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This is the outside of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s new FLEXLAB

 

FLEXLAB is the world’s first energy use lab that will help builders and manufactures test entire building systems down to the component level on a significant scale.

This lab offers solutions for people who bring products to test out and want to use all of the lab’s equipment to do so, to people who want to bring their product to test out with their own machinery and equipment.

Current projects involve measuring energy usage for the Genentech building, PG&E and more!

The lab has 4 stations (shown in the video above) to accommodate a variety of testing scenarios including:

1. “Test-drive technologies”

2. “Individual circuits and meters”

3. “Lighting and plug-load elements”

4. “On-site training”

5. “Compression testing”

and more.

According to the FLEXLAB, there is a problem that buildings are designed to be energy efficient, but once they are being used they end up using a lot more energy than was planned. A new study even pointed out that energy efficient buildings sometimes use more than twice the energy than was expected based on their design.

Here’s an except from the lab’s website about what they offer:

FLEXLAB is the first test bed in the world that can evaluate the energy efficiency of major building systems, as an integrated system, under real-world conditions. Stakeholders can evaluate energy-efficient building technologies individually or as integrated systems in advance of building projects or retrofits, in order to:

  • Optimize integrated systems to maximize energy savings
  • Ensure occupant comfort and user-friendliness
  • Verify cost-benefit numbers
  • Train building operators
  • Build confidence in new technologies

 

( Source: http://flexlab.lbl.gov/ )

Another great Green article from Green Halo

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Did you know that Chicago, IL has become the epicenter for LEED-certified buildings?

green halo waste tracking system leed building chicago illinois il green

How about the fact that landscaping designed to conserve water is called Xeriscaping and it’s big in Denver, CO?

green halo waste tracking system Xeriscaping denver colorado co

Freshkills landfill in New York, NY is a landfill that’s three-times the size of Central Park and it’s being worked on so that it can be turned into a park!

green halo waste tracking system freshkills park in new york

Portland, OR is home to the Bicycle Transportation Alliance whose mission it is to create healthy, sustainable communities by make bicycling safe, convenient and accessible.

greenhalo_systems_some_of_the_things_that_bicycle_transportation_alliance_offers_and_does

 

Source: http://ecowatch.com/2014/07/14/ranking-sustainability-programs-u-s/

and 

http://btaoregon.org/

 

Another great Green article from Green Halo

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green halo waste tracking system leed whitewave food brandsWhiteWave Foods is a leading consumer food and beverage company and their milk dairy facility in Dallas, Texas recently received green building certificates! WhiteWave Foods produces Silk®, Horizon®, International Delight® and Earthbound Farm® products. Their 325,000 square foot facility earned the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification for New Construction.

green halo waste tracking system leed whitewave food facility in dallas texas

This facility includes both a dairy and no-dairy area, there is also a 5,000 hp ammonia refrigeration system, multiple raw milk receiving bays, soy extraction area, multiple batching, filler lines and finished product coolers. This state-of-the-art facility is the result of just 8 months of renovation at a former frozen yogurt plant.

The president of WhiteWave Foods explained that the company is committed to helping people eat better and that how they make their products is just as important as what they make.

green halo waste tracking system leed whitewave food top of factory

Vendingmarketwatch.com’s article on WhiteWave Food explained how the LEED credits were earned for this building:

“The LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. Green attributes of the WhiteWave facility include:

·  Nearly 90 percent of all demolition and construction waste associated with the project was diverted from landfills.

·  Landscaping that requires no irrigation

·  Fixtures that use 30 percent less water

·  100 percent of wood-based building materials certified sustainable by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)

·  Nearly half of all building materials manufactured within 500 miles of the site

·  Use of materials and design techniques that facilitate solar reflectivity, helping to address “heat island” challenges associated with Dallas’ urban development. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the annual mean air temperature of a city with 1 million people or more can be 1.8–5.4°F warmer than its surroundings, increasing summertime peak energy demand, air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, and heat-related illness.”

Since this company’s products are so popular it’s good to know that WhiteWave Foods is committed to our health and how their products are made. This building also employed 300 individuals and LEED buildings are one incredible way to help the planet.

 

Source: http://www.hill-wilkinson.com/markets/food-beverage/white-wave-foods

and

http://www.vendingmarketwatch.com/news/11574721/whitewave-foods-opens-companys-first-certified-green-manufacturing-plant


Another great Green article from Green Halo

Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com

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Here it is, a list of the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint according to National Geographic and the folks @GreenHaloUSA

carbon footprint erase pan green halo green environment

How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

1. Make your home energy efficient.
Your home can be responsible for creating twice as many greenhouse gas emissions as your car. Since half of the energy used in your home helps to heat and cool it, making your home as energy efficient as possible will take big chunks out of your carbon footprint. Steps you can take include: Getting a home energy audit; installing energy efficient windows; insulating your attic and walls; installing a programmable thermostat; turning your thermostat down 2 degrees in winter and up 2 degrees in summer.

2. Drive less.
Combine your trips in the car, so you don’t have to go out multiple times to the same location. When possible, use public transit, walk or bike to your destination.

3. Buy the highest gas mileage car for your needs.
Cars contribute 20 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels; the better your gas mileage, the less gas you burn and the fewer emissions you create.

4. Buy energy efficient appliances.
When replacing appliances, buy Energy Star qualified appliances (these use 10-50% less energy than standard appliances and can save you $80 or more per year).

