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 improving the quality of life.
A recent study by Mark Z. Jacobson et al. finds [...]
The recent polar vortex has hit us all with some really harsh conditions and as a green contractor based in New York it has made work on our ecological construction sites difficult. Spending cold, winter days inside of an upcycled shipping container can leave you freezing for hours. Space heaters require electricity that you may [...]
For those of us who live in historic homes we know that our period dwellings bring us both joy and frustration. The frustration is largely attributed to the endless repairs that classic Brooklyn Brownstones require and their not so efficient envelope.
Eco Brooklyn has renovated many brownstones and knows first hand how challenging it can [...]
The growth in sustainable and green living has given rise to a movement of eco-tourism in a variety of forms across the country. Specifically the use of salvaged materials is making a breakthrough in the realm of practical and/ or novel green construction.
Across the country salvaged building trends and communities are blossoming and their [...]
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 not already begun. A change in the way we think about new buildings and construction, [...]
First 2000, and now 2012: Years in which people think the world might possibly end.
The world probably won’t end with a bang, but might just crumble beneath the accumulated consequences of our actions.
Meanwhile, American politicians’ opinions of science, especially climate science, are at an alarming low. Sometimes TV makes me wonder if there [...]
On 10/11/11 Eco Brooklyn, a green builder and supporter of a better America and world, went down to the Financial district to check out Occupy Wall Street. Nearly 30 days ago, a diverse group of citizens took to the street in NYC, and marched down to Zuccotti Park, formerly “Liberty Plaza Park”, placed in between [...]
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 hosted many contributors, ranging from non-profits and schools to entrepreneurs, government agencies, and corporate sponsors. [...]
You’ve got the efficiencies of building mounted wind turbines and then you’ve got the efficiencies of karma.
In response to a recent Environmental Building News feature story about the inefficiencies of building-integrated wind turbines comes this subtly hilarious examination of the efficiencies of building-integrated prayer wheels.
Now of course if you are a Tibetan Buddhist, [...]
Here is something from Bau-Biologie that is interesting:
Microwave Radiation – Cell phones, Wi-Fi Are they safe?
As fast as possible, our society is becoming more and more technologically oriented. Homes, schools, offices, entire communities are making decisions to go wireless. Cell phones are proliferating at an alarming rate. These devices were never pre-market tested [...]
Here is an image of the proposed plumbing setup for the green show house in Brooklyn. Chester Birchwood from New York Solar Systems is installing it.
It has three interesting components. These apply to hot water only since we are really managing the amount of energy we added to the hot water. The [...]
I’m experimenting with a transparent heat transfer wall. It would be a transparent wall attached to the outer south wall, leaving about one inch between them. The out wall would be painted a dark color. Ideally it would be black but that would be too much of an eye sore. So dark brown would [...]
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 on adding a wall of glass. It would have been magnificent.
But then [...]
One technology I have my eyes on is developed by Isomax.
They build homes that require basically no heating or cooling at all, regardless of where the house it. How do they do it?
They use a series of air and water tubes and ducts to pass heat and cold around. They have tubes in [...]
A “new” construction style coming out of Germany creates houses that barely need energy to run. They don’t even have heating systems. In the dead of winter they might need a little space heater but that is is. What is the secret?
Insane amounts of insulation, triple pane windows, fanatic air sealing, smart solar design, [...]
I have a moto that I live by when building: Fanatic Insulation. I’m not sure if I coined the phrase but I think I did . We use weather barrier, caulk, insulation, foam, flashing etc like there we’re building an antarctic deep sea submarine.
Considering some European standards, notably in Germany, our insulation style actually [...]
We have completely dug down the cellar by 3 and 1/2 feet. Then we put a vapour barrier and 3 inch insulation which we taped at the seams. Then we put down the salvaged fencing from the back yard to act as strengthener for the cement. On the fence we tied the pex tubing [...]
We are inserting the salvaged poly iso insulation board into the top floor ceiling of the house between the joists. All the joists have been sistered with “new” salvaged joists. You can see the bolts holding them together. We are packing four layers of poly iso board, making it an air tight R 36. The [...]
Here is an interesting article. It describes all the kinds of house wraps and vapor barriers in detail. It also concludes that despite all the fancy new products the good old tar paper is still the preferred product for the author.
I like building that sticks to the basics and avoids as much as possible [...]
Insulation from Eco Brooklyn Inc with Gennaro Brooks-Church
Green Building is like life: it is all about energy. How you control it, who has it, where it is flowing, and where it isn’t flowing. You control the energy and you have a great house (possibly a great life too).
So obviously insulation plays a [...]
I discovered a great web site today called Radiant Heat Institute.com It is a godsend for a builder like me who likes to build cheap and green. He has loads of practical info. Very good site.
Here is from his site on how to build green:
1. Locate house with south orientation, +5 or [...]
Last week I attended an Energy Efficiency Seminar hosted by Landmark West!, The Community Preservation Corporation and Steven Winter Associates, Inc.
I covered the many ways to make a building more efficient. First we looked at where the energy goes, from heating, to hot water, to appliances, to holes in roof. We learned the percentages [...]
When talking heat there are three ways heat or cold moves through space. Knowing these ways is important because it determines what kind of insulation you use or on the opposite end what kind of heating to use.
Convective heat transfer is what most of us are familiar with. This is how our forced air [...]
In the constant quest for a greener insulation I have considered many options. – Cellulose is good but messy and dusty. – Isonyne spray foam or Demilec spray foam is good but not that cheap and quite honestly not as green as they say. It takes huge amounts of energy and petroleum to create the [...]
Here are six things anyone can do to their home to make it greener. A “green home” means a lot of things. But it always includes energy efficiency. These simple things increase the efficiency of the home by attacking the most dramatic energy loss aspects of a house.
They are relatively cheap and simple steps [...]
We’re entering a new era of solar energy.
Congress just passed historic solar legislation that will increase the use of solar energy all across US, and the President signed it into law. HR1424 extends the 30% solar tax credit for eight years and removes the $2000 monetary cap for residential solar electric installations.
This is [...]
Part of building a healthy environment is keeping track of the environmental stressors. A stressor is something that alters the body in some way. It could be heat, humidity, sound, or electromagnetic fields. Stressors are not necessarily bad. We need heat and a correct level of humidity for example.
Other stressors are a trade off. [...]
Residential Energy Services Network’s (RESNET)
(For trained and certified home energy raters in your service are.)
Mortgage Industry National Home Energy Rating System Accreditation Standard
(For operating home energy rating systems, by state.)
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Energy-Efficient Mortgages Program
(For a searchable list [...]
Here is my answer to “Why should I use your real estate services?”
I am a real estate professional with additional EcoBroker training on the energy and environmental issues that affect real estate transactions. There are tremendous green resources available in the market and as part of my service commitment to my clients, I help [...]
Solar Panels for creating home electricity have come a long way. They are cheaper and last longer than before.
Photovoltaic systems now have expected lifetimes of 20 years and more, with manufacturers offering system and individual component warranties. Contractors are also offering warranties on installation and extended service agreements.
Even in the absence of additional [...]