How can blockchain save energy? Here are three possible ways

March 7, 2019 by  
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Blockchain has a bad rep for its energy footprint. But what if we used it to cut emissions instead?

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How can blockchain save energy? Here are three possible ways

Cedar Rapids turns tragedy into triumph with new LEED Platinum public library

December 7, 2016 by  
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Tragedy struck Cedar Rapids, Iowa in June 2008, when a devastating flood swept the city and destroyed hundreds of homes, businesses, and several prominent public structures, including the public library. In the wake of the unprecedented natural disaster, the community and local studio OPN Architects joined together to rebuild the library. The new Cedar Rapids Public Library was reborn as a vibrant, multipurpose center that’s earned numerous architecture awards and LEED Platinum certification. Completed in 2003, the new Cedar Rapids Public Library is located a couple blocks from the original site and overlooks Greene Square Park. OPN’s meetings with the community guided the 95,000-square-foot library design, which, according to the architects, was “driven by the desire to embrace openness, transparency and foster public engagement with and within the space.” The building features large expanses of floor-to-ceiling glass to engage the streetscape and to overlook views of the park and cityscape. Large windows and a two-story central atrium allow natural light to penetrate deep into the building and reduce dependence on artificial lighting. The library spaces are organized around the central atrium in a hub-and-spoke system in which the cafe and coffee shop are located in the Service Core Zone, while the children’s, young adult, and adult fiction areas branch out from the hub. Clear sight lines and open vertical circulation help users navigate their way to their destinations. The second floor includes adult non-fiction collections, a conference space, offices, and a 200-seat auditorium facing the park that spans both the second and third floors. A breakout lobby for the auditorium sits on the third floor, which provides access to the 24,000-square-foot green roof . Related: Boxy new library by Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects designed to regenerate Halifax The Cedar Rapids Public Library achieved LEED Platinum certification thanks to its lowered energy footprint, which exceeds the Iowa Energy Code by 55% and uses energy at a rate of 37 ktbu per square foot—a significant savings compared to the pre-flood library’s rate of 100 kbtu per square foot. The exterior glazing that covers over a third of the building envelope is insulating with low-E coating. The building also includes a pump & re-inject geothermal HVAC system, daylight sensors, LEDs, and thermally broken aluminum framing. The accessible green roof harvests rainwater for irrigation, and combined with pervious paving, helps retain 90% of normal annual rainfall and 100% of all rainfall up to one inch in a 24-hour period on site. + OPN Architects Via ArchDaily Images via OPN Architects , by Main Street Studio – Wayne Johnson

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Cedar Rapids turns tragedy into triumph with new LEED Platinum public library

Snails defeat Trump: Irish seawall scrapped

December 7, 2016 by  
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Snails accomplished what 16 Republican primary opponents and Hillary Clinton could not: defeat Donald Trump . The US president-elect just withdrew plans to build a massive seawall that would protect his Irish golf resort from rising sea levels caused by the climate change that he previously said is a Chinese hoax . Environmental activists opposed the development that would have extended 1.7 miles (2.8 kilometers) on Doughmore Beach in the Atlantic Coast village of Doonbeg, claiming that construction of the 15-foot limestone wall would have destroyed the EU-protected Carrowmore Dunes sand dune habitat that is home to the rare prehistoric snail, vertigo anguistor. California-based environmental organization Save the Waves Coalition worked with Irish and European environmental and surfing groups to defeat the wall through the #NatureTrumpsWall campaign, gathering more than 10,000 petition signatures from around the world. Related: Climate denier Donald Trump’s favorite Florida estate is being swallowed by the sea Trump International Golf Links Doonbeg management has reportedly proposed a scaled back barrier for submittal to Clare County Council that would extend to about 600 meters at the south of the beach and 250 meters at the north of the beach. “Trump’s decision to walk away from the seawall proposal is a huge milestone for the #NatureTrumpsWalls campaign and we are very excited by this decision,” Nick Mucha, Save the Waves director of programs said in a statement. “We are proud to have brought worldwide attention to this issue and save Doughmore Beach from their ill-conceived proposal. Our work continues as they consider scaled back measures, but we are excited to spare Doughmore Beach of the monstrous seawall proposal.” While Trump has recently waffled on his past statements denying the human connection to climate change and promising to withdraw the US from the Paris climate agreement, the documents submitted for the seawall in May were quite clear about the impact of climate change, stating that “rising sea levels and increased storm frequency and wave energy associated with global warming can increase the rate of erosion.” Via Save the Waves Coalition Lead image via Wikimedia , other image via Wikimedia

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Snails defeat Trump: Irish seawall scrapped

Green Places Community Clubhouse in Tainan invites nature indoors

November 24, 2016 by  
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The Green Places Community Clubhouse design follows the firm’s philosophy of viewing buildings as “living beings.” Taking cues from nature, the building features an organic-inspired curvaceous facade and interior decor, where timber and natural gray stone is used prominently and sculpted in rounded forms. Tall vertical indoor elements evoke the feeling of a forest, while timber surfaces and full-height continuous glazing wraps around the building to invite landscape views and natural light indoors. The outdoor landscape features multiple water features, including a swimming pool and reflecting pool. The multistory building provides spaces for dining, reading, exercising, learning, sharing, and communication. To minimize the clubhouse’s energy footprint, the architects installed a solid wall to the west of the building to protect against intense sun exposure. To the east, a grove of trees protects the swimming pool from cold winter mornings, while an overhang provides shade on sunny days. Waterproof nano silane ketone resin is used on the facade to control mold. Gaps between the anodized aluminum panels and RC walls promote natural cooling . Related: Solar-powered home in Tainan puts a modern twist on the traditional courtyard house “The design emphasizes not only a comfortable indoor environment, but a natural outdoor environment,” write the architects. “In addition to fulfilling residents’ needs, it provides a comfortable environment where residents enjoy socializing with their neighbours. The aim is to give the community’s residents a sense of belonging and happiness.” + Chain 10 Urban Space Design Via v2com Images by Kuo-Min Lee

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Green Places Community Clubhouse in Tainan invites nature indoors

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