Project Portfolio

Organic Waste Diversion

Did you know that, taken as a whole system, agriculture is the number one contributor to greenhouse gas emissions globally?

Here's a solution: let's take the food wastes from this extractive system and transform them into a feedstock for regenerative food systems. Regenerative agricultural systems simultaneously improve soil health, retain water, support biodiversity, and frequently improve food justice! Locally, we can avoid thousands of metric tons of greenhouse gasses annually simply by getting our food scraps into a compost pile. That's a solution we can all participate in - and support the regenerative revolution every time we do!

We are in the process of developing a realistic set of plans to divert at least 25% of our region's food waste. Stay tuned!

Northwest Lower Michigan Organics Diversion Roundup

Compost and Food Waste Reduction Project in Traverse City

Green Team Facilitator

As the City of Traverse City's Green Team facilitator, SEEDS is honored to share that the City received the gold certification for the Green Communities Challenge in 2022! The Michigan Green Communities Challenge is an annual program that serves as a guide to help communities measure their progress towards sustainability. Gold is the highest level, placing the City of Traverse City into the same category as Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, and Marquette.

In 2016, the City Commission passed a Clean Energy Resolution committing the City to meet 100% of operational electricity demands as reflected by the yearly total of all municipal electric meters with clean, renewable energy sources by 2020 (which they did!). The City developed the Green Team, composed of both department and community liaisons, to create a plan to become “carbon neutral before mid-century.” SEEDS was engaged to manage the City’s efforts.

Curbside Recycling

In 2020, SEEDS supported the waste diversion interests of three cities in Charlevoix County, including Charlevoix, Boyne City, and East Jordan. We researched opportunities to add curb-side recycling to the suite of services they provide to their residential and commercial stakeholders.

Did you know that communities that offer centralized recycling drop-off sites see participation rates of only 9%? With curbside recycling, that participation rate goes up to 67%! The Charlevoix County Community Foundation supported a deep, technical analysis of local capacity, opportunities, and financial implications for adding curb-side pickup of recyclables. The SEEDS team worked on this project with Resource Recycling Systems, a Michigan-based company out of Ann Arbor.

Clean Energy Salon Series

For centuries, the energy marketplace has been focused on:
  • Centralizing power structures (large-scale power generation, financial controls);
  • Exponential growth in the demand for electricity and extractive additives (think fertilizer and concrete, for example);
  • Burning the btus of petroleum products, and
  • Socializing all the “externalities” including the real costs of public health, ecosystem resilience, indigenous governance structures, global climate stability, and so on.

To address these issues, SEEDS facilitated a salon series in 2019 to elevate regional energy literacy, strengthen the platform for Clean Energy penetration into our regional marketplace, create quality time for problem solvers who are 'doing the work', and identify useful tools and information that can be more broadly shared. See all the topics and resources here.

Energy Management Workshop

In 2018, the Energy Management & Capital Improvement Planning Workshop was presented by the Michigan Community Energy Partnership (EcoWorks, SEEDS, Michigan Energy Options) in partnership with the Michigan Association of Planning and the Michigan Agency for Energy. 

We invited Michigan municipalities, school districts, and hospital systems to participate in our Energy Management & Capital Improvement Planning Workshop involving an overview of the capital improvement planning processes and a discussion on how to build energy efficiency strategies into Michigan organizations' capital improvement plans.