Hall County to End Building Codes

FHBZeroEnergyGRAND ISLAND, Neb. It will be a whole new ballgame for building construction in Hall County outside city or village limits after Tuesday’s Hall County Board meeting.

Board members are set to abolish all county building codes and the county building inspector position in part due to budgetary constraints, a county resolution states.


City and Church Find Solution on Homeless Shelters

jeremiahacenterIt was an image that stayed with Edmonds City Councilmember D.J. Wilson: A homeless mother and her small children sleeping in a car in Edmonds, trying to stay warm as temperatures dipped below freezing.


Wilson, himself the father of two small children, had heard the stories from church leaders about homeless families in Edmonds looking for shelter during the cold-weather months.


Going Green makes Sense and Cents

GoingGreenThe man on the street seems to be more aware of environmental issues even if their awareness is skewed, sometimes dramatically and not entirely accurately, by Hollywood’s movies like Roland Emmerich’s “The Day After Tomorrow” and James Cameron’s “Avatar”.

But one thing is evident – more people are aware and taking part in recycling projects by various organisations partly because of the incentives handed out in return for participation. An example of this in Singapore is the offer by corporate companies partnering the town councils to give away vouchers exchangeable for rice and other food staples for a certain weight of recyclable items contributed by residents in certain Housing and Development Board (HDB) estates as part of their environmental projects.


Australia: Time to restructure forestry

clearcutThe Victorian Government needs to have the guts and vision to commit to a long-term forestry plan that meets the needs of the timber industry, environmentalists and the people of Victoria.

What we have currently is not working.

Only 20 per cent of the 1.8 million metres cubed of native forest harvested by Victorian Government agency VicForests ends up in timber products - mainly flooring or structural timber.

The remaining 80 per cent becomes low-value wood chips, either for export or for the Maryvale pulp mill, near Traralgon.


One's report on living green

waterrippleIt started with gray water, then escalated to chickens, composting toilets and rain barrels. I'm talking about the two years I've spent transforming my humble California bungalow into a test case for sustainable living — an experience that's cost me hundreds of hours of my time and thousands of dollars, an endeavor that has tested the limits of not only my checkbook but also my sanity — and my DIY skills.

When I first delved into the subject, the idea was to look at environmentally promising home improvement projects through the eyes of a budget-minded consumer. I had seen so much media coverage that heaped praise on newly constructed eco-manses or expensive retrofit products, but the stories didn't answer my biggest question: For the green-minded person writing the checks, are the improvements worth the time, effort and expense?


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