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Ecosa Institute sets foundation for green building projects

Antony Brown, Director of Ecosa Institute sheds light on the importance of green building today: “Because half of all carbon emissions come from the building sector, the American Institute of Architects has announced the 2010 Imperative to increase ecological literacy in all design classrooms by 2010 and the 2030 Challenge to reduce the carbon output of all new construction 10% every five years, so that by 2030 all new buildings are completely carbon neutral. The Mission Lane project is an example of the work the Ecosa Institute is doing to address the oncoming crisis of climate change and can serve as a model for other designers attempting to meet the 2030 Challenge.”

How gratifying it must be for the students involved in designing a 45-unit affordable housing project to see their work move into the construction document phase. Ecosa Institute’s Total Immersion Semester in Sustainable Design worked together with Desert Mission Neighborhood Renewal, a non-profit community development organization sponsored by John C. Lincoln hospital in Phoenix, Arizona to create plans for an environmentally, socially and economically responsible housing project for “workers who provide vital services to the community,” as the National Society of Homebuilders has noted. (Source:

Another Arizona-based, Ecosa hot-bed project, Wild Bill Ranch, in the Coconino National Forest, whose mission was to be totally self-sufficient in power and other resources.

ecosawrkshop.jpgEcosa Institute was founded by Antony Brown in 1998, and has offered semesters in sustainable design for people of all backgrounds and interests since 2000. For a history of Ecosa’s approach to experiential education, and a brief, yet enlightening video interview with Brown, click here, where we learn, “the word ‘sustainability’ is a dumb word…It’s more about ‘survival’ right now…90% of habitat is destroyed so we can build buildings.”

LINKS: Ecosa’s hands-on, summer workshops
fall and winter semester programs
impressive faculty or @

AIA’s Top 10 Green Buildings for 2007 (via:Sustainable Style Foundtn)

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Naughty Knitter Organic Cotton Tee


Being crafty today is all the rage — knitting, crocheting, felting, spinning, scrapbooking, quilting, beading…and we love that. CraftyGear just announced a line of merch with kitschy designs and slogans for the crafty types. Here’s the only eco-friendly gift I could find from the Naughty Knitter line of over 50 items. Alas, too bad CraftyGear isn’t both green and crafty.

Know a lot of guy knitters? Here’s a goofy, organic men’s tee for $19.99

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hemp tri-fold wallet

Put your cash in something green. This tri-fold wallet is constructed of 100% hemp, and sports a wide assortment of pockets for all your debt-creating plastic — for a very modest $15.95.

available in black, moss, wine and sand

@ the hempest

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wednesday’s mixed bag of green news


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Solar e-Power charger

This pocket-size, folding solar charger fits most models of Nokia, Ericsson, Motorola or Samsung cellphones. Power cord adaptor included. It can also charge 4 AA or AAA batteries in the attached battery holder. Phone charging can be solar direct, or energy stored in the batteries. The compact folding design protects the cells during transport. Delivers 250 mA @ 6.0 volt. 4.5″ x 2.6″ x 1.3″

$69 @

$47.99 on sale @

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