Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Environmentalists vs. Preservationists


As I told you before, I've been doing a lot of "green reading" - here's another interesting find: A Cautionary Tale - Amid our green-building boom, why neglecting the old in favor of the new just might cost us dearly.

In this article, the author discusses the popularity of "green" building and the influence of the USGBC in the design of new buildings. He is concerned that the "green wave" is beginning to put preservationists and environmentalists at odds: preservationists want to retain existing building stock, and environmentalists wanting to build new.

The author argues that older buildings are not necessarily as inefficient as once thought, particularly those built in the 1920s and earlier. Many of these buildings were inherently "green." The embodied energy of these buildings makes them vaulable in their current form.

He also introduces the term "stealth green" to denote buildings (and practices) that are green without being overt or flashy.

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