Thursday, August 20, 2009

LEED in Monroeville

John Silvestri is on the board of The Cedars, a local assisted living and skilled nursing facility in Monroeville. John spoke previously at our July meeting about his experiences with the current "green" addition that is being built right now. The plan is to construct the first LEED building in Monroeville, and it is scheduled to be completed before the UPMC structure.

This could develop into something wonderful for the entire Municipality of Monroeville. John is incredibly engaged with the project and pushing the limits of what what initially proposed. It is all fabulous! I'm not sure if John is aware of how much stormwater management is on the minds of the municipal officials at this moment; however, in cooperation with Sustainable Monroeville, we will be able to educate council and the community about sustainable building practices.

Cooling Off With Rain Barrels

Rain barrels are one of those hot topics this summer. Saving water and helping your vegetables go hand in hand, but where do you buy them? One option is simply making them yourself by buying the hardware online or buy a food grade barrel from DeLallo's. A second option is to buy one from Penn Barrel, already assembled, or just go to Nine Mile Run Watershed Association. Many of these options work with diverter kits that are available online from The Garden WaterSaver. Total investment is $25.00.

In our experience, many citizens still don’t understand the benefits of rain barrels. For one, not all have of them have to be expensive. Some are aesthetically pleasing; yet can easily be portable or tucked behind a fence or stone barrier. The City loves it because during major storms less water rushes through the sewers reducing back-ups and overflows. Personally, we like it because it saves water – simply that! Whether it is a lot of water or not, we don’t care. It simply provides nourishment to my vegetables, herbs, roses, and plants. Given our public discussion, we also learned that the average roof sheds 160 gallons of rainwater per hour during a moderate rainfall. So I have a 50-gallon barrel – do the math!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Future Meetings

All meetings will be held on Monday's at 7:00pm in the Program Room at the Monroeville Public Library. The Fall and early Winter schedule dates are: August 24, October 5, November 16, and December 7.

Monroeville Public Library
4000 Gateway Campus Blvd
Monroeville, PA 15146

Black and Gold Partnership

Sustainable Monroeville is now a partner of The Black and Gold City Goes Green campaign.

The Black And Gold City Goes Green campaign is the action plan of the Pittsburgh Climate Initiative, working across four sectors: municipal operations, higher education, business, and the individuals that make up the Pittsburgh community.

The Initiative seeks to raise awareness and engage Pittsburgh's residents, businesses, government and institutions of higher learning in taking concrete actions that will reduce global warming pollution and its impact on our local economy and human health. View the press release from the campaign launch.

Consider joining the campaign and join the conversation on Facebook.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Welcome and Connect

Welcome to the blog of Sustainable Monroeville. This blog will provide information about future meetings and projects including articles, links, stories and pictures. The first Sustainable Monroeville meeting was on July 6th.

Although the group just started earlier this year, a lot of the people are really involved in various projects. Elisa Beck moderated the discussions, and several people spoke on different topics. Carrie Gallagher talked about beekeeping and how regular people can keep hives in their yards. We hope more people will try it in the future, since the bee population is declining at an alarming rate, and we'll all starve if we lose our pollinators. John Silvestri talked about the new LEED certified building at The Cedars, an assisted living community. He also spoke about white roofs and LED lights (which can last 23 years and use a fraction of the electricity of fluorescent bulbs). Other topics included soil tests and rain barrels.