Jan 15 2015 Newsletter

Please note that several of the following events have other events following them a few days later, which relate directly to them.  Mention of them is included in the first event’s description.  Enjoy!  Thanks.

January 17, 2015 – (Houston) – 15th Annual Urban Harvest Fruit Tree Sale Urban Harvest

January 21, 2015
– (Houston) – Houston Green Film Series: Short Films for Safe Streets – Air Alliance Houston, Emerging Professionals of the Houston USGBC, Houston Tomorrow, the RiceEnvironmental Club, and Transition Houston

January 21, 2015 – (Austin) – Advanced International Building Technologies – deeper green options – Design~Build~Live

January 25, 2015 – (Houston) – Sustainable Living Through Permaculture 1 – Urban Harvest, Permaculture Guild of Houston

January 29, 2015 – (Houston) – The Wild and Scenic Film Festival on Tour – CitizensEnvironment Coalition



15th Annual Urban Harvest Fruit Tree Sale
When:      Saturday, January 17th , 2015
Time:        9:00 am – 1:00 pm (or until we sell out)
Where:     Rice University, Greenbriar Lot
Location: 5600 Greenbriar Drive, Houston TX 77005
Cost:        free and open to the public (but you buy the trees!)

In case you didn’t know, the Annual Urban Harvest Fruit Tree Sale is The Event of the year!!  Many varieties of citrus will be available at the 2015 Fruit Tree Sale. An issue of importance for growers of citrus is maintaining healthy trees to protect your citrus from “greening”. Find out all about it… Citrus Greening: Get the Facts Updated!

For more information on both the Sale please go to: urbanharvest.org/fruit-tree-sale


Houston   Green Film Series, Short Films For Safe Streets
When:       Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Time:        6:30 – 9 pm
Where:     Rice Media Center
Location:  just inside the #8 entrance on the south side of the Rice Campus at University and Stockton
Cost:         $5 suggested donation, includes light meal

This will be a night of short films from StreetFilms.org, with Pedestrian Pete, and more. Complete Streets can transform the Houston region and we can have some fun doing it. Following the film, we’ll hear from representatives from three different City of Houston Departments who are all working on making your life more comfortable and safe on the streets of Houston.

The panel includes:
Amar Mohite, City of Houston Planning & Development Department
Carra Moroni, City of Houston Health & Human Services Department
Jeff Weatherford, City of Houston Public Works & Engineering Department
And will be moderated by Jay Blazek Crossley, Houston Tomorrow

Dinner provide by Dr. Pat Speck and Dry Bones Cafe
6:30 – 7:00 Networking and Dinner
7:00 – 8:30 The films
8:30 – 9:00 Panel Discussion

Open to the public.   $5 suggested donation.  The Houston Green Film Series is a partnership of Air Alliance Houston, Emerging Professionals of the Houston USGBC, Houston Tomorrow, the Rice Environmental Club, and Transition Houston.

For more information, please go to: facebook.com/events/1545748532343731/?ref=3&ref_newsfeed_story_type=regular


Advanced International Building Technologies – deeper green options When:       Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Time:         7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Where:     Treehouse
Location:  4477 S Lamar Blvd. #600 Austin, TX 78745
Cost:         free and open to the public

There is a lot of “greenwashing” in the sustainable building arena these days as companies feel the pressure to jump on the bandwagon. Sadly, many of the products really aren’t green. Even sadder, many of the products in our country meet some definition of “green” but are still terribly unhealthy for people and the planet.

The presentation will start with an introduction to “BauBiology” and the growing need to evolve “green” towards “clean” building. Next will be the “BreathingWall” concepts as they apply to addressing mold and trapped toxins in modern buildings.  (Seewww.breathingwalls.com for a preview.) Then some of the few truly non-toxic and fully “breathable” construction options available to North Americans will be described, including mineral paints and magnesium oxide (MgO) products.  For more information, please go to: designbuildlive.org  and look for Monthly Presentations.

There will also be a site visit on Saturday, January 24, to explore two projects — an all-MgO FEMA trailer suitable for people with multiple chemical sensitivities and a new 2800 square foot completed home with MgO exterior –- will be described. See details of the site visit under “upcoming workshops” on the DBL homepage: designbuildlive.org

For more information, please go to: designbuildlive.org  and look for Monthly Presentations

DBL is a volunteer-run educational organization providing valuable information, and optional donations at the door are always appreciated.  No RSVP required. For more details, email them via “Contact Us” or call Scott Clay at 512-689-1149.


