Making it Easier to be Green
Green design includes energy conservation, but that's not what it's all about. It's about having good air quality both indoors and outdoors, making the environments in which we work, live, study and play healthier and more comfortable and conserving all of our natural resources.
This site will provide a balanced, holistic view that includes advice about saving energy, water and other natural resources, improving indoor air quality, using environmentally responsible design and construction techniques and minimizing waste.

I will be focusing on interiors for three reasons:

  • We spend about 90% of our time indoors.
  • Buildings in the United States annually consume about 30% of our total energy and 75% of our electricity.
  • As a New York State Certified Interior Designer and a LEED Accredited Professional, I want to share my knowledge and expertise with you.
Sustainable design and construction can be done in many different styles and using a wide variety of materials. There are examples of healthy, sustainable, comfortable and inviting interiors for commercial, not-for-profit and residential clients on the web site for Interior Design Solutions.
You can use the labels on the sidebar to locate entries that you want to read. For instance, most people might want to look at the entries for "Green Homes," but "Green Finance" would be of more interest to professionals involved in the design, construction, management, financing and marketing of buildings.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Efficient Lighting Lowers Air Conditioning Bills

Okay, now she's really lost it!!! What does an Easy Bake Oven have to do with lighting efficiency and air conditioning bills? Quite a lot, actually.

The heat source that bakes all of those little cakes and cookies is an ordinary 100 watt incandescent bulb. Only 2% of the energy used by this type of light bulb generates light, and the rest generates enough heat to bake a cake. If you substituted a compact fluorescent bulb for the incandescent one in an Easy Bake Oven your child would be very disappointed because the batter would probably never turn into a cake. A fluorescent bulb is from four to five times as efficient as an incandescent one, so it generates a fraction of the heat.

Well designed lighting, properly used, can save quite a bit on your energy bill. Normally, the predicted savings are calculated using a simple formula that only accounts for the direct cost of the electricity used for lighting and ignores the savings on air conditioning.

Although accurately modeling the predicted energy use of air conditioning systems is complex and requires considerable expertise, intuitively it makes sense to assume that when you cut the amount of watts your lighting consumes, you are also cutting air conditioning requirements to some degree.

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