Green Building

Green infrastructure: New tool by University of Toronto researchers to help construction industry reduce carbon footprint
December 12, 2017 08:10 AM - University of Toronto

A team of researchers from the University of Toronto is partnering with the construction industry to help reduce the carbon footprint of buildings, bridges, public transit and other major infrastructure projects.

“What we’re building is a decision-support tool that can be used in the early stages of design and planning,” says Heather MacLean, a professor in the department of civil engineering who is one of five Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering professors involved in the project. “Ultimately, the goal is to produce infrastructure with much lower greenhouse gas impact.”

Sustainable dams — are they possible?
December 11, 2017 02:41 PM - Colorado State University

Humans have been altering natural waterways for centuries, but only in the last several decades have dams raised ecological concerns.

N. LeRoy Poff, professor of biology at Colorado State University, studies the ecological impact to rivers from human-caused changes, such as dam building, and how these modified river systems can be managed for resilience.

Remote northern Alberta community has UCalgary grad to thank for its solar energy project
December 5, 2017 08:14 AM - University of Calgary

How many solar panels does it take to cover the arena roof in Peavine Métis Settlement?

It’s not exactly the kind of question Juan Pfeiffer was accustomed to answering over the course of earning two engineering degrees in his native Colombia, but it is precisely the question at the core of his capstone project for the Master of Science in Sustainable Energy Development (SEDV) program at the University of Calgary from which he has just graduated.

Climate-Friendly Architecture Thanks to Natural Folding Mechanisms
November 30, 2017 01:41 PM - Technical University of Munich (TUM)

Active components on buildings such as blinds whose design was copied from naturally occurring solutions — that is the subject of the research conducted by a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the University of Freiburg, and the University of Stuttgart. The aim is to equip them with drive elements that can move without any electrical energy input. Serving as a model here are conifer pine cones, which utilize the varying swelling behaviors of their tissue to open when moist or close when dry.

Climate-Friendly Architecture Thanks to Natural Folding Mechanisms
November 30, 2017 01:41 PM - Technical University of Munich (TUM)

Active components on buildings such as blinds whose design was copied from naturally occurring solutions — that is the subject of the research conducted by a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM), the University of Freiburg, and the University of Stuttgart. The aim is to equip them with drive elements that can move without any electrical energy input. Serving as a model here are conifer pine cones, which utilize the varying swelling behaviors of their tissue to open when moist or close when dry.

Stanford researchers test public receptiveness to different wind energy turbines
November 29, 2017 10:46 AM - Stanford University

With global carbon emissions on the rise, wind power continues to be an attractive option for states and countries looking to limit fossil fuel use and increase renewable energy. Wind already accounts for over 5 percent of electricity generation in the United States. However, a number of issues plague the low-carbon energy source, such as complaints from nearby residents about noise and the killing of hundreds of thousands of birds and bats each year that collide with turbine blades.

A Tiny House Big on Style
October 27, 2017 08:13 AM - Carleton University

Three years ago, when Carleton architecture student and national team whitewater kayaker, Ben Hayward, took time off from his studies to train and compete in Europe in a bid to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, the cost of accommodation and travel was tough to manage on his amateur athlete’s budget.

So Hayward bought a used flatbed truck for just over $2,000 and, with $7,500 in materials and help from a Welsh mechanic friend, built a 72-square-foot wooden camper with a small wind turbine, solar panels and a round door at the back. He lived in the “Hobbit Van” for two years, driving from country to country to attend races, sleeping in parking lots.

A Tiny House Big on Style
October 27, 2017 08:13 AM - Carleton University

Three years ago, when Carleton architecture student and national team whitewater kayaker, Ben Hayward, took time off from his studies to train and compete in Europe in a bid to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Rio, the cost of accommodation and travel was tough to manage on his amateur athlete’s budget.

So Hayward bought a used flatbed truck for just over $2,000 and, with $7,500 in materials and help from a Welsh mechanic friend, built a 72-square-foot wooden camper with a small wind turbine, solar panels and a round door at the back. He lived in the “Hobbit Van” for two years, driving from country to country to attend races, sleeping in parking lots.

Cool Roofs Have Water Saving Benefits Too
October 20, 2017 01:42 PM - DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

The energy and climate benefits of cool roofs have been well established: By reflecting rather than absorbing the sun’s energy, light-colored roofs keep buildings, cities, and even the entire planet cooler. Now a new study by the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) has found that cool roofs can also save water by reducing how much is needed for urban irrigation.

New biomass plant to cut Simon Fraser University's greenhouse gases by two-thirds
October 17, 2017 08:16 AM - Simon Fraser University

A new project at Simon Fraser University (SFU) will soon divert wood waste from the landfill and help reduce greenhouse gasses at the University.

SFU and SFU Community Trust are collaborating with Corix Multi-Utility Services Inc., on a $33-million community-based biomass project called the Burnaby Mountain District Energy Utility (BMDEU).

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