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Archive for sustainable economy

slow design

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.

photo by tim laman for national geographic

baltimore biodiesel creates first solar powered fueling pump!

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!

Baltimore’s CivicWorks EnergyReady service corps applies Cool Roofs

EnergyReady applies Cool Roofs, an Energy Star approved white roofing system that lasts longer than traditional tar roofing and deflects the sun’s heat. A Cool Roof does not require the disposal of the old tar roof and it significantly reduces heat transfer to the interior of the building, reducing summertime energy demand. In addition to providing energy efficiency retrofit services, the program helps to grow Baltimore’s green economy and creates local living wage jobs.

obama’s *homestar* energy efficiency program announced!

PRESIDENT OBAMA has announced the homestar energy efficiency program. this program allows for up to $3,000 in rebates for homeowners that reach an energy savings of 20%. FYI, the Common Ecology Home Evaluation can reach savings of 70%! Call or write your Congress-person today so this program becomes law!

common ecology

who we are? common ecology is an environmental educational resource founded and supported by Carri Beer, Rob Brennan + Michael Hindle of Brennan + Company Architects and alterego. We are a group of architects, artists and designers dedicated to creating healthy, cooperative lifestyles.

mission? empower each other through education and inspiration to create healthier communities and sustainable lifestyles.

how are we doing this? We have started the process by creating a Framework for Healthy Communities + Sustainable Lifestyles TM. This is an on-line document that has been developed as an educational tool to be accessed by everyone.  Our hope is that while reading through this information you and your neighbors will be inspired to create a grassroots change to better our environment and way of life.  We are available to present this guide to your community, county, business or organization. Please contact us to arrange a workshop or presentation.

copyright 2007 common ecology. all rights reserved. limited reproduction for individual use is permitted without permission. commercial or multiple reproduction is not allowed. other requests should be directed to


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