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CONTACT: DEBRA VENZKE
UI COLLEGE OF PUBLIC HEALTH
5203 Westlawn
(319) 335-9647
e-mail: debra-venzke@uiowa.edu

Release: Nov. 7, 2002

UI to host program on sustainable agriculture and renewable energy Nov. 20 in Calmar

The University of Iowa College of Public Health and the UI Alumni Association will co-sponsor a Wednesday, Nov. 20 educational program, titled "Farming for the Future: Sustainable Agriculture and Renewable Energy Production," in Calmar, Iowa.

The free, public program will take place at the Dairy Center, Room 115, just south of Northeast Iowa Community College, 1527 Highway 150, in Calmar. A reception with light refreshments will begin at 5 p.m., followed by the 5:30-7 p.m. program.

The program will feature two speakers. Michael Duffy, Ph.D., associate director of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, will discuss sustainable agriculture in a talk titled, "Where Have All the Farmers Gone?" David Osterberg, associate professor of occupational and environmental health in the UI College of Public Health, will highlight aspects of renewable energy programs currently used by European countries. In summer 2002, Osterberg and several colleagues completed a four-week solar bicycle tour of renewable energy sites in northern Europe. He will talk about how an educational bicycle tour like his can help change energy policy in Iowa and what role citizens can play in influencing government policy decisions on such issues.

Due to limited seating, those planning to attend the program are asked to register in advance by contacting Jasmine Grassi at (319) 335-9829 or by e-mail at jasmine-grassi@uiowa.edu.

In addition to his work with the Leopold Center, Duffy is a professor of agricultural economics at Iowa State University and works with ISU Extension farm management specialists. He is the professor-in-charge of the ISU Beginning Farmer Center and conducts the yearly Iowa land values poll.

Osterberg spent 12 years in the Iowa General Assembly (1983-1994), where he served as chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Environmental Protection and chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture. Osterberg consults regularly on energy and natural resources issues and has appeared as an expert witness for consumer groups, environmental groups and small businesses in contested cases before state public utility commissions in eight states and before the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Osterberg is also executive director of the Iowa Policy Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting research on a broad set of issues of importance to Iowans.

This program has been planned in cooperation with Northeast Iowa Community College and the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture. The statewide College of Public Health Educational Outreach Series is funded in part by a grant from the Principal Financial Group Foundation. More information about the educational outreach programs, including a schedule of upcoming events, can be found at www.public-health.uiowa.edu/eop/.