Rock the Earth Cruises Along
not new news that Rock the Earth has been working hard over the last 5
years to protect our oceans, aquatic life and the aquatic ecosystem.
From protecting the Northwest Hawaiian Islands to working to persuade
the cruise industry to clean up their act, Rock the Earth has been an
effective voice for sustainability and environmental protection in this
critical area. As the Greening partner to Jam Cruises 4 & 5, we
became acutely aware of the significant environmental impacts that
cruise ships have on our aquatic ecosystem as well as on coastal
communities and global warming. To that end, our experience on Jam
Cruise also educated us as to the minimal impact that low-level
greening operations ultimately have on the overall environmental impact
from a cruise ship. In fact, the largest sources of pollution, namely
air pollution, carbon emissions, and discharges of minimally-treated
wastewater and sewage, are not affected at all by standard greening
Our long-time partners, Reverb,
had similar revelations working to green cruises such as the Barenaked
Ladies' Ships ‘n Dips, Mayercraft and Cayamo cruises. Recently,
Reverb and Rock the Earth joined forces with music cruise promoter
Sixthman to start to move the ball on this complicated issue. In late
September, representatives from Rock the Earth, Reverb and Sixthman met
in Miami with Norwegian Cruise Lines (NCL), to discuss NCL’s
environmental practices in advance of the 2011 Ships ‘n Dips
Cruise, on which Reverb Co-Founder, Adam Gardner, will be rocking out
with his band Guster.
The initial meeting with senior NCL officials, including the
company’s world-wide VP of Environmental Affairs went well,
allowing us to fully explore complex issues such as ways to improve
wastewater discharges, discharge monitoring programs, cleaner fuels,
slower ship speeds and shore power. We anticipate that this is just the
first of multiple meetings to come as we continue to educate Sixthman,
and each cruise line, about improvements that can, should and must be
taken to safely insure that operators of cruise lines are responsible
For further background or to read more about Rock the Earth’s work on this issue, go to our Cruise Ship Project Page.
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Meet the New Boss
no surprise that Americans are hurting in the worst economy since the
Great Depression. With official unemployment rates hovering around 10%
for over a year (and unofficial rates over 20%), small nonprofits that
rely heavily on individual donations are struggling. Rock the Earth has
not been immune to the economic downturn and significant drop in
individual and corporate supporters over the past two years has taken
its toll on our young organization.
Since the departure of our last Executive Director Shawn Kilmurray in
August, the Board has been actively involved in the recruitment of a
new ED. Several, very qualified and enthusiastic applicants applied for
the position and went through our interview process, but ultimately in
the end, the state of the economic health of the organization has
forced us to evaluate some very grim options. “We would hate for
us to extend an offer to a new Executive Director only for us to need
to move that person to part-time in the very near future,” said
Board Vice President Stacey Plant. “Not only would it be the
wrong thing to do, but it would not be good for the future of the
So, after much deliberation, we are very excited to announce that our
Founder and former Executive Director, Marc Ross, will be returning to
the Executive Director position effective November 1. With the return
of Mr. Ross to the ED position, it will allow our organization to once
again focus on building our resources to a stable state as once existed
before the economic downturn. Said Mr. Ross: “I am very excited
to take over the reins of Rock the Earth once again and believe that by
rededicating myself to this organization that I love, we will see both
financial prosperity and effective advocacy over the next year.”
We at Rock the Earth welcome the return of Mr. Ross to the ED role and
believe that it will only be temporary in nature. Already, cost cutting
measures taken by the Board in 2010, have resulted in much better
bottom line finances than we experienced in 2009. As of the date of
this newsletter, the organization carries no debt and with Mr. Ross
donating his time, with the re-engagement of our generous donors and
the improving economy, the organization is poised to return to full
financial health in 2011.
But, in order for the organization to take full advantage of these hard
cost cutting measures, we need YOUR help! If you are not yet a member
of Rock the Earth or if your membership has lapsed, please join (or
renew) TODAY. If you have already donated to us in the past year, we
would ask that you please consider making another donation before the end of the year to insure our viability going into 2011.
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A Fun Night to Rock the Earth - Denver
Saturday, November 6, 2010, the Rock the Earth Board and Volunteer
Staff will be gathering in Denver and YOU are invited. During the
evening, you’ll have your chance to hear what the organization
has been up to, meet the Staff and we’ll also be introducing our
new Executive Director, Marc Ross (see above).
to the generosity of New Belgium Brewing Company and some local
restaurants, we’ll enjoying some wonderful beverages and food. Rob Drabkin,
Denver’s Best Singer/Songwriter (Westword 2008, 2009, 2010) will
be setting the mood with some acoustic music. We’ll also be
conducting a Silent Auction, featuring rock memorabilia, concert
tickets, outdoor gear, artwork, gift certificates to local restaurants
and shops, video games, and other fantastic items, so don’t
forget to bring your checkbook! It’s going to be a very exciting
night, so we hope that you’ll join us!
Date: Saturday, November 6
Time: 7 to 10 p.m.
Where: Flobots.org Community Space, 2705 Larimer Street, Denver
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Key of Green: Improve Your Garden and Planet by Making Your Own Compost
you typically throw out leaves after raking them up? Consider trying
something different this Fall. Putting your leaf bags in the trash only
increases the strain on landfills, which are already overloaded with
yard clippings. According to the EPA,
decomposing yard waste acidifies other garbage and produces the
greenhouse gas methane. Burning your leaves leads to environmental and
health hazards even worse.