Sustainable Living Through Permaculture 1: SLTP 1
When:       Sunday, January 25th , 2015
Time:         1pm – 5pm
Location:  TBA
Cost:         $40.00

Important NOTE: This class is a prerequisite for SLTP2 (see below) and all other Permaculture (PC) classes, including the Designing Our Green Homes and Communities Through Permaculture Series (below).

In SLTP 1, the design principles of Permaculture (PC) are explained, observed and illustrated in a series of breakout sessions at a home and garden remodeled to reflect PC sustainability principles. This garden has cisterns, many types of fruits, vegetables, habitat plants, a small area for collecting excess rain and a remodeled home that includes many features to reduce energy consumption. Instructors are members of the Permaculture Guild of Houston, which is a group of people who have completed 92 hours of Permaculture classes to become Certified Permaculture Designers.

Sustainable Living Through Permaculture 2 will be held 2/01/2015  12noon – 4:30 pm, It will be on the University of Houston Main Campus, Room & Bldg TBA.  Cost:  $50.  It will be a classroom presentation, where participants carefully explore principles demonstrated in the Sustainable Living Through Permaculture 1 (SLPC 1) class, look at issues connected with larger rural sites, and begin the design of a farm/home site that connects and integrates food with housing and nature.  SLPC 2 is designed to complete what is begun in SLPC 1.

Reminder: Sustainable Living classes 1 and 2 are prerequisites to attend the rest of the permaculture class series, which includes the Designing Our Green Homes and Communities Through Permaculture Series, which starts Saturday 2/7/15.

For more information on this and all Urban Harvest classes, please go to:urbanharvest.org/classes-calendar


The Wild & Scenic Film Festival on Tour
When:       Thursday, January 29th , 2015
Time:         6:30 – 9 pm
Where:      The River Oaks Theatre
Location:   2009 W Gray St  Houston, TX 77019
Cost:          $12 or $15 & membership specials

You can expect a night of  Environmental Inspiration as CEC host the First Ever Houston screening of The Wild & Scenic Film Festival on Tour!   A selection of nine films will cover a variety of issues which will increase community understanding of the connection we share with the planet and our roles as stewards of the environment in which we live.

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival On Tour partners with environmental groups across the country to host the festival as a way to outreach into their communities and bring together an audience of diverse affiliations. The groups use the festival as a tool to raise awareness for their campaigns, bring the issues featured in these films to the local level to show how global issues affect everyone, and inspire everyday Americans to join in with local community efforts to become active effective advocates for the natural environment locally.

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival held each January in Nevada City, California is a kick-off for Wild & Scenic On Tour which travels to more than 140 communities and continues to grow every year. The Film Festival is a call to action. At Wild & Scenic, film-goers are transformed into a congregation of committed activists, dedicated to saving our increasingly threatened planet.

The 4-day event features over 100 award-winning films and welcomes over 100 guest speakers, celebrities, and activists who bring a human face to the environmental movement.

Tickets for the Houston event: General Admission (Early Bird $12) $15, and membership specials

for more information, please go to: cechouston.org and/or  wildandscenicfilmfestival.org/on-tour/



