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January/February 2013





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Publisher’s Letter

Let’s green up 2013


t’s another New Year, and a time to renew our efforts to live more locally and sustainably. At Greenability, we try to give you an abundance of ideas by telling the stories of people who are leading the way. This past year, we have been inspired by homeowners who achieved net-zero energy use, urban farmers who feed the city, organizations forging the way to mass transit, Electrify Heartland’s plans for a new fuel infrastructure, and faith communities that are using creativity and fundraising to install solar panels and edible gardens. We begin 2013 encouraged by their extraordinary efforts and hopeful that this year’s stories will bring even more environmental awareness to Kansas City and beyond. It’s cold outside, so it seems like a perfect time to look at the back story of a hot cup of coffee. Most of us know that we’ll never get a truly local cup because the beans just won’t grow here. But there are ways to make that morning ritual more sustainable and support the local roasteries that source organic and fair-trade beans. We also look at the annual day of love and how easily it can morph into an unsustainable day of consumerism. This year, we give you some creative, green ideas for treating your loved one on Valentine’s Day. Check out all the entertaining local alternatives to roses from Ecuador and diamonds from destructive mining. In our special section on Green Homes, we get a glimpse into the lives and homes of four local couples making a huge commitment to creating the energy they use. Through energy-efficiency strategies and renewable energy systems, they have reduced or eliminated their dependence on grid-supplied electricity. Whether it was a remodel or new construction, their house projects

show how much can be accomplished when the design/ build team is as committed to sustainability as the homeowners. We’d like to thank our commentary writer, Bob Akers of Surplus Exchange, for telling us about all of the resources that can be recycled from our old electronics. If you want to keep updated on green events and issues in Kansas City, sign up for our free e-newsletter on our Facebook page, or use your Smart phone to scan the QR code on this page. It’s a quick and easy way to get timely eco-news about Kansas City. If your organization or company has an upcoming green event that is open to the public, email us ( the information for a free listing in our online Greenability calendar. It’s the most extensive resource for green events in Kansas City. Check regularly to find environmental group meetings, family activities, workshops and speakers, gardening classes and outdoor adventures. And finally, if you would like to order additional copies of any issue for your organization’s green team, customers or other programs, please give us a call at 816-931-3646. We give discounts for bulk orders. Here’s to working toward a more sustainable lifestyle for all in 2013. Cheers!

Julie Koppen Publisher

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Volume 7, Number 1 January/February 2013

PUBLISHER Julie Koppen


COPY EDITOR Kim Broers WRITERS Bob Akers Jared Cole Mary Lynn Coulson Teresa Kelly ASSISTANTS James Gottsch Johannah Waldo GRAPHIC DESIGN Kim Tappan/Tappan Design Connie Saum



COVER PHOTOGRAPH LEED Platinum home of Andy and Cathy Homoly By Lauren Smulcer PHOTOGRAPHY Jared Cole Matt Doll Teresa Kelly Tim Sandweg Lauren Smulcer Michael Spillers ADVERTISING Julie Koppen

WEBSITE MANAGEMENT Tim Gieseking COPYRIGHT All contents of this issue of Greenability are copyrighted by The Koppen Group Inc., 2013. All rights reserved.

GREENABILITY January/February 2013 (ISSN 1938-5749) is published bi-monthly (6 times per year) for $24 per year by The Koppen Group, Inc., 1600 Olive St., Kansas City, MO 64127. Periodicals postage paid (USPS 2020) at Kansas City, MO and at additional mailing offices.

CONTACT US Phone 816-931-3646 Fax 816-960-4841 Renewable Energy Credits (REC) equal to 100% of the electricity used to print Greenability were purchased through AmerenUE’s Pure Power Program.

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or send subscription orders or address changes to P.O. Box 414056, Kansas City, MO 64141-4056.

