How Bermuda’s iconic white roofs overcome island’s chronic freshwater shortage

December 30, 2016 by  
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Life in Bermuda may seem exotic and glamorous to outsiders, but the Caribbean Community member faces significant challenges – including a chronic lack of fresh water . To counteract the dearth of springs, rivers, and lakes, local residents designed the island’s iconic white stepped roofs, which slow rainfall so that it may be stored. While Bermuda’s stepped roofs were originally built out of necessity, they are now officially a part of Bermuda law, which states that every new home must include eight gallons of rain barrel storage per square foot of roof space. The roofs that sit atop houses, which are akin to those in British villages but with more festive pastel paint jobs, are built out of limestone to withstand hurricane force winds. Their white color reflects UV light from the sun, which helps to purify the rainwater runoff and keep the homes cool. Related: 6 innovative ways to harvest and harness rainwater As Bermuda’s population has expanded and its reputation as a vacation destination has grown, the island of 60,000 has had to expand upon its low-tech roof system to provide fresh water. “When you can’t spread out, you start building up but think of a house where the roof area and the tank area is designed to satisfy a single family – if you build up and put in another family, you double the consumption,” said Stuart Hayward, an environmental expert from Bermuda.  Tourists , many of whom desire to play a few rounds on water-intensive golf courses, do not possess the same water preservation ethos as those who were born and raised on the island, which has raised Bermuda’s water consumption. The island has integrated desalinization plants, of which there are six, throughout the island. In total, these plants generate over 3,500,000 gallons of fresh purified water each day. However, admiration for the white stepped roofs remains. “What’s good about it is individual responsibility plus collective oversight plus a dependence on social and cultural values,” said Henrietta Moore of the Institute for Global Prosperity at University College London. “In terms of its advantages, it’s low-cost, has been developed over several hundred years so it’s been crafted and tailored to local circumstances,” said Roger Calow, head of the water policy program at the Overseas Development Institute. “It fits the climate , it works.” While Bermuda’s stepped roof method does not work everywhere, it may serve as a model for similar environments and as an inspiration for communities everywhere as they attempt to build water resilience in an increasingly unpredictable world. Via BBC Images via Andrew Currie  and Flickr   (1)

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How Bermuda’s iconic white roofs overcome island’s chronic freshwater shortage

How Bermuda’s iconic white roofs overcome island’s chronic freshwater shortage

December 30, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on How Bermuda’s iconic white roofs overcome island’s chronic freshwater shortage

Life in Bermuda may seem exotic and glamorous to outsiders, but the Caribbean Community member faces significant challenges – including a chronic lack of fresh water . To counteract the dearth of springs, rivers, and lakes, local residents designed the island’s iconic white stepped roofs, which slow rainfall so that it may be stored. While Bermuda’s stepped roofs were originally built out of necessity, they are now officially a part of Bermuda law, which states that every new home must include eight gallons of rain barrel storage per square foot of roof space. The roofs that sit atop houses, which are akin to those in British villages but with more festive pastel paint jobs, are built out of limestone to withstand hurricane force winds. Their white color reflects UV light from the sun, which helps to purify the rainwater runoff and keep the homes cool. Related: 6 innovative ways to harvest and harness rainwater As Bermuda’s population has expanded and its reputation as a vacation destination has grown, the island of 60,000 has had to expand upon its low-tech roof system to provide fresh water. “When you can’t spread out, you start building up but think of a house where the roof area and the tank area is designed to satisfy a single family – if you build up and put in another family, you double the consumption,” said Stuart Hayward, an environmental expert from Bermuda.  Tourists , many of whom desire to play a few rounds on water-intensive golf courses, do not possess the same water preservation ethos as those who were born and raised on the island, which has raised Bermuda’s water consumption. The island has integrated desalinization plants, of which there are six, throughout the island. In total, these plants generate over 3,500,000 gallons of fresh purified water each day. However, admiration for the white stepped roofs remains. “What’s good about it is individual responsibility plus collective oversight plus a dependence on social and cultural values,” said Henrietta Moore of the Institute for Global Prosperity at University College London. “In terms of its advantages, it’s low-cost, has been developed over several hundred years so it’s been crafted and tailored to local circumstances,” said Roger Calow, head of the water policy program at the Overseas Development Institute. “It fits the climate , it works.” While Bermuda’s stepped roof method does not work everywhere, it may serve as a model for similar environments and as an inspiration for communities everywhere as they attempt to build water resilience in an increasingly unpredictable world. Via BBC Images via Andrew Currie  and Flickr   (1)

