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Alert Notice #120
Green Building & Energy Efficiency


Latest Industry News, Events, Issues, Products, And Resources
October 6, 2015

Contents:

1. Industry Issues, Forecasts & Trends
2. Business Management
3. Building Design & Trends
4. Codes Standards & Regulations
5. Building Science & Technology
6. Building Performance Issues
7. Products & Suppliers
8. Installation & Procedures
9. Fuels, Energy & Transportation
10. Information Sources
11. Conferences & Shows
12. Education & Training
13. Costs & Savings
14. Incentives, Financing & Programs


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Here is another special BC Building Info issue on green building and energy efficieny.

The regular BC Building Info newsletter covering all industry topics will come your way in a few weeks as usual. Hope you find at least a wee bit of value here somewhere.

Have a “Top Drawer” day.

Ken Farrish
:o)

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Ken's Top Pick

Presentations From 2015 BC Building Envelope Conference
BC Building Envelope Council offers online access to the technical presentations from their recent 2015 BC Building Envelope Conference.

1. Industry Issues, Forecasts & Trends

BC Housing Hiring Senior Researcher, Economic Studies
BC Housing is hiring a Senior Researcher, Economic Studies. You'll lead complex internal research projects specific to BC Housing’s policy and program development and establish effective linkages with a broad range of industry, government, research, education and consumer organizations.

Present & Future Of Green Building In Multifamily
TecHome Builder says it might not be easy being green for some multifamily builders, but for others it’s going to be a way of life, or it already is.

Carbon Fees Are Not Best Solution To Climate Pollution
Green Building Advisor says pollution fees play an important supporting role in stopping climate change, but they are not the star performer.

Most Energy Efficient Cities In The World
Environmental News Network describes the most energy efficient cities in the world.

Initiating Sustainability In Your Community
Environmental News Network describes some issues and considerations for initiating sustainability in your community.

Outcomes from the Renewable Cities Global Learning Forum
Renewable Cities presents outcomes from their Global Learning Forum held in May, 2015.

Green Real Estate Results Show Improved Performance
REMI Network says participants in the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) survey continue to grow in number and demonstrate improved performance.

2015 International Energy Efficiency Self Scoring Tool
American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy free Excel-based 2015 International Scorecard Self-Scoring Tool allows you to analyze the status of energy efficiency by country or province, and compare this with the largest economies of the world.

2. Business Management

4 Types Of Buyers Motivated By More Than Just Price
Builder Magazine says many builders believe green certified homes are a niche product; that only the most environmentally conscious consumers care about green features. They contend that home buyer motivations are solely about the sales price. That might be the case, unless you’re selling to the following home buying segments.

9 Lead Capture Ideas For High Performance Home Builders
Energy Circle describes the process of multi-stage lead capture for high-performance builders.

Building Green As A Customer Service Strategy
Builder Magazine article says Meritage Homes touted a focus on building to higher standards for healthier lifestyles.

Whole-House System Approach To Home Renovation
RESNET says a whole-house system approach to building or renovating an existing home is the most effective method to optimizing home energy efficiency.

So Many Options For Home Performance
Indoor Environment & Energy Efficiency says there isn't just one path to take when it comes to HVAC contractors offering home performance. In fact, there are a number of great options that you can offer your customers to make sure they are getting the comfort they expect and want.

We Are Doing Residential Energy Efficiency All Wrong
Greentech Media says projects are not being sold and implemented in substantial numbers. We need to slow it down, build relationships with consumers and educate them, learn and think systemically about the problems they have, and arrive at solutions that fit homeowner budgets.

Residential Quality Assurance Handbook
Residential QCI Handbook covers the principle elements of managing the delivery of quality in home energy retrofit work. The QCI job task analysis has five domains broken down into individual tasks. Those tasks are broken down further into individual bullet points. The five domains cover defining quality checks, conducting quality checks, quality check post-work diagnostic inspection, ensuring worker professionalism, and ensuring program compliance. $99 USD

Getting To Outcome-Based Building Performance
New Buildings Institute report Getting to Outcome-Based Building Performance summarizes a summit of experts to focus on ideas on what industry characteristics and needs will support a move to performance outcomes. It suggests design and construction must be linked with operations and maintenance to realize performance goals. (PDF)

3. Building Design & Trends

Outdoor Living Spaces & Smart Home Technology Top US Homeowner Preferences
American Institute of Architects Home Design Trends Survey shows homeowners continue to prioritize investing in outdoor living spaces and there has been a significant surge in popularity in adding technology and systems that can help automate energy consumption.

