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Archive for the ‘Sustainability’ Category

West Coast Green is this week in San Francisco, and I am honored to be among the distinguished list of speakers at the event. I will be co-presenting a panel on Integrated Water Systems with Paul Kephart from Rana Creek and Andy Mannle this Friday, October 2, at 11am. The panel we did last year, “The Sexiest Large Scale Water Design Applications We Have Ever Seen”, was S.R.O. So they’re bringing us back for an update, which we’re calling (somewhat less racily) “The Whole Pitcher.”







Also at West Coast Green, Sherwood will be participating in the “Greening Fort Mason Design Slam.” The event was created to brainstorm design strategies and practical ideas for the continued evolution of Fort Mason Center as a leading environmentally sustainable destination. I will be facilitating this charette this Friday October 2 at 12:30pm along with a number of great minds from WRT, The Grove Consulting, Van Meter Williams Pollack, Solutions and PEC. You can read more about it here and register to attend the conference here.

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WCG_flyer

Green building professionals from across the nation will converge at Fort Mason Center on October 2nd during the West Coast Green Conference to brainstorm design strategies and practical ideas for the continued evolution of Fort Mason Center as a leading environmentally sustainable destination. As part of a planned rehabilitation of Pier 2, Fort Mason Center plans to adopt LEED Silver standards and install a large-scale solar array, which will provide for 80% of energy consumption. The Slam will provide a medium for development of a solar conversion plan by the leading solar engineers in the Bay Area.

This ‘meeting of the minds’ is an opportunity for Fort Mason Center to benefit from the design leaders assembled at West Coast Green and to harvest the intellectual capital of its visionary participants. The Slam is set to involve West Coast Green participants and advisors, including Eric Corey Freed, Gil Friend, David Johnston, Sim Van der Ryn, Bill Reed, The education director from PG&E, and several team members at Sherwood Design Engineers.

The collaboration with West Coast Green will strengthen Fort Mason Center’s role as a model of sustainability and help to generate additional synergy with other partners including Long Now Foundation, the National Park Service, San Francisco Conservation Corps, Zip Car, Eat Well, LMS Architects, and Presidio School of Management.

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Lansdowne Live

Controversy has been brewing in Ottawa over a proposal to turn a brownfield site into a stadium, to be called Lansdowne Live. John E. Martin, an Ottawa businessman, has invited Sherwood Engineers to join a group of politicians, government officials, architects, developers and community leaders to a private breakfast meeting this Thursday, Aug. 27, to discuss the situation. Sherwood will be presenting a case study based on our experience turning a brownfield site into a stadium in San Francisco. We will let keep you updated about the project as the dialogue continues.

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BillMcDonoughA new report by DesignIntelligence surveyed architects about their interest in sustainable design. Their 2009 Sustainable Design Survey drew data from architecture and design firms throughout the US.

Here are the Top 5 Individuals cited as role models of green and sustainable design:
1. William McDonough
2. Ed Mazria
3. Bob Berkebile
4. Amory Lovins
5. Barack Obama

The list of Top 5 Firms cited as role models of green and sustainable design includes many of the architecture firms we partner with:
1. HOK
2. Perkins + Will
3. BNIM
4. Kieran Timberlake
5. (tie) Arup
5. (tie) Mithun
5. (tie) William McDonough + Partners

It’s encouraging to know that even in tough economic times, the push for sustainability goes on, and that these successful architecture firms recognize the importance of partnering with sustainable engineering companies like Sherwood Design Engineers.

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Local water supply in rural India

Local water supply in rural India from the New York Times

  • Dr. Nocera at MIT is reserching the ability to capture energy through photosynthesis, so that we can harness solar energy at night
  • A cap and trade system for carbon emissions is looking like it is gaining consensus as the best option for  accounting for externalities of pollution, but how much will it cost our society?
  • More on green schools, this time talking about “the halo” system that enables natural light to shine into the classroom even on cloudy days at Da Vinci Arts Middle School in Portland, Oregon
  • Design your own graywater capture system!
  • Google tackles office greening in London. Best way to increase recycling? Take away trash cans at individual desks.
  • How can a hotel go green but still cater to visitor needs? Take a hole out of the soap bar…
  • A new analysis report was released recently, showing that India could face a severe water supply problem if they do not change their usage patterns soon

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Greetings –

This is the first in a series of regular updates I will be writing about what we have been working on at Sherwood Design Engineers. I’m excited to share information about these projects with you.

Guangzhou, China

Over the past month, we’ve gotten started with a transformative project in Guangzhou in the heart of China’s manufacturing region. We are working with Hargreaves and SOM to conceptualize the regeneration of a major portion of this city of 6-12 million people, which is 75 miles north of Hong Kong. The project entails transforming polluted land via green technology and enterprise in a 36 square kilometer area of the city in a very important region.

Sherwood Institute

Over the last 3 years Sherwood Design Engineers has invested over a quarter million dollars in research and pro-bono activities to develop a proven, project-driven model for improving and accelerating the availability and energy efficiency of fresh water around the world.  We have taken this effort to the next level with the formal founding of a non-profit. Building on the expertise we’ve accrued tackling challenging sustainability problems around the world, we’ve come up with the following mission for the Sherwood Institute:

Safeguard and extend the availability and energy efficiency of threatened fresh water resources in the 6 developed continents by:
• Improving design and practices that will minimize the water-related carbon footprint and maximize water resource use efficiency.
• Transforming policy roadblocks into opportunities for action.
• “Influencing the influencers” of water practices to change ways that people produce, access and use fresh water resources.
• Improving access for people in poverty to clean drinking water in the developing world.

7×7 Magazine Profile

Closer to home, the latest issue of 7×7 Magazine to hit the newsstand has a full page profile on what we are up to on page 25. It’s a very complimentary and well written article, the details are mostly right (you can see the piece for yourself in the News section of our site).

Valladolid

I just returned from visiting my mom’s permaculture education project in Valladolid, Mexico, in the Yucatan. She’s converted an 300 year old colonial home into a living and breathing building with rainwater harvesting and tropical food production. We’ll post some images here soon.

That’s all for now, in future editions of this letter I will keep you updated on these and other projects. I welcome your feedback and would love to know what you’d like to hear more in the comments section below. Thank you for reading.

Best,
Bry Sarte
President, Sherwood Design Engineers

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Solar and Wind Powered Monitoring Station (USGS(

Solar and Wind Powered Monitoring Station (USGS)

Setting up monitoring stations in remote places can be difficult without things we take for granted like an energy source to plug in to.   Solar powered systems are ok, but what if you need accurate information on rainy days?  The USGS Maine Water Science Center solved the problem by using solar and wind power combined on a snowfall measurement device.  The devices are essential to prediciting flooding hazards and projected reservoir volumes associated with snowmelt.  The combination of the two systems enable the use of a ” windmill that powers our measurements on windy and cloudy days, and solar panels that power them on calm, sunny days,” says Bob Lent, chief of the USGS Maine Water Science Center in Augusta.  USGS plans on installing 4 of these systems this summer, after testing in Agusta last winter.

(via EWRI)

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