5. Recycle.
Creating products from recycled materials uses up to 98 percent less energy than producing things from new materials.

6. Replace your light bulbs.
Switching to energy efficient compact fluorescent bulbs will save you $30 over the life of the bulb, because these they use about 75 percent less electricity than traditional incandescent bulbs.

7. Buy local food.
Each ingredient in a U.S. meal has traveled an average of 1,500 miles. If we all ate one meal per week of local, organic food, we’d save 1.1 million barrels of oil per week.

8. Eat less red meat.
Beef takes a lot of energy and resources to produce. Replace red meat with fish, chicken and eggs and cut your food carbon footprint by 29 percent. Go vegetarian to cut it by 50 percent.

9. Lower your water heater temperature from 140 degrees F to 120 degrees F.

10. Buy carbon offsets for the rest and make yourself “carbon neutral.”

green halo waste tracking system renewable energy windmill jazz

( Source: http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel/human-footprint/trash-talk2.html )

 

Another great Green article from Green Halo

Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com

 Follow Green Halo on Twitter at http://twitter.com/greenhalousa

Earlier this week, we posted about a how you can vermicompost and create, rich, anti-fungal earth for your gardening! Well, the info graphic that we posted is Sustainable America’s most popular infographic this year, so they made a trouble shooting worm bin guide and sent is to us!

For those of you who struggle to keep your worms happy or have questions about gardening with this compost or worm casings, please see this article.

waste tracking wastetracking system vermicomposting worms in dirt with casings

Another great Green article from Green Halo
Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com
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green halo systems coconut-water-splash

Tokelau, a New Zealand island has an abundance of coconuts but the same can’t be said for other natural resources that help us survive. For this reason, Tokelau’s leader Foua Toloa announced in 2009 that the island will switch to using coconuts and solar power to provide all of the energy for the island. At the moment, diesel is administered to the island from New Zealand to meet the island’s electricity demands (about 42,000 gallons annually). In addition to diesel, gasoline and kerosene is also imported to the island.green halo systems tokelau 2

In Tokelau, most of the population has modern appliances, including satellite TV and Internet. It’s astonishing to think that the island can run off of solar power and coconut oil but we applaud Foua Toloa and Tokelau for being so bold.  green halo systems tokelau

The new energy plan is to transfer most of the islands’ power generation to 93% photovoltaic solar arrays and biofuel from coconuts will supply the remaining 7% of power generated in Tokelau. Some say that this effort is purely symbolic but we should note that this is part of an effort amount South Pacific island nations to encourage renewable energy systems.fresh coconut halves on beach

Source: http://www.fastcoexist.com/1678915/a-tiny-pacific-island-is-now-powered-by-coconuts

Another great Green article from Green Halo

Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com

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Altaeros Energies has announced the first planned commercial demonstration if it’s Buoyant Airborne Turbine or BAT product. The announcement event plans to deploy the BAT at a height of 1,000’ above ground which could break the record for the highest wind turbine in the world. See what the BAT looks like here:

The BAT has a helium-filled, inflatable shell which lifts the apparatus to high altitudes so that energy can be consistently generated in a low cost way as well. BAT is secured to the ground with high strength tethers and electricity gets sent to the ground from there. The reason behind traveling to higher altitudes is because the winds are stronger and more consistent higher up in the sky.

To learn more, visit: http://www.altaerosenergies.com/

Another great Green article from Green Halo
Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com
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This gem just came on the web, besides the awesome graphic design and the fact that this is paperless environmental education this infographic is just jaw-dropping.

Prepare to be amazed:

compelling_recycling_waste_poster_green_halo

 

Another great Green article from Green Halo
Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com
Follow Green Halo on Twitter at 
http://twitter.com/greenhalousa

Did you know that cast iron pans are a good way to get the iron that you need from your food naturally?

If you’ve never cooked with a cast iron pan before you might not know how durable they are or the fact that they result in the best crust on your food. Some say the flavor that comes from a cast iron pan that has been “seasoned” is the best as well.

Some people love cast iron pans, and some don’t but the non-toxic nature of cast iron is compelling.

Teflon coating, and other nonstick pans can be toxic at high temperatures and when pieces get scrapped off the pan the possibility of it going into food and being consumed is high.

This site has compelling reasons as to why cast iron pans are a prime choice when cooking:

http://www.lahealthyliving.com/1/post/2014/03/10-reasons-to-use-cast-iron-cookware.html

cast iron pan green halo green environment

 

 

Another great Green article from Green Halo
Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com
Follow Green Halo on Twitter at 
http://twitter.com/greenhalousa

 

 

I consider this to be good art. Sad, but good.

yan lu's poor little fishbowl sink desin

Yan Lu’s piece “Poor Little Fishbowl Sink” is a visual reminder that if people use too much water, it kills living things around them. The sink has a fishbowl at eye level and the direct relationship between our water usage and the impact on the environment is clear.

The fish bowl and the faucet are actually separated so that the fish wouldn’t die from soapy water, and one can wash with clean water. Also, the fish bowl won’t actually ever drain completely but the idea is there and people will remember to turn off the tap!

(Source: http://magazine.good.is/articles/conserve-water-or-the-fish-will-die)

Another great Green article from Green Halo
Track your recycling at www.greenhalosystems.com
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