6 Energy Star Homes That Rock
Builder Magazine describes a sampling of Energy Star-certified projects that not only save energy but look good, too.

6 Energy-Efficient Homes That Soak Up The Sun
Dwell describes six houses that use cutting-edge solar collection methods.

Flexible Housing
CMHC describes the flexible housing concept and how it can respond to changes in health conditions, household composition and income changes. (PDF)

Net Zero Energy Buildings, Passive House + Renewables
North American Passive House Network (NAPHN) online ebook Net Zero Energy Buildings, Passive House + Renewables describes features, benefits, issues and considerations for net zero passive house buildings.

Building Green Community Makes The Green In Washington
TecHome Builder says going green has really paid off for one Washington Coast community; it sold out in a matter of months.

Social Sustainability In Practice
Sustainable Architecture and Building Magazine describes what is being done to design the physical and social aspects of a community.

Sustainability In The Building Industry
REMI says the belief in the latter part of the 20th century, that people could design the same building anywhere in the world, is no longer applicable. Climate change has shifted the conversation from sustainability to resilience.

4. Codes Standards & Regulations

Evolution Of Energy Efficiency Requirements In BC Building Code
Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions online report Evolution of Energy Efficiency Requirements in the BC Building Code focuses on the role and history of building regulations in accelerating energy efficiency. (PDF)

Common Definition For Zero Energy Buildings, Campuses, Communities
US Department of Energy says their Common Definition for Zero Energy Buildings, which states that a Zero Energy Building is “an energy-efficient building where, on a source energy basis, the actual annual delivered energy is less than or equal to the on-site renewable exported energy.”

CHBA Pilot Of Net Zero Energy Labelling Program
Canadian Home Builders Association has launched a pilot of their Net Zero Energy Labelling Program. It will provide the industry with a 2-tiered (NZE and NZE Ready) technical standard that will distinguish and recognize builders and renovators and their NZE homes.

Clarifying Confusing Calculations For Zero Energy Buildings
Energy Vanguard says US Department of Energy defines and calculates zero energy use based on source energy, but doing the calculations is a bit confusing.

NAFS In Part 9 Of The Canadian Code
RDH Building Engineering helps clarify the confusion and misunderstanding about how NAFS applies to windows and doors in Part 9 buildings.

Public Review Of New Canadian Standard For Rainwater Harvesting Systems
CSA is inviting public review of a new standard for the design, materials, installation, and operation of rainwater harvesting systems for potable and non-potable applications.

Resiliency Action List + Credit Catalog
C3 Living Design Project online RELi resilience standard, encourages city planners, project developers and businesses to build and operate facilities that can better withstand super storms, sea-level rise, drought, heat waves or even longer-simmering social unrest.

Identifying & Overcoming Code & Standard Barriers
Building America Guidance for Identifying and Overcoming Code, Standard, and Rating Method Barriers provides research teams and partners with specific information and approaches to identifying and overcoming potential barriers to Building America innovations arising in and/or stemming from codes, standards, and rating methods. (PDF)

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5. Building Science & Technology

10 Essential Steps To Building A Pretty Good House
Energy Vanguard says if you're interested in designing, building, or living in a Pretty Good House, here are 10 essential steps you need to take to make it happen. It starts with applying the principles of building science.

Building Better Basements
Home Builder Canada magazine describes issues and options for moisture problems that can result from finishing a basement too soon after construction.

High-Performance Slab-On-Grade Foundation Insulation Retrofits
US Department of Energy report High-Performance Slab-on-Grade Foundation Insulation Retrofits assesses slab-on-grade foundation insulation energy savings based on possible site and source energy savings for retrofits in US climate zones 4–7 for single and multifamily homes. (PDF)

Retrofits Versus Reductions
Green Building Advisor blog post says it’s possible to achieve significant energy savings without a deep energy retrofit.

