You Got to Be Kidding Me!

More on Green Buildings

Posted in Engineering, Environment, Home Improvement, Urban Planning by Stacy McMahon on February 14, 2007

Some of my friends and associates are probably a little bemused by my fascination with “green” buildings, green roofs, and sustainable development. Really though, it all makes perfect sense. Jim Bede once introduced his BD-10J personal supersonic jet with the tag line that he was “tired of 60 years of 130-mph airplanes”. Housing and building is, if this is even possible, even more stuck in the “because we’ve always done it this way” mentality than general aviation, and with even less economic justification.

And that is while the gains in efficiency and savings in utility bills from so-called green design are such low-hanging fruit that it’s silly not to avail yourself. I’ve already replaced most of my light bulbs with compact fluorescents, and I plan to install LED lighting. It’s hard to do more than that since I live in a condo, but if I had a house there are lots of things I could do–everything from a green roof (no more drainage problems in your yard) to placing windows and vents to take advantage of sunlight for heating. Whenever I do have a house, I will do all that stuff. Aside from the financial benefits (I’ve always believed in spending more upfront if it means lower recurring costs in the future) it’s just too appealing as an engineering project.

Anyway, I started this post as a way to link the Green Building Council as well as this Popular Mechanics list of top “green” technologies available today. Forget the hair-shirt version of environmentalism, I prefer this cool-toy version instead šŸ™‚

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6 Responses

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  1. Clint said, on February 14, 2007 at 7:41 pm

    I hear CFRs completely kill wifi and RF-remotes. that’s enough to keep me away so far.. but.. are they dimmable??

  2. Stacy McMahon said, on February 14, 2007 at 9:11 pm

    I haven’t noticed any problems with my wifi, and I have a bulb in an overhead fixture right in the center of my condo, about ten feet from the router. Don’t know about RF remotes.

  3. Clint said, on February 15, 2007 at 11:22 am

    I use multiple RF remotes and read a post by someone who had to switch back after having problems. Dimmability is a big one too — fluorescents *generally* aren’t dimmable but “hacks” have been made.

  4. Christina said, on February 16, 2007 at 5:30 am

    I have fluorescents and dimmers and they work fine, but things may be set up differently over here.

  5. Clint said, on February 16, 2007 at 11:30 am

    I also have electrical spikes and lights burn out far more often here than anywhere I’ve ever lived (power failures too). Aren’t those lights expensive?? I should try one I guess. I’m scared it will burn out and end up wasting me money. I mean, isn’t a 60 watt bulb for an entire month like $1 of power?

  6. Todd said, on February 16, 2007 at 2:44 pm

    Great post about Green Building. I’ve written a few articles on the subject myself and lots of folks are getting on board. The best part is that you get to help the environment and you get to save money on energy. It’s a total win win scenerio.


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