Sustainability

Women in Green: Simran Sethi

I’ve written about Simran Sethi here before. She’s an inspiring, energetic green diva—a strategist, educator, and journalist. She’s had a worldwide career, yet somehow she landed in Lawrence, my hometown in Kansas, and taught for some time at the University…

Techno-Systems Are not Ecosystems

Since the 1990’s, the term ecosystem and/or ecology have been used to refer to the complexity of how people, businesses, and technologies interact.  I’ve always found this metaphor misplaced; it clouds the fact that systems of commerce and resources are…

Q&A: Lance Hosey on Sustainability and China

A couple of weeks ago we received news that Lance Hosey, a former director with William McDonough + Partners and author of a new book, The Shape of Green: Aesthetics, Ecology, and Design (Island Press), had been named chief sustainability…

Tech and Sustainability Meet Up at Greenbuild

The “classic” Silicon Valley stretches from Palo Alto to south of San Jose, CA, about 20 miles south of San Francisco. Bay Area locals are mighty excited about Greenbuild coming to San Francisco in November.  The conference theme, “@ Greenbuild,”…

A Taste of the Bay Area's Green Architecture

Boucher Grygier Shipping Container House, Innovation and Transition tour Courtesy Jan Grygier From giant redwoods to adaptive reuse, San Francisco is chock full of memorable sights – green buildings and beyond. At USGBC’s annual Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, held…

Ultimate Oxymoron

Hotels are now worse for the planet than ever before. Recently built properties use twice as much energy per night as hotels built 50 years ago. Even so-called “green hotels” are often merely less-bad alternatives. Is hotel design inherently unsustainable?

The Prescience of Richard Neutra's Theory of "Biorealism"

Illustration: “Nature Near” Joseph G. Brin © 2012 Talk about biophilia, biomimicry, or biodiversity and another "bio" comes to mind—that of late architect Richard Neutra. He himself coined the term "biorealism" to connote “the inherent and inseparable relationship between man and…

Disney Green

Want to influence the next generation? Grab 'em young like cereal producers and others who advertise to children do. Reference point theory posits that our first exposure to a product or experience imprints and becomes the comparison reference for all…

Q&A: Susan Chin on Urban Farms

In New York City, where more than 8 million of us live in very close proximity to hundreds of our immediate neighbors, many of us are also near some form of urban agriculture. Today there are ten times more urban…

The Other Social Network

Sustainability is, by now, a well-embedded and highly visible part of public discourse. Buildings that breathe and cities that live are less science fiction than just plain science, and people are becoming more and more conscious of the impact their…