Minutes – January 13, 2015

Wednesday, January 13, 2016 at the Library


Those in attendance and their specific interests:

Erika Davis (good forum for change), Kimberly Foley (water/privatization), Bob Gerfy (What is transition?/time to go to work), Ande Finley (be inspired to live life better), Beverly Zapalac (preparedness/transportation), Felicity Green (local self sufficiency/transp), Henning Sehmsdorf (local food systems/transp), Scott Finley (local food system/barn raising), Margot Janeway (water/youth involvement/be a model), Mike Moore (transp/trails), Kay Keeler (act locally/change regionally), George Keeler (transp/preparedness/sustainability), Erin Bernardi (education/youth-videos), Liz Lafferty (water/spiritual conversations), Chom Greacen (renewable energy/OPALCO).


  • Community Solar: 

Chom stated the importance of the Transition group and the island community in actively participating in the coming election of the next OPALCO board member (April 2016).  The Energy group is concerned about the lack of support for community solar projects by Opalco-as they see solar as a financial threat.  She reports that only 0.3% of the energy on the Island comes from solar.  Chom felt that there were a few viable/good candidates (in their opinion) that would be supportive of more community solar projects.  Those candidates include:  Brian Silverstein and Lauren Stephens.  Henning stated that he has two solar panels-explaining to the group how they work and the energy savings (1/2 of the energy produced sold to OPALCO).

  • Carbon WA update: 

Ande explained the Carbon WA Initiative to the group-stating that it should make it onto the ballot in November.  She reminded the group to write their legislators asap (this week), and to remind others.

  • Climate Action Workgroup:  

Bob reported that he has sent out e-mails to those interested in participating in this group-especially those who have expressed interest in the Salish Sea.  He will contact them again in the next week to schedule a meeting this month.

Ande suggested that one of the speakers for a “Potluck with a Purpose” event could be Eric DePlace (Sightline institute)-an expert on the Salish Sea, to discuss the impacts of fossil fuel transport in the San Juans, with possible partnering with the Sierra Club and Friends of the San Juans.  Henning questioned what would be gained by such an event/speaker.  Would it lead toward/inspire direct action by the community? Group discussion followed.  Erin stated that she thought more research on the speaker should be done prior to a decision.  Group agreed to have Bob research the speaker, assess if he thought the event would benefit the community and then bring that info back to the group-before any concrete decision is made.


  • New Schedule/Next: 

It was decided that the next barn raising would be in March at Swallows Reach (pending approval by Kim/Liz’s landlord).  It would involve expanding the garden and general work around the property.  Liz stated that she would contact the Finleys in the next few weeks to see if others have expressed interested in a barn raising at their place in February (Sheila Metcalf, Judy Neiman, Finleys).  Future projects might include the Hamlet House and Resource center.  Kay explained the barn raising process to new members.  Mike mentioned the possibility of including High School students in the process through various school programs (Community Service/School Credits).  Henning stated that the group would need to come up with Community Service Projects-and then he would be happy to contact the school.

  • Tool Lending Library Update:

Scott stated that the bike shop would be the location for the library and a shop/building would need to be built.  Liz agreed to work on this with Scott.


  • Future LEG-UP events-how to proceed: 

Ande explained that these events are designed to invite speakers to present business’ ideas/projects to the community (inviting investors).  She described Square Holders:  potential for grants/loans/micro lending without interest etc.  Group liked this idea.  Tabled for now.

  • Taproot Community Kitchen fundraiser:  

Ande proposed a fundraiser to help support the new Community Kitchen.  She mentioned several people involved in this project/endeavor (Jean Perry, Randy Waugh, Josh & Jen Ratza).  She said that thus far, a 3 month trial/lease has been worked out.


  • “Potlucks with a Purpose” and Other Events:

Group agreed that the potlucks would be beneficial, but not quite sure how often to have them and when.  Liz and Kim agreed to help organize these events-others interested including:  Henning and Felicity.

Potential topics/speakers including: 

*Foraging with Doug Benoliel-possibly in the spring

*Friends of Fidalgo Island- Vision 2030

*Eric DePlace (mentioned above)

*Nikyta Palmisani- Creativity class

*Nathan Donnelly-Permaculture class

Other Events/Topics:

Meaningful Movies?  Most agreed that the first meaningful movie shown on Lopez-sponsored by Transition “This Changes Everything” was a success regarding the promotion of the film/great attendance etc…  However, not everyone agreed on the effectiveness of the film in inspiring direct action from the community.  Others felt that the question and answer portion of the event did get the community discussing the topic and had some community members wishing to be contacted regarding further involvement (Bob Gerfy).  Kay Keeler agreed to be responsible for the movies.  Discussion about the handling of money raised at Transition events.  Need more accountability?  A treasurer?  Questions still exist regarding future showings/how often and handling of money.

Emergency Preparedness:  Should this be educational or a separate group-many Transition members are interested in this topic.  Discussion about existing agencies already responsible for preparedness on Lopez (ie, County Council).  Beverly will look into this further.

“Sound Waters” educational event (Whidbey Island):  Ande reminded group of an e-mail she sent out regarding this event on Feb 6th-put on by “Sound Waters”.  Cost of the event is $48.00.  She thought this would be good information for the Transition group to have-if someone was interested in going.

West Coast Cities PeopleS Declaration:  Ande followed up with the “declaration” project.  This project was spearheaded by a number of Unitarian Churches the NW and throughout the country.  Anne Miller (Seattle) asked Ande if she would discuss the project with Transition Lopez, to see if they were willing to support it and sign the Declaration.  The declaration message:  “No More Fossil Fuel Infrastructure”.  It is rather lengthy.  Erica agreed to condense it.  Not sure of any deadline with this–it is ongoing.  Group agreed that they should support it and sign.

Tour de Lopez:  Kay announced that the Tour de Lopez this year will include many riders from the school.  She encouraged people to sponsor as many young people as possible.


No update.  Mike, Felicity, George and Henning will meet and report about this at the next meeting.


Date of February Meeting to be determined.  Ande and Liz will confer about place and time and e-mail the group.