Iowa City Weekender – September 13-14

Little Village is going to monopolize this week’s weekender by highlighting I-Renew’s 2008 Energy and Sustainability Expo. No, it’s not the only thing to do this weekend, it’s just the only thing you SHOULD do. Keep your eyes on the sustainable prize of an earth that loves its inhabitants.

Saturday, September 13 – Sunday, September 14

I-Renew Energy & Sustainability Expo | Center for Energy & Environmental Education (CEEE), University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, Iowa | $10 or free for I-renew members

Organic eating for pennies, everyday tips for living green, beginning permaculture design and growing food instead of mowing a lawn: these 70 exhibitors and demonstrations have a li’l something for everyone.

At 1 p.m. this Saturday, Keynoter Wally Rippel will be presenting the address, “Climate Change and an All-Electric Economy.” Many conscientious oil-objectors have probably already made the transition from the old Volvo to the new Toyota Prius, but we’re all still steps away from traveling completely sans petrol. The more we know, the more we control, and it’s already time to step it up. Hey all you consumers shout: Affordable electric cars for everybody! Tesla Motors made one (I know what you’re saying–who???–the car manufacturer Rippel worked for) and Chevorlet will release its Volt in 2010. It’s the ride of the future and y’all can learn about it NOW at the expo.

And for those of you sick of turning trees into wasted xeroxes at your earth-crushing jobs, plan on attending Lisa Kivirist and John Ivanko’s talk, “ECOpreneuring: Putting Purpose and the Planet before Profits,” that same day at 2:10 p.m. They’ve made their way sowing an organic earth and keeping a sustainable inn, and have a few ladybugs up their sleeves who can tell you the path to your very own green-collar job. Figure out the skills you already have and make them work for your own green agenda.

What else are hot topics at this year’s energy expo? Well, you can learn about new solar thermal technologies to pick up sustainable- AND science-minded chicks, cooking with the sun for your hot Sunday date, and solar home design for the passive–all on Saturday. Sunday will learn ya that bikes are not your only option for a human-powered vehicle, how to be a part of a community (g)re(ase)cyling program, and how to reduce your home’s energy use.

So conserve your energy on Thursday and Friday and spend it all this weekend at the I-Renew expo up in Cedar Falls (biking or carpooling there, of course). Take in some of their tips and follow their instructions for action, and the earth will love you for it.

Entry is free for I-Renew members and $10 for non-members attending each day’s events.

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