Segments in this Video

Introduction: Green Designs (01:35)


Skyscrapers use 48% of all energy in the United States and 76% of electricity. This program investigates some of the world’s green buildings.

Singapore's National Library (06:40)

Architect Ken Yeang discusses the bioclimatic features he designed for the library. These include lights and escalators that switch on only when needed, sky gardens that cool the building, and an eco-cell that brings natural light to lower levels and allows the collection of rainwater.

Heliotrope House (02:33)

Hanna Lehman gives a tour of the house designed by her husband, Rolf Disch. It features 54 square meters of solar panels and rotates slowly to maximize sunlight. It also features toilets and a food waste chute that go directly to compost and a washing machine that utilizes rainwater.

European Regulations (01:20)

The law in Frieburg requires all new builds obtain 20% of power from renewable sources. A European Union directive requires commercial and residential buildings to meet minimum standards of energy use. The high cost of energy may make European architects think green.

Rocky Mountain Institute (03:31)

John Simpson promotes the practice of recycling old structures instead of building new ones. His group’s headquarters is an old motorcycle workshop that was made greener with the use of recycled building materials, solatubes, and waterless urinals.

Nanyang Technical University (01:35)

Gerry Wu discusses the building's grassy roof. The grass cools the roof’s temperature by 10 degrees and saves 50,000 kilowatt hours of energy per year. Rainwater is collected and recycled to water the grass.

Green Principles (04:30)

Nokia’s headquarters in Beijing is China’s first commercial office to receive a special gold rating from the U.S. Green Building Council. Colin Giles discusses the structure’s green features, which include furniture and carpeting made of recycled material, an outer glass curtain that regulates temperature, and a video conferencing system that minimizes the need to travel.

Credits: Green Design (00:19)

Credits: Green Design

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Green Designs

Part of the Series : What a Waste
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $99.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $149.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $99.95



Buildings are among the biggest wasters of energy on the planet. Almost 40 percent of all global greenhouse gas emissions come from buildings; and in the more intense urban areas, like New York and London, it’s closer 70 percent. Designing and constructing buildings that are eco-friendly has never been more important. Skyscrapers and other commercial buildings are the worst offenders. They are often designed for show and with little consideration for the environment. But some architects have been going in the other direction, designing buildings that run as complete ecosystems with little external energy supply, using elements of nature such as green roofs, natural light and recycled rainwater. This program visits Singapore, Germany and the United States to look at some of the greenest buildings in the world. 

Length: 23 minutes

Item#: BVL166318

ISBN: 978-1-64481-462-8

Copyright date: ©2009

Closed Captioned

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