In This Issue:
1 & 2
Perspectives is the bimonthly e-newsletter of the Alberta Chapter, Canada Green Building Council.
change to register March
16 AGM –
LEED Credentialing and Credentialing Maintenance – What's Next?
More than 10,000 green building professionals in Canada have become LEED AP's over the past 10 years. These individuals are now shaping the future by designing and constructing healthier and more efficient buildings, homes and communities across Canada and internationally. Steve Dulmage, Director of Education at the CaGBC, will provide an overview of the changes, the enrolment process, opportunities to become a LEED Green Associate and how the CaGBC will be meeting the needs of its members in the future.
Alberta Green Building Market Update
Chapter member, Spencer Ord and
5:30 pm Registration & Networking
MacEwan University, Robbins Health Learning Centre, City Centre
Campus, Room 9-101
The Alberta Sustainable Building Symposium (ASBS) 2011 moves our tradition of great symposia to new heights – giving you more scope than ever before to join the conversation.
With a dynamic new interactive demonstration format, new features including the first-ever Technology Showcase and speakers who know their stuff and want to expand the conversation, ASBS 2011 – Alberta’s largest green building event – is a must-attend.
Register today and get ready to join the conversation!
– Tuesday, May 10, Northland’s Expo Centre
Check out the details
And who better to lead the conversation than keynote Jason McLennan, considered one of the most influential people in today’s green building movement. He is CEO of the Cascadia Green Building Council, the Pacific Northwest’s leading organization for green building and sustainable development. He wrote the Living Building Challenge, an international green building program, and is co-creator of Pharos, the most advanced building material rating system in North America.
Check out Alberta Chapter chairperson Trina Larsen’s book review of Zugunruhe, McLennan’s latest book.
On to ASBS format changes. You talked to us last year about ways to make SBS even better. We listened. We did away with breakout sessions this year. The day features a single room plenary-style format where keynotes will bookmark their topics with 20-minute performances – that are sure to engage, enthral and encourage you to join the conversation.
The pecha kucha style performances are designed to capture the excitement and intensity of the sustainable building industry.
“The fast-paced technology, entertainment, design elements reflect the mood and objectives of 2011 ASBS,” says Alberta Chapter Executive Director Tanya Doran. “Presenters offer enough information to engage your interest and imagination, then the ASBS format gives you the opportunity to follow up that interest in a meaningful way.”
Gone are the traditional Q and A periods after each presenter. Instead, each speaker will be available in the Conversation Café, part of the new Technology Showcase. Visit those presenters in the café for engaging one-on-one conversations.
And take your time in the Technology Showcase. You’ll have up to 35 booths to investigate – representing suppliers, industry and many regionally available products. Register now for the Showcase.
As well, join the conversation this year by attending the Building Information Modeling (BIM) workshops hosted by the University of Alberta and offered concurrently with the plenary 20-minute presentations. BIM presenters will join the group during keynotes and the networking reception.
Finally, you told us your evenings are precious. We heard you. ASBS is presented in one action-packed day, ending on a high note with our keynote presentation and a networking reception that wraps up by 6:30 pm.
Book Review by Trina
Larsen, P.Eng., M.Sc, LEED AP +
“Release your ideas and innovations to the world when they are ¾ baked. Chasing perfection is a fool’s errand.” Jason McLennan
Zugunruhe – an unsettled journey.
This book examines many aspects of sustainability, from transportation and accommodation to changing career paths, mentorship, generalization and basically just going out there and doing things. Your life choices may be challenged by reading this book.
What captured me most were the stories of people Mr. McLennan has met and their way of looking at the world: how they were influenced, what motivated them to take their journey towards sustainability.
A major theme running through this book is perfection is over-rated – our society may hand-tie itself waiting for perfection. As we try to live and build more sustainably, we will fail; we won’t reach the exact level of energy efficiency we desire. But through this failure we will learn and touch the earth more lightly. It’s a reminder that if we continue to do things in the same way as always, we’ll continue to fail in the same ways as always.
Ultimately, Zugunruhe is an autobiography – a documentation of Jason McLennan’s journey within the sustainable design industry and his life beyond the office. It starts with “when I was a boy” and ends with who he is now.
Zugunruhe to Ruhe – from an unsettled journey to peacefulness.
Enermodal’s Ryan Clarke agrees with the saying that a team approach trumps solitary input every time – and the LEED-CI Gold Certified LoyaltyOne office proves his point.
Client LoyaltyOne’s vision was clear when they approached Enermodal: use a team approach to devise the most sustainable design possible in their new office space at Calgary’s Stampede Station, immediately west of the Calgary Stampede Grounds and BMO Convention Centre.
