Blog Archives

What is the tax rebate for solar panels in NYC?

As a solar panel installer I have to admit that even Eco Brooklyn sometimes gets confused. The rebates expire, then get reinstated and expire again. Here is the current tax rebate agreement. Check out the text in red. This is

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Renewable Energy Plan for New York

Let’s convert New York State’s energy infrastructure into something more sustainable. It’s a simple concept, with a multitude of benefits.  Converting to renewable energy will stabilize costs of energy and  produce jobs while reducing health and climate damage and overall

Posted in All Posts, Eco Brooklyn, Education, Energy, Finance, Green, Solar, Sustainability, Technology Tagged with: , , ,

Exterior Shades – The Anti-Heat Wave of the Future

Temperature has assuredly become a hot topic in offices throughout Brooklyn and Manhattan during the recent heat wave. Eco Brooklyn’s office is no exception to the heat. However, we have a unique approach to the problem. Passive housing has been

Posted in Brooklyn, Build It Forward, City Planning, Design, Eco Brooklyn, Energy, Finance, Green, House, News, Passive House, Philosophy, Radiant Heating, Solar, Sustainability, Technology Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Das Haus New York

Last week, the interns from Eco Brooklyn went to the Net Zero Symposium sponsored by Das Haus in White Plains, New York to hear lectures and view a model of Das Haus, a passivhaus model made from two shipping containers

Posted in City Planning, Design, Education, Energy, House, Passive House, Solar Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Riverside Park: Flushing Away the Porter Potties, Adding Composting Toilets

In 1875, Fredrick Law Olmsted designed Riverside Park, in 1935 Robert Moses built a highway right thought, but somehow the park has prevailed and it now going to be home to one of the greenest structures in the city –

Posted in Brooklyn, City Planning, Design, Eco Brooklyn, Green Roof, Recycled, Solar, Sustainability, water Tagged with: , , , , , , ,

The Living Building Challenge- Winner of the 2012 Buckminster-Fuller Challenge

Green building and eco-sensitive design is currently at the forefront of our modern ethos.   What this means for the green builders, contractors and architects of NY, and the world, is a period of dramatic change and challenge is ahead if

Posted in Build It Forward, City Planning, Design, Eco Brooklyn, Education, Energy, Ethics, Finance, Gray Water, Green, House, LEED, Passive House, Philosophy, Politics, Press, Projects, Real Estate, Recycled, Solar, Sustainability, Technology, triple bottom line, water Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

New Green City: A key element to Green design and construction.

On a beautiful fall day in early October, Eco Brooklyn, a New York City green contractor, took to the South Plaza of Union Square in downtown Manhattan to check out New Green City, an event hosted by GrowNYC.  The event

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Reasons NOT to do Solar (maybe)

Obviously, the author at these links is NOT selling PV systems (I haven’t checked their accuracy): A PV Alternate Energy Summary…  (April 25, 2010) … ” Present panel costs are $3.50 per peak watt. For a significant net energy contribution,

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Solar PV vs. Solar Thermal Costs

There is an increasing opinion amoungst New York solar installers that solar thermal pays for itself quicker than solar PV. Looking at the numbers I thought so too and would recommend solar thermal as a better investment if the client

Posted in All Posts, Energy, Solar

Solar powered attic fans

The following info to chew on was compiled by Martin Holladay, former associate editor at the Journal of Light Construction, former editor of Energy Design Update, currently senior editor for Green Building Advisor. GreenSpec recently delisted powered attic ventilation fans,

Posted in All Posts, Energy, Solar

Brooklyn Brownstone Solar Installation

Ever since the fire department threw a wrench in the New York solar installation movement this year New York solar panel installers have been scrambling to find alternatives for solar installations on Brooklyn brownstones. The wrench in this case is

Posted in All Posts, Solar

Green Roof and Solar Installation Tax Abatement

Navigating the maze of paperwork to get the New York Green Roof and Solar Tax abatement can be confusing, and we’re green roof and solar installers! Below is a list of all you need. The process is pretty simple once