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How Bermuda’s iconic white roofs overcome island’s chronic freshwater shortage

Geothermal-powered Thompson Exhibition Building mimics a crashing wave

December 30, 2016 by  
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Walk beneath the curved ceiling of the Thompson Exhibition Building and you’ll be struck by how similar it feels to being engulfed by a crashing ocean wave. This dramatic effect is part of the many sea-inspired elements of the newly completed structure, designed by Centerbrook Architects , which serves as the keynote building for the 19-acre riverfront campus at Mystic Seaport , Museum of America and the Sea. The striking timber-framed building offers more than just bold design—energy efficient features are incorporated, including geothermal heating and cooling. Inspired by the nearby sea, the Thompson Exhibition Building also takes design cues from the curved hulls of the wooden ships that sailed from the town of Mystic. Its exposed wooden trusses bring to mind the ribbed skeletal forms of marine animals. The building replaces the Seaport’s previous indoor-oriented exhibit spaces with an improved, 5,000-square-foot exhibit gallery, visitor reception, events space, retail shop, cafe, and outdoor terraces that connect to the new Donald C. McGraw Gallery Quadrangle. Related: Greenery-infused nursery school in Japan brings children closer to nature Versatility was key to the design of the exhibition space, which features tall ceilings and demountable walls that can accommodate displays of varying sizes, from watercraft to fine art. Inspired by a sailing ship’s top timbers as well as the arc of a wave and whale vertebrae, the ceiling was constructed from curved lengths of glue-laminated Douglas Fir , a wood species preferred by New England ship builders after the Civil War. The architects write: “Overall, the building stands for what we came to regard as “the geometry of the sea” – the spiral shape of sea life, the kinetic movement of ocean swells, the crash of waves on the shore, the billow of sails, and the faring of wooden hulls. Wood was the ideal material for these purposes because it can economically enclose a large clear-span space while forming complex organic geometries.” + Centerbrook Architects Via ArchDaily Images © Jeff Goldberg

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Geothermal-powered Thompson Exhibition Building mimics a crashing wave

Turkish dairy factory turns cheese production into a 360-degree experience

December 30, 2016 by  
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The Farm of 38° 30°, an iconic boutique dairy factory designed by architectural studios Slash Architects and Arkizon Architects , is more than a simple production space. The architects designed the building as a cheese showroom and museum that allows visitors to observe the production of cheese in a unique 360° space. The circular building encloses an inner courtyard from where visitors can observe all sequences of production. The main entrance leads guests to a green courtyard where cocktails and events are organized. Most spaces are transparent, with Corten steel sun blinds rendering those used by staff semi-transparent. Vertical slits carved into the exterior facade offer views of the surrounding countryside and allow natural light to reach the interior. Related: Foster + Partners unveils new winery for Château Margaux in Bordeaux The architects combined locally-sourced materials such as natural Afyon stone with Corten steel to emphasize the building’s contemporary industrial identity. This rich material palette lends an element of modernity to the facility’s monumental form. + Slash Architects + Arkizon Architects

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Turkish dairy factory turns cheese production into a 360-degree experience