Deep Energy Retrofit Of Three-Story Victorian House
Building Science describes a Victorian house retrofit that included new fiber cement siding installed over exterior insulation, new high performance windows, a conditioned basement, improved insulation at the attic and roof, and improved air tightness.

Affordable Window Retrofit Solutions With Storm Windows
US Department of Energy report Affordable Window Retrofit Solutions demonstrates a 10%-35% heating and cooling savings from the installation of low-e storm windows compared to single-pane and double-pane clear windows. The savings from installing low-e storm windows were roughly equivalent to the savings from window replacement with double-pane low-e windows; however, the storm window installation cost only about one quarter the cost of window replacement. (PDF)

Drawing Rammed Earth Lessons From Ancient Roots
Green Building Advisor says the rammed earth buildings of Bhutan make sense, even in our high-tech building world.

Building Enclosure Details & Assemblies For Wood-Frame Buildings
Woodworks online slide show presentation Building Enclosure Details and Assemblies for Wood-Frame Buildings provides an in-depth look at a variety of wood-frame building enclosure assemblies and details. It covers building enclosure design fundamentals and considerations, best practices with references from technical guidelines and case studies, and the critical detail interfaces between different enclosure assemblies. (PDF)

6. Building Performance Issues

Free Building Monitoring Software
Fine Homebuilding says software developed by the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation allows building owners and managers to track everything from real-time energy use to indoor temperatures and water consumption, and the system is being offered to anyone for free.

Householder Guide To Moisture & Air Problems & Remedies
CMHC provides guide to assist in the identification of the signs and probable causes of indoor-generated moisture and moisture-related indoor air quality problems in houses and units in multi-unit residential buildings and to propose practical solutions.

Radiant Floor Heat In Superinsulated Houses
Green Building Advisor discusses issues and considerations for using radiant floor heating in a superinsulated house.

Tougher Energy Codes Prompt Advanced Framing Switch
Journal of Light Construction says when mid-Atlantic builders had to make the jump from R13 walls to R20 walls, advanced wall framing started to look like the best option.

Ventilation For Your Tight House
Green Building Advisor provides podcast discussing how to get your ventilation system correct after your house is tight.

Homeowners Experiences Living In EQuilibrium Net-Zero Homes
CMHC study The Experiences of Canadian Homeowners Living in EQuilibrium Housing Net-Zero Energy Homes includes their feedback on the performance, benefits, value, satisfaction and most appreciated features of living in a near or net-zero energy sustainable home. (PDF)

Vapor Diffusion-Open Walls Study In Alaska
Alaska Cold Climate Housing Research Center (CCHRC) monitored a super low-energy home to see how the innovative systems performed in the the Fairbanks climate. The house has super-insulated walls and foundation, an integrated heat storage system, and an open wall design that allows vapor to diffuse through.

How A Deep Energy Retrofit Can Make A Difference In Your Building
RDH Building Engineering summarizes a building enclosure condition assessment followed by an in-depth energy and sustainability research project that evaluated potential energy efficiency upgrades to major building systems for a 13-storey, 37-unit residential building located in Vancouver.

7. Products & Suppliers

Sustainable Building Materials Database
Minnesota Building Materials Database site is a vehicle to document, evaluate, and disseminate usable information on sustainable materials, products, systems, and services for the commercial and residential building construction industry in Minnesota.

Comparing LEDs, CFLs, Incandescents
Energitix online comparison chart illustrates the value of the latest LED bulbs when compared with CFLs and incandescents for overall efficiency as well as cost-effectiveness. (PDF)

Injected Spray Sealant For Existing HVAC Ducts
Building America Solution Center describes features, benefits and considerations for installing injected spray sealant for existing HVAC ducts.

Field Trial Of Aerosol-Based Enclosure Sealing Technology
US Department of Energy report Field Trial of an Aerosol-Based Enclosure Sealing Technology presents results from demonstrations of a new method for sealing building envelope air leaks. (PDF)

EPDs Are The Future Of The Building Industry
Building Green says environmental product declarations are taking off, and some experts share the ups and downs of this promising but imperfect transparency tool.

How EPDs Are Improving Our Products
Building Green says some manufacturers feel Environmental Product Declarations are worth the effort, and the business case is stronger than the marketing case.

