I include this link to my other blog, even though it has nothing to do with sustainability.
When you write for a big newspaper, you get fact-checked by your readers if something slips through the lines of defense that editors represent. That sometimes happens on a blog, too, but since I haven't yet reached the hundreds-of-thousands-of-readers-per-day stratum, I also try to send my posts to the people most described or affected, so they can point out my errors, should there be any.
I sent last week's report on NESEA's public forum to Henry Gifford and Brendan Owens, who each, very nicely, pointed out facets of the report they thought could be better. Read more »
The state has decided to move ahead with two of the three zero net energy projects recommended last week by the Zero Net Energy Task Force.
I reported previously that the governor had asked for one such recommendation, and that the task force had recommended three, in Westborough, Danvers, and Lowell, so this step is both a doubling of the state's original commitment and short of the panel's recommendation.
The Westborough project is the headquarters of the Department of Fish and Game's Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. It is about 34,000 gross square feet. Read more »
Longtime readers know I'm a committed Michael Pollan fan, ever since "Omnivore's Dilemma," which, to me, is not only brilliant in the extreme but also a model for my professional aspirations
At Tara Pope Parker's blog at nytimes.com, Pollan is collecting our collected wisdom on sage and healthy eating. It appears that the post went up on the 9th, and that in less than a week, more than 2,100 readers have left their tips, including me. Read more »
Note: I wrote a follow-up to this post. It's here.
I mentioned NESEA’s public forum Tuesday night in advance of it, but haven’t been able to report on it until now. It was, depending on your outlook, a spirited discussion, a rant, or a mugging.
The topic was Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, the green-building rating system administered by the US Green Building Council. It is, without doubt, the winner thus far in the race to establish a nationwide standard for green building. Others exist, but there’s really only one in the public consciousness, which includes the actions by more than a dozen municipalities to incorporate LEED standards into building codes.
The question was, does it warrant its status? Judging from occasional hoots and shouts from the crowd of about 200, and a couple pointedly angry comments during the audience portion of the event, a good portion would have answered no. Read more »
NOTE: This is a first for Sustainably, a story written by someone other than Michael. Please welcome Jeremy Marin of Arlington, a very committed advocate for energy efficiency who puts a great deal of effort behind his beliefs, as this story attests.
By Jeremy Marin
On March 7, about 60 [update: it was more like 45] people converged on two homes in Cambridge for what HEET (Home Energy Efficiency Team, www.audreyschulman.com/HEET/index.htm) terms a “barn-raising” as part of Brain Shift’s (www.brainfound.org/) Energy Smackdown competition (www.energysmackdown.com/) involving teams from Arlington, Medford, and Cambridge.
Modeled on the Yankee tradition of communities working together to help a neighbor, the group went to work sealing the homes’ building envelopes to reduce their energy bills. Participants were divided into teams: attic, basement, interior caulking (baseboards, windows, etc.) and water conservation (low-flow shower heads, aerators, etc.). Read more »
Mass. Power Shift is leading a rally against coal, and for renewable energy, on the south steps of the State House tomorrow, Saturday, from 3-4 p.m.
The specific issue is a resolution in the legislature calling for the federal government to power America with 100 percent clean electricity within 10 years. Speakers will include resolution sponsors Sen. Marc Pacheco and Rep. Frank Smizik, as well as student and community environmental leaders. Read more »
Simply put, if you haven't heard of Seth Godin, who blogs about marketing, you should check him out. I consider that a complete thought, and good content, all by itself.
But he's not really a sustainability guy ... actually, I think he is! OMG, yes he is — he's always talking about the long view, albeit in his realm of selling, rather than environmental. Yet another example of how sustainability is a very broad topic. Read more »
There are 14 recommendations in the commercial sector, a catch-all category excluding public buildings and residential buildings of less than five units.
Establish energy performance standards for new construction and major renovations.
Improve the building code for energy requirements.
Require solar readiness for all new construction and major renovations. Read more »