Joseph Lstiburek Surprises Passive House Conference Attendees

first_imgWhy did he say that? “I’m a conservation guy, not a renewables guy.” In the end, that’s what explains his interest in the Passive House program, I believe. The R-2000 program had unrealistic expectationsFollowing that introduction, Joe launched into the work he did in the early ’80s building superinsulated houses. He explained that he was using the Perfect Wall idea first published by N.B. Hutcheon (a Canadian, of course) in 1964. He discussed the R-2000 program in Canada and how it became a boutique program because of unrealistic expectations.He also showed a lot of photos of his early projects and the failures they had to work through. My favorite was the house where they were going to embed ducts in the slab and then had to fight to get them to stay down as they floated in the wet concrete. That must have been a fun day! It’s also one of the reasons that Joe loves scotch so much.The reason he was doing that work in the early ’80s, though, is that he did NOT quit the profession. In 1980, after hitting a low point in his life, he was living in his mother’s basement and ready to quit and do something different. Then he went to hear Amory Lovins speak in Toronto and got inspired to redouble his efforts. We’re lucky that he did because his work and his company, Building Science Corporation, have helped to blaze the trail for those of us who came afterward. Does he or doesn’t he?Joe and his colleague, Professor John Straube, have been critical of the Passivhaus program. In his article, Just Right and Airtight, Joe wrote, “The group that really has me confused are the Passivhaus folks who are pushing 0.6 ach@50Pa.” In the next paragraph, he wrote:“Have you any idea how difficult it is to get to 0.6 ach@50 Pa? The number doesn’t seem to be based on anything that makes any sense. It is less than half the R-2000 number [1.5 ach@50 Pa] that didn’t make any sense. What I have been more or less able to figure out is that the 0.6 ach@50 Pa doesn’t come from any energy conservation rationale directly; it seems to be based on the need to prevent moisture problems in highly insulated building enclosures. That is the argument for the number 0.6 ach@50 Pa as I understand it. Never mind that the number, in itself, makes no sense as you can easily design highly insulated building closures without moisture problems that are not anywhere that tight.”He didn’t really raise this issue in his talk, and I think that caught some people off guard. One person told me afterward he was disappointed in the talk because Joe seemed too nice toward the program. He wasn’t sure that Joe was sincere. I guess I can see how someone might think that if they know of his previous criticism and then hear the talk, but when I put it all in context, it does make sense. Comparing Passivhaus Homes to Other Low-Energy HomesJoe Lstiburek’s Airtightness GoalsSolar Versus Superinsulation: A 30-Year-Old DebateThe History of Superinsulated Houses in North America A historical perspective on the Passivhaus standardFirst, the history. Joe went way back and started by saying that the igloo built by Eskimos was the first passive house. It uses ice, with an R-value of 2 per inch, but with very thick walls. It has an air-lock entry to minimize infiltration. It has minimal glazing. And, Canuck Joe said, it’s Canadian!Jumping to modern times, Joe discussed the history of energy efficiency and mentioned that that efficiency movement split into two camps back in the ’70s: those who pushed for superinsulated houses and the advocates of passive solar, or “mass and glass,” as Joe called it. (The passive solar camp has since turned into the renewables camp, with a great emphasis on converting solar energy into electricity with photovoltaics.)Back in the ’70s, though, that camp was focused on capturing the heat from the sun in all kinds of ways. Joe mentioned a few and said, “If you need something like rock-bed heat storage, you’ve made a mistake.” At the 2012 Passive House Conference in Denver, Dr. Joseph Lstiburek gave the keynote address for the opening plenary (or plenum, as Henry Gifford would say) session. His words, clever as always, added some nice historical perspective to what the Passive House folks are doing but also caught some people off guard.Read on, and I’ll tell you more about that. RELATED ARTICLES “We’re family”First, Joe is a conservation guy, and Passivhaus is an extreme conservation program.Second, Joe invited Katrin Klingenberg to speak at Building Science Summer Camp this year, and he gave an impassioned plea at the end of her talk not to let the Passivhaus program become a boutique program like R-2000 had.Third, I was hanging out with Joe and Kat the night before his talk (and drinking plenty of scotch), and I can tell you that he really does have a great interest in and affection for the Passivhaus program.You can find another clue to where he stands on this issue in a comment he made during the annual crawl space Twitterview at Building Science Summer Camp this year.Asked if Passivhaus is an asinine program, he responded, “No, you just need to keep the good parts of Passivhaus and change the bad parts. And it needs to evolve. A boutique program that impacts a few hundred homes doesn’t solve anything.”Joe concluded his talk by saying, “We’re family,” and he meant it.I’d like to hear more about where he thinks the Passivhaus standard should go, especially regarding the issue of air leakage, but the substance of his talk didn’t surprise me. What did surprise me, however, was that he gave his whole talk without a single F-bomb! Allison Bailes of Decatur, Georgia, is a RESNET-accredited energy consultant, trainer, and the author of the Energy Vanguard blog.last_img read more