Founding Members Of Canadian Net Zero Energy Housing Council
Canadian Home Builders Association has approved the 2015 members of their Net Zero Energy Housing Council. Members were selected for their demonstrated competence and experience in NZE or R-2000 Housing as well as their knowledge or capability in specialized areas important to the advancement of NZE Housing. (PDF)

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8. Installation & Procedures

Creating High-Performance Walls
Green Building Advisor describes details of the exterior high performance walls that manage heat, water, vapour, and air.

Attic Eave Minimum Insulation
Building America Solution Center online guide provides information about constructing a roof with full insulation at the eaves.

Installing Attic Hatch Insulation
Building America Solution Center online video describes how to install attic hatch insulation.

Three-Stage HRV Defrost Evaluation In Alaska
Alaska Cold Climate Housing Research Center paper discusses the effectiveness of various HRV frost protection strategies, the energy use of the system, and the effect of continuous ventilation on indoor air quality in a cold climate home.

Tips & Tricks For Blower Door & Duct Leakage Testing
Energy Vanguard provides seven tips for successful blower door and duct leakage testing.

Google Launches Project Sunroof
Utility Dive says Google has launched Project Sunroof, a new tool that uses Google Earth's aerial mapping technology to calculate the solar potential of rooftops.

Green Roof Maintenance Is Key To Roof Integrity & Longevity
Green Building Elements describes how to maintain green roofs so they don’t become overgrown and potentially damage the very building they are a part of.

HVAC Optimisation Guide For Commercial Buildings
Australian Government online HVAC Optimisation Guide To Cut Commercial Building Energy Use outlines strategies for reducing energy use through optimising heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. (PDF)

9. Fuels, Energy & Transportation

Renewables & Fossil Fuels Will Share Energy Landscape
Business Council of British Columbia op-ed says renewables and fossil fuels will share our future energy landscape.

Tri-Generation Promises Greener Power For Off-Grid Homes
Electrical Business says a tri-generation system fuelled entirely by raw plant oils could have great potential for isolated homes and businesses operating outside grid systems say the people behind a small-scale combined cooling, heat and power system, which has been designed to provide dependable electricity without requiring grid connectivity.

Options For Allocating Carbon Pricing Revenue
Sustainable Prosperity discusses the best way to allocate carbon pricing funds, given the particular context of each jurisdiction.

Obama Spins Vision Of Decentralized Energy Revolution
Energy Efficiency Markets says President Barack Obama made clear this week how much he will champion the next phase in the American energy revolution, the drive toward local energy, a decentralized grid and consumer control.

Economics Of Demand Flexibility
Rocky Mountain Institute describes the flexiwatt. Not really new in practice, but certainly in name, the flexiwatt gives identity to the idea of controlling energy use in the home through load shifting with advanced energy technologies.

Opportunities To Reach Higher Electricity Savings By 2030
ACEEE report New Horizons for Energy Efficiency: Major Opportunities to Reach Higher Electricity Savings by 2030, identified 18 possible measures to save energy that are not in widespread use. Free site registration required.

10. Information Sources

Purchasable Book What Green Means To Home Buyers: Perceptions & Preferences
US National Association of Home Builders book What Green Means to Home Buyers: Perceptions and Preferences summarizes a study of consumer preferences focusing exclusively on green/high-performance features in the home and the community. $116 USD

Purchasable Building Science Principles Reference Guide
Building Performance Institute & International Code Council developed the Building Science Principles Reference Guide. It addresses how the systems of a home interact with each other and the fundamental scientific principles of heat, moisture and air movement to impact the home's overall performance. $120 USD

EnerGuide Housing Glossary Of Terms
NRCan online encyclopedia that explains terms and definitions used in home energy efficiency and energy performance.

EPA Indoor airPLUS Online Checklist & Resources
Building America Solution Center online Indoor airPLUS feature is an interactive checklist providing direct links to how-to guides in the Solution Center that provide step-by-step instructions for meeting each requirement in the Indoor airPLUS checklist. Along with instructions, each guide contains scopes of work, climate-specific recommendations, relevant codes and standards, research articles, CAD files, and related photographs and videos builders and contractors can use for training purposes.

North American Wood Reuse & Recycling Options
Canadian Wood Council and American Wood Council have partnered with the Building Materials Reuse Association to develop an online North American directory outlining reuse and recycling options for wood and wood products.

