New Mexico’s families of color already feeling climate change’s effects

July 27, 2021 by  
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In hot, dry  New Mexico , climate change is already playing out. And it’s hitting people of color especially hard, say climate change experts. In Albuquerque, New Mexico’s biggest city, the International District, where many families of color live, is a heat sink. Too much concrete and not enough vegetation traps heat. Several organizations are planting  trees  in lower-income areas of the city, but it will be a while before saplings can provide shade. Related: Environmental racism in America “As it gets hotter, heat sinks will affect mental and emotional health,” said Joan Brown, executive director of climate justice organization New Mexico Interfaith Power and Light, as reported by NM Political Report. “You get really depressed if there’s no shade, no beauty or coolness. It really impacts children and their well being. Trees are really important to  children  for that green and that beauty.” As the  climate changes , it will be harder and harder for lower-income people to endure the heat if they can’t afford air conditioning, good insulation and evaporative coolers. And people who work outside will have no relief at all. Already, this year’s heatwave has impacted workers in dairies and copper mines and people harvesting New Mexico’s signature green chile.  Around the Permian Basin of southeast New Mexico, oil and gas are big businesses. Lower-income families living near these extractive industries are more likely to suffer from asthma and other  pollution -related health problems. Go even farther south, and you reach the  Mexican  border. Johanna Bencomo, executive director for New Mexico CAFé, said climate refugees are of concern to southern New Mexico. “We are a border community,” she said, as reported by NM Political Report. “We will be seeing more immigrants coming to our borders because of environmental issues, because of climate change.” Some indigenous residents of New Mexico have already left their traditional homeland due to a changing climate. “Even now, people are selling their cows,” said Mario Atencio, a board member of Diné Citizens Against Ruining our Environment, as reported by NM Political Report. “It’s kind of happening. There are no jobs, you can’t raise and sustain a herd of  cows , what else are you going to do? You’ve got to go work. It’s not going to be a mass migration. It’s happening very slowly, a climate change diaspora.” Via NM Political Report Lead image via Pixabay

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New Mexico’s families of color already feeling climate change’s effects

New Oakville North additions put pedestrians first

July 27, 2021 by  
Filed under Eco, Green, Recycle

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Most master-planned communities take into account things like location to central services and inclusion of a gym, but North Oak at Oakvillage, a multiphase condominium development in Oakville, Canada, builds housing units while incorporating sustainable building practices, too.  Oakvillage is a pedestrian-first community with a focus on connecting to the nearby natural elements of the area. A scenic, 1.5 kilometer multipurpose trail is woven throughout the community. Moreover, onsite trails lead to 300 kilometers of additional trails as well as pristine forests and meadows surrounding Oakvillage. Residents can hit the Sixteen Mile Creek, Bronte Creek Natural Park and Lions Valley Park. In the future, the complex will connect to a planned restaurant and retail complex via a pedestrian-only trail. The master plan presented four phases of construction. With the first three phrases well received and sold out, Minto Communities, the building company behind the project, has launched North Oak Phase 4.  Related: A sustainable campus is built from 22 recycled shipping containers The project is exploring ways to build human and environmental health considerations into a multi-unit complex. This initial tower will debut the developer’s first multi-residential geoexchange energy system. Geoexchange is an energy-efficient way of tapping into Earth’s naturally stable underground temperatures. While it’s not new technology, in Canada and other areas, it has mostly been used for single-family residences. With a geoexchange system, there’s no need for extreme variations in order to heat or cool the air because it’s already temperature-controlled year-round. These systems have been shown to reduce carbon emissions as much as 70%, a particularly big environmental win for a multi-family space. “We’re thrilled to launch North Oak’s second tower, 4B, after the tremendous success of our launch of tower 4A earlier this year. North Oak is our first project to offer community energy through a geoexchange system and the response from purchasers so far has been positive,” said Roya Khaleeli, Director of Sustainability and Innovation for Minto Communities GTA. “Not only will residents benefit from this leading-edge technology, we know they’ll also benefit greatly from the wellness-inspired approach that’s seen through every touch point — from the walking paths and pedestrian prioritization to the beautiful gardens with native plantings and the bright interiors with natural materials and biophilic design incorporated throughout.” With the recent pandemic fresh in the minds of developers, they created a concept they call the “Neighbourhood Nest,” which is a centralized space with eye-catching architecture that will connect North Oak to the future tower next door. This area is designed for social gatherings and also serves as an emergency response center with back-up power, a communications system and refrigeration. Large glass walls provide natural light and further encourage the connection between inside and outside. At the lobby entrance, an expansive planter filled with native species greets residents. Just outside the building, green spaces and a pond are nestled into the landscape. Suites at North Oak are offered in one-bedroom, loft, two-bedroom and two-bedroom plus den options, with suites starting in the mid-$400s. + Minto Communities GTA Images via Minto Communities GTA

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New Oakville North additions put pedestrians first

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