Archive for the ‘Green Design’ Category

Harnessing Nature To Cool Cities: Parks For Tomorrow

Via Harvard Magazine, an article on how nature can help cool cities: IN 2009, Bas Smets walked across an old industrial plaza in Arles, France. Entirely concrete, the space posed a problem. The area was being transformed into a large art complex, but in the intense summer sun, the ground reflected the heat, doubly baking […]

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Keeping Stormwater at Bay: A Brooklyn Green Roof Offers a Look at a Climate Resilient Future

Via Inside Climate News, an article on how green infrastructure mitigates the impacts of stormwater on New York City’s sewer systems, limiting the flow of sewage to local waterways: Every Friday afternoon, the Kingsland Wildflower Green Roof opens its doors to the local community. Tall grass and brightly-colored flowers greet visitors after their four-floor trek […]

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America’s Largest Renewable Energy-Powered Transit Depot

Via AlphaStruxure, a look at the U.S.’s largest renewable energy-powered transit depot: Welcome to the Equipment Maintenance & Transit Operation Center microgrid   Fast facts  Location: Derwood, Montgomery County, MD  Size: 5.5 MW of solar generation with 2 MW battery storage  Timeline: Construction to last about 1 year, operational by Fall 2025  Project Superlatives  #1 largest renewable energy-powered transit depot […]

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Researchers Are Reinventing Glass For A Warmer World

Via Anthropocene Magazine, a look at how scientists have devised a window coating that looks like frosted glass but is brighter, provides cooling to reduce reliance on air-conditioning, and does not require cleaning: Glass walls are great for letting in natural light and brightening up living rooms and offices. But they are not the best […]

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How Battery-Swap Networks Are Preventing Emergency Blackouts

Via MIT Technology Review, a look at how Taiwan’s Gogoro’s 12,500 green-and-white battery-swap stations – built to allow users of electric scooters to drop off an empty battery and get a fully charged one immediately – automatically stopped drawing electricity to stabilize the grid after the 7.4 magnitude earthquake there this April: On the morning […]

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The Cement That Could Turn Buildings Into Giant Batteries

Via BBC, a look at how an innovative cement could turn buildings into giant batteries: Concrete is perhaps the most commonly used building material in the world. With a bit of tweaking, it could help to power our homes too. On a laboratory bench in Cambridge, Massachusetts, a stack of polished cylinders of black-coloured concrete […]

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ABOUT
BLACK SWANS GREEN SHOOTS
Black Swans / Green Shoots examines the collision between urbanization and resource scarcity in a world affected by climate change, identifying opportunities to build sustainable cities and resilient infrastructure through the use of revolutionary capital, increased awareness, innovative technologies, and smart design to make a difference in the face of global and local climate perils.

'Black Swans' are highly improbable events that come as a surprise, have major disruptive effects, and that are often rationalized after the fact as if they had been predictable to begin with. In our rapidly warming world, such events are occurring ever more frequently and include wildfires, floods, extreme heat, and drought.

'Green Shoots' is a term used to describe signs of economic recovery or positive data during a downturn. It references a period of growth and recovery, when plants start to show signs of health and life, and, therefore, has been employed as a metaphor for a recovering economy.

It is my hope that Black Swans / Green Shoots will help readers understand both climate-activated risk and opportunity so that you may invest in, advise, or lead organizations in the context of increasing pressures of global urbanization, resource scarcity, and perils relating to climate change. I believe that the tools of business and finance can help individuals, businesses, and global society make informed choices about who and what to protect, and I hope that this blog provides some insight into the policy and private sector tools used to assess investments in resilient reinforcement, response, or recovery.