Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Marcellus Fail

It's a little skimpy on details, but this report on violations related to Marcellus Shale gas development in Pennsylvania is instructive in terms of the kinds of environmental impacts we might expect in New York. Unfortunately, about three-quarters of the citations involve actions that have the potential to directly contaminate surface- and groundwater with a largely unknown suite of toxic compounds.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Water slides!

A colleague of mine told me about an interesting upcoming conference in Milwaukee (see here), and we chatted for a bit about how the city is really striving to be a focal point in the discussion of water resources.

That conversation got me curious about what else has happened in Milwaukee of late, so I did a quick Google search... Lo and behold, up came these very interesting presentations from July's Water Summit (scroll about midway down the page)...

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Harvesting greenroof runoff and more

Unfortunately, the time to put together thoughful comments on articles continues to elude me... but this bit about rainwater harvesting from greenroofs.com is worth reading, if only for the linked resources...

I hope that I'll have time to post more in-depth ideas/photos/research/etc. soon!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Greenroofs, PV panels, and green building

A couple of tidbits for your Monday AM:

An interesting article about the symbiosis between greenroofs/white roofs and PV panels...

And a very cool building planned for Portland, OR.

And last, but not least, the Wall Street Journal did a short overview of stormwater management in big -- and biggish -- American cities.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Monday, June 21, 2010

Galactic gardening in NYC

No need to consider soil fertility with these hydroponic greenhouse pods. Very interesting... but they presumably offer no water retention or insulation...

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Rooftop soil fertility

A very interesting article on fertility problems associated with Uncommon Ground's intensive greenroof/garden roof soil.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Green roofs and walls

I've made a couple of cool discoveries over the past couple of days and wanted to share them.

First, in our quest to find the perfect wedding venue, my fiancee and I took to Durham, NC. While we didn't find a spot for vows, we did find a new parking garage at Duke -- complete with greenroofs and walls. A couple of photos, and a couple of links:

Here's some information and a few graphics that picture areas that I couldn't capture.

The garage follows tenets outlined in the New Campus Master Plan (essentially, the redevelopment of the old Central Campus).

Second, I got a note from a client yesterday with images of a greenroof we installed at the end of last summer (see below). So far, so good! The sedum should fill in the gaps this summer.

Last, but not least: Columbia and Con Ed have teamed to assess the insulating and cooling capacities of cool roofs (white roofs and greenroofs) vs. conventional black roofs (tar beaches!). In a very interesting study released last week, the group found that green and white roofs perform roughly equally in preventing heat island effect (through evapotranspiration and albedo, respectively) and that each limited temperature variability enough to produce modest energy savings. There is concern, however, that the performance of older white roofs may suffer since the reflectance of these roofs declines as they age. White roofs also lack the ability to moderate water flow, improve air and water quality, provide habitat and recreation space, and improve aesthetics for nearby neighbors, six of the primary motivators for greenroof installation. A very interesting study and I look forward to reading future research findings...