5 Tips for a Green Home Remodel from Eco Architect Sarah Susanka

While conjuring up comfort in the home seems like a basic principle, it’s a far more complex process for architect & remodeling guru Sarah Susanka, who believes that comfort can significantly influence the sustainability of your personal abode. With her mantra of “build better, not bigger,” Susanka promotes quality over quantity when remodeling a home. Through transforming your living space into a more beautiful and comfortable environment, Susanka says that any home’s occupants will automatically take better care of their space in a more sustainable way. We sat down with Susanka to get the low-down on how to do more with less when revamping your space.

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INTERVIEW: Inhabitat Speaks to Dr. John Keung About Singapore's Green Mark Building Certification System

Dr. John Keung, Singapore's Building and Construction Agency, BCA, green mark, john keung, singapore green building, green building singapore, green design, green mark certification, sustainable design, eco design, energy efficient building design, green building certifications, green mark asia

If you’re a regular Inhabitat reader, you’re probably already familiar with LEED, BREEAM, Passivhaus and even LBC, but there’s another green building certification program that you should know about – particularly if you’re interested in sustainable architecture in Asia. The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) of Singapore launched the Green Mark certification system in 2005 as a way to incentivize energy efficiency and cut dependence on foreign resources, but the program has since traveled outside of national borders and has been adopted by other Asian countries as an established standard for sustainable building. We recently met with the BCA’s CEO, Dr. John Keung, during the 2013 International Green Building Conference  to pick his brain about what distinguishes Green Mark from other green certification systems, what Singapore is doing to promote eco-conscious design and behaviors through education and how the program is making its “mark” on Asia. Read on to learn more about Green Mark and see Dr. Keung’s thoughts.

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INTERVIEW: Inhabitat Chats with J Mays, VP of Global Design and Chief Creative Officer at Ford Motor Company

Ford Chief Creative Officer, Ford Head of Design, Automotive Designer, auto designer, auto design, green auto design

Automotive designer J Mays has become well-known as the design director of Ford Motor Company. Born in rural Oklahoma, Mays started working at his family’s auto parts store at an early age with aspirations of becoming an architect, but eventually found his calling in car design while at the Art Center in Pasadena. An automotive design pioneer with more than 30 years under his belt, Mays has been involved in the design of a number of the car industry’s most well-recognized automobiles, including the VW “New Beetle”, Aston Martin DB9, Land Rover LR3/Discovery, Ford GT, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 2012 Focus (including the Focus EV), and the new green 2013 Ford Fusion—just to name a few! For the last 16 years he’s been leading the charge at Ford as the Vice President of Global Design and Chief Creative Officer and has played a critical role in bringing a new generation of stylish, green, high-performance electric and hybrid vehicles to a mainstream market. I recently got the chance to chat with Mays about his monumental career, and I’ve published our interview here. Click ahead to read the entire interview, where Mays touches on his global travels, his design ethos and influences, the current market for hybrid and electric vehicles, and what he sees for the future of zero-emissions vehicles, both at Ford and on a global scale.

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INTERVIEW: Inhabitat Talks Resilient Design with J Mays, VP of Global Design and Chief Creative Officer at Ford Motors

Inhabitat interview, J Mays, VP of Global Design and Chief Creative Officer at Ford Motor Company, ford motors, ford, ford ev, ford design, green automotive, green cars, energy efficient cars, ev, electric vehicles, electric cars, fuel efficient cars, fuel efficiency, green automotive, ford trucks, ford hybrid, fusion energi, ford fusion energi, Ford Chief Creative Officer, Ford Head of Design, Automotive Designer, auto designer, auto design, green auto design

Few designers get the opportunity to define a brand as prominent as Ford, but for the last 16 years, J Mays has been the driving design force behind the vehicles coming off the car company’s production line. With more than 30 years of experience, and a considerable number of car designs credited to his name — including the VW “New Beetle”, Aston Martin DB9, and the Ford GT, Focus, and the Fusion — J has led a quite a career. While we’ve spoken to Mays in depth about his journey as a designer and his life as Ford’s VP of Global Design, we thought now would be a fantastic time to catch up with the auto design pioneer. This Thursday, October 3rd, Mays will be taking part of our ‘Design With a Purpose’ panel being held at the AIA Center for Architecture in New York City (something we’ll also be webcasting live right here on Inhabitat). In anticipation of this event, we chatted with J about some of the topics he plans delve into this week, including resilient design, new vehicle safety technology, what’s in store for Ford in the coming years, and of course, New York City architecture. Keep reading for the scoop!

