Building it Green! Living and Learning for Sustainability: Near Carbon Neutral Living

Living and Learning for Sustainability: This Lunch and Learn Series seminar is part of the Sustainability Certification program offered through the Adena Center for Sustainability and Communications.

Building it Green!

Global Warming: What You Can Do Now....Towards Near Zero Carbon Living

Mark Isaacs AIA

December 7. 2007
12 p.m to 1:30 p.m.
Webster University Louisville Campus
Directions: I-71 Exit 2, Zorn Ave. @ River Rd behind BP (Map)
Free and open to the public. Donations welcome. A light lunch buffet will be available.
Please RSVP to 502 896-1835 or

In this Lunch and Learn seminar, Architect/Builder Mark Isaacs connects the big picture issues of climate change and energy with the practical choices facing homeowners, neighborhoods and businesses. How can we become energy efficient and move toward sustainable Near Zero Carbon living? What is do-able and cost-effective now?

This workshop will be an eye opening tour of the state of green building today and the many positive opportunities available to homeowners, builders, students, neighbors, developers, technologists and others who want to participate now in the new green revolution.
Click here for more details....

Sustainable Home Forum, December 6, 2007

The Urban Design Studio will be presenting a Sustainable City workshop by Bill Abner of Energy Pros at Glassworks, 815 West Market, Louisville, KY, Thursday, December 6, 2007 at 6;00 PM.

You may remember Energy Pros from the Louisville Green and Local Business Conference presentation made by Emma Kuhl about Energy Pros and the Kentucky Green Building Council.

To learn more and RSVP please go to the Sustainable City page at the Urban Design Studio site.

Sustainable Business Network/BALLE Chapter Organizing Meeting, December 10, 2007

There will be a small working meeting of the Sustainable Business Networks/BALLE Chapter Organizing Committee on December 10, 2007, 4:30 PM at Webster University. If you or your organization are interested in participating, please send Agenda suggestions and RSVP to: or call 502 410 2786.

Draft Agenda:

  • Introductions
  • Agenda review
  • Sustainable Business Networks Overview
  • Regional Organizing goals and strategy
  • Brainstorm One
  • BALLE Chapter affiliation status
  • Membership Benefits and Participation
  • Resources and Development Opportunities
  • Green And Local Business Conference 2008 Planning
  • Green Expo
  • Green Business Directory
  • Derby Green Planning
  • 2008 Living and Learning for Sustainability Schedule

  • Next Steps

Louisville Green Business Directory 2008

The 2008 Green Business Directory is now being organized. To be listed or to contribute articles, please contact:

Louisville Sustainable Business Conference 2008

Planning is now underway for the Spring 2008 Green and Local Louisville Sustainable Business Conference. If you or your business would like to be involved in planning, presentation or underwriting, please contact us at

Open Living and Learning Network News:

Open: Living and Learning for Sustainability: November, 2007

The Open Living and Learning Network is a recent initiative which has already given rise to some great new opportunities in Louisville and elsewhere.

To follow the development of this learning initiative, take a look at Living and Learning for Sustainability
To join the listserve and living and learning collaborative in Louisville, go to Sustainability Education Group

Sustainable Clift*n: The November 13, 2007 Clifton Community Council meeting included a briefing on the Gaia Education and LEEDS Neighborhood ideas and invitations to Clifton and other community members to participate in the Open Living and Learning for Sustainability Network neighborhood activities. Clifton Center 7 PM.

You may also be interested in the work of the Sustainable Neighborhood committee of the Limerick Neighborhood's West St. Catherine Street Association. The next meeting will be 5 PM, Sunday, November 11, 2007, to discuss options for greening the neighborhood. Walnut Street Baptist Church, 1100 South 3rd St at St. Catherine Streets Contact: Chair - Sustainable Neighborhoods, Steven Sizemore,, 502-290-7623
The Open Living and Learning Network idea was originally proposed during the Living Routes visit in early September, 2007, as a next step in the development of the Open Community projects launched in 2004. Click here to see one of the Open living and Learning Network proposals.

The Living Routes meetings connected Louisville to Study Abroad opportunities with ecovillages world wide.

Clifton Neighborhood, which is taking a lead on the Living and Learning approach, began charting a course towards sustainability several years ago. In October, the Clifton Neighborhood Council filed an application as the first Open Louisville Living and Learning Network Gaia Education site. Clifton has joined with Adena Institute, Webster University and regional sustainability practitioners, in going after Global Ecovillage Network and UNITAR curriculum certification along with an education grant from the Gaia Trust.

Clifton has also embarked on learning
about becoming a LEED Neighborhood as part of the Open Living and Learning Network. LEED is the US Green Building Council standard for Energy and Environmental building practices. The LEED Neighborhood standard is now undergoing pilot testing in 234 neighborhoods around the United States. Clifton is applying to be a "corresponding neighborhood"- that is, a neighborhood that wants to learn more about the LEEDs Green Neighborhood process in anticipation of applying for full LEEDs status in the next year or so.

