Beyond Green Building: Morning Round-Up

Posted on: September 25th, 2007 by Patrice Frey

 

A Manifesto for a New Environmentalism – New Republic. Authors Ted Nordhaus & Michael Shellenberger argue that increasing investment in clean energy technology is the key to addressing global climate change, not reducing overall energy demand.

Wal-Mart To Push Suppliers On Energy Efficiency Reuters. Wal-Mart Stores Inc has formed a partnership with the Carbon Disclosure Project to look for ways for its suppliers to better manage their energy efficiency, as part of its environmental push, the company said on Monday.

World energy revolution needed for climate: U.S. –Reuter. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said on Monday the world needs a revolution on energy that transcends oil, gas and coal to prevent problems from climate change.
"Ultimately, we must develop and bring to market new energy technologies that transcend the current system of fossil fuels, carbon emissions and economic activity. Put simply, the world needs a technological revolution," Rice told delegates at a special U.N. conference on climate change.

U.N. chief sees major commitment to climate change -- Reuters. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said a one-day high-level meeting on climate change on Monday was a turning point in the battle against global warming. “What I heard today is a major political commitment for a breakthrough in climate change in Bali," Ban said.

Gore urges U.N. to "overcome paralysis" on climate – Reuters. Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore bluntly told a U.N. conference on Monday that the planet would be better off if people cared more about global warming and less about O.J. Simpson and Paris Hilton

Deal Reached to Phase Out Greenhouse Gas – AP. Governments of almost 200 countries have agreed to speed the elimination of a major greenhouse gas that depletes ozone, U.N. and Canadian officials said Saturday, describing a deal they said was a significant step toward fighting global warming. The agreement reached Friday night will accelerate a treaty to freeze and phase out hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) which are used in home appliances, some refrigerators, hair sprays and air conditioners, said Nick Nuttall, spokesman for the United Nations Environment Program.

Dumpster Dive – The Digital Way – Chicago Tribune. Freecycling is all the rage.

US Telecommuters save 840 million gallons of gas per year – Environmental Leader. That’s enough to power 1 million households for a year.

Report recommends cutting urban sprawl – Pittsburgh Post Gazette. The report by the Urban Land Institute, Smart Growth America and other national and state organizations warns that total vehicle miles driven in the United States are on track to increase 59 percent by 2030, and the exhaust from all those vehicles driven all those millions of extra miles will overwhelm expected emissions reductions produced by more efficient, cleaner-running cars and trucks

Follow the Money: The (Slow) Rise of Green Financial Services – Joel Makower. We seem to be on the cusp of a cluster of green financial services -- everything from energy-efficiency mortgages to green consumer banks to climate-friendly credit cards. It's hardly approaching a tipping point, but financial services companies seem increasingly interested, almost eager, to cater to green-minded consumers and companies.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Louis Sullivan's Last Chicago Building Restored

Posted on: September 24th, 2007 by Margaret Foster 1 Comment

 

Krause Music, SteveHall@HedrichBlessing.comThings are looking up for the oeuvre of Louis Sullivan (1856-1924), the architect known as the father of modernism. After three of his buildings were destroyed last year, his last commission, the 1922 Krause Music Store in Chicago, was renovated this year.

The National Register-listed building's terra cotta exterior was restored and its interior converted to offices; this month, workers are completing the landscaping portion of the project.

"Being the son of an architect, my dad always pointed out the Krause Music store. I've known the building for years," says Jacob Goldberg, president of Chicago-based Goldberg General Contracting, Inc., which completed the 16-month project this spring. "To get the opportunity and the responsibility to restore the facade and renovate the whole building was a really big deal for me." ... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Notes from the Field: New Orleans

Posted on: September 24th, 2007 by Walter Gallas

 

New Orleans Mid-City neighborhood threatened by VA hospital development.The Preservation Resource Center and its Operation Comeback program developed a great concept a few years ago called “Renovator Happy Hour.” Every other month, a home which is under renovation in one of New Orleans’ historic neighborhoods becomes the place where people gather at the end of the day to sip a beverage and to see and hear from a homeowner about their house renovation.

This past week's host house on Palmyra Street between S. Miro and S. Tonti is located essentially at ground zero on the footprint of the proposed new VA hospital in Mid-City, a National Register District. I had the opportunity to walk around the immediate area that evening, to talk to neighbors who were back, and found it all particularly distressing that these hard-working residents might lose their homes to this 25-block development. The neighborhood looked mostly intact, with complete collections of houses either renovated or at least boarded—but all of it could be wiped away if plans go forward. “This is how the mayor welcomes us back?” remarked a neighbor who has repaired his house using insurance proceeds. He had stayed during Katrina and then had to be rescued by boat when water reached about five feet.

Because federal agencies are involved in this project and because the project will clearly impact a National Register District, Section 106 review (required by the National Historic Preservation Act) must be undertaken so all alternatives are examined. To date we have heard nothing about plans to initiate 106 consultation. A member of the staff of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation told me this week that the Advisory Council was working on a letter to all relevant federal agencies alerting them that 106 review must be a part of their planning before they go forward much farther.

