Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Ask the Green Architect: Why Should I Care About Green Building Anyway?

By Eric Corey Freed

Typically, I am suspicious of lists with an even number of ten items on them. It makes me think only eight or nine could be found and they made up a couple. Today, I am breaking my own rule and bringing you the ten most often asked questions I receive about green building.

After nearly 15 years in green building, I have observed widespread misunderstanding of some basic principals of sustainability. In the future, all buildings will be green. It is inevitable in order for our species to survive. The sooner everyone comes to a basic understanding of how to be environmentally responsible, the better off we all will be.

Click here to read my answers to the most popular questions I receive in regards to building green.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Sustainable Building Expert Yudelson Receives State, National Marketing Awards

Yudelson Associates, a leading green building consulting firm, announced today that its founder, Jerry Yudelson, has received two major marketing awards in recent months. In July, Yudelson was awarded a statewide marketing communications award by the Oregon chapter of the Society for Marketing Professional Services, a national professional organization for the architecture, engineering and construction community. In August, Yudelson received a national marketing communications award at the SMPS annual meeting in Los Angeles.

These awards were given for Yudelson’s innovative marketing campaign for Interface Engineering, Inc., a Portland, Oregon, based regional engineering firm. In November 2006, Yudelson created a marketing campaign based around a projected LEED Platinum award for the Oregon Health & Science University’s "Center for Health and Healing" in Portland. This campaign featured a remarkable 48-page detailed case study of Interface’s engineering design for the project. In the first year of publication, Interface received more than 7,000 requests for copies of this case study, from all over the world.

"What we did was unique for a building engineering firm, detailing the inner workings of an integrated design project that produced more than 60 percent energy savings and 50 percent water savings over a conventional building, at 12 percent less cost than the contractor’s initial budget," said Yudelson. "Our communications program vaulted Interface Engineering into the top rank of West Coast engineering firms, resulting in a number of design awards from major, first-time clients." He concluded, "Engineering firms have been reluctant to 'toot their horn' when they do something this remarkable. Interface’s accomplishments were featured as cover stories in three national trade magazines as a result of this communications program. This is the essence of good marketing in today’s world: a great story, well told."

Jerry Yudelson is the Sr. Editor for Sign up for his monthly eNewsletter here.

Ask the Green Architect: Green Cleaning, Lawn Maintenance, and more

By: Eric Corey Freed

This week, Freed tackles the problem of how to green-clean commercial spaces, how to maintain a "green" lawn, and answers the question, "Where do green and historic preservation intersect?"

Q: Are there green cleaning products for commercial spaces, such as: day spas, baths, or gyms? Given the more stringent health requirements for these spaces, are these products approved for this use?

A: Cleaning one's home or office is often considered a healthy thing to do. After all, it feels kind of good and self-satisfying to remove all of the inevitable dust, food crumbs, fallen hairs, and other gross remnants of daily life from our home.

Ironically, we typically clean our homes and offices with chemically intensive and potentially toxic cleaning materials. Did you ever wonder why you have to wear gloves (and sometimes even masks) to clean?

The chemicals used to clean are adding to the already overloaded toxic soup we have in most indoor spaces.The American Association of Poison Control Centers ranks household cleaners as the leading source for acute human exposure to toxic substances. In addition, these caustic cleaners, pesky pesticides, raucous removers, and other potent products with their toxic ingredients also damage our environment through their production, use, and disposal.

Fortunately, a number of commercially available healthy alternatives exist:

Ecover: established in 1980, Ecover is one of the global leaders in healthy cleaning products. Not only are the products healthier, the company is incredibly dedicated to sustainable business. Their solar powered factory features green building features such as passive solar and water efficient methods.

Finish reading this article on here.

Green Building in Georgia's Parks

The Sweetwater Creek State Park Visitor Center
By: David Freedman, P.E. - Monday, November 13, 2006

Georgia's Sweetwater Creek State Park Visitor Center is the first new construction in the Southeast to receive LEED Platinum certification. The new Center serves as an example of sustainable building that doesn't necessarily cost more than standard construction.

Read the full article and share your comments with here.

Building the Change: The 2030 Climate Challenge

By: Gil Friend - Sunday, November 12, 2006

Ed Mazria presented the opening keynote at West Coast Green in San Francisco September 28, and offered what was probably the most compelling, moving and useful global warming presentation I've heard yet. (No offense, Al, but Ed got more usefully into what to do for high leverage impact.)

"When the US balked at Kyoto," he explained, "the stated concern was impact on industry and competitiveness. But U.S. industry has held emissions relatively flat for the last 20 years (part thru efficiency, part through export of industry and emissions)."

Read the full article at

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Free DVD about classroom acoustics, HVAC and indoor air quality is informative

The 13 minute video that plays when you load this DVD (found on is really very informative. I think teachers, architects, school officials, facility managers and parents should watch this.

Tell us what you think...

You can request a copy of this DVD here

94 percent of Americans want to work in healthy, energy-efficient buildings

According to a recent poll by Mortgage Lenders Network USA (MLN), 94 percent of Americans prefer to work in a building that is designed to be energy efficient and ecologically sound. The poll results showed that women appear to be more environmentally-concerned than men about their workplace. The poll revealed that 72 percent of working women declare a strong preference for green employers, vs. 64 percent of men. And, a larger percentage of Americans ages 45-54 would prefer to work in an eco-friendly building vs. their less eco-minded counterparts ages 25-34 (74 percent vs. 62 percent). This strengthens the business case for green buildings, particularly among developers aiming at large corporations for their tenants.

Posted by Matt Banes for Jerry Yudelson