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July Edition   2009
Principal's Word

Summer is in and triple digit heat is placing a toll on energy use.  It is imperative that electricity use is conserved by turning off lights, running the AC only when needed, taking short showers, and unplugging electronical devices.  Other ways to conserve energy is through light bulbs that are energy efficient such as CFL bulbs.  They use 75% less energy, last 10x longer and saves the home owner $30 or more over the life of each bulb, or about $81 a year in savings. A single 18 watt CFL used in place of a 75 watt incandescent will save about 570 kWh over its lifetime.  These tips are just the beginning, there are innumberable ways in which you can help the environment and lower costs.

Here at RESCUE Green we believe that cutting edge ideas, technology, design, and ever more importantly, people with the right attitude can help save the environment and their pocket books.  Society might not have all the answers just yet but individuals do have the power to "RESCUE Green" the planet. Millions of people doing the right thing is at best a positive and progressive start. 

July 22, 2009
Joseph Blanco and DeAundri Abbott
By: Bill Warkentin
July 15, 2009

Implementation is underway and it will change the reality of land use decision-making in California.
Trying to predict SB 375's impact is at best an educated assessment, at worst pure crystal ball guesswork. So much depends on actions yet to be taken, policies and programs yet to be defined. Following is my best guess based on personal review and discussion with a number of folks currently involved in those yet to be taken actions.
AB 32 requires the State of California to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels no later than 2020. SB 375 implements that program with regard to passenger vehicles and light trucks, the bill asserts "In addition, automobiles and light trucks account for 50 percent of air pollution in California and 70 percent of its consumption of petroleum. Changes in land use and transportation policy, based upon established modeling methodology, will provide significant assistance to California's goals to implement the federal and state Clean Air Acts and to reduce its dependence on petroleum. The Legislature intends, by this act, to build upon that successful process by requiring metropolitan planning organizations to develop and incorporate a sustainable communities strategy which will be the land use allocation in the regional transportation plan."
SB 375 shifts the focus from a local land-use allocation paradigm to a clean air and transportation based paradigm. The plans overall success is a function of creating reasonable and achievable GHG reductions targets that can be measured and plugged into the SCS analysis methodology.
The bill creates a new General Plan level Land Use Plan called a Sustainable Community Strategy (SCS) based on "current planning assumptions" which presumably includes the base data in existing General Plans. This process officially begins Sept 30, 2010, the day the GHG emissions targets are due from the California Air Resource Board.
  • Designate a development pattern for the region including housing areas for all of a region's population growth including employment generated growth and including all economic segments of the population;  
  • Identify a transportation network needed to meet the region's transportation needs; 
  • Achieve GHG emission reductions from the land use/transportation sector needed to meet  the region's GHG reduction target set by the ARB to the extent feasible; 
  • Gather and consider the best available information on the region's farmland and habitat.
        Source of bullet points: California League of Conservation Voters and the NRDC
SB 375 shifts development toward Transit Priority Projects (TPP) on infill sites to avoid CEQA. TPP sites must be less than 8 acres in size, contain no more than 200 units, have a density of at least 20 du/ac and be within 1/2 mile of a major transit station or corridor. These are, by definition, infill projects served by existing transit systems.
Peter Templeton, Principal of the Templeton Planning Group points out that large scale planning projects all must go through the CEQA process, prepare EIRs with regional impact assessments and are conditioned with all manner of environmental mitigation and monitoring programs. These SR 375 criteria can only apply to smaller TPPs that are part of a larger master planned community and the key question is whether a future planned transit system meets the criteria?
SB 375 initiates the first state-wide regional planning regime in California history. By linking land use to transportation funding and GHG reductions, the issue of local land use control has been shelved, local control is still viable so long as it agrees with the GHG reductions and meets the criteria of the SCS.
I recall a decade old analysis that speculated not more than 10% of development could reasonably be accommodated on infill sites. SB 375 intends to increase that factor substantially and whether the home buying consumer is ready for limited choices and fewer greenfield development options remains to be seen.
Las Vegas Takes the Plunge with its Springs Preserve
By: James L. Broeske
July 6, 2009
In Las Vegas, where there is no shortage of neon and glamour-or dreams of big winnings-a cultural institution just a few miles from downtown reminds that sustainability is no gamble.
The Springs Preserve spans 180 acres, and includes a state of the art visitor's center called Origen Experience.  (The name is derived from the words, "original" and "generations.")   In its displays and landscaping-and in its design-Origen pays homage to the desert's most precious natural resource:  water.
The Preserve has the distinction of being listed on the National Register of Historic Places-a status it has enjoyed since 1978.  This is no small feat considering Las Vegas's reputation for imploding its history.  But in fact, the town known for architectural feats/follies (depending on your "take" on Sin City) such as the Luxor pyramid, Paris's scaled-down Eiffel Tower, Caesars Palace, The Stratosphere and New York, New York-as well as the Sands, the Dunes, the Hacienda and other ghosts of gamblers past-wouldn't have happened, were it not for the artesian pools of the Las Vegas Creek, which trickles up onto the Preserve.  The availability of water made the region's growth possible.
Some 3,000 years ago, migrating native Americans gathered at the creek, growing crops on its banks.  The creek later served Spanish travelers and their horses.  In the 1890s, as "modern" Las Vegas took root, the creek was the site of social gatherings. 
As Las Vegas grew, the Las Vegas Valley Water District purchased the property that had been so pivotal to the area's development.  Over the years, as Las Vegas grappled with its water needs, the site was recognized for its archeological and historic significance.  In June 2007 the Springs Preserve was opened.
Its features include a Desert Living Center, which has interactive exhibits and classroom and meeting areas, gardens and trails, and a Wolfgang Puck café that is the site of a monthly networking group-a "green mixer"-that promotes sustainability.        
In paying tribute to the springs-which continues to provide five per cent of the water utilized by a thirsty Las Vegas-the Preserve stresses the need for eco-consciousness through its very buildings, which are certified Platinum LEED.  For instance, the public restroom toilets release only a trickle of water upon flushing.  And the plantings outside are drought-resistant.  
In a city known for anything goes lavishness, the center reminds that liquid gold is to be used wisely.               
The Origen is featured in an article in Green Source
For more on the Springs Preserve,click here
Let's hope that the message this center imparts doesn't just stay in Vegas.