Congress workers sell tomatoes for subsidised rate outside UP Assembly

first_imgPricey tomatoes spurred a fresh round of protests by Congress workers on Friday, who parked a cart full of tomatoes in front of the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly and sold the kitchen staple at Rs 10 per kg.The party had earlier come up with a “State Bank of Tomato” that is being operated from the Youth Congress office here.Tomato prices have hovered around Rs 100 per kg in major cities with supplies being disrupted due to heavy rains.Congress workers led by state secretary Shailendra Tiwari stood in front of the Assembly with a cart full of tomatoes with a banner “Tamatar ke aaye acche din” (good days have come for tomatoes) and sold it at Rs 10 per kg per person.“This is our way to protest the soaring tomato price.We are selling it to common man to show our concern for them.It’s ironical that the government has not taken any initiative to open subsidised counters for selling tomatoes or to check its price,” Mr. Tiwari said.The ‘tomato bank’ has some interesting schemes to offer like providing the commodity on easy loan as also a locker facility, 80 per cent loans on tomatoes and attractive interest rates for depositing tomatoes, especially for the poor.The idea behind the bank is to lodge protest and to create awareness among the people about the commodity being sold at such high rates.Prices of tomato have shot up about four times since the beginning of June when tomatoes were being sold at about Rs 25 per kg in the Delhi-National Capital Region market.Industry body Assocham had said recently that “Tomato prices may not immediately ease as flooding in some of the growing states has led to damage to the crop.” Unlike onion and potato, the shelf life of tomato is very short and it needs cold chains and modern warehouses for storage and transportation, it said.Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Odisha are the major tomato growing States.The country produces around 18 million tonnes of tomatoes.last_img read more

Chouhan makes light of Congress alliance moves

first_imgMaking light of the Congress’ efforts to cobble up pre-poll tie-ups in Madhya Pradesh, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said on Wednesday that outfits that allied with the grand old party have suffered destruction.“The Congress is a ‘dhokhebaj’ (deceitful) party. Those who had formed an alliance with the Congress had invited destruction [upon them],” Mr. Chouhan said at Maihar in Satna district, around 450 km from Bhopal, from where he launched the second leg of his ‘Jan Ashirwad Yatra’.The Chief Minister was reacting to the Congress’ efforts to stitch an alliance with parties such as the Bahujan Samaj Party and the Samajwadi Party ahead of Assembly elections due later this year.‘Remember history’“You must remember that the Congress had pulled down the Chaudhary Charan Singh government within four months and humiliated him. The Congress did the same with I.K. Gujral and H.D. Deve Gowda [former Prime Ministers],” he said.Before launching the second leg of the yatra that would cover Bundelkhand, Mahakaushal and Vindhya regions, the Chief Minister, who has been helming the State since November 2005, paid obeisance at the Maa Sharada temple in Maihar.The first leg of the 75-day yatra was flagged off by BJP president Amit Shah on July 14 from Ujjain after offering prayers at the Mahakaleshwar temple.Two vehicles have been converted into chariots for the yatra. One of the chariots is being used in central Madhya Pradesh, Malwa and Nimar regions which were covered in the first leg of the yatra, the other chariot is meant for Bundelkhand, Mahakaushal and Vindhya regions.Mr. Chouhan had embarked on a similar yatra ahead of the Assembly polls in 2008 and 2013.The opposition Congress, which has been out of power since 2003, has been trying to forge ties with BSP and SP.State unit Congress president Kamal Nath had announced that his party was ready to align with like-minded parties, especially the BSP, ahead of polls to unseat the ruling BJP in Madhya Pradesh.He had met BSP chief Mayawati in Delhi recently.last_img read more

29 girls go missing from Odisha residential school

first_imgTwenty-nine students of a residential high school for girls at Antarba in Odisha’s Gajapati district left their hostel on Saturday night and are missing since.Despite efforts of the school authorities as well as the administration, the girls had not been traced till Sunday evening. They have not even returned to their homes. Most of the girls are from Class IX. It is suspected that they escaped from the hostel to complain to the District Collector about the state of affairs in the hostel.Gajapati District Welfare Officer Santosh Kumar Rath is monitoring the search operation. According to Mr. Rath, the girls have left behind a handwritten letter mentioning some reasons for leaving the hostel.Speaking to newsmen, school headmaster Manoj Rath accepted that the girls had earlier expressed their resentment over some issue with their teachers. As per the headmaster, the issue had been resolved. He felt the same reason may have prompted them to leave the hostel.last_img read more