Here is a list of resources available to you to utilize,
and/or groups to get involved with for improving your quality of life.
The “**” notes an organization that has regular meetings, speakers or workshops, so you can check their website often to keep learning!  (Check this list for additions or changes, periodically.)
* cechouston.org – Houston area – Citizens Environmental Coalition – a network for environmentalissues in the Houston/Galveston, Texas area, serving the public and diverse groups to build awareness about environmental issues.
* cleanhouston.org – Houston area – Citizens League for Environmental Action Now – this organizations emphasis is on public education and environmental data collection.
** designbuildlive.org – Austin area – Design~Build~Live – For events, speakers and especially great for their helpful, hands-on natural building workshops mainly regarding small scale do-it-yourself home matters.
energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=mortgages.energy_efficient_mortgages – National  – Government site about EEMs… Energy Efficient Mortgage (EEM) is a mortgage that credits a home’s energy efficiency in the mortgage itself.  EEMs give borrowers the opportunity to finance cost-effective, energy-saving measures as part of a single mortgage and stretch debt-to-income qualifying ratios on loans thereby allowing borrowers to qualify for a larger loan amount and a better, more energy-efficient home.
GreenDoorHouston.org  – Houston area – GDH represents a “Green Movement” where individuals from all communities and all walks of life are able to participate in green initiatives at all levels –personal, professional and societal.  GDI is a great Green Community Resource in the Houston region.
** holisticmanagement.org/ – Teaching sessions throughout Texas – Holistic Management – Click on HM Workshops or call 505-842-5252.  Beginning farmer, third generation rancher, or public land manager,  learn to apply Holistic Management principles to enhance the health of your land & increase productivity while reducing operating costs. Informative workshops hosted by Holistic Management International and taught by world renowned Holistic Management® Certified Educator, Ian Mitchell-Innes.
* houstongreenscene.org – Houston area – Houston Green Scene – Houston vendors, all things Green Guide, networking and mixers.

HoustonCommunitySustainability.org – The Houston Sustainability Indicators (HSI) project is a long-range effort by the Shell Center for Sustainability to assist with the measurement and characterization of sustainability in Houston. Metrics for the chosen indicators were defined and are measured based on literature review; expert and advisory consultation; and data availability.

** houstontomorrow.org/events/ – Houston area – Houston Tomorrow – For events concerning green living and planning, in and around the Urban Houston area.
* houstontx.gov/solidwaste/recycling.html – Houston area – Houston’s City Recycling information.
* houstontx.gov/solidwaste/resuse.html – Houston area – Houston’s ReUse Warehouse. The City of Houston Building Materials Reuse Warehouse is one of the local organizations working to keep reusable building materials out of the landfills and to put them into the hands of those that can use them.
** houstonurbangardeners.org/home.html – Houston area – Houston Urban Gardeners – Organic gardening for personal gardens and growing your own food with any space. Meeting the second Monday of each month at Houston’s Multi-Service Center at 1475 West Gray Houston, TX 77019
** lastorganicoutpost.com/contact.html Houston area – Last Organic Outpost – Organic Gardening in and for Houston; participate in and/or purchase organic produce; for all ages.
* texasnaturalbuilders.info – Waller, Tx – Texas Natural Builders & New Jura Intentional Community – A nearby source for hands-on natural building education.  (Participants, please send me your comments & rating. LaVerne)
** ohbaonline.org – Houston area – Organic Horticulture Business Alliance.
organicconsumers.org –  National – The Organic Consumers Association (OCA)–  An online and grassroots non-profit 501(c)3 public interest organization campaigning for health, justice, and sustainability.  The OCA deals with crucial issues of food safety, industrial agriculture, genetic engineering, children’s health, corporate accountability, Fair Trade, environmental sustainability and other key topics.  They are the only organization in the US focused exclusively on promoting the views and interests of the nation’s estimated 50 million organic and socially responsible consumers.
** responsibletechnology.org – National – Institute for Responsible Technology. “The most comprehensive source of GMO health risk information on the web”

sustainablecitiesexchange.com/ –  National – Sustainable Cities Exchange brings local government, educational institutions, architects, planners, attorneys, and consultants together via free online workshops. The purpose is to explore ideas and showcase the top energy related sustainability policies, programs and projects that have improved the economies of cities/towns across the US. The goal of Sustainable Cities Exchange is to connect local government and businesses to solutions for economic growth and a sustainable future.