Green Vacations/Ecotourism
grand canyon
By: Geri Fox
July 1, 2009
Summer vacation time has finally arrived; however, many families are cutting back on their travel expenditures in this economy, or eliminating their vacation travel plans entirely.
Never underestimate the fun and fond memories a family can create by just pitching a tent in your backyard, and hiking or biking to explore the local parks and open spaces in your area.  I grew up in a family of seven, and some of my favorite vacations were our backyard campouts! 
The U.S. National Park Service is offering three fee-free weekends at over 100 national parks that usually charge entrance fees; one of which is the Grand Canyon!  Mark your calendars for fee-free weekends this summer.  Click here for more info:
How would you like to swim with wild dolphins or manatees?  Play with wolves or walk with wild horses?  What if you could have a vacation adventure while supporting animal sanctuaries at the same time?   Some great vacation packages can be found at Gordon's Guide, a travel website that offers several travel options suited to your interests and your budget, while still being Earth-friendly. You can search for Ecotourism packages from $200 or less; $200-$500; $500-$750; $750 - $1000, and in $1000 increments all the way up to $10,000 and above.  Click here for more information:
Also, here's a link to Fodor's Editor, Cate Starmer's, article "Ecotourism on a Budget:  6 Simple Eco-Conscious Tips for Saving Money"...
 Gordon's Guide
We'd love to hear from you if you have other sites or ideas you'd like us to publish in one of our upcoming newsletters.
Submit your ideas
iCeL Green Motion
By: Keith Gifford
July 17, 2009

