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The Most Ecological City in the World

Treasureislandmodel

You’ve probably heard of Treasure Island, the entirely man-made island that was formerly a Naval base.  It was decommissioned several years ago, but San Francisco wants to bring it back to life.  The city has held hundreds of meetings to determine the future of the 400-acre Superfund site, and they’ve got a plan: Treasure Island will become a testbed for the newest ideas in energy efficiency, water conservation, waste management, and low-impact living.

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BaleHaus by Modcell, Semi-Modern Strawbale

Modcell

The renderings in this article are of BaleHaus by ModCell.  This UK concept springs from the three positions that we need to: (1) live within our environmental means, (2) maintain a healthy and comfortable quality of life, and (3) build strong communities.  Stated otherwise, the BaleHaus is meant to provide good, comfortable living with a guilt-free eco-conscience.  BaleHaus is super-insulated, boxy and functional, and geared towards communal living.  More renderings below …

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Consumers Spend $3 Billion/Year on Nothing!

Vampireenergy

Vampire energy, aka phantom loads, is estimated to cost U.S. consumers about $3 billion per year.  I know, it’s not really that much … I mean, if you break it down to the individual level, that’s only $10 per person ($3 billion / 300 million).  But the point is, it’s money that goes in the pocketbook of energy companies and their shareholders — it’s not going in yours.  The chart above is courtesy of GOOD, the magazine that always brings a full-page spread to otherwise obfuscatory information.

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Cisco Opens Green Office, Appoints Green Guru

Cisco_logo There’s major action in the data center world, with all sorts of facilities aiming for energy-efficient centers and LEED buildings.  Cisco, led by the undeniably approachable CEO John Chambers, is embarking on a plan to green their business.  It kind of feels like a revival of the old Japanese, waste-elimination era, but there’s progress in areas other than efficiency.  Here’s what they’re doing:

  • 17,400 sf office in Chesterfield Ridge Center (St. Louis Regional Sales HQ) received LEED certification;
  • Their Carbon to Collaboration Initiative aims to reduce company GHG emissions from air travel by 10 %;
  • They hired Paul Marcoux, one of the founders of The Green Grid, to drive green initiatives inside and outside the company – he’s become known as the company "Green Guru." 

Yes, the greening of business is something we’re going to keep seeing.  ##

SunTrackerOne, Saving $$ with Smart Natural Light

Suntrackerone

Ciralight caught the attention of a few attendees at this year’s Greenbuild 2007 exhibition.  Their flagship product, SunTrackerOne, is free-standing, solar-powered, and completely self-contained.  SunTrackerOne has three mirrors that track and reflect the sun into buildings through a thermal barrier, light well, and diffuser.  It’s different than passive lighting because it collects more light and diffuses it more effectively throughout a building.  This lighting system is a major green innovation to keep an eye on, especially since Ciralight touts a seductive 15 – 35% return on investment on energy savings alone.

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[Video] Recycling On the Job, Deconstruction

There’s a new online video show hosted by Alex Pettitt called Mainstream Green.  Their videos are high-quality and super informative.  Sometimes, it helps to see how things work, so I love to show video as often as possible.  The video above is on recycling and deconstruction.  The deconstruction guy says the cost of on-site deconstruction is comparable to waste removal.  That’s a good.  Generally, people are self-interested and when it becomes profitable to do the right thing, more and more people will start doing the right thing.  Makes sense doesn’t it?

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