Enermodal accepted the challenge.
Focusing on furniture, finishes and energy use, the results earned the office space LEED-CI (Commercial Interiors) Gold certification.
“The team has lowered the environmental footprint of a downtown office,” says Ryan Clarke, project lead. “LoyaltyOne has combined sustainable design with a philosophy of enabling their employees toward lifestyles that support sustainability.”
The team’s first focus was on reusing materials. More than 50 per cent of the furniture was reused from other LoyaltyOne offices – significantly reducing the latent energy associated with manufacturing furnishings. Most came from the previous LoyaltyOne office just down the street, with the happy result of using significantly lower transportation energy as there is very little furniture manufactured in Calgary.
The new finishes were chosen for their environmental, health, and durability benefits. Of the new products purchased 13 per cent by cost are made from recycled materials. These include all millwork and door substrates, the CRI Green Label Plus carpet tiles, new GREENGUARD or SCS certified chairs and desks, and the locally manufactured demountable wall systems. Over half of the wood purchased was FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified, proving the trees were maintained and harvested in an environmentally appropriate manner.
“Finishes are a popular focus for CI projects. We tested the indoor air with some pretty sophisticated equipment to make sure they aren’t harmful to the indoor air quality,” explains Ryan. “The VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) ratings were very low – and that means a sustainable, safer workplace. Down the road, LoyaltyOne will likely see reduced absenteeism from workplace illnesses.”
Energy use was also a key area. Almost all the office equipment is Energy Star rated. The lighting power of the office, including user controlled task lights, is a mere 7.5 W/m2. “Typical standard use is around 12 for an open office setting, so we achieved energy use more than 36 per cent below established efficiency standards.”
LoyaltyOne also purchased green power from wind turbines to offset the carbon associated with electricity production.
The office also uses water conservation. All new plumbing fixtures are low flow, with water consumption estimated to be only 285m3/m2 annually.
In addition to the physical sustainability features, LoyaltyOne took care to encourage its approximately 30 employees to adopt more personally sustainable lifestyles. A major feature is the location of its new offices – across the street from a light rail transit station and near several bus routes. The building also has showers and a change room and underground bike storage for those biking to and from the office. The company also offers a telecommuting program and video conferencing system.
LoyaltyOne is a global provider of loyalty strategy and programs, including the AIR MILES® Reward Program, and customer analytics and relationship marketing services.
The Alberta Chapter is walking the talk of maintaining as low a carbon footprint as possible.
You may be wondering where the Chapter’s office is located. It’s a virtual office, existing in Sandra Golightly’s and Executive Director Tanya Doran’s computers and phones. No travel, no furniture, no light and water, only rare face-to-face meetings needed to keep the Chapter’s operation moving forward.
And have you updated your phone list? Call
Alberta Chapter, CaGBC Administrative Assistant Sandra Golightly’s describes her involvement with the Chapter as a family affair.
With husband Russ being involved in the Chapter for years and son Noah’s enthusiasm for having Mom work in her virtual office from home, the Golightly family is enjoying Sandra’s new job.
“I’m still learning the ropes, but I can see my duties are going to be varied and exciting,” says Sandra. So far, she’s been stick handling membership inquiries, getting the ducks in a row for the March 16 Annual General Meeting and delving into the logistics needed for the Alberta Sustainable Building Symposium in May. Sandra started with the Chapter in late January.
She says Russ started the ball rolling when he received an e-mail about the opportunity. “I was looking for a new challenge, and working from home in a virtual office was a perfect fit for me,” she explains. “Working from home gives me the flexibility I need to be a Mom to Noah while keeping the Chapter’s needs moving forward.”
Sandra is realistic about the challenges of working from home, but is confident she can manage. “Ignoring the distractions at home is hard for some people. I’m motivated to stick to what I need to get done but flexible enough to be able to drop everything else if a situation needs all hands on deck.”
So far, 8-year-old Noah likes having his Mom work from home. “He’s reorganized my office a few times already.”
Sandra’s background prepares her well for the variety and interfaces she’ll face in her job with the Chapter. Most recently, she worked with the Calgary Kiwanis Music Festival. In fact, she’s still helping them out until the end of March. She also has some experience in the corporate world, including an administrative job on the advertising side of the Calgary Herald and working with the students’ union at the University of Calgary.
Away from work, Sandra shines in the fine arts arena. “Basically, I’ve been a singer forever – and I like to dance, too. I’m the oddball in my family but it’s fun!” She’s president of the board of directors this year for a semi-professional women’s singing group with which she’s been involved for the past 25 years.
