So all your preservation buddies are talking "embodied energy" again (they've been at it since the 70s, but it just wasn't cool for the last 20 years)... and you've been fed nothing but LEED-driven developer drivel and need to get hip. So check it out: Mike Jackson at the 2007 NTHP Conference in St. Paul. Mr. Jackson isn't afraid of blasting the consumer approach to green that many have found success in promoting. We think he has a great point, one that preservation takes to heart: how can you buy your way to green? And as he likes to say, preservation isn't recycling, it's REUSE. No need to repackage, resell, and re-whateverelseitisyou'retryingtodo. It's just smart. Like Mike.
So check out his presentation. Embodied Energy is a fairly intuitive concept, if you stop to think about it. Basically (very basically), it's the idea that the building materials in our existing structures represent a considerable investment in energy. And why waste that investment by tearing down historic buildings. There are some great tools out there to figure our how much energy your old house is worth, and we'll post them later.
We won't even try to hide it: the MTWAS loves Mike Jackson, thinks he's brilliant, and are damn happy he works for the IHPA. The NTHP Conference was great too, so a big hello to everyone we met there. The Trust was nice enough to put up a ton of handouts, so check out more stuff here, including something from another favorite, Carl Elefante.