With just a little effort, you can turn your leaves into mulch or
compost instead, doing wonders for your garden! Just follow a few
Chop up the leaves to help them decompose. This can be done with a
shredding machine or lawn mower. After this step, the shredded leaves
may be added to your garden as mulch--a defender against weeds and
harsh weather—or carried on to the next step if you wish to make
Include grass clippings or other sources of nitrogen (such as alfalfa
meal or manure) in your compost bin or pile. Regularly add water to
preserve moisture and flip it over at least once a week to keep the
ingredients properly mixed.
process doesn’t happen overnight and takes at least a few months.
But in the end you’ll save a lot of money on compost, help the
environment, and greatly improve your garden with this nutrient-rich
If you are not a gardener, check with your local government for alternative yard waste collection and recycling programs.
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Rock the Earth Member Benefits: Live Nation Store
Live Nation Store is an online store selling music and merchandise
from100s of artists, including many RtE band partners: Bonnie Raitt,
DaveMatthews Band, Jackson Browne, Ozzy Osbourne, String Cheese
Incident, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, and more. The online store
even has an entire section dedicated to Green Gear. Check out http://www.store.livenation.com.
*Rock the Earth members receive a 15% discount on merchandise purchased at the online Live Nation Store.
To see a list of all Rock the Earth membership benefits, click here.
To find out how you can take advantage of these members-only benefits, e-mail
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Jam provides an outlet to thank non-staff volunteers and supporters who
have rocked it big time during the past month, and who have gone above
and beyond in generous support of the Rock the Earth cause.
We want to sincerely thank each of you for giving so generously of
their time, and applaud you for your contributions: Susan Honig, Shira
Newmark, Ivon Jorrin, Tara Mulvaney, Melissa Hans, Gregory Hans, Kevin
O'Donohue,Heather Nelson, Brandi Honeycutt, John Mehringer, Danny
Rosen, Rob Hillard, Susan Beam, Jenni Coopersmith, Andrea Browne, Erin
Tracey, Mimi Clayton, Liz Lundy, Lynda Kaufman, Jen Kaufman and Devon
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What Rocks Your Earth -- Rob Drabkin
Drabkin is a singer, songwriter and guitar player from Denver,
Colorado. He was voted Colorado's Best Singer/Songwriter by Westword
Magazine 2008-2010. He gathered enough votes to earn his turn on stage
at The Mile High Music Festival with artists like The Fray, Widespread
Panic, Tool, and Ben Harper. Rob has opened for The John Butler Trio
and has done short tours with Carbon Leaf and Tea Leaf Green as well as
a national tour with Davy Knowles and Back Door Slam. "On These Heavy
Feet" is Rob's first full length release.
What environmental issue(s) do you consider to be the most critical at this time?
I think it's safe to say I've never seen a happy human being at a gas
station. No one is happy there, at all, ever. Certainly myself
included. Even if you have the money to spend, It's one of the least
rewarding places to visit. After doing my taxes for 2009, I tallied up
about 25,000 miles on my car from touring as an active musician. That
was about $3000 dollars in gas money. Part of my travels this year was
6 week supporting tour on beautiful Prevost tour bus. Each time we
filled up the tank, it was $500. The factors problems surrounding
petroleum usage extend well beyond a musician's checkbook: burned
carbon fuel in the atmosphere and global warming, the cruelty drilling
has on land and water, and simply the corruption of the industry
itself. It was thrown right in our faces this year when we saw how one
single oil company actually has the capability of destroying an entire
What has inspired you to combine environmental activism with your art?
It looks like this spring, I will be part of a 6 week tour on a bus
powered by vegetable oil! It'll be my first time running a diesel
engine and really interesting to learn how effective it is. The bus
will sleep about 10 people. From what I've researched the cost can be
anywhere from a dollar a gallon for filtered oil, $ 0.50 a gallon to
unfiltered oil, free depending on the restaurant, and if you make it a
regular stop, then you can actually earn money by taking oil off the
hands off of restaurants. My gas station blues might be forever
eliminated :). That I am looking forward to!
Where is your favorite place in nature to go to find solace or inspiration?
Just outside of Fraser, CO, about 10 miles of getting lost on unnamed
roads, eventually I arrive at "Miles Behind," my family's cabin. My mom
and dad named it after a favorite Miles Davis record, "Miles Ahead."
We've had for about 15 years and music has filled that place ever since
we built it. Usually my Dad (saxophone) and I go on the small deck and
just wail! Deer and even moose come out and say hello.... or they hear
us and run away. It was almost destroyed by the forest fire this past
week (it was about a half mile out), but we lucked out. I've written a
number of songs there and a number of songs in the city. A friend of
mine listened to a song last week and said, you wrote that at the
cabin, didn't you? I guess it's starting to show. We'll be recording
drums for the next CD there!
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Rock the Earth invites you to follow our musings and up-to-the-minute events and issues coverage at www.Twitter.com/RocktheEarth, and become a fan of Rock the Earth on Facebook to stay updated on the most notable news stories, photos and events in the Rock the Earth realm.
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