Walter Gallas is director of the New Orleans Field Office.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Beyond Green Building: Morning Round-Up

Posted on: September 24th, 2007 by Patrice Frey

 

Do to technical error - my morning round-up wasn't posted yesterday (the 24th). Enjoy a double dose of news today.  

News to Keep you in the Know - September 24th.

Cut sprawl, help environment, report says -- Baltimore Sun.  Living in pedestrian-friendly area would cut emissions, according to report's author Suburban sprawl is the missing link in climate change, a group of urban planning researchers said today, warning in a new report that global warming can only be slowed by changing development patterns to reduce the need for driving.   Living in more compact, pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods actually would do more to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide -- the chief climate-changing gas -- than driving a hybrid car while staying in a typically spread-out suburb, the report asserts.

LEED - The Green Standard?  -- Fast Company.  As alarm over the environment intensifies, LEED has been in the right place at the right time. But critics say that the LEED standard falls short of what's possible in terms of saving energy.

Athena Hits the Mark with Green Building Tool - Tree Hugger. The construction industry has gained the Athena Assembly Evaluation tool for use (free!) with the Green Building Initiative’s™ (GBI) Green Globes™ environmental assessment and rating system for commercial buildings. The intent is to leverage life cycle assessment within the industry and provide a simple framework and tool that can be incorporated into the system.

Sunny Outlook: Can Sunshine Provide All U.S. Electricity? - -Scientific American. Large amounts of solar-thermal electric supply may become a reality if steam storage technology works—and new transmission infrastructure is built

China Could Be Top Wind Market inThreeYears -Reuters.  China could become the world's top wind power market in three to five years but will grow faster if it reforms its subsidy system, executives of major wind turbine maker Vestas said on Friday

UK Sees Need For Global Biofuel Standards, Protections -- Reuters. Global standards must be developed to ensure the growth in the use of biofuels does not have damaging consequences for the environment, Britain's Climate Change Minister Phil Woolas said on Thursday.

New Software Designs & Calculates The "Green" In Your Building – ENN. Green Building Studio, Inc., today announced the beta availability of Green Building Studio V3.0, offering architects, owners, and building design teams the opportunity to use the new web service’s advanced capabilities firsthand

Combating Climate Change Given Big Confidence Boost in Canada – ENN. Governments Agree to Accelerated 'Freeze and Phase-out" of Ozone and Climate-Damaging Chemicals at Montreal Protocol's 20th Anniversary Celebrations

10 Solutions to Save the Ocean - ENN. The most inspiring thing I’ve read lately about the oceans is “10 Solutions to Save the Ocean,” a series of short, upbeat, and to-the-point essays in the latest issue of Conservation magazine.

Global warming meetings put focus on U.S. role -- Reuters. A trio of climate change meetings in the United States this week will focus attention on how Washington can deliver on its pledge to play a lead role in combating global warming.

Bush Seeks Global Warming Process – ENN. Bush administration officials set out Friday to convince the world it can cool the Earth with voluntary "processes," more cooperation and fewer barriers to trade among the U.S., China and other major polluters, contrary to the U.N.'s mandatory approach to global warming.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

There May Be Hope to Save the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Posted on: September 21st, 2007 by presnation

 

Written by Warren Shaver

We are very pleased to report that Senator Daniel Akaka and Senator Jim Webb have submitted Senate Amendment No. 2995 to the Defense Authorization Bill that may help save the historic Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

If it is enacted, Senate Amendment 2995 would stop the rush to discard the authentic monument and, instead, require a thorough re-consideration of repairing the monument’s cosmetic cracks. Here is the full text of the Akaka-Webb amendment:

SEC. 1044. REPORT ON PLANS TO REPLACE THE MONUMENT AT THE TOMB OF THE UNKNOWNS AT ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY, VIRGINIA.

(a) Report Required.--Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Army and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall jointly submit to Congress a report setting forth the following:

(1) The current plans of the Secretaries with respect to --

(A) replacing the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia; and

(B) disposing of the current monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns, if it were removed and replaced.

(2) An assessment of the feasibility and advisability of repairing the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns rather than replacing it.

(3) A description of the current efforts of the Secretaries to maintain and preserve the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns.

(4) An explanation of why no attempt has been made since 1989 to repair the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns.

(5) A comprehensive estimate of the cost of replacement of the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns and the cost of repairing such monument.

(6) An assessment of the structural integrity of the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns.

(b) Limitation on Action.--The Secretary of the Army and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs may not take any action to replace the monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia, until 180 days after the date of the receipt by Congress of the report required by subsection (a).

(c) Exception.--The limitation in subsection (b) shall not prevent the Secretary of the Army or the Secretary of Veterans Affairs from repairing the current monument at the Tomb of the Unknowns or from acquiring any blocks of marble for uses related to such monument, subject to the availability of appropriations for that purposes.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.