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

GreenHomeNYC’s Pandemic Pivot Proves the Power of Commitment and Community

November 26, 2020

By Melanie Mason

 

We have spent the better part of our year in throes of the COVID-19 pandemic—social distancing, Zooming, washing our hands like crazy, and carrying out GreenHomeNYC’s mission from the kitchen table. This has almost begun to feel like a normal part of our routines. But at the beginning of the lockdowns back in March, the challenges to life as usual suddenly felt very far from “normal.” Just like everyone else, GreenHomeNYC had to quickly adapt to this new way of being. A testimony to our incredibly driven volunteers, together we dove headfirst into tackling how GreenHomeNYC would go from a live and lively in-person community to operating fully remotely.

 

Said GreenHomeNYC’s board president Lucie Dupas, “The board is so thankful for all the amazing work that our volunteers are able to get done safely from their homes—this year has been incredibly challenging in all aspects of life, and we are amazed on a daily basis by how passionate and resilient our whole community is!”

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At Home for the Holidays: Sustainable and Safe

November 24, 2020

By Pamela Berns

 

Covid-19 has created disruptions in all aspects of our lives, challenging us to change our habits and lifestyles, only to have to change them yet again. “Pivot” and “shift” have become the buzzwords of 2020, and although it’s been exhausting, one might even say we’ve gotten enough practice to be become masters of behavior change. This holiday season is no different, unfolding like no other in memory, demanding that we revisit some of our most fundamental practices and revise our most cherished rituals. With social distancing and the unfortunate winter surge, more families are opting to go smaller at home. They are improvising strategies for virtual get togethers and seeking meaning in unfamiliar ways, hoping to compensate at least a little for lost hugs and after dinner walks.

 

If COVID-19 is calling on us to change the way we eat together, it also necessitates greater mindfulness in the way we plan and prepare and our meals. Smaller guest lists mean buying and cooking less, and ultimately wasting less. Many studies have shown that how we produce and consume food is one of the biggest drivers of our planet’s deteriorating health, wrote Brent Loken, Global Food Lead Scientist with the World Wildlife Federation (WWF) on October 8. (more…)

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Posted by Pam Berns in Blog

Indigenous Peoples: Centuries of Sustainable Living 

By Alexa Roccanova

 

Amidst a convergence of contemporary crises, private and public actors alike have championed sustainability as the ultimate goal for an environmentally, socially, and economically sound future. We’ve witnessed an inundation of seemingly “sustainable” alternatives for products, technologies, lifestyles, and systems that pose only slightly better versions of the status-quo — alternatives that by themselves, without a significant shift in the dynamic of our dominant systems, will not be enough to effectively mitigate climate change.

 

But there exist generations of people who have already been living sustainably for centuries. Indigenous peoples all over the world have been tending to the Earth, conserving local ecosystems, preserving biodiversity, and maintaining their ancestral cosmovisions, knowledges, and practices, despite incessant efforts by colonizer nations and institutions to displace, assimilate, and terminate them. The survival of their communities and lifeways is itself a testament to the sustainability of their culturally and spiritually guided relations with the environment.

 

“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.”– Chief Seattle, Duwamish

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Viewpoint: Getting Back to Paris

November 9, 2020

By Evan Mason

 

In all the confusion and excitement of the post-election drama, some of us may have missed a piece of important news: the day after Election Day, the Trump administration’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement became official. But that doesn’t mean it became permanent.

 

According to the NY Times, President-Elect Biden plans to inform the United Nations of his decision to rejoin the Paris Climate accord, by executive action. While it’s preferable to go through Congress instead of changing policy in this manner—effectively this stroke of Biden’s pen can easily be reversed by the next president in 2024–it’s clear that the President Elect recognizes the short deadline for reversing the impacts of climate change. (more…)

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Posted by Pam Berns in Blog

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