Green Building

Worldwide Green Building Council Forms

TESTINGOn November 12, in San Francisco, a new organization was formed – the World Green Building Council. Its purpose is to foster the development of national green building councils around the world to develop and promote standards, rating and certification systems, performance measures, technologies, products, and resources in green building and construction. Currently there are formal councils in the U.S, Japan, Spain and Korea. A new website will help members communicate and will include a “tool kit” to provide a model for countries interested in forming their own national green building councils. The next World Green Building Council meeting is currently scheduled to be held March 30-31, 2000 in Paris, France. The website will be: http://www.wgbc.org. For more information, contact Michelle A. Crozier, WorldBuild Technologies.

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Pennsylvania's Story of Building Green: On Video

TESTINGA free video that documents the green design and construction process for Pennsylvania’s new 73,000 square foot Department of Environmental Protection building may be useful if you are exploring the idea for your own construction project or for use as a professional tool to educate potential clients. Pennsylvania plans to replicate the integrated planning and design process used here as a model for future state buildings. The video chronicles the construction process from brownfield remediation to installation of access floors and carpet tiles. You’ll see interviews with industry leaders like Ray Anderson of Interface and Rick Fedrizzi of Carrier, as well as the manufacturing process of some green materials; PET soda bottles turned into work stations, for example. At $78/sf for hard construction costs, the building consumes half the energy of a comparable conventional building and saves $50,000 annually. Some of its green features are: – energy-efficient building envelope, including argon-filled, low-e windows – access floors used for conditional air supply – highly reflective ceiling tiles, light shelves for daylight penetration, high efficiency indirect lighting – gas-fired absorption chillers – removable carpet tiles – recycled-content workstation fabric and natural fiber upholstery fabric – occupancy-sensing power strips and controls – recycled-content […]

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Fort Worth Post Office Tests Green Design

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TESTINGWith 35,000 facilities, and 500-700 new ones going up each year, the USPS has an enormous building program. A wide range of green building features are being tested in a series of showcase facilities. The first to be completed is the 25,500 square foot Eighth Avenue Post Office in Fort Worth, Texas, which opened for business early this year. The budget for the Eighth Avenue Post Office allowed for a cost premium of up to 10 percent to cover experimental green strategies, for a total budget of $93.50 per square foot. Among the environmental strategies at this facility are rainwater catchment, daylighting, high-efficiency lighting and HVAC, native plantings, and the use of various low-impact, certified wood and recycled materials. Interpretive signage explains these features to visitors. Recycled materials are used in: — Mulch: recycled cellulose and yard scraps — Base aggregate (for paving and under slab): recycled concrete & stone — Concrete: waste fly ash — Toilet partitions: recycled plastic — Dock bumpers: recycled tires — Wall bumpers: recycled plastic — Acoustical ceiling tiles: recycled cellulose — Sheathing/millwork panels: recycled cellulose The drinking water rainwater catchment system is rare in non-residential buildings. As a semi-private federal agency, the Postal Service […]

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Eco-Industrial Design Competition

TESTINGAn Eco-Industrial Design Competition is underway for students and professionals. It opened March 1 and entries are due by April 12. The design challenge is to create a site design for an eco-park and second, to design a flexible “green” light industrial/office building. Sponsored by Londonderry, New Hampshire (the site of the eco-industrial park) and Cornell’s Work & Environment Institute, $10,000 in prize money will be awarded for winning entries. A collection of the best entries will be exhibited at the National Town Meeting for a Sustainable America in May and also in Cornell galleries. [sorry this link is no longer available]

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Alliance Proposes Fix for National Model Energy Codes

TESTING1999 is a pivotal year for residential energy codes in the United States. The International Code Council, which develops model codes for states and localities to adopt, is trying to resolve a conflict between its energy code and a new residential code. The International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) is used as a model by dozens of states, but the new International Residential Code (IRC) has its own energy standards which are weaker than the IECC. If states start using the IRC, new homes will be less energy efficient. A contentious set of hearings are set for March and September. In general, energy codes are too weak. If you’d like to get involved, contact the Alliance to Save Energy. Bill Prindle: brindle@ase.org http://www.ase.org David Eisenberg, at the Development Center for Appropriate Technology is also working on greening building codes: DCAT@azstarnet.com

