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SXSW Eco Announces 2016 Place by Design Finalists

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Aug 1, 2016 10:25:55 AM

Finals will showcase 36 extraordinary designs at SXSW Eco that rethink public space’s potential.

The designs range from a maternity ward meant to lower Uganda’s infant mortality rate to an initiative to compost the deceased and they demonstrate that place-based design has far-reaching influence, and that all types of places, from the lowly median to the standard storefront, to the towering, abandoned steel plant, can be repurposed to be inspirational and of community value.

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Sending a Message—The Homebuilding Industry's Keynote Choices

Posted by Ron Jones

Jan 14, 2016 10:21:55 AM

Has the building industry simply turned its back on issues like climate change, rapidly evolving technologies, emerging regulations, labor and materials, plus the economic uncertainties of building in the year to come?

Soon the 2016 edition of Design & Construction Week will be underway in Las Vegas just a little more than a week after the conclusion of the 2016 CES, the annual event produced by the Consumer Technologies Association, which was also held in Las Vegas.

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For A True Measure of Product Sustainability, Include Durability

Posted by Eliza Clark, guest columnist

Dec 4, 2015 3:16:32 PM

A look at produce sustainability and transparency.

It is an exciting time to be working in building product development. After decades of research, testing, more research and exhaustive product development, the products coming to market today represent the best in generations. Based on this some believe that sustainability can be found only in a new product.

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When Humanitarians and Sustainable Design Collide

Posted by Heather Wallace, Guest Columnist

Aug 25, 2015 2:33:00 PM

Inspired by more than the American Dream, Journeyman International partners university students with local and global humanitarian organizations to complete meaningful projects.

Daniel Wiens was getting ready to graduate from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, California with a degree in construction management. Most students were preparing to work on theoretical thesis projects. He decided there had to be a more practical, meaningful approach so he partnered with an architecture student and they designed and built a dental clinic in Belize.

This would mark the beginning of Journeyman International (JI).

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Coming to a Small Screen Near You!

Posted by Ron Jones

Jan 8, 2015 9:21:00 AM

AS THE GREEN BUILDER MEDIA TEAM enters our second decade—as the undisputed leader in delivering information and inspiration about sustainable development, green building and intelligent living—we find ourselves on the doorstep of realizing a long-standing dream of sharing our passion for both the natural and built environments in what, for us, is a totally new and powerful medium.

After more than a dozen years of pursuing the ambitious goal of airing the Green Builder television series, along with our international award and Emmy-winning friends at Christopher Productions, we now have the commitment for the distribution support we’ll need to ensure that the completed production is effectively promoted to public television stations across the entire country.

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Heartfelt Gratitude

Posted by Sara Gutterman

Nov 26, 2014 12:00:08 PM

2015 marks Green Builder® Media’s 10 year anniversary. So much has changed in the past decade. The green building market, and Green Builder Media along with it, has evolved from niche and fringe to mainstream and intelligent. As individuals, corporations, and governments around the world have awakened to our pressing environmental realities, sustainability has become recognized as the most cost-efficient, durable, and efficient design and building strategy.

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Greenbuild 2014: Reinvigorating A Zeal for Sustainability

Posted by Adam Jonash, Guest Columnist

Nov 12, 2014 12:15:52 PM

The city of New Orleans proved to be a perfect venue for this year’s annual Greenbuild Conference.

Once crippled by storm surges from Hurricane Katrina, the city has come back with a vengeance, rejuvenated by a focus on durability and sustainability. Subsequent restorations and rebuilds have included techniques such as building raised structures on stilts, strategic parklands and integrated wetlands to manage stormwater.

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A Journey Towards Meaning

Posted by Sara Gutterman

Oct 9, 2014 12:22:25 PM

January 2015 will mark the tenth anniversary of Green Builder® Media. So much has changed over the past decade. The green building market, and Green Builder Media along with it, has evolved from niche and fringe to mainstream and intelligent. As individuals, corporations, and governments around the world have awakened to our pressing environmental realities, sustainability has become recognized as the most cost-efficient, durable, and efficient building strategy.

