How can we build
our homes and communities so that they co-exist harmoniously with
Nature? What does it mean to create a sustainable house, a sustainable
community, a sustainable city? For each additional day that we
live, design and build unsustainably, we pull another fibre out
of the fabric of Earth’s ecosystems.
Bamberton: Environmentally Sound Building Materials
No 2 May 1994
The 1994 R2000
building standard requires an emphasis on healthy, non-toxic building
materials, as well as energy efficiency. For information on R2000
builders, contact the Victoria Home-Builders' Association, 1-744
Fairview Rd, Victoria V9A 5T9 Tel 383-5044; Cowichan Valley Home-Builders
Association, PO Box 939, Duncan V9L 3Y2 Tel 746-5838; Nanaimo
Home-Builders Association, 7a, 6421 Applecross Rd, Nanaimo V9V
1K8 Tel 390-2220.
resins, glues, finishes
water-based paints or varnishes, or those with zero volatile content,
and no use of urea formaldehydes
a range of water-based, mercury and lead-free paints, using 30%
408 John St,
Victoria V8T 1T5 Tel 386-6185
wide range of Earth-friendly products including paints, soaps,
stains, finishes, cleaners, waxes, carpet products, caulking &
sealers, adhesives and ceramic tiles. Distributed on Vancouver
Island by Katy Young, 1019 Lodge Ave, V8X 3B1, Tel 384-8892. (Catalogue
and Diamond Elite varnish, a high quality water-based floor varnish,
available at most hardware stores.
complete range of natural, plant-based wood preservers, stains,
floor finishes, shellacs, paint, glues, cleansers, & polishes
imported from Germany. Catalogue & colour chart available
from Eco-House Inc, PO Box 220, Stn A, Fredericton, N.B. E3B 4Y9.
Tel (506) 366-3529
full range of products using natural & replenishable materials
: oil finishes, varnishes, waxes, paints, thinners and cleansers.
For the catalogue, write to BAU, PO Box 190, Alton, NH, USA 03839.
Tel (603) 364-2400 Fax (603) 364-2401
paints from Germany. The Auro range includes floor oil, floor
wax, paint, impregnating oil, furniture polish & wax, lime
washes, thinner, oil paint, tints, boron wood preservative, hardening
oil, linseed oil, shellac, varnish, wood stains & wood tar
preservative. Teekah Environmental Products, 96 Harbord St, Toronto,
Ont M5S 1G6. Also Sinan Co, Natural Building Materials, Box 857,
Davis, CA 95617-0857, USA. (916) 753-3104.
an underlayment board manufactured from 100% post-consumer newsprint.
MEDITE-2 is a new non-urea formaldehyde-bonded fibreboard. Both
are available through PJ White Hardwoods, 776 Fairview Rd, Victoria
V9A 5V1. Tel 480-0338.
natural floor-coverings, or carpets that contain no glues, and
either have no underpad, or an underpad made from recycled rubber.
Naturlich Flooring - distribute natural linoleum & tiles,
cork linoleum, and carpets made from wool, cotton, sisal/coir
. The sample-board costs $5. For their information package on
natural floorcovering, write to 8031 Mill Station Rd, Sebastopol,
CA 95472. (707) 829-3959
2000, free of formaldehydes; uses non-toxic glues. Brochure available
from #300 - 4250 Dawson St, Burnaby, BC V5C 4B1 298-1050
as living air filters
In NASA studies
on using houseplants to reduce indoor air pollution, the following
species dramatically reduced the level of 3 common household pollutants
- formaldehyde, benzene and trichlorethylene : Aloe plant, Bamboo
plant, Spider plant, Chrysanthemums, Dracaenas, African Daisy,
English Ivy, Banana Tree, Philodendrons, Peace Lily, Boston Fern.
overall source of up-to-date information, discussion and ideas
for environmentally concerned interior designers, architects,
contractors and individuals. PO Box 3981, Main Post Office, Vancouver
V6B 3Z4. (604) 689-7622. Membership costs $25pa (Small business
1-3 persons $50; Business $75), for which you receive a quarterly
journal, EcoDesign. Also publish the EcoDesign Resource Guide Part 1 : Regional Information Sources. $8 + $2 postage.
by Design, by Kim Leclair and David Rousseau
This is the
best resource guide available on the market, written by two of
BC's leading 'healthy building' architects. Deals with all interior
finishing materials, and includes listings of specific manufacturers'
products, rating them according to a number of environmental criteria.
Paperback version costs $24.95, and the Professional Edition $55.00.
Available from the EcoDesign Resource Society, PO Box 3981, Main
Post Office, Vancouver V6B 3Z4.
guide, available free from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation,
helps home-owners to identify problems, and develop solutions.
Call 363-3103, or write to CMHC, 1007 Fort St, Victoria V8V 4T7.
Green on the Rural West Coast
of environmentally responsible building techniques and approaches.
$8.00 from Salt Spring Island Community Society, Box 314, Ganges,
BC VOS 1E0.
for designers, architects and builders, keeping them current on
the newest environmental products, issues and industry changes.
6 issues for $30US, PO Box 2386, Mill Valley, CA 94942.
Institute for Bau-Biologie & Ecology
is 'the study of the impact of the building environment upon the
health of people and the application of this knowledge to the
construction of healthy homes and workplaces'. It is also 'the
science of holistic interactions between life and the living environment'.
A free booklet introducing bau-biologie, listing the 25 Principles
of Bau-Biologie and giving details of associated publications
& membership ($30 pa) and of the Institute's Bau-Biologie
Correspondence Course is available from Helmut Ziehe, IBE, Box
387, Clearwater, Florida 34615. (813) 461-4371
is a planned community for 12,000 people, located on the site
of the old cement works, 20 miles north of Victoria. The town
is being planned as a model of traditional neighbourhood design,
ecological sustainability and community values, with its own local
economy. All of the buildings at Bamberton will be governed by
a Registered Building Scheme, which prohibits the use of urea
formaldehyde based glues and resins, woods containing pentachloraphenol
or other preservatives associated with the production of volatile
organics (eg dioxins), creosote, and paints containing xylene,
tuolene, cadmium or lead. The use of chemical pesticides, herbicides
and fertilizers is restricted through covenants attached to the
title of the the land-parcels. An 'E-Star' Awards Program will
further encourage the building of environmentally healthy, advanced
by Guy Dauncey. Please feel free to make copies.