Walking and talking green | SteamboatToday.com

Walking and talking green

Local architect to lead off green buildings monthly series

Jan Cohen will speak next month during the Talking Green series about the straw-bale house she built. The monthly events will focus on 'green' buildings.

— A Steamboat Springs architect who is designing and building a home that produces all its own electricity will lead off a new series of monthly events that focus on green buildings.

Rob Hawkins built his first passive solar house in 1976 so it only seems appropriate he kick off the Talking Green events.

“All my designs since then have utilized some element of passive solar design and efficiencies,” Hawkins said.

Numerous speakers already have been lined up for the monthly Talking Green events that will be held the second Thursday of each month.

Hawkins will discuss the science behind building green, energy-efficient buildings from 5 to 6 p.m. Thursday at Rex’s American Grill and Bar.

“We want to encourage networking and give people ideas of local people they can talk to,” said Steamboat resident Janet Panebaker.

Panebaker, who is a retired teacher and member of the Community Alliance of the Yampa Valley came up with the idea of creating a casual setting to talk about environmentally friendly buildings. Sara Fox with Fox Construction also worked with Panebaker on developing the concept.

Talking Green is sponsored by the Community Alliance and Fox Construction.

“I liked the idea of starting a group, but I also wanted it to be a part of something that’s already going on in the community,” Panebaker said.

She and Fox borrowed the concept behind Talking Green from Green Drinks, a program that is practiced worldwide.

“It’s based on the idea of you get five friends and I get five friends and we have someone talk to us about a green topic,” Panebaker said.

On May 10, Jan Cohen will speak about straw-bale home construction. Cohen built her home in Steamboat in the Brooklyn neighborhood using the energy-efficient straw-bale construction method.

The June 14 event will feature Harold Stout, who will talk about multiple applications for a geothermal system.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 871-4210

or e-mail mstensland@steamboatpilot.com

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