Buildings account for 48% of energy use in the United States (Architecture2030). Energy efficiency retrofits, such as duct sealing, replacing windows and doors, or improving insulation, can drastically reduce energy needs required for heating, cooling, or lighting a building. However, upfront costs and uncertainty about energy improvement options by homeowners are major barriers to completing projects. Unlike installing solar panels, which are a visible method to reduce traditional energy usage, energy savings through retrofits are hidden in insulation, duct leaks, or poorly sized heating and cooling equipment, for example. Solar panels will not improve a building’s efficiency, as air sealing might, therefore the State identifies retrofits as a cost-effective manner to reduce energy use.
Prior to leaving for Copenhagen, Denmark, for the United Nations Conference of the Parties 15, a group of 24 UC Santa Barbara students and 4 professors held a weekly meeting to discuss logistics and plans while in Copenhagen. One professor advised that it was possible to have a planned schedule of the day’s events, but also suggested remaining flexible and networking with people in the hallways or lobbies. Flexibility turned out to be essential, as several UC Santa Barbara students and conference registrants were not accredited (allowed in the conference) until a few days after the conference began.
For anyone concerned about their impact on the environment then reducing your carbon footprint is a worthy goal. But is it enough? While it is extremely important we reduce our demand on energy, we need to do more. We need to make low carbon solutions more affordable in order to drive low carbon solutions. Because when it is all said and done, with the increasing demands of strong global population growth, low carbon solutions are the only way to a sustainable future!
Georgia-Pacific Gypsum Blog Entry
When it comes to building smart, durable and for the long run, there is a phrase that should be on the mind of everyone involved in the project – sustainability and mitigation.
Sustainability and mitigation have come to mean a lot of things in the trade and beyond, but in the case of our mission – advocating for the conscientious use of the best, most efficient products in order to build to last – we present Georgia-Pacific Gypsum’s definitions of the terms:
In the fall of 2009, our local builders association in Porter County, Indiana, organized a Green Homes on Parade event. Our primary goals were to provide numerous avenues for professional and public education, certify each home to meet the requirements of at least the Gold level of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Green Guidelines and/or Standards, keep the homes affordable, valued at no more than $250,000 including landscaping, and to recycle nearly all of our construction waste. While the parade was successful in all respects, including education, as well as waste recycling and reduction, we unfortunately discovered that even with our best intentions to recycle construction waste, there was no guarantee that the material we intended for recycling would still not end up in a landfill. Locally, there are several waste handling firms who could place containers on site for both separated and comingled construction waste. The parade builders contracted with one firm who placed separate containers for wood and cardboard and another for comingled materials.
The population of metropolitan Cairo is approximately eighteen million. It’s a city the size of New York City, without a city-wide trash collection system. Let that sink in for a minute. It’s a city with a population similar to New York City but without vital infrastructure and no government trash management system. But that doesn’t mean no system exists. Quite the contrary. Much of the waste removal is done by a group known as the Zaballeen (Arabic for garbage people) who live in garbage villages on the outskirts of the city. One of the largest is Mokattam (also known as Garbage City) where an estimated seventy to eighty thousand people live.
This is a guest post by John Simonetta, owner of Proforma Simonetta Freelance, an eco-friendly promotional items consultancy (see proformagreen.com). John’s blogs are designed to keep us up to date on the “greening” of his industry.
Once again Norwood takes a basic idea and makes it a whole lot better. Laminated woven polypropylene bags are not new to the industry. Nor are pre-printed totes. However Norwood took these two basic ideas, added a bit of Velcro, and presto, a brand new product idea is launched that is going to get your brand noticed in a hurry.
Wrong. What the Recycling Bin Tote Set really accomplishes is a portable recycling station and a very smart promotional idea for any Ecopreneurist targeting office workers, parks, college dorms, any area where people collect in small groups.
Think about it, what does a dorm or office really need to kick start a recycling program? First step is a place to put the materials to be recycled. The three bags in the Recycling Bin Tote Set come pre-printed with the text PAPER (green tote), METAL (orange tote), PLASTIC (blue tote). Easy to understand.
Then – here is the genius – they attach to each other with Velcro on the top outer edge of each tote. And presto you have an instant recycle station, branded with your logo, for any indoor or outdoor space. The PAPER, METAL, PLASTIC text is even in multiple languages for that whole act local, think global ideal, and each tote is pre-printed with a symbol of the recyclable for that bag.
Each tote is a huge 11-3/8″w x 16-1/4″h x 11-1/4″d in size, with a 8″w x 6-1/2″h imprint area on the orange center tote only. Each set can also connect to another set since the Velcro runs the outside of the totes as well, so setting up multiple sets as needed is possible. And of course the fact they connect makes the totes freestanding as well.
Say you are an eco lodge that does picnics on your property, but away from the main building. Set up the picnic and then set out the Recycling Bin Tote Set. So you collect all the recyclables from the picnic, unlatch the Velcro, pick up the individual totes for easy carriage to your main recycling center. Done.
Repeat this idea at the college dorm-room, office meeting room, home, etc. Genius.
At EQP of $10.89 per set, wherever the Recycling Bin Tote Set is setup, there stands your logo as well, telling the crowds who is providing this great on-the-fly service (and yes they also make very nice shopping totes).
If you are an ASI distributor MarkGoldring is the contact to talk to at Norwood about this great idea. If you are interested in the Recycling Bin Tote Set to promote your own business contact your local promotional items vendor or email firstname.lastname@example.org for information and pricing.