Injury forces Saina out of Indian Open

first_imgAn ankle injury forced Saina Nehwal to pull out of the Indian Open badminton championships, which got underway in Hyderabad on Wednesday. The Indian ace experienced pain in her right ankle after a practice session in the morning and subsequently withdrew.Saina confirmed that she had experienced pain on Wednesday. “Everytime I stretched on my right side, I felt a slight pain. I consulted Kiran Kumar (physiotherapist) and Pullela Gopi Chand sir and they were of the view that I should pull out,” said Saina.Saina added she had experienced similar pain in the third game of the Hong Kong Super Series final on Sunday, where she emerged victorious. ” I had felt the same pain when I was leading 17- 14 against Wang Shixian. But I continued as I was so close to winning,” she said.Speaking to Mail Today, Kiran Kumar said the injury was not serious. “It is not at all a serious injury. But then, seeing the tight schedule that she has ivn the coming year, we thought it was better not to take a chance,” he said.Elaborating on the injury, Kiran said Saina’s subtalar joint was at the root of the problem. ” One needs some massage and rest. I saw her ankle and felt that she needed at least a week’s break. Conversely, had she played, the injury could have been aggravated. It would have also put her out of action for five to six weeks,” Kiran Kumar said.But the bigger issue is with that with five to six weeks being the recovery period for her, the Indian ace is certain to miss the Super Series finals that are slated to be held in Taipei from January 5.advertisementWhen asked whether Saina would be able to play in the Taipei event, Kiran felt her chances were ” not too bright”. For his part, chief coach Gopi Chand said Saina was keen to participate but was prevented from going ahead. ” We did not want to take any risk by playing her here,” he said.Meanwhile, C Punnaiah Choudhary, the tournament secretary, admitted that Saina’s pull out came as a big disappointment.”The organisers and local fans were all hoping to see their star player win.Unfortunately that will not happen now,” he said.He also said that Saina will be fined for pulling out after the tournament had started. ” She will have to cough up the penalty of $ 250 for withdrawing so late,” Choudhary said.last_img read more

UCSD study finds link between Roundup Herbicide and liver disease

first_img Posted: May 14, 2019 KUSI Newsroom May 14, 2019 UCSD study finds link between Roundup Herbicide and liver disease 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Researchers at UC San Diego published a study today establishing a link between the weed killer Roundup and severe cases of liver disease in humans.The researchers studied the amount of glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup, in the urine samples of two groups of people: one with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and one without. The study found that glyphosate residue was higher in the urine of subjects with liver disease regardless of possible underlying factors such as age, body mass index or race.Company representatives could not be immediately reached for comment on the results of the study, which was published in the journal Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.The UCSD researchers surveyed 93 patients in total, 41 percent of whom were men and 42 percent were white. An additional 35 percent of subjects were Hispanic or Latino.“There have been a handful of studies, all of which we cited in our paper, where animals either were or weren’t fed Roundup or glyphosate directly, and they all point to the same thing: the development of liver pathology,” said UCSD professor and study leader Paul Mills. “So I naturally thought: `Well, could it be exposure to this same herbicide that is driving liver disease in the U.S.?”’Roundup, manufactured by Monsanto, a subsidiary of the German chemical company Bayer AG, has rapidly increased in use since the mid-1990s. During that same period, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease cases in the U.S. have also risen significantly, according to the UCSD researchers.Glyphosate-based herbicides account for roughly half of Monsanto’s annual revenue, and most people are exposed to the chemical by eating non- organic grains like wheat and oats. Glyphosate is currently the most widely used herbicide in the country, according to UCSD.On Monday, a jury in Alameda County awarded more than $2 billion to a San Francisco Bay Area couple who claimed Roundup caused them to contract non- Hodgkin’s lymphoma.The verdict was the third Roundup-related legal battle Monsanto has lost in California since mid-2018. The company said it plans to appeal the decision, as it has the other two, and maintains that Roundup does not cause cancer or other illnesses.“Bayer is disappointed with the jury’s decision and will appeal the verdict in this case, which conflicts directly with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s interim registration review decision released just last month, the consensus among leading health regulators worldwide that glyphosate- based products can be used safely and that glyphosate is not carcinogenic and the 40 years of extensive scientific research on which their favorable conclusions are based,” the company said in a statement.More than 13,000 plaintiffs across the country currently have lawsuits pending against Monsanto.Mills and the UCSD research team plan to launch further studies into glyphosate’s affect on humans. One of those studies includes putting a group of subjects on a strict diet of organic food to track how herbicide-free food may affect the development of liver disease. The researchers also intend to monitor how other herbicides affect human health.“There are so many synthetic chemicals we are regularly exposed to,” Mills said. “We measured just one.”More Info: https://bit.ly/2fofFKg Categories: California News, Health, Healthy Living, Local San Diego News, National & International News, Trending FacebookTwitter KUSI Newsroom, last_img

