The Green Register Blog

For and by sustainable construction professionals

ECO-BUILD or ECO-BLING?

Posted on April 1st, 2012

Tom Dollard | Head of Sustainable Design | Pollard Thomas Edwards Architects

Ecobuild this year has been compared to a nightclub – a fair comment with all the Eco-bling and show-boating on a scale previously seen only at Interbuild or MIPIM. It is encouraging that Sustainability has truly hit the mainstream with Saint Gobain, Lafarge, and VM ZINC as some of the biggest stands. However, trekking around the mammoth air-conditioned halls of the Excel centre – I began to wonder – where was sustainable design? How would I ever see the sustainably sourced wood through the trees?

After some evasive action and...

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The challenges of eco-retrofitting interiors

Posted on February 1st, 2012

Brian Murphy | National Green Specification

The interior design profession is coming around to the idea that refurbishment jobs need to take into account the environmental impact these projects have and to address this, The Green Register is holding a seminal one day conference in London on 9th February to address some of the more pressing issues interior designers have to face. But what are these issues?

Since interior finishes are removed and replaced frequently, the building-fabric-only needs to be competent or every refit would require building regulations applications, associated design and application fees and increasing energy performance...

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Becoming an Accredited Eco-refurbisher: A New Course from The Green Register

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

Guest blog by delegate Tim Brown, Ashton Design, Cumbria

Work in Cumbria is varied and diverse but predominantly involves renovation/refurbishment and extension of traditional buildings, many employing solid stone walls and dipping slate roofs. Therefore when I learnt of the one day course to become an Accredited Eco-Refurbisher and with the experience of previous Green Register events I decided to venture down to Bristol.

Travel to Bristol by train or bus from `The North` is not easy for a one day event so I used up all of my travel brownie points (I work from home) and arrived by car the night before. Bristol is a vibrant city and a stroll along the river bank looking for...

Posted in Events, Testimonials

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Sustainable Building & Services Course - Birmingham

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

Guest blog by delegate Malcolm Glenister, Dipl. Arch. (Glos.,) RIBA, Director of BPL Architecture, Tewkesbury, Glos., GL20 5NX.

I attended the 2-day introductory course "Sustainable Building & Services", at Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre, 1046, Bristol Road, Selly Oak, Birmingham, B29 6LJ, on 12th - 13th May, 2009, which was a very rewarding and enjoyably informative 2 days, with a small group of fellow architects in tranquil landscaped surroundings just off the A38.

The 2 days were packed full of interesting and useful information across a wide range of topics, which actively involved the 9 architects from a diverse range of practices and locations.

Day 1...

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The Success of Sustainability Now

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

On 13th and 14th May, Phil Clark, Editor-in-chief digital communities at UBM Built Environment pulled off an impressive feat inviting everyone from the construction industry to participate in the virtual event 'Sustainability Now'. I was invited as an expert to take part, and had two slots over the two days where I would contribute to live discussions on issues close to my heart.

After overcoming the technology, I enjoyed a very lively debate with lots of people whom I'd never met - with at least three threads of conversation going on at the same time. There was much to discuss and some controversial comments such as "it has not been proven that human activities cause increases...

Posted in Testimonials

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Sustainabilty Now - virtual event 13th-14th May

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

I’ll be joining Building Design’s exciting virtual event entitled Sustainability Now on 13th and 14th May. You don’t have to leave your seats, but do join us some time over these two days for what looks likely to be an event with lots of healthy debate, something The Green Register is renowned for.

Amongst other topics, we’ll be discussing what are the best scale-able ways of improving our existing stock of properties, possible closer ties between BREEAM and LEED, how the Passiv Haus method could be expanded to apply to non-domestic buildings and the old chestnut, the definition of zero carbon.

Follow this link for information on the event -...

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Low Carbon Technologies

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

By Guest Blogger Robert Borruso

The session started off with an in-depth look at global energy supply as it currently stands - which for many was an eye opener. Seeing the numbers there on the screen in glorious Powerpoint really brought the 'business as usual is not an option' message home. We moved on to have a look at some of the current technological solutions available to the specifier. It then became apparent that the hype surrounding a technology is rarely a good pointer to how well it really works, which simply confirmed some attendees suspicions.

We then looked forward to a time when some technologies move into the mainstream and large grants for eco-accessories...

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Welcomed Turnout for Builders on SBS Course

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

The Green Register ran our regular two day Sustainable Building and Services introductory course in Exeter last week. Usually more than half of the attendees on these courses are architects but this time nearly half were builders. We were really delighted with this - each time we run these courses we get a different mix of people, all contributing their own experiences, frustrations and ideas for the future. This time the builders brought a fresh perspective to the two days, their contributions rooted in the practicalities of achieving well insulated, airtight, low impact buildings.

It's an unfortunate side effect of the downturn that builders have more time to attend training...

Posted in General News

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Green Register's Take on Ecobuild

Posted on February 23rd, 2011

The Green Register (TGR) had a small-but-perfectly-formed stand at Ecobuild in Earl's Court this year. The position of our stand was much better than last year's so we received many more visitors including lots of familiar faces - friends, fellow colleagues and TGR members - and all of us staffing the stand were grateful for these visits which kept us going throughout the 3 days.

But we had lots of interest from those who hadn't heard of us. Sadly some industry professionals were telling us that they have been made redundant, yet they were interested in using this time to gain more skills, particularly in sustainability – which is where TGR can help! It was good to have the...

Posted in Events

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UK Government CO2e Targets & Seeing Through the Eco-hype

Posted on August 7th, 2009

Guest blog by Robert Borruso, TGR Expert Trainer

The profile of renewable technologies has been growing relentlessly over the past few years, spurred on by countless government initiatives and regulation. Some planning authorities now even insist that a proportion of all the energy used in any new development comes from renewables sources as a planning condition. With the latest targets for UK CO2e emission levels set at 34% below 1990 levels by 2020, and with the government’s own delivery plan containing plans to cut CO2 emissions from the power sector by 50%, you could start to tentatively believe that the promise being made since the early 90s by some green groups that with...

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