Archive for environment
Many jurisdictions do not allow food waste compost in your backyard. Or maybe the tiny little counter compost fills up every day and you’re not in the mood to trudge through the snow to put it in your bin. Yes, that’s me.
Though an investment at $299 this indoor composter by NatureMill is a great solution!
On Saturday, April 30, 2011, Baltimore County will host a joint compost bin and rain barrel sale. The sale will be held on the auxiliary parking lot of THE AVENUE at White Marsh, 8125 Honeygo Blvd (behind the movie theater across Town Center Drive). This sale will be a one-day event from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., rain or shine. Compost bins and rain barrels will be sold on a first come, first served basis while supplies last.
The compost bin for sale is once again The Earth MachineTM, made from recycled plastic with an 80-gallon capacity, easy snap together assembly, and a ten-year warranty.
The rain barrel for sale is once again the Systern Rain Barrel. The Systern Rain Barrel is made from recycled plastic with a 55-gallon capacity, a mosquito mesh to keep bugs and debris out, and a five-year warranty. It also comes with installation instructions, spigot, screws, and an overflow hose.
Compost bins, valued at $100, will be available for the low price of $35, including tax. Rain barrels, valued at $120, will be available for the low price of $50, including tax. There is no limit on the amount of compost bins/rain barrels you may purchase at this event and both items will be sold on a first come, first served basis while supplies last. Cash, checks, or credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, or Discover) will be accepted and you do not need to be a Baltimore County resident to purchase a compost bin or rain barrel
browse through common ecology and find some things you can do to celebrate our earth this weekend!
leave the grass high for hiding easter eggs. go to a farmers market. support local businesses. walk instead of drive. open your windows. turn off your lights. bird watch. plant some vegetables and native plants. have a zero waste weekend. make a rain barrel….
As I rush here and there this holiday season, traveling to see family, rushing home from work to wrap gifts, I find myself needing to just stop. To slow down. To actually enjoy the beauty that surrounds me and take the time to be mindful.
There is the slow food movement which is a grassroots organization “linking the pleasure of good food with a commitment to their community and the environment. Slow Food was founded in 1989 to counter the rise of fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food choices affect the rest of the world.”
There is the slow money movement which suggests “we must bring money back down to earth. Slow Money believes “there is such a thing as money that is too fast, companies that are too big, finance that is too complex. Therefore, we must slow our money down.” Slow Money proposes that “the 21st Century will be the era of nurture capital, built around principles of carrying capacity, care of the commons, sense of place and non-violence. We must connect investors to the places where they live, creating vital relationships and new sources of capital for small food enterprises.”
I would like to introduce the concept of SLOW DESIGN which aims to encourage clients, contractors and architects to participate in making smart choices for a true investment in buildings, the community, and our future. Slow Design is a mindful approach to architecture:
- Creating spaces that are collaborative efforts between architect, engineers, owner and builder.
- Making decisions and choices that reflect our impact on the environment.
- Building homes and schools that are so well-designed they have a minimal carbon footprint.
- Taking the time to select high quality, durable, and local materials.
- Investing more money up front to see immediate payback in energy use, our health, and our environment.
Congratulations to Michael Hindle, cphc who has been asked to speak at the 2010 Passive House Conference held in Portland, Oregon, November 4-7. Michael will be discussing his efforts on creating Baltimore County’s High Performance Homes bill and incorporating the Passive House standard in the process.
Baltimore County’s High Performance Homes Bill offers a property tax credit to homeowners who invest in improving the energy efficiency of their homes. The Bill went into effect June 25, 2010. The amount of the tax credit is a percentage of the total County property tax assessed on the home that is equal to the percentage of increased energy efficiency achieved in the process of renovation or new construction. The tax credit starts at 30% efficiency for three years and increases to a carbon neutral home with a 100% tax credit for five years. Michael and Carri Beer, AIA, LEED ap worked assiduously with Councilman Vince Gardina to make this bill a reality for Baltimore County residents.
alterego, our friendly environmental building products retailer, has a great little write-up in Baltimore’s Urbanite Home + Design blog.
thanks to brennen for visiting the store!
brennan + company architects is so thrilled, after years and years of trying, to finally have a green roof installed! Thank you to our great clients for seeing this through. And thanks to Capitol Green Roofs for their fabulous installation job.
Green roofs help with stormwater retention and provide a slow release of this water. They also aid in absorption, transpiration and reducing the heat island effect.
We would love to have a green roof installed on your new project – contact brennan + company architects for full service, earth friendly architecture.
in true sustainable lifestyle fashion, baltimore biodiesel coop, with it’s genius volunteers, has created and built the first solar powered fueling pump station in the country! the pump is located at Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland. As a driver of a biodiesel powered car and member of the coop, I am so proud of what you guys have done! Freedom from Petroleum!
Our own Michael Hindle has received his certification as a Certified Passive House Consultant (CPHC). He is one of only three CPHC’s in the Baltimore area and only a handful in the state of Maryland. Passive House is an energy performance standard which sets a very ambitious goal of 90% energy use reductions for heating and cooling. The Passive House standard and the associated building strategies are supported by 19 years of exhaustive building performance monitoring and building science research. Consultants use highly accurate modeling software to project and determine energy use for all building types.
Vice President Biden announced an additional $452 million to ramp up energy retrofit projects. The money has been divided among 25 states and non-profits. The press release states “existing techniques and technologies in energy efficiency retrofitting can reduce energy use by up to 40 percent per home and lower total associated greenhouse gas emissions by up to 160 million metric tons annually.” At Common Ecology, we believe we can do even better than 40% reductions. Drop us a line and schedule a Holistic Home Evaluation to learn more!