** sustainablesources.com – National – nearly 20 years of online Green Building information.
texasclimatenews.org/   -Texas! – Texas Climate News – An online magazine about climate change and sustainability dedicated to producing public-interest journalism, based on traditional principles of independent-mindedness, accuracy and fairness.  TCN is published by the Houston Advanced Research Center as a project of its Texas Climate Initiative.  HARC is a not-for-profit organization, based in The Woodlands, Texas, which is “dedicated to improving human and ecosystem well-being through the application of sustainability science and principles of sustainable development.”
**tinyurl.com/ctfgkfz – Houston area -Rice University Shell Center for Sustainability –  The Shell Center creates an interdisciplinary program of research, outreach and education to address actions that can be taken to ensure the sustainable development of living standards, interpreted broadly, to encompass all factors affecting the quality of life including environmental resources.  It supports the efforts of Rice University’s faculty, staff and students to better our planet’s economy, society andenvironment.  The Center celebrated its 10th year in 2012.
** transitionhouston.org – Houston area – The Transition Movement supports the transition from oil dependency to local resilience by equipping communities with creative adaptations in areas such as food, energy, health, education, spirit and economy to generate a road map towards sustainable living.  Transition Houston serves to build on the wisdom of the existing resources in Houston’s diverse community to inspire, network and train localized communities to consider and adapt Rob Hopkins’ transition model.  There are several other options for connecting with us.
treia.org –  Texas Renewable Energy Industry Association – a 501 (c)(6) non-profit trade association of companies and individuals engaged in, or considering engagement in, development, marketing, sales, installation, servicing, manufacture, of solar, wind, biomass, geothermal or hydrokinetic energy technologies. Also included are organizations and agencies involved in related research, information development and dissemination, education, or policy.
** urbanharvest.org – Houston area – Urban Harvest – Growing Community Gardens and Enriching Lives in the Houston Area in the city, schools, empty city lots, with Permaculture classes, etc.
** usefulwildplants.org – Austin area – Useful Wild Plants – Specialists in wild plants and their usefulness.
** usgbchouston.org/calendar.asp – Houston area – U.S. Green Building Council of the Greater Houston Area Chapter reaches 26 counties along the Upper Gulf Coast and beyond including: Austin, Brazoria, Brazos, Chambers, Colorado, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Hardin, Harris, Houston, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Montgomery, Newton, Orange, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, Tyler, Waller, Washington and Wharton, mainly oriented for building professionals.
** usgbc-centraltexas.org – Austin, San Antonio, Tx et al – U.S. Green Building Council of the Central Texas – Balcones Chapter (usgbc-centraltexas.org) is a 501c(3) non-profit organization comprising building and associated industry professionals from Austin, San Antonio and 55 counties along the Balcones Escarpment, mainly oriented for building professionals.


With your well-being in mind, I hope this information is helpful and that you attend as many of these events as possible.

Enjoy!

LaVerne

LaVerne A. Williams, AIA, LEED AP
architect, bioneer & building ecologist, founder & ceo
Environment  Associates,  Architects  &  Consultants
5828 Langfield Road, Houston TX  77092     713.528.0000
Leadership in Cultivating & Implementing Sustainable Living Concepts & Practices since 1975
*LaVerne@EnvironmentAssoc.com    * www.EnvironmentAssoc.com
Our signature work,  “eaDesign for Life™” is about creating durable, extraordinarily energy efficient  & healthful dwellings & sites that delight & nurture life, finances… and security.  For new projects throughout Texas & beyond, plus the restoration, rehabilitation, adaptive reuse, and the remodeling of existing & historic structures, and the revitalization of damaged land.
 “eaDesign for Life™” focuses upon the Design and Renewal of Healthy Natural Passive Sustainability & Resilience, because our lives depend upon it.
Our wholistic design approach focuses upon the creation of healthful and sensible provident homes, land use, and communities. Whether you live in the city or country, we help our clients prepare their present or future home as an oasis for surviving and thriving in the unknown and challenging future that appears to be ahead.
40 Years of Leadership Cultivating & Implementing
Sustainable Living Concepts & Practices… since 1975
Design/ Consulting/ Design Counseling/ Construction Documents
/Construction Administration Services
Note: Environment Associates is the proud recipient of the preeminent green building awards available Nationally and Locally and is the first Houston-based entity to complete a Certified LEED Platinum project anywhere on the Planet (a home in Austin, Texas) and had advisory and consulting roles in creating Houston’s 1st LEED Home and Houston’s 1st Platinum & Gold LEED homes.
Our design for “Houston’s Passive Solar Demonstration Home” for the Southern Solar Energy Center in 1979 is the project that launched the Green Building Movement in Texas (toured by over 30,000 people).  Other projects, such as our design for “Houston’s Ultra-performing Cost Efficient LEED Home” and the “Houston Heights Integral Urban Homestead“, continues to prove our green building leadership and demonstrates how well our “eaDesign for Life” concepts and principles for passive sustainability and healthful living actually perform.

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