Posts Tagged ‘Green’

Mean and Green, hopefully lean

Earlier today the Mayor signed into law the nations most ‘stringent’ green building codes, for both residential and commercial construction. This being a continuing effort by the mayor to put San Francisco in the spotlight when it comes to progressive politics. All politics is local as they say, and energy policy is probably the most pressing issue the world is facing today.
From the Chron earlier today:

The new codes are to be phased in by 2012. Projects will be evaluated on a point system with credit given for materials used in the building, the location of the building site and water and energy efficiencies…..

Despite those predictions, the city’s Office of Economic Analysis estimated that the new codes would cost the city between $30 million and $700 million a year in economic output, as it could lead to higher rents and businesses choosing to locate elsewhere.

Newsom called that report inaccurate and predicted the new regulations would actually attract businesses to the city. That opinion was echoed by Phil Williams, an executive at San Mateo-based Webcor Builders, who sat on the city task force on green building that developed the new regulations.

The LEED certifications for green building will apply to larger projects, both residential and commercial and the Greenpoint system will apply to smaller projects.

The opposition are crying that the added expense will further drive up the cost of owning a home or a business in SF, and I cry bullshit on that. For far too long people have not paid the true cost of housing, energy and other resources. And this is where government certainly has a role, protecting the commons.

There will be cost savings aplenty as people fall in line with the added up front expense of building to codes that make sense in today’s world.


Photograph CC by Chance Gardener.

Preview Presidio Renovations

100px-presidio_trust.jpgIn 1994, the Army turned the Presidio over to the national park system. And in doing so created one of the finest public spaces in SF and California. Originally founded approximately 1776, there are now plans to renovate some key sections of the Presidio, including the greening of what is now a parking lot, but what used to be called the Parade Ground. Along with building a tunnel for the Doyle drive approach to the Golden Gate bridge. The Parade grounds are lined by Barracks, which are mostly offices and at the southern edge where Donald Fisher wants to build a museum.

The tunnel plan is really interesting as it will connect the western edge of the Parade Grounds with the beachfront at the west end of Chrissy Field, whereas today if you were to walk from the parade grounds to the beach you would walk under the Doyle drive approach (it’s elevated freeway). This would also create some nice beach views from the newly recreated Parade grounds.


Funding? From what I’ve read it’s not fully evident where the money comes from. The current docs state:

To achieve its mission, the Trust generates revenues by leasing the park’s buildings. Federal appropriations diminish each year and will cease at the end of fiscal year 2012. The Trust uses these sources of funding to operate the park and undertake necessary capital improvements.

Overview of new area, parking and poll

Clean and Green Summit 2008

Want to get involved with the greening of San Francisco, need to work off some of that consumer guilt you have been carrying around all year?

The 2008 NEN Clean & Green Summit will feature…

  • A resource fair featuring dozens of agencies & non profits committed to helping you make a difference in your community
  • Five different break out groups that you can pre-register for online
  • How to use Solar and Wind to power your home and /or business
  • Rainwater Harvesting: How you can capture rainwater to use in your garden
  • Demystifying the community challenge grant process
  • How to build community in your neighborhood around being cleaner and greener
  • How to make your home more earth friendly
  • Walking tours of the Mission including a stop at the “Greenest” home in San Francisco – truly an amazing structure!

Date: Saturday May 31st, 2008
Location: Cesar Chavez Elementary School (23rd St. and Folsom).
Cost: FREE

A lunch will be provided by Norcal and the California Culinary Academy to registrants.

Schedule and Links

Cal Academy Wins Award of Excellence!

The Green Roof Industry Association has awarded the new Cal Academy of Sciences with an award of excellence for their green roof installation. The new Academy opens on September 27, 2008. The living roof is a key part of the platinum LEED certification the museum has accomplished. From the southeast view the building truly blends in to the landscape. From the west, see picture below, still a sight to behold.

The roof also retains 2 million gallons of rainwater, preventing 70% of the rainwater that falls on the roof from becoming runoff. The water that does run off the roof is collected in basement-level cisterns and reused for roof irrigation. No potable water will be used to irrigate the living roof.

The roof covers an ambitious 197,000 sq. ft. to a depth of 6-7 inches and cost $17 per sq. ft. In conjunction with the building’s other innovative sustainable features, the living roof contributes to many of the anticipated LEED® points, which, when achieved, will make the Academy the world’s largest LEED® Platinum -certified public space


Photo Credit: Peter Kaminski. H/t to Inhabitat.


Vote Today – Special Congressional Open Primary Election

Don’t forget to vote today. There is a Special Congressional Open Primary Election today for the 12th District House of Representatives seat left behind by the late representative Tom Lantos.

This April 8 Special Congressional Open Primary Election is being held to elect a candidate to serve the remainder of the term for Californias Congressional District 12. All candidates will appear together on the same ballot, regardless of party affiliation, and voters may vote for any of the candidates, regardless of the voter’s party affiliation….

You may vote in person on or before Election Day beginning on March 24, 2008 outside our office in City Hall, Room 48, from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

List of candidates (pdf).

  • Michelle T. McMurry, San Francisco, Democrat
  • Jackie Speier, Burlingame, Democrat
  • Greg Conlon, Atherton, Republican
  • Mike Moloney, Foster City, Republican
  • Barry Hermanson, San Francisco, Green

Voter info pamplet (pdf, text)

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