Thank you for attending the 11th Annual Green Gifts Fair! We look forward to seeing you next year!

A Sampling of Minnesota’s Sustainable Building History

The Weidt Group on behalf of the USGBC-Mississippi Headwaters Chapter 1945 Andersen introduced the Pressure Seal double hung window, which uses a removable sash and pressure-seal weather-stripping to keep out wind and precipitation. 1966 The Perm-Shield System, by Andersen, made its debut. The patented, tough vinyl exterior for wood windows …

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Co-operative Housing

Do It Green! Minnesota From www.co-ophousingcoalition.org From the outside, a housing co-op looks like any other townhouse development or apartment building. But, a housing co-op is different – here’s how: Owned by Members The residents of a housing co-op are members of the co-op corporation which owns the whole property. …

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Eco-Villages and Intentional Communities

Laurie Voeltz Intern at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage I have this dream of living some kind of “happily-ever-after.” A dream where I’m surrounded by friends, and we eat together, laugh together, create together, work together and work out our problems together outside the constraints of modern society as we know it. …

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From “Brown” to “Green”

Erin Barnes-Driscoll Green Building Specialist, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Most homeowners typically face an array of choices involved in designing, building, outfitting, upgrading, expanding, tweaking, and/or overhauling the sanctuaries in which they reside. For many, it provides an important opportunity to express their personal values in the choices made, be …

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Funding Assistance for Green Building Projects

Do It Green! Minnesota Established in 1995, the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE) is an ongoing project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Here are some examples of financing programs, tax incentives, loan programs and rebates: Financing …

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Getting Started with Green Building and Remodeling

Michael Anschel Otogawa-Anschel Design + Build The key to successful green building lies in two things: planning and communication. One of the big challenges in green construction and design is sorting through the vast ocean of information including all of the facts, fictions, and applications. Location, climate and building type …

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Green Remodeling Products… Don’t Stop There!

Bob Alf Construction Bob Alf Construction Green home improvement products are everywhere! These products are helpful and fun to use for a green home remodeling project, but they are not the solution to making your home as efficient and sustainable as possible. For example, how sustainable is it to pay …

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Green Building 101

Rachel Maloney Natural Built Home Store Let’s face it, green is hot. It describes everything from automobiles to energy sources. One area where the development of green products is exploding is in the field of green building. Green building encompasses initial building site selection and energy efficiency all the way …

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Green Rooftops

Corrie Zoll Minnesota Green Roofs Council A green rooftop is a rooftop that incorporates plants as part of a building’s roofing system. Properly designed, green roofs are stable, living ecosystems that replicate many of the processes found in nature. Green rooftops can provide multiple ecological benefits including stormwater management, water …

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Greener Design and Remodeling

Michael Anschel Otogawa-Anschel Design + Build If you are reading this article, you may already know the importance of considering our planet’s resources when designing our homes. Determining the most sustainable solutions is a real challenge. Should you invest in solar panels? Should you buy the carpet with the Green …

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Healthy and Responsible Eating on a College Student’s Budget

Since moving away from home and subsequently being forced to become more self-sufficient, one of the biggest challenges I’ve faced is how to eat healthy with a limited budget. The following is a bit about how I changed my diet for the better both for myself and for the environment. …

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Installing a Residential Geothermal Heat Pump

Mark Snyder Do it Green! Magazine My journey toward geothermal climate control at my home in Minneapolis began some eight years ago, after my father installed a heat pump at his house in Andover, MN. At the time, I’ll admit I was a bit skeptical of the idea of actually …

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Minnesota GreenStar to Take Center Stage

Michael Anschel & Corey Brinkema Green Remodeling Group & Green Institute This has been a great year of progress in Minnesota’s efforts to become a national leader in preserving and restoring our environment. From the landmark legislation in addressing climate change and developing sustainable energy resources to the growth of …

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My Experience Building a Computer

Nate Dobbins Do-It-Yourself projects – whether they be repairs, improvements, or brand new creations – are often highly regarded among sustainably-minded people, and for good reason: getting into the habit of ‘doing-it-yourself’ will lengthen the life of your possessions, thus reducing the amount of ‘stuff’ you consume. It also affords …

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Native Plantings: A Beautiful Solution for Minnesota Shorelines