Karan Johar teaming up with Dil Raju after SS Rajamouli

first_imgDil Raju and Karan JoharCollage of photos taken from Twitter and FacebookAfter SS Rajamouli, Tollywood producers Dil Raju is said to be teaming up with Bollywood filmmaker Karan Johar. He has planned to remake Nani and Shraddha Srinath’ Telugu movie Jersey in Hindi.Raju, who made his debut as a producer with the Telugu film Dil in 2003, has bankrolled over 30 movies in his career spanning 16 years and most of them have become successful ventures at the box office. It is known that he is set to enter Bollywood with the remake of F2 – Fun and Frustration in Hindi.The sources close to Dil Raju now claims that he has planned to expand his production house Sri Venkateswara Creations (SVC) all over India. He is set to take successful Telugu movies with universal appeal to Hindi directly and collaborate with top B-Town stars. The Hindi remake of F2 – Fun and Frustration, which he is jointly producing with Boney Kapoor, is the first attempt in that direction.Dil Raju, who is also a well-known distributor, released Jersey in Nizam and Vizag regions and he is stunned by its performance at the ticket counters in these areas. The movie has a universal appeal and after seeing its critical and commercial success, the producer has reportedly planned to take it Bollywood.Sources close to Dil Raju said that he wants to collaborate with Karan Johar for the Hindi remake of Jersey. It is said that he is currently in talks with the Bollywood producer, who earlier presented Baahubali movies. The two are expected to complete the formalities of their first joint production.Written and directed by Gowtham Tinnanuri, Jersey is a period sports drama that is about a middle-aged cricketer who is forced to give up on his dream after his career failed to take off. It has struck a chord audience, critics and also many celebs including SS Rajamouli, Allu Arjun, Jr NTR and Vijay Deverakonda. The movie has recovered over 60 per cent of the distributors’ investment in just three days.last_img read more

PepsiCo bottler Varun Beverages IPO to open on October 26

first_imgPepsiCo Inc’s bottler Varun Beverages on Wednesday announced that its Initial Public Offering (IPO) valued at Rs 1,000 crore will open on October 26 and close on October 28. The price band has been set at Rs 440-445 per share.Proceeds from the IPO will be used to repay part of the Rs 1,700 crore debt, which was taken to boost its expansion plans over the last few years. Delhi-based businessman Ravi Jaipuria and his son Varun Jaipuria, who own the flagship firm, will each sell five million shares in the public offering, while the company will sell 15 million new shares.Kotak Mahindra Capital Co Ltd, Axis Capital Ltd, CLSA India Pvt. Ltd. and YES Securities (India) have been hired to manage the IPO.Varun Beverages accounts for about 45 percent of PepsiCo’s volumes in India. The firm is the only bottler and distributor of PepsiCo in the North and East India, with the exception of Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, Bihar and Jharkhand regions, Jaipuria told the media.Last month, Varun Beverages Ltd won the stock market regulator’s approval for its Rs 1,000 crore worth Initial Public Offering. The company secured clearance from the Securities Exchange Board of India (Sebi) on August 31.In October last year, the company had raised Rs 600 crore from Aion Investments, a Singapore-based company. The company had then said it would utilise the funds for expanding its business and “refinancing debt.”Varun Beverages is PepsiCo’s product distributor in 17 states and two Union Territories across India. It is also PepsiCo’s second-largest bottler in South Asia and has, apart from India, operations in Nepal and Sri Lanka. It also sells PepsiCo’s products in parts of Africa.last_img read more