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BOOK REVIEW: $20 per Gallon

sustainable design, green design, book review, $20 per gallon, christopher steiner, oil, alternative energy

We have to admit that when we saw the title of Christopher Steiner’s book, we scoffed a bit. Twenty dollars per a gallon of gas seems like an outrageous, unfathomable price, even when you’re a believer in peak oil. But part of the beauty of Steiner’s book is its ability to track the effects of ever-more-scarce oil in believable detail. Whether the author’s predictions of local food, high-speed trains and alternative plastics are correct, they are excellent illustrations of the pervasiveness of petroleum.

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VIDEO: The Buckminster Fuller Institute

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The Buckminster Fuller Institute (BFI) is an organization after Inhabitat’s own heart. It was formed by the visionary eco architect/designer’s family in 1983 to champion Buckminster Fuller’s amazing legacy and provide the design world — and the rest of humanity, for that matter — with the tools we need to solve the world’s most pressing problems. Buckminster Fuller was a “full systems thinker” — he was a renaissance man who foresaw the problems we are facing now decades before anyone else, and came up with innovative, thoughtful ways to solve humanity’s most pressing problems around energy, shelter and natural resources. Sadly, this amazing man is no longer with us, but The Buckminster Fuller Institute marches forward in his name with a handful of thought-provoking programs for designers. Their flagship initiative is the Buckminster Fuller Challenge design competition to provide solutions to complicated social/environmental problems. Inhabitat covers the BFI Challenge finalists every year, and we were thrilled to announce the winner of the 2010 competition in a video! Watch our video profile (above) to learn about BFI, Bucky’s legacy, and the inspiring winner of this $100,000 prize.

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Awaveawake Captures Thailand's Wild Beauty at NY Fashion Week

Awaveawake Spring Summer 2014 Collection

Awaveawake designer and stylist Jaclyn Hodes is known for the stunning, feminine silhouettes she creates, and with her Spring/Summer 2014 presentation at New York Fashion Week, she has drawn upon the glorious colors and textures of Thailand as inspiration. The pieces she created certainly evoke the wonders of Thai spice markets: body-skimming gowns and separates in hues like orchid, saffron, peach, and lemongrass, juxtaposed against cool grays that hint at stone shrines and monsoons. Each item has a story to tell, and those who love the idea that fashion can be imbued with tales of spirit walks through incense-filled temples would undoubtedly enjoy revelling in this collection. Click through to read Ecouterre’s interview with this innovative designer:

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BOOK REVIEW: Climate Cover-Up

by , 09/15/13
filed under: global warming, Interviews

sustainable design, green design, james hoggan, climate cover up, inhabitat book review

Conspiracy! Author James Hoggan realizes the ridiculousness of that word, asserting that it “strains credulity and is offensive in its own right.” Yet the massive media sway that he details in his book Climate Cover-Up feels like something a squinty, scruffy, clipboard-wielding man would accost you with. It turns out that most of the oft-quoted global warming skeptics are not climate scientists, and are not published in credible scientific journals. They are funded mostly by think tanks which are, in turn, funded by fossil fuel companies. “There are conspiracies aplenty,” he writes, ” documented and undeniable.” The central conspiracy here is the perpetuation of global warming uncertainty. His book puts out the serious details.

