January 27, 2018Have you ever wondered what happens to the water you use after washing the dishes, taking a shower, or flushing the toilet? GreenHomeNYC visited the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant in Greenpoint, Brooklyn to learn how the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) sustainably handles wastewater treatment. Our tour was led by LaToya Anderson, the Science and Environmental Protection Educator for the NYC DEP. As the largest of NYC’s 14 wastewater treatment facilities, Newtown Creek handles an impressive 310 million gallons of wastewater every day, and up to 620 million on a rainy day. As we approached the site, the first thing we noticed were the glistening, futuristic digester “eggs”. Since 2010, these alien-esque digesters have become an iconic piece of the Brooklyn cityscape, especially when illuminated with bright blue LEDs in the evening. Anaerobic Digestion Inside the digesters, a biological process called “anaerobic digestion” takes place. Bacteria breaks down “sludge”, the organic material removed from our sewage. For this process to take place, the digesters are kept at 98°F and are completely sealed to create an oxygen-free environment. In total, these digesters can hold 24 million gallons of sludge at any given time. (more…)
November 28, 2017Hudson Yards, the largest private development in the history of the United States. Hudson Yards is located in Midtown West and will consist of 18 million square feet of office, residential and retail space, three parks, and 14 acres of gardens and plazas. It will be populated by 40,000 workers and residents, and up to 65,000 visitors per day. The vast scale of the project, coupled with building a platform to span active train tracks, posed new levels of complexity for Related Companies, the real estate firm responsible for the project. The GreenHomeNYC Forum, “Spotlight on Hudson Yards”, was co-hosted with AEE-NY and ASHRAE New York at the New York Institute of Technology, and drew a crowd in excess of 80 attendees. Three senior executives from Related Companies took the stage to discuss Hudson Yards’ operational sustainability initiatives, energy performance tracking, and building commissioning and asset management. (more…)
June 5, 2017
GreenHomeNYC INVITES YOU TO
DISCOVER HIGH PERFORMANCE BUILDING MATERIALS IN BROOKLYNJoin us to learn how leading architects and developers achieve rigorous Passive House standards here in the City. We will tour the 475 High Performance Building Supply warehouse in Brooklyn to learn about the latest products that can lead to 90% reductions in heating and cooling energy usage. Founded and run by architects, 475 provides building knowledge and components to help professionals meet the international Passive House building standards. Guests will be treated to an interactive presentation on green building materials and diagnostic testing that improve air sealing, ventilation, fenestration, thermal insulation, and overall performance. This is a hands-on experience with cutting edge green building materials. It’s the next best thing to being in the Paris Agreement! After the tour guests are encouraged to join GreenHomeNYC for networking drinks at nearby Threes Brewing
February 3, 2017GreenHomeNYC launched another year of monthly forums with the annual Green Catwalk, featuring seven speakers who discussed the latest “green” news. From Saudi Arabia to New York City, challenges remain. But, in New York, in particular, much is being done to overcome them. The speakers offered insight into what needs to happen in order achieve our climate goals, the progress we’ve made already, and the programs and opportunities that are in the works right now. Development in the Desert While New York City has its own sustainability goals and initiatives, we can’t forget that the climate crisis is a global one. Duncan Prahl of IBACOS, began by taking the audience to the opposite end of the earth, to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. In 2015, Riyadh became home to the first LEED-Platinum building in the Middle East. Designed to achieve a net-zero energy balance, it holds 28 kW of rooftop solar PV and has enough batteries to last 24 hours. After two years of serving as a high-level consultant on the project, Prahl shared his thoughts on the challenges of building to such standards in the desert: “I would never recommend doing that again… to anyone.” (more…)
December 1, 2016The Northeast Sustainable Energy Association held their annual Building Energy NYC conference on November 3, bringing together leaders in energy, building maintenance, real estate, policy, product, and new technologies. Many topics were discussed, but three of the main takeaways were long term planning, regional-district planning, and enhanced resiliency for the city of New York. In a talk by Jenna Tatum, Kate Gouin, Benjamin Mandel and John Lee from the NYC Mayor’s Office of Sustainability, the focus was on 80×50, the de Blasio administration’s commitment to reduce GHG emissions 80% from 2005 levels by 2050 (80×50). NYC’s Sustainability 80X50 plan states, “It is the level the UN projects is necessary to avert the most disastrous impacts of climate change.” The plan is essentially a roadmap that is broken into four areas of focus: Buildings, Energy Supply, Waste, and Transportation, with comprehensive reporting and modeling done for each category. Following are the four main takeaways of the plan’s goals in each sector. (more…)
July 31, 2016impact are prevalent, yet not always apparent. The GreenHomeNYC July Forum on Government and Corporate Commitments drew a diverse crowd of industry professionals, students, teachers, job seekers, city officials and the public to discuss the multitude of challenges and growing successes in corporate and governmental sustainability. From methods of integrating alternative fuels in emergency response vehicles, to rethinking and automating our transportation system, to using sustainable economic methods to rethink the way we plan for company growth, the Forum offered a front row seat for the systemic changes remapping industry and our world. (more…)
January 28, 2016
Water is a central aspect of all of our lives, and yet the complexities we face with managing it in a city of nearly 8.5 million people, often fly under the radar. Constantly supplying it, managing demand, keeping it clean, protecting ourselves from it (i.e. sewage, storms, sea level rise, etc), using it more efficiently and also teaching people about it, are all critically important to keeping such a massive city running. At a time where one American city is facing a major health crisis due to water contamination, we want to examine what is being done in our own city to keep us healthy and safe, and what we can do to support that. For our February Forum, we will hear about how the City of New York manages water in the present and the plans being pursued for the future.
Date: Wednesday, February 17, 2016 Time: 6:30-8:00pm Place: Hafele America Co., 25 East 26th Street, New York, NY 10010
To speak on this topic we are bringing in:
Vlada Kenniff, Managing Director of the Demand Management and Resiliency group in the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. She manages a portfolio of sustainability and resiliency projects that cover a Water Demand Management Program, Climate Resiliency Program, and Green Infrastructure Projects. In the last five years with the agency, Vlada worked on the Sustainable Storm Water Management Plan, Managed the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan, and the Water Demand Management Plan
Michele Moore, Senior Advisor to the VP of Disaster Recovery at the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA). She oversees over $3 billion in disaster recovery funds to repair and protect from future storms, over 33 NYCHA developments severely damaged during Superstorm Sandy. Looking at these 33 developments as campuses, Michele is part of a team working to change the way water is managed on these sites through NYCHA’s Stormwater Management Through Placemaking Initiative. Recently NYCHA was awarded funding for this initiative for our Sandy damaged developments on the Lower East Side of Manhattan through the National Disaster Resiliency Competition, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.