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Alliance Proposes Fix for National Model Energy Codes

TESTING1999 is a pivotal year for residential energy codes in the United States. The International Code Council, which develops model codes for states and localities to adopt, is trying to resolve a conflict between its energy code and a new residential code. The International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) is used as a model by dozens of states, but the new International Residential Code (IRC) has its own energy standards which are weaker than the IECC. If states start using the IRC, new homes will be less energy efficient. A contentious set of hearings are set for March and September. In general, energy codes are too weak. If you’d like to get involved, contact the Alliance to Save Energy. Bill Prindle: brindle@ase.org http://www.ase.org David Eisenberg, at the Development Center for Appropriate Technology is also working on greening building codes: DCAT@azstarnet.com

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Ideal Sustainable Home

TESTINGThe Ideal Sustainable Home will be constructed for public view at Sustain ’99, the World Sustainable Energy Fair, May 25-27, in Amsterdam. It will be fully equipped with the latest innovations to demonstrate that clean energy and energy efficiency are affordable and offer a higher standard of living. The house will feature PV, solar water heating, passive glazing, and combined heat and power, as well as many energy saving techniques, including a low-water washing machine and a rainwater collection system. Furniture and fittings will be produced from sustainable wood and other materials. The architecturally designed house will be built in the exhibit hall by one of the largest construction consortiums in The Netherlands, NBM-Amstelland. The house will be re-located afterward to the major housing project at Leidsche Rijn near Utrecht. Source: Environmental Design & Construction http://www.edc-mag.com

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Green Post Office Opens

TESTINGThe world’s first green post office opened in November in Ft. Worth, Texas, made entirely with recycled-content materials and energy efficient systems. With more than 35,000 facilities nationwide, and about 700 new facilities constructed each year, USPS is implementing alternatives to wasteful building practices. Some of the environmental features of the new building are: * Recycled cellulose and yard scraps used in landscaping mulch * Fly ash in concrete * Recycled plastic in toilet partitions and wall bumpers * Recycled tires in dock bumpers * Recycled cellulose in ceiling tiles and panels * Certified wood throughout * Strawbale exterior walls * Recycled trellis structure shades the south-facing windows during the summer * Recycled steel reinforcements The facility took two years to construct and saved the agency $36,000 over a similar size conventional structure.

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Habitat for Humanity Forms Green Team

TESTINGOver 400 of Habitat for Humanitys 1500 affiliates have signed up for the Green Team, a new program that provides education on energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and sustainable building design. How a house is built is largely up to the particular affiliate. Were trying to provide information that is volunteer-friendly, affordable, and that enables them to conserve energy without hatcheting up costs, explains Graham Davis, Green Team director. The plan is to build all Habitat homes to EPA Energy Star standards. At a recent five-day blitz-build in Houston, all 100 homes were built to the standards. After affiliates are up-to-speed on energy efficiency the Green Team will expand to alternative building materials such as strawbale. They also promote job site recycling; at a recent blitz build they recycled or reused sheet rock, scrap lumber, aluminum and vinyl. Source: Environmental Design & Construction

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Helping the Hospitality Industry Become Sustainable

TESTINGAs the problematic impacts of tourism developments become evident, developers face the challenge of creating a balance between economic growth and the environmental sensitivity. Twin Share: Tourism Accommodation & the Environment is an Australian government website; its comprehensive information, however, is universal. It’s a primer for the tourism industry on sustainable principles, environmental construction materials, design, eco-management, energy, waste, and water technologies. There are 12 case studies of successful Australian businesses where innovative technology and environmental practices have been implemented. [sorry this link is no longer available]

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