Angie Hong East Metro Water Resource Education Program Here in Minnesota, shoreline living is not limited to the rich and famous. According to the MN DNR, Minnesota has 11,842 lakes and 69,200 miles of natural rivers and streams. We have over 13 million acres of lakes, streams, and wetlands, which …

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Products That Make a Difference for the Environment and Your Wallet

Peter Palmieri D&R International, ENERGY STAR Contractor As energy costs rise, consumers must find ways to reduce their energy consumption to not only save money, but to also protect the environment by reducing air pollution and greenhouse gases caused by burning fossil fuels. Using appliances less frequently can cut energy …

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Reducing the Impact of your Driveway

EarthWizards.com Most homes have driveways. We use driveways for vehicle storage and to provide access to our homes and garages from the street. We use driveway surfaces that are sturdy enough to hold the weight of automobiles, to tolerate freezing weather and summer heat, and to stand up to snow …

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Shades of Green: Healthy Basement Renovations

Erin Barnes-Driscoll Green Buildings Team—Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Basements are notorious for being damp, dark, inhospitable places—the antithesis of what we like to associate with green and healthy living. As a rule, the basements in older homes were not designed to be functional living spaces. Yet for many of us, …

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Sustainable Lumber and Wood Products

Tamara Downs Schwei Dovetail Partners, Inc. Minnesota’s forests are vital to the state economy and environment. The Minnesota wood products industry provides employment to rural communities and serves markets throughout the world. As global trade in forest products grows, forest certification has emerged as a mechanism for consumers to identify …

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The Environmental Benefits of Making Dirt, Not Waste

Eureka Recycling The energy saving benefits of recycling have been touted for years, but calculations about the environmental benefits of composting are just surfacing. Recent studies confirm that composting is an effective and accessible way to reduce greenhouse gases. Our household waste is a significant contributor to global warming, and …

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The Myth of the Homeless Person

Joshua Lang St. Stevens Homeless Shelter The image that most people identify with a homeless person is the panhandler on Nicollet Mall, the vodka-guzzling man on the bus, or the mentally ill person hearing voices on the corner. These stereotypes are the visibly homeless. In reality, they are the exception …

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The Understanding of Your Housing Rights

Elizabeth A. Emerson VISTA Tenant Advocate It goes without saying that a housing problem exists in the Twin Cites. Private landlords and tenants alike find it increasingly difficult to maintain their housing and tenants, and the housing market shows no signs of relieving either group. Sustainable housing is an important …

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Thoughts on Buying an E-Book Reader (and Tips for Buying Gadgets)

Nate Dobbins Lately I’ve been considering buying an e-ink tablet for reading books and my RSS feed. I wasn’t exactly excited by the prospect of an e-reader until a friend said this to me in an email conversation: “It comes down to this – authors are putting words out there …

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Tips on Working with Your Landlord to Green Your Apartment

Amy Pickett and Chad Skally Skally Management Too often when we talk about living green, we focus on homeowners rather than renters. At Skally Management, a family-owned and -operated real estate management company in St. Paul, we’re changing that concept by finding innovative ways to practice Eco-Management: sustainable, responsible real …

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Using the Sun Wisely: Solar Shades & Energy Saving Awnings

Todd Fink Best Power, Intl. It’s 10 a.m. on a Saturday and I’m cooking an egg on the sidewalk, not in Death Valley but in St. Paul, and in a solar oven. The pace of solar cooking allows me to parent, write and ponder our civilization’s future without burning my …

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We are Living in Individual Ecosystems

Eleise Jones Do It Green! Magazine A home is made up of many things: foundation, structure, function, and of greatest importance, the people within its walls. A healthy home is a beautiful thing, for it implies a clean, life-supporting environment. Your home may include a whole household, or your dwelling …

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What Is Your Ecological Footprint?

Jessica Houlihan Do It Green! Magazine Every person, through basic life decisions, has the ability to affect their surroundings. One’s attitude can rub off on others, one’s choices can inspire people around them and one’s daily decisions affect the environment. According to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, “just as owning …

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Wildfire: How to Keep Your Home and Family Safe

Lindsay Brice Do It Green! Magazine According to the pamphlet “Wildfire: Are You and Your Home Prepared?” three quarters of wildfires are caused by the careless actions of people. These fires are preventable. “In the Great Lakes Region, more than one-quarter, or 1500 fires annually, are caused by careless burning …

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