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ART

BOOK REVIEW: Land/Art New Mexico

by , 09/08/13
filed under: Art, Interviews

Land/Art New Mexico, sustainable design, green design, environmental art, eco art, book review, earthworks

If you’re interested in art that uses nature as its medium, there’s no better place to get your fill than Land/Art New Mexico. The event may be over but the gathering was commemorated with this vibrant book by the same name. Written by Lucy Lippard, William Fox, and Nancy Mithlo, it’s a collection of giant photographs and in-depth essays documenting and analyzing the state of land art. Read on to discover all you’ve missed . . .

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INTERVIEW: Ecouterre Talks to Designer Victoria Bartlett About Cruelty-Free Fashion

by , 09/06/13

eco-fashion, ethical fashion, green fashion, Healthy Food in Fashion, Interviews, Sustainable Fashion, sustainable style, vegan clothing, vegan fashion, vegan style, Victoria Bartlett, VPL

At Ecouterre, we’ve always been fascinated with designer Victoria Bartlett‘s ability to create fantastic fashions without having to use the furs and skins of animals. So we were delighted to have the chance to speak to this cruelty-free fashion pioneer recently at the annual “Healthy Food in Fashion” fall gala. We chatted with Bartlett about how she thinks we can get more designers to practice cruelty-free fashion, the significance of her controversial human hair accessories, and her favorite meat-free recipe.

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INHABITAT INTERVIEW: 8 Questions With Liz Rooks of North Carolina's Research Triangle Park

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BOOK REVIEW: The Eco Chick Guide to Life

 book review, Eco Chick guide to life, eco lifestyle, green book review, green cleaning, green design, green lifestyle, inhabitat book review, starre vartan, sustainable products

The Eco Chick Guide to Life is a roadmap to greener living for the modern girl. Author Starre Vartan covers fashion, makeup, cleaning supplies, pets, drinking, food and more in this easy-to-read guide. When it comes to transitioning into a greener lifestyle, Vartan leaves no questions unanswered. She explains food and clothing labels, breaks down the reasons to go vegetarian, and spells out every acronym. Read on to see what we thought of this comprehensive book for the green living.

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Inhabitat Talks to Lisa Katayama About 'We Are All Radioactive': a Crowdfunded Video Series About Surfers Rebuilding Japan

by , 08/31/13

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INHABITAT INTERVIEW: 8 Questions with Architect Tom Kundig

by , 08/29/13
filed under: Architecture, Interviews

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INTERVIEW: Why John Bartlett Thinks Cruelty-Free Fashion is Going to the Dogs (Literally!)

by , 08/24/13

eco-fashion, ethical fashion, green fashion, Healthy Food in Fashion, Interviews, John Bartlett, NY Coalition for Healthy School Food, Sustainable Fashion, sustainable style, vegan clothing, vegan fashion, vegan style

Fashion designer John Bartlett is best known for his classic American garments, but when he’s not creating impeccable clothes, he’s passionate about spreading awareness about animal welfare. We recently caught up with Bartlett at the Healthy Food in Fashion Gala, and got a chance to talk to him about why he chooses to embrace cruelty-free fashion and the The Tiny Tim Collection, his latest line of clothes that benefit organizations that rescue dogs from kill shelters (just like his own 3-legged best friend Tiny Tim) and find them new homes. Read on for the full interview!

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VIDEO: Inhabitat Interviews California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom!

VIDEO: Inhabitat Interviews California Lieutenant Governor Gavin…

Inhabitat readers might remember that we interviewed California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom in 2009, back when he was the mayor of San Francisco in a live webcast that was open to…

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INTERVIEW: How Grace Bonney Explores Green Interiors & DIY In Design*Sponge at Home

INTERVIEW: How Grace Bonney Explores Green Interiors & DIY In…

Image ©Lincoln Barbour Inhabitat: There's obviously a strong DIY movement afoot, else you would not have put out this beautiful tome. What do you think spurred this on? Grace: I…

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INTERVIEW: Summer Rayne Oakes Talks to Kavita Parmar About the IOU Project

INTERVIEW: Summer Rayne Oakes Talks to Kavita Parmar About the IOU…

The IOU Project is a movement to rethink how goods are produced and sold in order to benefit people and the planet, not just big business. Recently, Summer Rayne Oakes, co-founder…

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