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Change Agents for a Greener Naples Make Strides

by Linda Sechrist W

hile no one knows which acts or individuals will finally tip the critical mass toward

an enduring good, we do know that a small, determined group of people that do not give up will make a difference. In Naples, a small, yet resolute group of change agents continues to work for a greener community. Blazing trails, they encourage others to follow.

Dianne Rhodes,

Citizen Activist For years, Dianne Rhodes has been working tirelessly for the planet, whether she’s in Naples or back home in Saskatch- ewan, Canada. In 2006, she organized a home viewing party for former Vice President Al Gore’s film, An Inconve- nient Truth; in 2007, she motivated a group of 400 at the Naples Pier for Bill McKibben’s first national day of envi- ronmental action (the event that led to the development of; and in 2008, she formed a Naples Network for Climate Action that orchestrated Naples Leading the Way to Sustain- ability, a week of environmental events and actions. Recently, she completed training with Gore and the scientists of the Climate Reality Project to become a Climate Reality presenter.

Rhodes also participated in the fourth annual Healing Walk, July 4 through 6, in Fort McMurray, Alberta; a meaningful ceremonial action to pray for the healing of Mother Earth, especially from damage by the tar sands industry. The event required camping in the heart of tar sands country on the territory of the Fort McMurray First Nation. Noth-

36 Collier/Lee Counties

ing prepared Rhodes for the stark reality of seeing the tar sands for the first time. She says, “The site of Syncrude’s (one of the largest producers of crude oil from Canada’s oil sands) open pit mines, the toxic tailings ponds so deadly and devoid of life, massive machines, smoke- stacks bellowing clouds of poison into the atmosphere and the constant stream of heavy trucks and machinery brought me to tears. I thought of climate scientist James Hansen’s words, ‘If the Keystone XL goes through, it will be game over for the climate.’”

To contact Dianne Rhodes, email Dian- Also, visit stop-Keystone-xl.

Marjorie Ziff-Levine,

Green Dreamer Ever since a sympo- sium—Awakening the Dreamer, Changing the Dream—reignited Marjorie Ziff-Levine’s passion for environ- mental activism, she has worked to build awareness for green practices that save energy and resources.

Naples Sustainable Business Network Mixer

Join green businesses, organizations and community leaders contributing to a sustainable future for southwest Florida held at different locations each month.

Thursday, October 10th 5:15-6:45pm

Harmon-Meek Gallery 599 Ninth St N., Suite 309, Naples

RSVP: NPower Naples: 234-4558. Leave message with contact info and number attending.

Initially active as a facilitator of the sym- posium, she subsequently worked with Rhodes in planning a sustainability event in Fleishmann Park. She also designed an eco-networking web portal and eco- business consulting practice and vol- unteered her time to a group of Florida Gulf Coast University students interested in sustainable business. Ziff-Levine par- ticipated in the county and city Energy Task Forces and organized the U Gotta Go Green Eco-extravaganza at Mercato, in Naples, on October 10, 2010. A woman with a positive attitude and a lot of perseverance, Ziff-Levine hasn’t let up. Most recently, she created the Naples Sustainable Business Net- work (NSBN), which has attracted 40 to 60 people to their monthly gatherings. The green champion believes that since her involvement began in 2008, small actions by hundreds of individuals have accumulated to build support for the green initiatives now emerging in Na- ples. Subscribing to the theory that, “A steady rain soaks the grass,” Ziff-Levine patiently awaits the time when the seeds she has fervently sown blossom into the field of green she’s long envisioned.

Find the Naples Sustainable Business Network on Facebook at NPowerNaples.

Cloe Waterfield,

Twentyfifty Cloe Waterfield’s scientific research and consulting company, twentyfifty, helps organizations and individuals optimize environmental objectives in both daily operations and long-term business

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