GreenHomeNYC's mission is to promote an energy efficient and sustainable built environment and to support green professional development in NYC. We provide sustainability information to the general public and technical education to advance sustainability careers through a diverse array of programming, events, peer-to-peer mentoring and networking opportunities.

GreenHomeNYC Blog

April Forum Recap: Sustainable Food Systems

May 24, 2017

by Sunitha Sarveswaran


Most people look at strawberry tops or carrot peels and throw them away, without realizing the myriad of other uses these scraps could provide. According to the EPA, the most preferred use for food and organics is human consumption. The least preferred uses are landfill and incineration. The GreenHomeNYC April Forum on Sustainable Food Systems featured a panel of five experts who spoke about the different strategies communities, businesses, and building owners can employ in order to limit or eliminate their organic waste footprint.


Communities can make a difference

According to the New York City Department of Sanitation, more than a third of all waste generated by New York City residents is organic waste. Michael Hurwitz, the Director of the GreenMarket Program and GrowNYC, spoke about how consumers can make a large impact on the organic waste footprint of New York City. Greenmarket was founded in 1976 with two main goals: to keep local farms viable and to ensure New Yorkers have unlimited access to fresh, local produce. Hurwitz discussed how one third of all food grown goes unharvested due to the cosmetic preferences of vendors. GreenMarket takes this unwanted produce and sells it at their local markets. Greenmarket’s passion is educating consumers on how to prepare food so that every part is used and scraps are not wasted. Greenmarket provides recipes, canning presentations and workshops to help consumers minimize their food waste and stretch their dollar.


Green Careers: Sustainable Waste Management

May 22, 2017

By Megan Nordgren


Photo by Giulia Luci


On Tuesday, May 9, representatives from the public and private sectors in sustainable waste management came together with moderator Emily Taubenblatt to provide career insights into this rapidly growing and changing field. While the speakers described different experiences with their respective employers, they agreed on the kinds of traits that are most useful when working in the field of sustainable waste management: Patience, Persistence and the Ability to Troubleshoot.


Marisa Kaminski – NYC Department of Education Zero Waste Schools Program
With more than 1,800 public schools in New York City serving more than one million students, the Department of Education (DOE) has a very large waste footprint. To support OneNYC’s Goal of Zero Waste by 2030, the DOE Office of Sustainability created a new Zero Waste Schools Program to help schools improve their recycling rates and reduce their waste. The program is a partnership between the Department of Sanitation and GrowNYC’s Recycling Champions, working together to increase recycling.
With the program now in its first year, the seven current staff members who serve as Zero Waste Schools coordinators are working with 100 schools selected to be in the program. They also help other schools when requested, and assist schools identified as having a problem. The coordinators work with the various school staff involved in recycling, including custodians, school food staff, principals, teachers, and students to troubleshoot problems that are found and to provide education. Several of the coordinators have Master’s Degrees in Sustainability Management, but it is not a requirement for employment. What is required, however, are strong communications skills, project management skills, and the ability to troubleshoot. (more…)

Posted by Emily Taubenblatt in Blog

Living Building Challenge: Designing for an Equitable and Regenerative Future

April 28, 2017

by Sunitha Sarveswaran


Have you ever considered how a flower functions? It lives off the resources available to it, using the sun, water and soil in its immediate surroundings to thrive. It also provides a service to its surrounding environment, in the way of food, shelter and aesthetic beauty. This is what a building following the Living Building Challenge® certification is designed to emulate.


Living Building Challenge (LBC) was created by the Cascadia Green Building Council in 2006. It was born from the concept that a building should not only be energy efficient, but also have a positive impact on its residents and the community. Buildings that take on the Challenge go above and beyond typical high performance buildings. The aim of LBC is to reduce the energy and water footprint of a building down to the amount it can produce on site. In addition, LBC asks buildings to connect residents and communities with healthy, beautiful and renewing environments. These are very tall orders!


Green Careers: Sustainable Waste Management

April 26, 2017

Interested in learning about compost, recycling, and other forms of sustainable waste management? Join Green Careers for an interactive panel on sustainable waste management practices in NYC!


Marisa Kaminski – Zero Waste Schools Program
Marguerite Manela – NYC Department of Sanitation, Bureau of Recycling and Sustainability
Amy Marpman – Recycling Track Systems
Jacquelyn Ottman – We Hate to Waste


Tue, May 9, 2017
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM EDT
Steven Winter Associates
307 7th Avenue
17th Floor Conference Room
New York City, NY 10001


Register Here:

Posted by Emily Taubenblatt in Blog

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