The 2011 Calgary CANstruction competition raised more than 43,000 pounds of food for the Calgary Food Bank with creations supporting the “Oh Canada” theme.
Again this year, Fluor Canada Ltd. took the Structural Ingenuity Award for its design of non-perishable canned food tins.
Other award winners:
meal: The City of Calgary
Check out the photos of the awesome creations.
Canstruction® is a global anti-hunger project. Using canned food and other non-perishable items as building blocks, teams of engineers, designers, architects and builders create extraordinary structures. When the competition is over, all food goes to the local food bank.
Since 2006, Canstruction® Calgary has provided nearly 300,000 pounds of food to needy Calgarians.
Are you taking part in Edmonton’s CANstruction competition? Let us know!
Deadline for entering the Edmonton competition is March 31, and the creations are to be built May 6. They will be on display at Southgate Centre from May 7-21.
If you’re competing, let us know. We’ll help tell your story from the trials of creation through the fun of construction – and we’ll publish the highlights of your photos!
Hole’s Enjoy Centre redefines the “green” in greenhouse operations.
For more than 50 years, Hole’s Greenhouses and Gardens in St. Albert has appealed to “green thumbs” throughout Alberta and beyond.
Never a family to rest on their laurels, however, the Holes realized a “destination garden centre” would offer a more amenable experience for their traditional fans as well as the 20- and 30-somethings.
Enter the Enjoy Centre. Located on a 4.5-hectare site a few kilometres away from the familiar Hole’s location, the Enjoy Centre’s experience includes event and banquet space, delis, spas and wine stores familiar to younger urban residents as well as the greenhouse operations.
“Many younger folks simply aren’t as familiar with gardening and gardening centres as their parents and grandparents were,” said Jim Hole. “The Enjoy Centre will let them discover gardening in a context they are comfortable with.”
Equally exciting are the many sustainable building features at the centre.
For example, locating the greenhouse spaces on the second storey, some on top of warehouse space, maximizes heat and water savings. “This design takes advantage of heat rising from main floor areas and incorporates an efficient water collection system,” says Jim.
Water efficiency is a big feature at the centre. “We collect rain water off the roof,” Jim notes. The water flows down pipes into a 500,000-litre cistern, then is used to water the plants in the greenhouses.
As well, the greenhouses use flood floors that allow each plant to take the water it needs – and no more. “Gone are the days when we irrigate each plant and allow the excess water to drain away,” Jim explains.
Another innovation is the track system that moves each hanging basket to a central station where exact amounts of water needed and supplied are monitored. “We have zero runoff throughout our Enjoy Centre greenhouse operation.”
Other sustainability features include an onsite co-generation system used to heat the greenhouses.
As well, all floors are heated, ensuring the heat is supplied to the roots and stalks of the plants. “Heat conservation is an important concept in our industry. Plants are like people in many ways. If your feet and lower body are warm, you don’t need so much heat in the rest of the room.”
The Centre also features a sophisticated control system with double windows and automated curtains that close at night to contain the heat.
Using the building 365 days a year also makes good sustainability sense. “If your greenhouse is vacant or under-used for several months of the year, you’re not making best use of the infrastructure. We maximize the use of the space – and combining plants with event space ensures the plants are scrubbing out the volatile gases in the air.”
Finally, the Enjoy Centre is placing heavy emphasis on local food suppliers for their deli and food market operations. “We are enthusiastic supporters of the living local concept. Every food source we can get locally cuts down on transportation requirements, reducing the carbon footprint. And that’s good for everybody.”
Product Profiles – Mould Control
Moulds are found in our natural environment and are vital to the decomposition of organic materials – they also serve to recycle nutrients back into the soil.
Moulds reproduce and grow very rapidly; all that is needed is a food source and moisture and they will flourish. Unfortunately, food sources for moulds can include wood, paper, insulation, and even paint and drywall.
As important as moulds are to the natural world, they can become dangerous and even toxic when located indoors. Mould only needs a few days to start colonizing and producing spores – these spores can produce compounds such as mycotoxins that in humans can produce anything from allergic reactions to serious immune and respiratory problems.
Once mould has gained a
foothold indoors, the removal and
The best way to deal with mould is to ensure that your home is an unfriendly place for it to grow. One way to do this is to use a wood sealer to prevent moisture gain. An Alberta company, Genics Inc., manufactures a product called CobraTM Coat-Blu, an oil-free, environmentally safe, home use mould control. It is easy to apply and is non-toxic to people; it can be used as a pre-treat for residences and commercial buildings as well as on decks, fences, poles, spindles, landscape timbers, lattices, gazebos, etc.
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