by Lisa Crockett
CP Green has a new leader at its helm. Carol Barbeito, a Castle Pines North (CPN) resident, has assumed leadership of the community group, which aims to help the Castle Pines community find ways to live in a more environmentally friendly way. Barbeito takes the place of former leader Ryan Parker.
“I want to thank Ryan for all his time and efforts in getting CP Green started and vital to our community” said Castle Pines North City Council member Jennifer Havercroft, who serves as the City’s liaison to the group. “It has been an honor and a privilege to work with him on this extremely worthwhile venture.”
Barbeito encourages residents of the community to get involved in the group, which looks for ways to provide programs and opportunities for recycling and other environment-conscious changes to the area.
“We welcome and need more members and volunteers to CP Green,” she said.
CP Green isn’t Barbeito’s only venture in the “green” arena. In fact, she’s at the helm of an environmental movement that spans the globe via the Internet. Barbeito and her son, Grant – who has expertise in film and video production, joined forces to create Earth Protect (www.earthprotect.com) as a way to merge social networking with environmental awareness.
The site features more than 2,500 videos on a myriad of environmental topics and forums related to the featured topics, which provides an avenue for people to connect and work toward common goals.
“Green is now the new norm,” said Barbeito. “We feel we’re doing something important about the biggest problem the world has ever faced.”
The content of the website is screened and is only included on the site if it is deemed appropriate for users as young as 13.
“We’re looking for ways that schools can use the site in their curriculum and help to create a new education model,” said Barbeito.
Young users seem to be catching on, forming forums and groups on the site and adding content of their own. University and high school students are participating in forum discussions, and a charter high school in California has a blog linked to the site.
The site is sponsoring a world-wide youth video contest to further encourage active participation from students.
Barbeito brings years of management expertise to the endeavor, though to date the project has been a labor of love, rather than a strictly professional pursuit. She spent months researching the best way to organize the voluminous content of the site in a way that would make it accessible and useful.
“We wanted to raise awareness, connect people and tell them how to act,” said Barbeito. “Our goal is to have 40 million unique users by the end of 2012.”
The site is well on its way, currently boasting roughly 40,000 unique users since its launch roughly a year ago. At the current time, traffic at the site increases by about 25 percent per month.
“We’re really thrilled with the way this is coming together,” said Barbeito. “It’s been great to blend my years of management experience with my son’s creative abilities; it’s very exciting.”
Barbeito, whose professional background is as a leader in various non-profit organizations, is a Senior Associate of the Australia Environment International, a Friend of Colorado Association of Nonprofit Organizations and Executive Committee Member of the South Platte Sierra Club.
Barbeito has been passionate about the environment for years and recommends those just starting to learn about ways to protect the planet start small.
“Pick just one or two things you can do – start small,” she said. “Unplug the appliances in your house and plug them in only when you are using them. Save your errands and do them in one trip, rather than making several trips. Turn off the lights when you’re not using them. It’s better for the earth and it’s better for your pocketbook. It’s a win-win.”
What is Castle Pines Green?
Message provided by the City of Castle Pines North
The CP Green Committee promotes sustainable growth ideas and suggestions to the City of Castle Pines North with an emphasis on green solutions for our business district and residential areas. A list of broad priorities includes:
* Environmental Design
* Balance of Growth and Nature
* Communitywide Recycling
A warm thank you is extended to Jennifer Havercroft, City liaison to the CP Green Committee, Ryan Parker, Chair of the CP Green Committee, and Carol Barbeito, the future chair of the CP Green Committee, for their vision and green solution research to protect the quality of life in the city.