Home Style Green - Sustainable Design and Building

Home is where the heart is. It's also where our lungs are, where our eyes and ears are, where our whole bodies, and where our minds are.

In this week's show, I read a short audio essay about why we should dream and why we should ask for, and build better homes. 

Links:

Direct download: 47_Home_is_Where_the_Heart_is.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:14pm +12

46: How to Measure the Impact of Where Stuff Comes From with eTool

What's the impact of where all the stuff comes from that you use when creating your dream home, and how do you measure it? That's what LCA (life cycle analysis) is all about, and that's what eTool is all about. This week, I talk to eTool creator, Alex Bruce. 

Growing up on a farm helped shape Alex's appreciation for the outdoors. He went on to study Mechanical Engineering and while working in remote north Western Australia, got an opportunity to get into the solar panel business. 

One day someone asked Alex if it was true that solar panels consume more energy to make that what they produce in their lifetime. At the time he didn't know the answer, and set out to find out. 

eTool is now available to help answer that same question for all types of products and materials that go into building your home. 

References:

  • http://etool.net.au/
  • http://www.homestar.org.nz/
  • http://www.bioregional.com/oneplanetliving/what-is-one-planet-living/
  • http://www.oneplanetliving.org/index.html
  • http://www.usgbc.org/leed/homes
  • http://living-future.org/lbc

Book recommendation:

Making Your Home Sustainable, by Derek Wrigley

Other Podcasts:

http://www.entrearchitect.com/category/podcast/

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/geoff-mcdonald-ideas-architect/id673000099

http://www.houseplanninghelp.com/category/podcast/

https://itunes.apple.com/nz/podcast/rnz-nine-to-noon/id174829950

https://itunes.apple.com/nz/podcast/rnz-this-way-up/id207987745

Direct download: 46_How_to_Measure_the_Impact_of_Where_Stuff_Comes_From_with_eTool.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:32pm +12

New Zealand Centre for Sustainable Cities are hosting a launch event on 20th August 2013 in Wellington for the book 'Homes People Can Afford"

The book was put together by Sarah Bierre, Philippa Howden-Chapman and Lisa Early from He Kainga Oranga, the Housing and Health Research Programme.

I discussed with Sarah, why they wrote the book, what housing affordability actually means and why it's important. 

Reference

The Poetics of Space

Direct download: Homes_People_can_Afford.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:47am +12

Danny Squires and Martin Luff met on Twitter, were inspired by a TEDex video and have since co-founded WikiHouse NZ. With this project, they're setting out to change the world and to 'make things better' by design. 

Links:

  • WikiHouse NZ Website: http://spacecraft.co.nz/
  • TV3 News item: http://www.3news.co.nz/Chch-developers-plan-jigsaw-puzzle-house/tabid/423/articleID/307657/Default.aspx
  • http://blog.ted.com/2013/05/23/how-to-print-out-your-own-house/

Supporters:

  • http://www.health2000.co.nz/
  • http://www.madeonjupiter.com/
  • http://www.pfc.co.nz/
  • http://www.jnl.co.nz/
  • http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/about-massey/news/article.cfm?mnarticle=fab-lab-wellington-officially-opened-28-08-2012

Direct download: 44_How_to_Make_Things_Better_with_WikiHouse_NZ.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:36pm +12

In this short, sharp episode of Home Style Green, I answer a listener question about insulating the edges of a concrete floor slab, what to do if you can't afford to install solar hot water, thermally broken windows, getting extra insulation in your walls and LED lighting. 

Direct download: 43_Concrete_slab_hot_water_windows_walls__LEDs_-_Listener_Questions.mp3
Category:Building -- posted at: 8:34pm +12

Design Navigator is a great, online resource for calculating the thermal performance of your house plan. I spoke with developer, Albrecht Stoecklein about why he created it and a great new feature he's just added.

References

  • http://www.designnavigator.co.nz/index.html
  • http://www.energywise.govt.nz/resource/design-sun
  • http://www.ecotect.co.nz/PDF/eecapsfs.pdf
  • http://www.waitakere.govt.nz/abtcit/ec/bldsus/pdf/energy/designsun.pdf
Direct download: 42_Design_Navigator_with_Albrecht_Stoecklein.mp3
Category:Sustainable Design -- posted at: 10:10pm +12

Lisa Madarasz was frustrated by not being able to find good products for her home that were going to be good for her family and good for the planet. (Does that sound familiar?)

With so much 'eco' marketing out there, how can you tell what's truly green?

To help, Lisa created Ecodeals.co.nz

links:

  • http://www.ecodeals.co.nz
  • https://www.facebook.com/ecodeals
  • http://www.environmentalchoice.org.nz/
  • http://www.unpackit.org.nz/
  • http://greenideas.co.nz/products-page/subscription/new-subscription/
Direct download: 41_Save_Time._Save_Money._Save_the_Planet._Ecodeals_with_Lisa_Madarasz.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm +12

What's a "Building Whisperer"?

David Bartlett leads the IBM’s Smarter Buildings initiative, helping clients create more green, cost-efficient cities, campuses, corporate offices, commercial sites, casinos, hospitals and neighborhoods worldwide.  As IBM’s “Building Whisperer,” he is a vocal advocate at industry events and in media for using data analysis to better control buildings’ function and tame wasteful energy practices.

Links mentioned in today's show:

Direct download: 40_Building_Whisperer_David_Bartlett.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:10pm +12

ZETA Design + Build produce modular buildings inside a factory. I spoke with CEO, Howard Koenig this week to talk about why anyone would want a factory built home. Turns out there are some very compelling reasons. Listen in to find out more.

Useful links:

Direct download: 39_Howard_Koenig_ZETA_modular_building.mp3
Category:Building -- posted at: 8:54pm +12

I've just come back from three days at buildnz designex. This week I report back on some of the highlights from the show and some great new products to look out for.

Plus, a question about reducing VOCs and toxicity in a new home:

  1. Don't be fooled by the name 'eco..'
  2. Look for known, third party verification like ISO 14001, Environment Choice or FSC and looked for reporte figures on VOCs
  3. Use Envirospec 
  4. Ask your designer, supplier and builder, to specify, supply and use low VOC and non-formaldehyde products

Links from the show: