Nan’s Top 5 Favorite BuildDirect Green Blog Posts of 2011

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I love research. I’m an analytical info junkie. I love to surf, read and connect the dots. Researching for this blog for most of 2011 has been enlightening and humbling. I’ve discovered joy and conflict, moved into topics that I knew little about and expanded on topics I already understood. I’ve learned a lot and hopefully got you thinking.

A big thank you to Rob Jones for hiring me in February and for giving me ideas and inspiration when I was dry throughout the year. Our emails are worth reading over just for entertainment!

Here’s my end-of-year wrap up with my five most favorite posts on the BuildDirect green blog. For my wrap-up of the BuildDirect blog, read this. (I’ll link this when the other one is scheduled.)

1. Green Housing Developments: 3 To Watch

As I researched green housing developments, I realized this was a topic worth more space than a blog post! I could write a book about the various ways developers are getting creative to cut emissions and build with a lower impact than they’re used to. I was impressed, because, truthfully, I am not fond of developers, who typically tear up beautiful open space to build something as cheaply as possible to reap the greatest profit. Nice to know it can be different.

2. Vertical Farming – The Food System of the Future?

Last spring, on my own blog, I wrote about a friend’s vertical garden. For people with limited space, growing up instead of out makes a lot of sense. You can plant and harvest more, since you can plant closer together, and crops are not sprawled all over a row. When I read in depth about vertical farming for this piece, though, vertical farming turned out to be a futuristic, sci-fi idea that I could not grasp. Find out why, and be sure to read the comments!

3. 10 Shipping Container Buildings For Homes And Outbuildings

I had a personal story to start this piece off. Again, the more I researched and read, the more creative answers there were. My partner and I are talking about building a house, and I suggested recycling some shipping containers. He’s thinking on it.

4. Green Jobs: Green Roofs and Roof Gardens

In this series on green jobs, I was compelled to write about gardening. Roof gardens replace the footprint of the building provide insulation, help manage storm run-off, and provide wildlife habitat. I knew all that. What I didn’t know is that a green roof has to be engineered! It is quite a process to design to carry to weight of soil, water and plants.

5. Green Building in Africa

The most humbling post I’ve written is about green building in Africa. As I read about the strife and politics of this huge continent, I had to wonder if green building was even a priority when sometimes, any kind of shelter would suffice. I felt helpless and as though green building was stupid and irrelevant. I have never studied Africa, so this was an eye opener to get right inside some of the countries. There is some green building going on in some of the more advanced countries, though.

Happy holidays, and here’s to another year of learning by writing for BuildDirect!

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Nan Fischer

Nan Fischer has been living and building green for over 35 years. Nan’s emphasis on the BuildDirect blog is about how to make your dollar stretch further, while also moving toward a more sustainable lifestyle, as well as upcoming and existing technology to help us live in an ecologically-friendly way. Nan also authors posts on the website of her seed business, sweetly seeds.