No headway in Rana Plaza murder case

first_imgThe collapsed Rana Plaza.Proceedings in the murder case over the Rana Plaza collapse have been stalled, following a High Court order six years after the deadly incident that killed more than 1100 people.Testifying in the murder case was halted after two of them got a stay order from the court challenging the order to frame charges, according to the office of Dhaka district public prosecutor (PP).Six years ago on 24 April 2013, a total of 1,136 people, mostly readymade garment workers, were killed and 1,169 more were injured and later physically disabled after the multi-storey building collapsed.Three years ago, the Dhaka district and sessions judge court framed a charge sheet and passed an order to carry on proceedings of the murder case against Sohel Rana, owner of the building, and 40 others.Earlier, three cases were filed in connection with the Rana Plaza collapse. One was filed under the building construction act. The proceedings in the case were also stalled following a revision appeal by the accused.The trial of only the case which was filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is now going on.Bangladesh Centre for Workers Solidarity’s executive director Kalpana Akhter told Prothom Alo, “A lot of people were killed or physically disabled in the incident. But there has been no justice over the past six years. This is a sheer humiliation for the victims. If the workers had any value, justice would be done in 6 months.”The attorney general Mahbubey Alam said, “The public prosecutors informed me that the trial in the two cases remains stalled following stay order by the High Court in favour of two accused. As soon as possible, the state will take necessary steps over the withdrawal of the stay order.”Dhaka district’s chief public prosecutor Khandakar Abdul Mannan told Prothom Alo that he earlier informed the attorney general’s office about the matter.In reality, he added, there is no scope to carry on the trial due to the stay order from the higher court.He assured that he will soon talk with the attorney general over the matter.In this AFP file photo taken on 24 April 2013 Bangladeshi civilian volunteers assist in rescue operations after an eight-storey building collapsed in Savar, on the outskirts of Dhaka. Photo: AFPThe case was delayed for three years as there was no permission to frame charge sheets against the six government servants involved in the matter.The public administration, and labour and employment ministry argued that they won’t give permission to frame charges against its officials as they did not commit any serious crime.The police finally framed charges against the officials despite no permission from the ministry. Taking the matter into cognizance, the Dhaka district and sessions judge court framed the charge sheet on 18 July on 2016.Dhaka PP office said eight accused filed an appeal with the High Court challenging the charge sheet. Following a hearing on the issue, the higher court passed a stay order. Meanwhile, stay order of six have been withdrawn. The trial remains stalled as the higher court extended stay in favour of former mayor Refayet Ullah and former councilor Mohammad Ali Khan.Out of 41 accused in the case, only Sohel Rana, owner of the building, is in jail while 32 are on bail, six are in hiding while two of them have died.Asked about the matter, Supreme Court lawyer Shahdeen Malik told Prothom Alo that it seems that the state has no interest about any cases other than political ones.This is why the state is not taking any action to withdraw the stay on the case, he said.What does the charge sheet say?Savar police first investigated the incident. Then, the Detective Branch (DB) of police probed for the second time and finally, police’s Crime and Investigation Department (CID) conducted another investigation.According to the charge sheet, a crack was seen on the third floor’s pillars and walls of the Rana Plaza at 9:30am on 23 April 2013. Following the incident, BGMEA officials immediately visited the spot and asked the authorities to stop using the building until a BUET team examined it.But the owners of five garments factories forced the workers to carry on their work on 24 April. On that day, Rana Plaza’s owners—Khaleq and Sohel Rana—said that ‘the building won’t collapse in a hundred years.’In this AFP file photo taken on 24 April 2013 Bangladeshi garment workers help evacuate a survivor using lengths of textiles as a slide to evacuate them from the rubble after an eight-storey building collapsed in Savar, on the outskirts of Dhaka. Photo: AFPThe charges sheet said Rana Plaza’s owner Khaleq and his son Sohel Rana resorted to corruption at every step of constructing the building, making it a death trap. Five garment factories were opened in the building. Heavy electric generators, big sewing machines were set up inside the building. On the morning of the disaster day, the electricity power went off at 9:00am. They then turned on three generators. The building immediately collapsed.Statement stopped in another caseCID submitted a charge sheet on 26 April 2015 in a case filed by RAJUK (Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha). The case was filed under the building construction act and 18 persons including Sohel Rana were named. Taking this charge sheet into consideration, on 14 June next year, the senior judicial magistrate of Dhaka framed charges. A number of plaintiffs challenged the order and sought revision with the district and session judge court at Dhaka.Recording of statements pertaining to the case under the building construction act came to a halt as a revision petition was filed, said state-prosecutor Anwarul Kabir.The statements will be taken once the documents are delivered from the chief judicial magistrate court. But the course of recording statement has been running under a special judge court of Dhaka division. Charges were framed against 10 people including Sohel Rana on 21 May 2017.*This report appeared in Prothom Alo print edition has been rewritten in English by Nusrat Nowrin and Toriqul Islamlast_img read more