Since Green Builder Media’s inception, we have aspired not just to report the news about green building; we’ve broken ground and made headlines with our thought-provoking editorial, advanced VISION House demonstration projects, involvement in the code and regulatory arena, and advocacy efforts. We’ve joined forces with building professionals, sustainability experts, manufacturers, and organizations throughout the industry, and, together, we’ve helped shape the national conversation about sustainable living.

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Sustainable City Startups

Posted by Wyatt C. King

Mar 22, 2014 12:08:11 PM

Among the most intriguing and extravagant approaches to emerge in recent years to address the challenge of urban sustainability has been so-called “smart-from-the-start” eco-cities, medium-sized cities built from the ground up to incorporate the latest and greatest thinking in sustainable technology and design. These built-from-scratch settlements have started to sprout in several countries – so far, there are projects in various stages of completion in South Korea, Abu Dhabi, Portugal, Kenya, and across China—and they are being touted by developers as showcases for the most advanced ideas in resource-efficient living. They are financed largely by governments and deep-pocketed information technology companies that see a huge business opportunity in urban systems—as the global imperative for sustainable living becomes ever-more evident and pressing.

Masdar City, in Abu Dhabi, embodies many of the aspirations of this new urban genre. By combining ancient design features, such as narrow, shaded streets angled to channel desert winds—with modern technology—including solar power, electric cars, and waste-to-energy systems—lead architect Norman Foster initially claimed that the city would be both carbon-neutral and zero-waste. Nearly seven years on, financial reality has set in; ambitions have been scaled back, and the completion date postponed. But the project is still moving forward. Looking ahead, planners intend for Masdar to serve as a test bed for home-grown innovations developed in an on-site research institute they hope will rival MIT.

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Finding the Trailhead into Green Building Codes Work

Posted by Christina B. Farnsworth

Mar 20, 2014 2:44:00 PM

For nearly two decades, Co-founder and Executive Director David Eisenberg of The Development Center for Appropriate Technology (DCAT) “has lead the effort to create a sustainable context for building codes.” DCAT “works to enhance the health of the planet and our communities by promoting a shift to sustainable construction and development through leadership, strategic relationships and education.”

Eisenberg has built in steel, rammed earth and straw, among other alternative building materials, and is a big proponent of strawbale construction. But what he has focused on the most is getting building codes to include alternative materials.

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No Apparent Change

Posted by Ron Jones

Mar 13, 2014 1:38:16 PM

Nobody loves acronyms more than the military and intelligence agencies, so “NAC”, the popular abbreviation for “No Apparent Change”, is commonly used in updated reports to indicate that whatever is currently being observed or monitored has not changed much from previous versions, a convenient way to save time and space.

In this case, I am reporting that NAC applies to the newly updated official policy of the National Association of Home Builders on green building and sustainability. Allow me to explain…

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Measuring Up

Posted by Ron Jones

Dec 23, 2013 12:19:00 PM

GUMPTION. ITS'S NOT A WORD you hear every day. Not in the modern vernacular, for sure. Sounds outdated, almost—I don’t know—hillbilly. But Webster defines it as: “initiative, aggressiveness, resourcefulness,” and then adds, “courage, spunk, guts.”

In my experience, it takes gumption to execute a project that merits national award consideration, let alone make the judges agree. It has a lot to do with presentation. There is no substitute for great images and a clear, thoughtful narrative. After all, it would be impossible for judges to physically visit dozens of entries that come from all around the country, so you have to be part storyteller in order to make yours stand out from the pack.

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Moratorium on Excess?

Posted by Sara Gutterman

Nov 20, 2013 9:17:00 AM

WHILE IT SEEMS that Americans have become more fiscally aware since the recession, we certainly can’t be accused of embracing a culture of frugality. Our excesses are well known by societies across the planet, idealized and emulated by some, hatefully condemned by others.

One consequence of our throwaway economy is a gargantuan amount of trash. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), each person in the U.S. generates a daily average of 4.5 pounds of municipal solid waste—a collective total of approximately 1.35 billion pounds every day, or over 250 billion tons per year. It’s estimated that Americans spend $100 per ton to dispose of this waste, or over $250 billion per year.

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