The fog shrouding the future of energy production is beginning to lift. Today, solar and wind powered electrical generation systems are providing more and more of the power we rely on. Yet one inherent problem has continued to persist with these technologies. The energy they produce is intermittent. Solar only works when the sun shines, and wind only produces power when it is blowing. What has been needed is a reliable means to store this energy for use at later times. iCeL Systems, of Van Nuys California, has developed a high density energy storage device based on lithium-ion technology. The product is scalable, (from one kilowatt to multiple megawatts) reliable, (the storage packs have been cycled over 15,000 times with 80% capacity retention) and almost infinitely versatile in their applications. Most anything requiring energy can be powered by an iCeL.

Now, energy generated by the sun and wind can be stored efficiently and made available 24 hours a day. Presently, both grid-tied and grid independent users are benefiting from the iCeL. The core product is the model 714, a compact, one kilowatt hour storage unit. Several other models of various sizes are currently under design and testing. Full scale production is expected to begin by second quarter of 2009. The first manufacturing site will be located in California's Inland Empire city of Riverside.

The Green Funny Bone!



 Dark Sky

By: Ian Davidson
July 16, 2009

With the vast expansion of suburbs, we are quickly losing our view of the universe.  In addition to this loss, the environmental and health effects of light pollution are immense, and surprisingly, overlooked. 
Light pollution is wasted light that does nothing to increase nighttime safety, utility or security.  It produces glare, clutter, light trespass and pollution, while wasting energy, money, and natural resources in the process.
According to the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) website, wasted outdoor lighting that shines directly upward is estimated at 17,400 gigawatt-hours a year, adding up to a cost of approximately $1.74 billion per year, and environmental waste adding up to:
9.1 Million Tons of coal; or
32.3 million barrels of oil; or
600 million gallons of gasoline
All for light that is wasted.
You can help prevent this waste by using the light you need for a particular task in the most efficient manner possible. Unfortunately, lack of awareness, rather than resistance is the biggest problem in controlling light pollution. IDA gives these tips for dealing with Light Pollution:
·Use night lighting only when necessary. Turn off lights when they are not needed. Timers can be very effective. Use the correct amount of light for the need, more is not better.
·Direct the light downward, where it is needed. The use and effective placement of well-designed fixtures will achieve excellent lighting control. When possible, retrofit or replace all existing fixtures of poor quality with the goal of using fixtures that control the light, and minimize glare, light trespass, light pollution, and energy usage.
·Use low pressure sodium (LPS) light sources whenever possible. LPS lamps are the most energy-efficient light sources that exist. Areas where LPS is especially good include street lighting, parking lot lighting, security lighting, and any application where color rendering is not critical.
·Homeowners, businesses and cities should shield and lower the wattage of all outdoor lighting.  And finally,
·Use only the light you need t o get the job done
You can learn more about the effects of light pollution, how you can help, and find solutions to lighting problems at the IDA website 
LED's:  Shedding Light on the Shadowy Unknown

The right and wrong applications for LED's
By: Leonard Maya

About a year ago I was asked to evaluate whether LED (Light Emitting Diodes) could be used effectively to light an interior office space.  It is no secret that LED's have hit the mainstream lighting world with brute force, but not much data has been published about their performance and where they should be used.  One of the biggest challenges facing architects and lighting designers trying to specify LED light fixtures is the lack of information regarding the performance of LED's. 

Most manufactures will tell you that the performance is based on the type of LED's used along with the light fixture optics.  This means there is really no way of comparing LED's "watt to watt" with the more traditional types of lighting, including incandescent, fluorescent, or HID lamped fixture.  Because of the lack of performance data, and because there are so few existing installations using LED's as the main source of general lighting, I decided to mock up a typical office space using (6) 12 Watt LED downlights, which are advertised as being able to replace a 65W incandescent.  Before I get into the results, I would like to discuss some of the Pros and Cons with LED technology and provide a little more explanation on what an LED is.