Posted in All Posts, Green Roof, Solar

Solar PV for Brooklyn

Like most people nowadays we think Solar PV is sexy. When you have a Brooklyn brownstone it isn’t like you can have a lot of it, though. Especially now with the new fire regulations requiring a large area of the

Posted in All Posts, Solar

New York Green Roof and Solar Tax Abatement Forms

If you ware building a green roof in Brooklyn or installing a solar PV system in Brooklyn you can apply for a tax abatement. It is pretty easy once you get the hang of it. You want to go here

Posted in All Posts, Green Roof, Solar

New Jersey Solar PV Paperwork

We are working on a solar PV job in New Jersey. Right now we are in the first stages of analyzing load, costs and paperwork needed. One of the people on our installation team is solar expert David Gibbs. He

Posted in All Posts, Solar

Reclaimed Lumber Pergola

We have built a pergola on the green show house for solar pv and thermal. This raises it above the green roof. Green Architect Roxanne Ryce-Paul sketched up the drawings for it: It looks really great. Eco Brooklyn green builder

Posted in All Posts, Green Roof, Salvaged, Solar

LED Basics

LED lighting is not a new idea. It is only in the last few years or so that the technology’s efficiency and efficacy surpassed CFL and HID lighting. This makes it hard to find cost effective lighting replacement, without large

Posted in Design, Energy, LED, Salvaged, Solar

Solar Heroics

Bob Cavello from Mercury Solar is one of the players in solar PV sales in Brooklyn. There aren’t many players and you get to know them all if you are in the green building community. He has this great term:

Posted in All Posts, Solar

Suntech Solar

I have a lot of respect for Suntech, one of the largest solar panel manufacturers in the world. It is one of the few exceptions I will make in my distain for Chinese products. China has a lot of great

Posted in All Posts, Review, Solar

Urban Off Grid

My manager Jack and I were talking about the direction of Eco Brooklyn today and we were trying to put into words the concept of Eco Brooklyn’s services. Jack came up with a genius term: Urban Off Grid. That is

Posted in All Posts, Build It Forward, Gray Water, Green Roof, Politics, Solar

Lighting with LED 1

Lighting can account for 15-20% of your monthly electric bill. With recent advances in LED technology we are able to reproduce the same level of brightness for 1/5- 1/10th the power. This is a huge savings. If we all work

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Solar Panels on the Brownstone Roof

The Brooklyn green show house has a green roof, solar panels, and solar water heater panels. Needless to say that is a lot to fit on a 600 square foot space. So we’re looking at ways to fit it all

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Brooklyn: the Berkeley of the East Coast

Berkeley,California, is one of the few places in the world where the ideals of the 60’s went beyond drugs and loose sex and actually blossomed into some very powerful things. Green building is one of these. Berkeley has examples of

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Here is a cool app courtesy of It shows all the natural homes in the world (at least the ones they know of, which is probably one tenth the real number). The map at first only shows the US,

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Solar Panels, An Example in Green Considerations

The process of building green is different than normal building. There are new considerations to include in the mix. Here is an example. Solar PV is a smart choice in NY I think. NY gets a lot of sun and

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Adding Solar gain and recyclables to Facade

Above: Facade with planter and recycled joists. Originally the top facade of the building had a lot of rotted wood. And there was a great view. So in the heat of the summer I tore down the wall and planned

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Recycled Wood Floor

I have relationships with the contractors in the neighborhood. These oak floors were perfectly fine but the owner wanted to replace them with cherry wood floors. Instead of put them in the dump I got them. The lower floors of

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Eco Brooklyn is a member of American Solar Energy Society

The American Solar Energy Society has been around since 1954, way before most people even knew what solar was. Visionary is the word. They also put out a very useful magazine. Now of course they are huge and respected. More

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Solar Tax Credits Extended

After a disastrous few weeks on Wall Street, the renewable energy industry has come out a winner. It seems there’s always a silver lining in even the worst developments. The long-awaited extension of the Production (PTC) and Investment Tax Credits

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Jack Johnson has solar studio

Jack Johnson shows off his solar studio. JACK JOHNSON – TRAILER SLEEP THROUGH THE STATICby Jack-Johnson

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