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Green Remodeling Workshops Coming to a Town Near You

Posted March 16, 2010 2:40 PM by Peter Yost
Related Categories: Events

Ever since the premier of USGBC's two-day REGREEN workshop in Phoenix, AZ at Greenbuild last November, Annette, Rob, and I have been gearing up for a slew of green remodeling workshops across the country -- the REGREEN Roadshow. The REGREEN workshops are a lot of fun to teach (and take) for two reasons: one, the blend of builder/remodeler with interior design perspectives is completely refreshing; and two, the substantial and substantive group work woven into the workshop makes for an energetic and invigorating approach.

Now you might be saying to yourself: What? Interior designers and hard-core building science-builder types making sweet music together? You would be surprised at how well these perspectives can inform each other. Here is just one example:

"The drama of a 2x4 shot from an air cannon at glass windows"

Posted September 23, 2009 2:15 PM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Events, LEED, Passive Survivability, Politics, Product Talk
Architectural testing concern HTL will be at GlassBuild America shooting missiles at windows again. The demonstration/demolition follows the Miami-Dade large missile protocol by shooting 2x4s at impact-resistant and non-impact-resistant windows. A press release from HTL quotes NGA Industry Events Director Susan Jacob: "There is nothing quite like the drama of a 2x4 missile shot from an air cannon at glass windows." Wish I was going! I checked HTL's website for some footage, but was left wanting. There's a link for client videos (and there's some top name clients in there), but they all seem to be password-protected.

Greenbuild 2009 Expo Hall: Some Math

Posted August 31, 2009 11:11 AM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Events, Greenbuild '09
I tend to spend a lot of time in the Expo Hall at Greenbuild. On the Greenbuild 2009 website, the Greenbuild International Expo page says:
This year's expo hall in Phoenix boasts over 1,800 exhibit booths showcasing the latest in innovative products and services.
Were you there last year? That was 800 booths. Double that, and add some. At this writing, there are 1,057 exhibitors listed for this year; but let's assume that there will be at least the promised 1,800 by show time. Here's the expo hall schedule:
Tuesday5:30pm - 8:00pm
Wednesday9:00am - 5:30pm
Thursday9:00am - 5:30pm
The Expo is open a total of 19.5 hours — which is 1,170 minutes... or 70,200 seconds. Divide those seconds by 1,800 booths. You have 39 seconds to linger at each one.

Al Gore, Sheryl Crow kick off Greenbuild 2009

Posted August 31, 2009 10:45 AM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Events, Greenbuild '09
If you haven't already heard, the opening keynote at Greenbuild 2009 will be former U.S. Vice President, environmental advocate, and Oscar-, Grammy-, and Nobel Peace Prize-winner Al Gore. Gore's address will take place at Chase Field stadium; afterward, a little music from nine-time Grammy winner Sheryl Crow. The annual Greenbuild International Conference & Expo will be held in Phoenix, Arizona, this year, November 11-13, at the Phoenix Convention Center, just a block or two from Chase Field. Previous Greenbuild keynote speakers include former President Bill Clinton and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Greenbuild 2009 is also slated to have more than 100 educational sessions and workshops, a two-day Residential Summit, the World Green Building Council International Congress, tours of area green building sites, and more than 1,700 exhibition booths showcasing technologies and products. In addition to inventing the internet, Al Gore is on the Board of Directors for Apple Computer, and a senior advisor to Google. (Two of those things are true.) offers up another free webcast on June 29 at 4 p.m. Eastern. Rob Moody, consultant at Organic Think, LEED Faculty member, and partner in the National Center for Sustainability will be talking about current and future funding opportunities for green building projects courtesy the economic stimulus package. Rise above the recession! Register here. Find out about more webcasts from GreenBuildingAdvisor (like Trade Contractor Management for High Performance Homes, and Smart Strategies to Market Your High Performance Homes, and Inspiring Sustainable Residential Interiors...)

The Lifecycle Building Challenge

Posted May 16, 2009 12:43 PM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Awards, Events, Product Talk, The Industry
A design competition for professionals and students, the Lifecycle Building Challenge is sponsored by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, the American Institute of Architects, and West Coast Green. The competition is focused on design for adaptability, material reuse, and minimizing lifecycle impacts from products. Registration and participation is free. Submission deadline is August 30 2009. From the website:
Lifecycle building is designing buildings to facilitate disassembly and material reuse to minimize waste, energy consumption, and associated greenhouse gas emissions.

LEED for Homes: Tips for Successful Projects

Posted May 16, 2009 8:24 AM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Books & Media, Events, LEED
Who could be more qualified than one of the principal authors of LEED for Homes to provide insight on the best ways to make the program work?
LEED for Homes, like other rating systems, is an assessment tool. This means that while it provides some "how-to" information (at the level of individual strategies or "credits"), it doesn't offer any guidance for how to approach the design and construction of a high-performing home differently than a conventional project. Ann Edminster will offer some of that missing guidance in this webinar.
It gets better. Not only do you not have to jet off to some city to sit in some auditorium during some high-priced conference to take this in... it's free. Just sign up and it's yours for the taking on June 2, at 2:00 pm Eastern (1:00 pm Central, noon Mountain, 11:00 am Pacific), right on your computer. A gift from The presenter, Ann Edminster, is a longtime green building mover and shaker.

The most overlooked building material in the U.S.?

Posted May 7, 2009 6:55 AM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Events, Nature & Nurture, Product Talk
Even though there are extant and occupied earthen homes scattered throughout the northern states and Canada from the mid-19th century, raw earth as a building material is overlooked in most of the USA. See Richard Pieper's article, "Earthen Architecture in the Northern United States" and these photos of earthen houses in upstate New York that I took in 2004, following Pieper's trail. Those are the tip of the iceberg, of course.

Free Webinars from

Posted April 18, 2009 12:56 PM by Mark Piepkorn
Related Categories: Books & Media, Events
On Wednesday, April 29, Alex Wilson presents The Future of Housing — "leading-edge strategies for achieving net-zero-energy homes, transportation energy use associated with where we live, the looming challenge of water, passive survivability as a residential design criterion, and thoughts on incorporating food production into the built environment. Today's economic crisis makes this discussion all the more important and points to the need to focus on our existing housing stock, which will also be discussed." Then on Monday, May 11, Alex is back with What's New in Green Products, in which he will "discuss how BuildingGreen assesses products for its GreenSpec directory of green building products and review some of the more exciting new products that have come across his desk recently. Though he has been reviewing and reporting on green building products for more than 20 years, Alex is still excited when he comes across innovative new products.

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