2016 Green Schools Awards Winners Announced

The Center for Green Schools at USGBC, in collaboration with the Green Schools National Network (GSNN), announced the 2016 Best of Green Schools award recipients earlier this year. The awards recognize 11 individuals, institutions, projects and events representing the best environmental efforts in schools across the country and highlight the national leaders and innovators in school sustainability for the year. “This year’s honorees are making huge strides in their schools and communities,” said Rachel Gutter, director of the Center for…

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25+ Shipping Container House Plans

This article has been arranged so the shipping container house plans are first, because that is probably what you want to see. Below the plan information are a number of tips and issues to familiarize yourself with so that you can make good decisions before you spend a lot of money on the containers and getting the contractor help you might need. Dozens of Shipping Container House Plans 1 Container Bunkhouse A very simple design for a cabin or hunting…

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ICEhouse(TM) (Innovation for the Circular Economy house) (C) 2016 William McDonough + Partners (PRNewsFoto/William McDonough + Partners)

Designer McDonough Debuts ICEhouse at World Economic Forum

Famed designer William McDonough, of Cradle to Cradle fame, will debut his latest creation, ICEhouse, in Davos, Switzerland, as a place for those attending the World Economic Forum annual meeting to gather and discuss the future of Innovation for the Circular Economy. The structure has been designed to demonstrate the positive design framework described in the book Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, the sustainable development goals of the United Nations, and the reuse of resources implicit in…

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City Repair Project, Portland, Oregon

Designed for the Future: City Repair Project – Portland, Oregon

GBE will be featuring three posts highlighting projects from the recently published book Designed For The Future: 80 Practical Ideas for a Sustainable World. The book asks the question: “What gives you the hope that a sustainable future is possible?” Featuring responses by 80 innovators spanning architecture, urban planning, landscaping, journalism, and also environmental leaders, the resulting book is a compilation of their interesting ideas on how to create a better future.  Create a really beautiful place, and people will slow down…

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Steelhenge, made of shipping containers

‘Steelhenge’ Takes Shipping Containers To Another Level

Swiss architecture firm Bureau A recreated the iconic Stonehenge with shipping containers for the first edition of the biennale for independent art spaces in Geneva, BIG. Using 50 containers, the firm was commissioned to create an open air venue that would function as a space for attendees to congregate. “We like to work with references, displacement or even direct quotes,” Bureau A’s Leopold Banchini said in an interview with Dezeen. “In this case, the ruins of Stonehenge and the pagan rituals that…

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Greenest Cities in the US in 2015

  WalletHub analysts recently released their list of the greenest cities in the US, based on their study of 100 cities across the nation. Cities were measured on thirteen key metrics across four dimensions: 1) Environmental Quality, 2) “Greenness” of Transportation, 3) “Greenness” of Energy Sources and 4) Green Lifestyle & Local Policies. Here are the metrics they used in each category: Environmental Quality – Total Points: 40 Median Air Quality Index: Full Weight (~10 Points) Greenhouse-Gas Emissions per Capita: Full…

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Washington-Based zHome Sets National Net-Zero Precedent

Originally published on CleanTechnica Builders seeking a net-zero energy home showcase can look to BuiltGreen’s zHome townhome complex in Issaquah, Washington. White paper released According to a BuiltGreen white paper, the zHome development is the first net-zero energy townhome complex in the US, a project meant to spur the market toward deep green housing for the average person. Built Green is an environmentally friendly, non-profit residential building program of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties. When launched. this project…

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Solar Decathlon 2015 Kicks Off

Solar Decathlon 2015 Kicks Off

Solar Decathlon 2015, a design and build competition involving university teams from around the globe, kicked off today with keynote speaker US Secretary of Energy Dr. Ernest Moniz.  The Decathlon asks teams to design and build homes powered by the sun that are affordable, energy efficient, attractive, and easy to live in, which are judged in several competitions.  The homes are on display throughout the competition so spectators can tour them. “These inspiring collegiate teams show the world how energy-efficient building design…

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Three Ways to Grow Green Things at Home

I propose that the next thing you add to your home to-do list on the weekends is the goal of growing something—anything! All the reasons and ways to grow flowers, plants, herbs, and vegetables—heck, even a tree once a year, if you can manage it—are of course too numerous to cover in one post. However, I’ll start with three benefits for both yourself and the planet.   Build a green roof! You might be wondering the purpose behind them, but…

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Solar lamp design winner

Solar Lamp Design Winner Will Be Distributed Throughout Africa To Dispel Darkness

The winning design for a solar lamp, shown above, will be distributed to off-grid communities in Africa to help people living there dispel the darkness without the use of carbon-emitting kerosene lanterns.  About 14,500 lamps, powered by the sun, will be distributed throughout Zimbabwe, Senegal, and Zambia. The Natural Light contest, sponsored by skylight manufacturer VELUX and Little Sun, which is a social business and a global project founded by internationally renowned artist Olafur Eliasson and engineer Frederik Ottesen, asked teams to…

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Free single family home design

Sustainable Home Designs Now Free Online

The Australian government has begun making free sustainable home designs for single family homes available online. The plans showcase modern, sustainable designs featuring a large main bedroom with a generous walk-in closet and ensuite bathroom. There is also an open plan living and kitchen area with cathedral ceilings, bathroom and laundry. The flexible, functional floor plans are available in two size options: 3 bedroom plus study and 2 bedroom plus study. Both include a single car garage.  Karen Andrews, parliamentary secretary for industry and…

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Tiny House Trends: Homelessness & Sustainability

Having been interested in tiny houses for a while now, I continue to be pleasantly surprised by new developments in the movement. One of the more recent developments in the many uses for tiny houses is making permanent housing the first, most crucial part of a comprehensive strategy to help counteract homelessness. Home ownership is a significant step forward for most members of the homeless community. It is perhaps the most important factor involved in restoring a sense of dignity…

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Green roof maintenance

Green Roof Maintenance Is Key to Roof Integrity and Longevity

Green roofs are all the rage in urban areas around the globe.  However, many don’t understand the constant need to maintain these roofs so they don’t become overgrown and potentially damage the very building they are a part of.  Green roof maintenance doesn’t have to be difficult, but a plan must be developed. Many jurisdictions, such as Toronto, Canada, are now requiring a maintenance plan to be submitted when getting a permit for a green roof.  In Washington, DC, rooftop…

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