Sustainable Community Planning Resources
CMHC online resources on sustainable community planning include Residential Intensification. Brownfield Redevelopment for Housing in Canada, Greyfield Redevelopment for Housing in Canada, Transit-Oriented Development, Comparing Neighbourhoods for Sustainable Features, as well as The Fused Grid.

Tribal Green Building Toolkit
US EPA online Tribal Green Building Toolkit is meant to help revive sustainable building practices for tribal housing. The Toolkit is an assessment designed to help tribal leaders develop priorities for housing and figure out whether new or updated codes are needed in their communities. There are a series of checklists in six categories: land use, materials and resource conservation, health, energy efficiency, water management, and resilience and adaptability. (PDF)

Concrete Sustainability Hub Research Center
Concrete Sustainability Hub is a research center at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The CSHub addresses the sustainability and environmental implications of the production and use of concrete. Its research aims to fine-tune the composition of concrete, reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of its production, and quantify its environmental impact and cost during the entire lifespan of an infrastructure or building project.

11. Conferences & Shows

Solar West 2015: Conference & Trade Show
Canadian Solar Industries Association presents Solar West 2015 Conference & Trade Show in Calgary, October 7-9.

PV Operations & Maintenance USA 2015
The PV Operations & Maintenance USA 2015 conference will be held in San Francisco, October 20-21. The photovoltaic operations and maintenance market is growing exponentially in the US, as is the potential for O&M practices to directly impact on plant performance, output and yield.

Power Smart Forum For Business & Governments
The Power Smart Forum, held October 27th in Vancouver, explores key trends and successes in energy management and offers solutions to attendees looking to advance their conservation strategy, maintain competitiveness, and discover cost-saving opportunities. This year's theme, Getting to Zero: Innovating for the Future, looks at a predicted shift in focus and development toward products and technologies with a target of zero.

QUEST 2015: Getting Smart About Energy in Our Communities
Quality Urban Energy Systems of Tomorrow presents QUEST 2015: Getting Smart About Energy in Our Communities, held in Toronto, October 26-28. Join up to 350 leading decision makers and practitioners to build partnerships, profile best practices, and explore ongoing opportunities for advancing Smart Energy Communities in Canada.

Vancouver Zero Waste Conference
Metro Vancouver Zero Waste Conference 2015 on October 29th will present perspectives and leading initiatives that challenge traditional assumptions around waste and demonstrate the economic value to be realized from zero waste and circular economy approaches.

Great Climate Race In Vancouver
The Great Climate Race, held on November 8th in Vancouver is intended to increase public awareness of climate change while raising funds for local solar energy projects.

12. Education & Training

Hands-On Training On Building Green With Concrete
Vancouver ICF is presenting their second hands-on training session showing the latest in green concrete technologies: Nudura ICF, ICF Monopour, Helix Micro Rebar, Passive House foundations, Concrete Mix Design and Suspended Slab Systems. The sessions will be held on October 22nd at the Metro Vancouver Research Centre. Participants will construct a full size structure, including interfacing suspended floor systems as well as pouring a slab with Helix Micro Rebar.

Residential Renewable Energy
BCIT weekend course Residential Renewable Energy will be held in Burnaby, October 17-18. Energy sources discussed include solar energy (thermal, photovoltaic), wind power (water pumping and electrical generation), hydro power (electrical generation), geothermal energy (heat and electrical generation), biomass (heat and fuel) and hydrogen (transportation).

ICBA AGM & BC Construction Roundtable Breakfast
ICBA AGM and BC Construction Roundtable Breakfast will be held in Burnaby on October 16th. Following their Annual General Meeting there will be an interactive discussion on access to labour with representatives from both the provincial and federal government.

Understanding The WELL Building Standard
Canadian Green Building Council presents Understanding the WELL Building Standard, on October 21st in Vancouver. The course is designed to help people understand WELL and apply it to projects.

Net Positive Energy Webinar Series
International Living Future Institute is presenting a 5-part Energy Petal Webinar Series on Net Positive Energy Buildings.

Fall 2015 NAFS Education Sessions
RDH Building Engineering lists the various industry events where Al Jaugelis will be speaking about fenestration-related topics.

