Thursday, October 18, 2007

Report on Scottsdale Green Building Expo

Featured Keynote speaker, Edward Mazria, AIA highlighted the building industry's role in creating global warming issues and thus our responsibility and ability to impact the impending climate crisis in a big way. Buildings and the building industry account for more than half of all energy consumption and Carbon emissions. By making small changes in every project, and bigger changes whenever possible we can start to alter the future. However, the "silver bullet" which can really reverse the trend toward disaster is coal - specifically coal burning power plants.

Coal is the only fossil fuel plentiful enough and supposedly ‘cheap’ enough to push the planet to 450 parts per million of CO2 in the atmosphere - an event which will trigger potentially irreversible glacial melt and sea level rise. 53% of Americans live in and around coastal cities and towns and, beginning with just one meter of sea level rise, many of these cities and towns will be inundated. For more info, read the article at

Get involved - tell your congressman to stop the building of new coal power plants - there are approximately 150 in process now! Forward this to anyone and everyone you know. There is power in numbers - more than money even, and we can make a difference if we let them know we don't want any more coal. Let's explore solar, wind, geo-thermal and other options.

Other news from the expo-

The 10th Annual Green Building Expo was bigger and more exciting than ever. The Phoenix Tri-city metro area is making great strides in green building and sustainability.

Tips for living green abounded - for instance, some simple ways to conserve everyday include:
  • Keep water in the fridge rather than let it run to get cold
  • Use cold water in the washer to lower utility bills and energy use - there are even new detergent formulas specifically for this
  • Water your yard early in the morning or late in the evening when evaporation rates are at their lowest
  • Repair or purchase used items instead of buying new ones
  • Donate unwanted items to consignment or re-sale shops so they can be used again
  • Choose household cleaning products that are the least harmful to the environment
  • Buy local whenever possible to save the energy used in transporting goods
  • Buy a reusable water bottle to avoid disposable cup waste
  • Avoid products with lots of packaging or those in plastic or Styrofoam containers
  • Recycle paper products, and buy recycled products to help complete the cycle

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