Category 3 storm Hurricane Nicole batters Bermuda

October 13, 2016 by  
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Just days after Hurricane Matthew , Hurricane Nicole is slamming into Bermuda. The Category 3 hurricane battered Bermuda Thursday, destroying homes and trees, and causing massive  floods . While the hurricane is expected to miss the United States and travel into the Atlantic Ocean, it could still cause rip currents along the U.S. East Coast. According to the National Hurricane Center , Hurricane Nicole is “extremely dangerous.” They predicted water levels would surge six to eight feet higher than normal in Bermuda, and “large and destructive” waves would pummel the island. Maximum sustained winds clock in at 125 miles per hour. Tornadoes could possibly roll through the area and add to the destruction. Related: Unchecked global warming could bring the worst hurricanes ever seen by the end of this century Residents and visitors hid indoors as the storm hit. National Security Minister Jeff Baron said, “This is a serious storm , and it’s living up to the weather predictions. The worst is not over.” Bermuda’s weathered hurricanes in the past, but few have been as strong as Hurricane Nicole, according to the National Hurricane Center. The island’s infrastructure is built to deal with severe weather, but even so 20,000 customers lost power. Airlines and cruise ships canceled travel to the tropical destination, as those on the island hunkered down to wait. Government offices and schools closed on Thursday. AP spoke with local Nick West, whose garden was underwater and who lost a big part of his roof to the hurricane. “We are hiding downstairs,” West told AP. “Just as long as we are all safe, that is all I really care about.” While it’s likely Hurricane Nicole won’t make it to the United States, it could still affect weather conditions. The National Hurricane Center warned everyone “from the Carolinas northward” to beware of rip currents. North Carolina and South Carolina could see threatening swell conditions. Via NPR and AP Images via NOAA NWS National Hurricane Center Facebook and screenshot

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Category 3 storm Hurricane Nicole batters Bermuda

The Caribbean has Lost 80% of its Coral Reefs According to Catlin Seaview Survey

August 1, 2013 by  
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Coral reef photo from Shutterstock Overall, the world has already lost 40% of its corals due to pollution, climate change , and overfishing. Recently the Catlin Seaview Survey found that reefs in the Caribbean have declined by an alarming 80%, creating problems for the marine ecosystem as well as the local community, which depends on tourism and natural resources to survive. The Catlin project , which commenced in September of 2012, hopes to paint a more accurate picture of how the globe’s coral reefs are faring and create a “baseline” to help future scientists work towards conservation. Read the rest of The Caribbean has Lost 80% of its Coral Reefs According to Catlin Seaview Survey Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: anguilla , barbuda , belize , bermuda , California , caribbean , catlin group , catlin seaview survey , coral reef , florida , global change institute , Great Barrier Reef , mexico , ove hoegh-guldberg , san diego , scripps institute of oceanogoraphy , st. lucia , stephen catlin , the university of queensland , turks & caicos        

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The Caribbean has Lost 80% of its Coral Reefs According to Catlin Seaview Survey

INEOS Bio Creates First Commercial-Scale Waste to Biofuel System

August 1, 2013 by  
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Photo via Shutterstock In regards to biofuel , INEOS Bio has been able literally turned trash into treasure. The company released a statement on Wednesday that they had successfully been able to produce commercial quantities of ethanol from wood waste and non-food vegetative matter. Soon, they hope to use municipal garbage as a feedstock to create the alcohol. Although they did not say exactly how much they had made in their Vero Beach, Florida facility, they hope to begin shipments this August of the fossil fuel alternative. Their ultimate goal is to produce eight million gallons a year. Read the rest of INEOS Bio Creates First Commercial-Scale Waste to Biofuel System Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: bacteria , biocatalyst , biofuel , distillation , fermentation , florida , gasification , ineos bio , peter williams , vero beach , Waste        

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INEOS Bio Creates First Commercial-Scale Waste to Biofuel System

RFP for NYC’s Flood-Protecting Seaport City Puts It a Step Closer to Reality

August 1, 2013 by  
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If you thought New York City was just playing around when it proposed building a mini city onto the side of Manhattan to protect it from future storms , check this out. Yesterday, Mayor Bloomberg issued a request for proposals for the Seaport City project to study its feasibility. Click here to learn how and when to submit to the request. READ MORE > Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Climate Change , eco design , green design , hurricane sandy nyc , mayor Bloomberg climate change , mayor bloomberg seaport city , new york resiliency plan , nyc climate change report , nyc flood map , NYC flood zones , NYC flooding , nyc future climate change , nyc future hurricanes , nyc future storms , nyc resiliency plan , nyc sea levels , NYC Storms , safeguarding manhattan , seaport city , seaport city nyc , storm surge protection Manhattan. Superstorm Sandy , stronger more resilient new york , sustainable design        

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RFP for NYC’s Flood-Protecting Seaport City Puts It a Step Closer to Reality

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