Game Of Homes
EnergyLogic Academy online Game of Homes is a game designed for home energy professionals. It is an interactive game that puts players in the middle of home performance scenarios where decision making is what matters.

Choosing Nominee For HPO Continuing Professional Development Requirement
BC Homeowner Protection Office bulletin Choosing a Nominee for the Continuing Professional Development Requirement explains how to choose a nominee. (PDF)

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13. Costs & Savings

Photovoltaic System Pricing Trends 2015
US Department of Energy report Photovoltaic System Pricing Trends: Historical, Recent, and Near-Term Projections covers recent reported prices, bottom-up cost analysis, comparison between reported and bottom-up price estimates, and near future price trends. (PDF)

Local Energy Efficiency Policy Calculator
American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy free Local Energy Efficiency Policy Calculator (LEEP-C) is a decision making tool for local policymaking. It estimates the impact select public and residential buildings policies have on energy savings, cost savings, pollution, and other outcomes.

Residential Existing Homes Programs In US & Canada
Consortium for Energy Efficiency online Overview of Residential Existing Homes Programs in the United States and Canada summarizes currently active voluntary efficiency programs aimed at reducing energy consumption in existing homes. (PDF)

West Kootenay Communities Aim To Reduce Energy & Emissions
Several West Kootenay communities will soon be reducing their carbon footprint thanks to $168,000 support from Columbia Basin Trust and FortisBC.

US City-Level Energy Decision Making
US National Renewable Energy Laboratory report City-Level Energy Decision Making: Data Use in Energy Planning, Implementation, and Evaluation in U.S. Cities, examines what US cities are doing to reduce their energy use. (PDF)

New York City Launches Accelerator Program For Energy Retrofits
Retrofit accelerator is a free one-stop shop of experts who will advise building owners on conservation and clean energy options and assist with permits, financing, and incentives to upgrade systems.

Case Studies On Valuing Energy Efficiency
Institute for Market Transformation case studies show that careful attention to financial parameters can help a wide range of building owners achieve substantial energy and cost savings without raising rents or product prices to justify efficiency expenditures.

14. Incentives, Financing & Programs

Power Smart Deals & Rebates
BC Hydro lists deals that save money on Energy Star appliances and products.

Smart Thermostat Pilot Program In Richmond
City of Richmond is offering a $125 rebate on the installation of Smart Thermostats, including the Nest Learning Thermostat, Ecobee 3, or Honeywell Lyric. The program is open to households living in single family homes, attached housing, duplexes, or townhomes.

Vancouver Heritage Energy Retrofit Grant Program
Vancouver Heritage Foundation, beginning in September of 2015, will offer a pilot grant program to assist with energy retrofits for older Vancouver homes. Homes built before 1940 and those listed on the Vancouver Heritage Register are eligible to apply.

Why Solar Financing Is Moving From Leases To Loans
Utility Dive article says by 2020, the rooftop solar market will be $10 billion and half may be owned through loans.

BC Report Proposes On-Bill Financing
Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions report Cheaper Power Bills, More Jobs, Less CO2 says BC needs a loan program to fund home energy retrofits, and this will be a shot in the arm for the economy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce energy costs. (PDF)

Tip Sheets For Implementing Local Climate & Energy Programs
US EPA online Effective Practices for Implementing Local Climate and Energy Programs Tip Sheets are a series of 19 tip sheets that cover a wide range of topics, including effective marketing and communications, working with specific types of stakeholders, and more.

Guide For Benchmarking Residential Energy Efficiency Program Progress
US Department of Energy online Guide for Benchmarking Residential Energy Efficiency Program Progress With Examples can help you continually assess your program's performance to effectively engage customers and achieve energy savings.


Dittie For Today: On Your Offering

It has become a common feeling, I believe, as we have watched our heroes falling over the years, that our own small stone of activism, which might not seem to measure up to the rugged boulders of heroism we have so admired, is a paltry offering toward the building of an edifice of hope. Many who believe this choose to withhold their offerings out of shame. This is the tragedy of the world. For we can do nothing substantial toward changing our course on the planet, a destructive one, without rousing ourselves, individual by individual, and bringing our small, imperfect stones to the pile. - Alice Walker


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© Copyright 2015              Ken Farrish              All Rights Reserved

ISSN: 1703-5597 - National Library of Canada

 
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