STAR Community Index, Like LEED But For Cities and Local Governments

Keep your eyes out for the newest tool designed to rate cities in their efforts to push environmental stewardship.  The STAR Community Index is like LEED, but it’s designed to rate local governments.  With myriad green city rankings and websites trying to calculate the sustainability of local governments,* it’s high time for a highly respected, standardized formula for measuring a community’s sustainability.  According to ICLEI, the STAR Program will create a process, not unlike LEED, to bring in leaders in the field toward the goal of establishing shared measures and processes for greening communities.  STAR will have tiered levels, with the aim to accomplish the following:

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By |August 18th, 2008|Categories: LEED, News|Tags: |5 Comments

RoofRay Your Building's Solar Potential

I just noticed this RoofRay mashup that uses Google Maps and various other information to help you calculate the solar potential of your building.  It’s pretty interesting, actually.  You can find your building, trace the potential solar roof area, adjust the calculations based on your estimate of orientation and angle, and then see what you have.  After that, you start entering in your electricity usage information and the company you purchase electricity from (watch out though because they didn’t have Rocky Mountain Power’s information and may not have your information yet).  After that, you cruise along where they start to provide you with an estimate of the system’s cost, rebates, and potential savings, etc. 

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By |August 18th, 2008|Categories: Gadgets, Solar|Tags: |0 Comments

Beleza To Be Smart, Green Community

River North Properties LLC is planning to develop a LEED Certified, condo/retail project for Denver’s River North ("RiNo") neighborhood.  Named Beleza, a Brazilian Portuguese word for "beauty", this luxurious green community is modeled after the Brazilian city of Curitiba.  Like Curitiba, Beleza will focus on sustainable lifestyle, eco-friendly development, and planning that cuts pollution and waste while improving the quality of life for residents.  It will also have smart amenities, such as biometric fingerprint access, climate-controlled window blinds, power outlets in parking spaces, and digital screen controlled integrated lighting, communications, and A/V systems. 

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By |August 17th, 2008|Categories: Condo, LEED, Skyscraper|Tags: |1 Comment

Home Solar, Green Church, Changing American Dream, + Eco Factory Homes

Solar power hits home. Factory-homes might be greener. Giant retailers look to sun for energy savings. NREL solar cells set efficiency record of 40.8%. The American dream is changing. […]

By |August 16th, 2008|Categories: Week in Review|0 Comments

Modern Alley House Goes Super Green

Just one mile from downtown Seattle in Madison Valley, Cascade Built has finished their latest green home, the Alley House.  This high-performance home just received LEED Platinum certification last week and, for those that are interested, is on sale for ~$770,000.  The home is on an advantageous urban infill lot and features some high-end finishes such as Caesarstone countertops, Kirei doors, and a Liebherr refrigerator.  In addition to a private bamboo garden, this home has some of the following green features:

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By |August 15th, 2008|Categories: LEED, Modern architecture, Single Family|Tags: |9 Comments

Palo Alto Law Firm Installs Large 87 kW Solar System

The Silicon Valley-based law firm of Cooley Godward Kronish has just brought online the largest on-site solar system of any Bay Area law firm.  The 465 panel, 87 kW system was installed on the roof of their Palo Alto-Hanover building of 130,000 sf.  Installing a solar system of this size has almost lost its newsworthiness, especially with tons of companies placing monster solar arrays in service by the end of this year to take advantage of the tax benefits.  But what’s really interesting, I think, is one of the reasons the firm decided to generate some on-site green power: their clients are in this business and inspired them to go green. 

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By |August 14th, 2008|Categories: News, Solar|Tags: , |0 Comments
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