See the article "Neighborhoods Taking The LEED" by Jennifer Oladipo from LEO weekly:

See some of the recent ideas for the Open Louisville Living and Learning Network: Next Steps DRAFT v1-1

Open Louisville Living and Learning Network: Next Steps DRAFT v1-1

Open Louisville Living and Learning Network: Next Steps DRAFT v1-1 9/7/07

For More information:

Some ideas for developing the Open Louisville Living and Learning Network:

1) Green and Sustainable Communities.
Sustainability depends on integrating environmental, economic, equity, multi-generational and local/global aspects of development. Green communities are learning communities, where all aspects of business, government and community life are moving through democratic transformations towards sustainability. Here are some elements of policy and process reforms which the Louisville Living and Learning Network could support:

1.1) City - wide LEED Green Building standards.
Many communities around the world are moving from "Pilot Projects and PR " to community-wide adoption of Green building and design standards. for example, Washington DC has adopted a policy whereby all new construction in DC MUST conform with Green Building "LEED" standards by 2010. Louisville, with a much smaller building footprint could move even more quickly.

1.2) Green Neighborhoods.
Neighborhoods and villages around the world are moving to Green standards through LEED and Ecovillage standards. Louisville already has the optional "village form " district designation for neighborhood planning. This should be amended and extended so that not only Green Building but Green neighborhood and regional design is the defacto standard for the community. Democratic neighborhood councils and small cities can move to adopt these measures even before Metro government acts, and in so doing can strengthen the neighborhoods movement.

1.3) Education for Sustainability.
There are a variety of measures that community organizations and institutions can undertake to move towards sustainable community education, including citizen and vocational education in addition to public schools and universities. In all of these education forums, solar technician and construction training, composting and permaculture certification, green neighborhoods planning training and democracy schools are among the means for learning the technical and process skills of a sustainable society. In partnership with these specific skills trainings, there are community based integrative curricula and partnerships such as the Ecovillage Design Education curriculum of the Global Ecovillage Network and the Neighborhood LEEDS programs of the US Green Building Council.  Over the past few decades a variety of "Open" community based research and continuing education initiatives have pioneered in this approach, such as the Open Center in NY,  Open Network in Colorado, the Loka Institute in Washington, DC,  the Science Shops movement in Europe, the Open University in Britain, and the Open Community projects in Louisville.  These partnerships can be used to help green neighborhoods become Open "Living and Learning" classrooms for Louisville and the world.

Neighborhoods taking the LEED

Neighborhoods taking the LEED
by Jennifer Oladipo

From LEO Weekly, 9/26/07

There’s nothing more frustrating than watching a golden opportunity pass while waiting for the folks in charge to move. Within the last four years or so, environmentally friendly buildings have sprung up around the country with increasing speed, but many communities are itching for change that’s bigger and faster than one business or government building at a time.

Some Clifton residents want to get their own neighborhood into the game, making it a model for how other neighborhoods in Louisville can go green. The Clifton Community Council’s land use and preservation committee was scheduled to discuss how to move the neighborhood toward meeting LEED-ND standards, and possibly even further, at Tuesday’s meeting.

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the standard for green building. It takes into consideration issues such as building sites, water and energy use, materials and indoor air quality, and is pretty much the only national standard, created by the nonprofit U.S. Green Building Council. Recognizing a need, the council has created a pilot program for neighborhood development, LEED-ND.

LEED standards, quickly adopted by governments from the federal level down, are in a constant state of refinement, and still taking cues from many similar programs.

Clifton is known for being a little bit artsy, a little bit lefty, and has a mix of young and old, renters and homeowners, a few residents who drive BMWs and a few who sleep on benches. The neighborhood is also a geographical lynchpin, located about the same distance from expensive homes in Crescent Hill and St. Matthews as it is from the more modest housing of Butchertown, Clifton Heights and east downtown.

In short, achieving sustainability in the neighborhood would mean negotiating several issues and interests, possibly making Clifton a great place to start a trend and work out kinks. Like other parts of Louisville, it’s filling up with condominiums, small housing communities with shared interests and common rules that could easily implement sustainable standards. Clusters of existing homes on one of Clifton’s many short streets or cul-de-sacs could also come to mutual agreements and pool their resources.

The smallest LEED-ND pilot sites hover around one acre, but sites of all sizes are participating, some with as many as 12,000 acres. No Kentucky cities made the list of more than 200 pilot programs in 37 states, plus Washington, DC, and some Canadian cities. Louisville is home to a handful of LEED-certified buildings, including the Tucker Booker Donhoff + Partners architectural firm on Market Street and the forthcoming downtown arena. With a little neighborly action, the city might someday be able to claim a Frankfort Avenue ecovillage as well. —Jennifer Oladipo