Upcoming Events

Mon August 3 - Tues August 4 - Pasadena, CA

The AQMD invites you to participate in this Forum & Expo which offer a variety of networking opportunities for cleantech developers and investment companies. The goal is to offer a helping hand to environmental stakeholders dealing with a difficult economic cycle and expedite the introduction of new, low-emission technologies needed to produce both economic and environmental benefits.

To register Click Here

Sat August 29 - Sun August 30 San Ramon, CA

Eco-festival events are designed to engage consumers of all ages through interactive entertainment and exhibitions that make learning how to minimize harm to our environment fun.

For more info Click Here

Mon August, 31 - Tues Sept, 1 - San Diego, CA

A unique opportunity to gain in-depth, comprehensive knowledge and first-hand experience of the benefits and challenges, technologies and implementation techniques of smart metering, giving attendees a strategic and practical approach to the smart grid and green efficiency initiatives.

This event is the only executive platform available on the West Coast that enables companies to take advantage of the global surge towards smarter, greener energy infrastructure, implementation and communication.

To register Click Here
Tues Sept 29 - Wed Sept 30 - San Francisco, CA
The conference focuses on finance and investment for clean energy technologies, with a particular emphasis on the Western US, and covers both large scale projects and the development and commercialization of new technologies.
Event website:
Thurs Oct 22 - Fri Oct 23, 2009 - Tucson, AZ
Renewable energy is coming to the Southwest.  How will it impact our natural resources?  Topics:
 - Issues and opportunities for renewable energy in the Southwest
 - Incentives and barriers to renewable development
 - Federal, state, and utility roles
 - Land and water requirements
 - The permitting process
 - Costs and benefits of various technologies

In This Issue
~ SB 375 - Revolutionary changes for regional planning in transportation and housing
~ Las Vegas takes the Plunge with its Spring Preserve
~ Green Vacations/Ecotourism
~ The Green Funny Bone!
~ Dark Sky
~ LED's: Shedding Light on the Shadowy Unknown
 Featured Green Product


The EnergyMax® Intersect is a 2-lamp, energy efficient, louvered luminaire designed to provide full distribution and energy savings in a crisp new look.

  • Typically qualifies for EPAct tax deduction
  • Integral hinges and latches on louver
  • Mechanical light seal
  • Rolled fixture edges for safe handling
  • Corner hinging for easy insertion
  • Housing ends secured by unique corner interlock and screws

Click Here for More Info

 Plant of the Month

The Red Bird of Paradise is a very large accent shrub that grows well in the desert heat when most other vegetation fades. The deciduous shrub attracts hummingbirds with its incredibly showy blossoms of orange and red.  This plant grows well in alkaline to acidic, well-drained soils.  It benefits from pruning and can be shaped to tree or shrubby bush form.

Click Here For More Info
 Get Trained: Green Building in 2009
RESCUE Green has invested substantial resources in developing Training programs that are relevant, as well as rigorous.
RESCUE Green utilizes its Professional Collaborative as well as other experts in green building and psychometrics to prepare and approve the RESCUE Green materials, and to ensure state-of-the-art environmental training certification for commercial and/or residential practitioners.
NOW AVAILABLE! Green Building for Real Estate Professionals!
Sign up today for our next class and Earn Continuing Education Credits.
Next class: August 26th. Space is limited.

If you are interested in up to date Green Building training, email your contact information to and we will send you a list of training classes in your area.
Teasers on Next Month's Issue

In The August Edition

"The International Green Movement"

  • Solar Energy powering the developing world
  • Sustainable countries
  • Building a Better Planet: Green Cities
  • Global Carbon Markets
Quote of the Month

"What we need to do is really improve energy efficiency standards, develop in full scale renewable and alternative energy and use the one resource we have in abundance, our creativity."

- Dr. Alon Tal, Professor at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel.

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