earth day presentation

Here are the slides /presentation I have made, in different formats, to a number of groups recently, pulling on a number of sources relating to sustainability in the built environment.

… on coals future

A round up of recent coal articles and activities suggest that the writing on the wall may be becoming clearer:

Can coal live up to its clean promise? New Scientist. Seems the CCS, carbon capture schemes) may not be in favour with the world of science. Well worth a read to get an overview of the current state of CCS (A study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology called The Future of Coal, published last year, suggests that the first commercial CCS plants won’t be on stream until 2030 at the earliest.)

E.on climb down on Kingsnorth and ask for delay in planning decision?  Guardian. … Well at least until CCS is viable. Maybe they have read the NS and MIT reports. Greenpeace love it.

byoblue, the Architecture 2030 No Coal campaign grows in strength with supporters across the world,  Facebook and in Second Life (If anyone is in doubt as to the relationship between buildings, their energy demand (or waste) and coal, can I suggest a visit to the excellent material on the Architecture 2030 site.)

blue is the colour…

For those who have asked “why blue” for the Architecture 2030 No Coal campaign, here is the response from Peter over at BYOBlue:

Blue is for clear, clean skies without coal!

The genesis of this theme also comes from the Earth Day Network “Sky Petition” which Architecture 2030 collaborated on, demanding that (the US Congress):

1. Impose an immediate moratorium on the building of all new conventional coal-fired power plants, and require a phase out of 30 percent of existing coal plants by 2030.

2. Require that all utilities generate 30 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030.

3. Require that all new buildings, renovations and developments immediately reduce fossil-fuel energy consumption by 50 percent, and that all new buildings become ‘carbon neutral’ by 2030.

4. Protect the poor and middle class from unfairly bearing the cost of solving the climate crisis.

(thanks Peter)

Meanwhile here in the UK, in Sundays Observer Climate Change special edited by Thom Yorke of Radiohead

  • Drax coal power station emits more CO2 than the 100 least industrialised countries – combined – (22.8 million tonnes annually)
  • Burning fossil fuels for electricity contributed one quarter of the worlds CO2 emissions
  • It was the closure of coal mines that enabled Britain to meet Kyoto reduction pledges
  • There is enough CO2 in coal to take us far beyond the danger level of creating a different planet ( James Hansen, Nasa)

Consider all this in the context of the built environment – the demand it places on energy from coal powered stations and the energy it wastes through poor design, construction, maintenance and the slow speed in which we seem to be moving to low carbon thinking …

uk earth day events

See here for update

On Earth Day 2008, 22nd April, Deepdale Farm North Norfolk will be hosting a whole range of eco friendly organisations for an Earth Day exhibition about the environment, including environmental technology installers, advisors, pressure groups and other related organisations.Whether you are looking for solar panels, wood chip boiler, LED lights, ground source heat pump, wind turbine, need some advice about how to green up your home or business, want to know more about organics or just fancy a look around Deepdale’s eco-friendly facilities, … check out the Deepdale web pages

If you are aware of any more UK based Earth Day events happening, please leave details in the comments below.

And if you are attending any Earth Day events – be sure to check out BYOBLue

…on coal, blue and earth day 2008

Wear BLUE for Earth Day 2008 to VOTE for No Coal

This blog has commented through many posts on coal, on its significant contribution to carbon footprints, on the relationship with the built environment (coal – safe cigarettes for the built environment) and on the recently approved new coal power station in the UK.

But did you know that the UK Eon power station, the first for 20 years, will add 5% to the UK’s carbon footprint, and that the proposed magic cure of carbon capture, when viable, will take some 40% of the energy proposed just to drive the capture application. (source – Guardian Environmental weekly podcast 12/03/08).

isite has long supported Architecture 2030, a movement in the US that makes the link between design / buildings in use and energy production from coal.

isite is proud to have been asked to promote Architecture 2030’s rallying call to everyone to participate in the BYOBlue campaign by calling on everyone to wear BLUE during Earth Day 2008 to signify a vote for NO COAL. (April 20th)

More details can be found at www.byoblue.org and in Ed Mazria’s article posted at Grist (here).

Details on any UK BYOBlue activities will be posted here.