By David Krantz
NEW YORK (Jan. 16, 2014) — The next Shmita year is scheduled to begin in September, so we need to get ready! The Jewish Energy Guide is designed to help the Jewish community become more environmentally sustainable and help reduce our energy consumption in preparation for the next Shmita year. And in honor of Tu B’Shvat, the Green Zionist Alliance and the Coalition for the Environment and Jewish Life are releasing the complete Jewish Energy Guide as a PDF today.
The 100-page Jewish Energy Guide features articles by fellow Siach members Rabbi Nina Beth Cardin, Mirele Goldsmith, Einat Kramer, Jakir Manela, Evonne Marzouk, Rachel Jacoby Rosenfield, Rabbi David Seidenberg, Rabbi Lawrence Troster and Gail Wechsler, as well as Siach advisory-board member Naomi Tsur. Other contributors include Al Gore, Bill McKibben and Rabbi Arthur Waskow.
Siach means conversation, and although the Jewish Energy Guide is being released today, the publication began simply with a conversation between me and COEJL Director Sybil Sanchez at the first Siach in 2011 at Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center.
So this Tu B’Shvat, read the Jewish Energy Guide, begin preparations for Shmita, and start a conversation with someone new about Jewish environmentalism. Because you never know where something as simple as a conversation can lead.