Plant on Michigan Shoreline?"

     7:30 - 8:30      Eco Awards/Auction

  8:30 - 10:00      Rich Vander Veen

                              "A Declaration of Energy Independence"

10:00 - 12:00      Campfire Music with Victor, Tim & Friends

Sunday May 16

  7:30 - 9:00     Breakfast

  9:00 - 10:00     Free time / Group Discussion

10:30 - 11:00     Children's Presentation

11:00 - 12:00     Closing Speaker - Donele Wilkins

                            "Detroiters Working for Environmental Justice"

                 12:30      Closing Circle

     1:00 - 2:00      Lunch

          2:00 -  ?     Socialize, Clean up, Pack up, Departure

      For 22 years CACC has offered the Backyard ECO Conference. It is
our yearly opportunity to spend a carefree (other than issues)
weekend at a beautiful, nurturing lakeside spot in the woods. This is
a premier chance each year to soak up the sun, canoe, eat well,
dance, learn, share it all with young people and then end the weekend
with a 100-person hug. Come witness and participate with some of the
finest minds and warmest hearts in the Great Lakes area as we strive
with ideas and plans to bring about a better world.

Mystic Lake YMCA Camp has 500 acres of wooded land near LakeStation
in southwestern Clare County, and features two private lakes, unique
bogs and the most extensive patch of lady's slippers in the area. The
camp specializes in youth camping, environmental education, and
retreats. Lodging is provided in heated cabins, some with their own
bathrooms and the rest with central bathhouses, or, ECO participants
can camp on the grounds.

Mystic Lake YMCA Camp is owned and operated by the Lansing YMCA and
is located one mile west of Village of Lake on US - 10, or four miles
west of the end of the US - 10/M-115 freeway. All conference
registrants will receive a detailed map with their registration
packet. Late registrants are urged to call the ECO Registrar at
989-426-5540 (evenings) to assure space availability in cabins after
May 5.

The Backyard ECO Conference has been an annual gathering sponsored by
Citizens for Alternatives to Chemical Contamination since 1983. CACC
is a grassroots environmental education and advocacy organization
dedicated to the principles of social and economic justice, reduction
of corporate domination of American/World politics, pollution
prevention, citizen empowerment, and the protection of the Great
Lakes ECO system. CACC is a member of the Michigan Environmental
Council, the Michigan United Conservation Clubs, Great Lakes United,
and Earth Share of Michigan..

8735 Maple Grove Road
Lake, MI

=============================================================ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
majordomo@great-lakes.net  with a one-line message body of  "info enviro-mich"