Cert no. BV-COC-963605

Contents January/February 2013


11 36

10 ways to love the Earth on Valentine’s Day Explore extreme weather and climate change at the GreenZONE


4 34 35

Green Homes

17 Leawood home reaches

LEED Platinum level

Southern-style Parkville home 23 surpasses net-zero energy use Brookside homeowners 27 cut electric bills in half Independence couple strives for 29 self-sufficient homestead

From the Publisher Green Pages

Commentary: Recover valuable metals and reduce toxins


Greenability Directory


Sip a sustainable cup of coffee







Sip a sustainable cup of COFFEE By Jared Cole

Jared Cole enjoys a certified organic, fair-trade cup of coffee at One More Cup in Waldo.


ike many people, I start my day off with a fresh cup of coffee. But unlike most people, I have seen the impact that each sip makes on some of the most bio-diverse areas of the planet. I travelled to the tropics in search of birds, and I actually didn’t drink coffee until I was there. While living in a rural area of Rwanda and working as an environmental educator, I found few options for liquid refreshments. They included filtered or boiled water, local tea, which was so bitter that even the locals insisted on adding at least two scoops of sugar, or walking two kilometers to buy a semi-cold soda or cup of unpasteurized yogurt-milk drink (ikivuguto). Or I could add locally available Nescafe to my boiled water. That’s how I became a coffee drinker.


Greenability Greenability

Greenability Challenge

Coffee was grown locally in Rwanda, but it was mainly for export or the expensive expat and tourist shops in the capital. In East Africa and then in travels in Mexico and Ecuador, I came to see an unfortunate side to my new drink of choice. In places as far north as Mexico to places like Peru and Brazil, forests are being cut to make way for agriculture. Coffee is one of many crops in the tropics, and in highland forests especially, areas are transformed from forests with a high diversity of trees, birds, and other organisms to plots of one species of coffee tree (Coffea arabica or Coffea canephora robusta). Scientists are finding that birds decline in coffee farms with intensive human modification, but that they can survive and thrive at much higher rates when the coffee is grown under tree shade. The trade-off for more shade is smaller yield, and for a smaller supply, higher prices must be charged. Many people incorporate sustainability into their menu by buying local. While many products can be grown in Kansas City, coffee is not one of them. Coffee can only be grown in scale in the tropics, because the plants are intolerant of frost and extreme temperatures. As someone who normally thinks about the origins of my food, I can relate to the impact that my coffee purchases make.

Look for these logos


Bird Friendly™ is a coffee

certification developed by the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center. Its criteria includes organic certification, retaining 40 percent of the native forest canopy cover, retaining multiple layers of forest that naturally occur, and ensuring that at least 10 native tree species are found in the coffee-growing area.


USDA Organic certification requires

that no substance from the USDA National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances is used during the growing, production or processing of the product. Additionally, it requires crop rotations, mulching and cover crops to improve soil fertility.


Rainforest Alliance certification is

applicable to many forest products. In addition to labor standards, the environmental requirements include inventorying species diversity, using integrated pest management and prohibiting hunting of native species. For coffee, it also calls for 40 percent shade cover in two layers and a minimum number of tree species.

4 A shade-grown coffee demonstration plot at the Maquipucuna Reserve in Ecuador offers education and outreach to coffee growers in the region.

Fair Trade is a certification offered

for many products by either Fair Trade USA or Fair Trade International. Both certifications focus mainly on labor concerns, but also prohibit use of certain substances and call for minimizing the use of pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. They encourage the establishment of buffer areas to protect water supplies and nearby natural areas, but contain no habitat conservation or shade requirements.


Greenability Challenge

While bird watching, I’ve actually explored several types of coffee farms, from full sun to nearly full shade in Mexico, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda and Ecuador. In Mexico, I saw that birds, both migratory and indigenous, benefit from the insects and habitat that remain in ecologically-minded coffee farms. In Tanzania, I learned that sustainably-produced coffees help local people by providing jobs, income and rewarding work environments next to important ecological zones. In Uganda and Rwanda, I saw that while large protected areas offer the best habitat, even small patches of forests, including those with shade products maintained by local people, could support high levels of biodiversity. In Ecuador, I bought coffee from farmers who were willing to grow it in a way I appreciated, as I could see in regular birding trips around their farms. So now that I am in Kansas City, how can I get a green cup of “Joe”?

Think local in a global context Since I choose products that are grown locally, organically or with some other form of environmentally conscious approach, I decided to imagine I lived in coffee-growing areas and considered the type of producers I would like to support. For me, it’s important to know that workers are treated well, that shade trees are left for birds and other animals, and that pesticides are not used.

Understand the certifications In theory, labels and third-party certifications make it easy for consumers to know what they are getting and verify its impact. Different certifications target different goals and use different indicators of success. Terms like “shade-grown” or “carbon-neutral” may indicate that sustainability has been incorporated into a product, but since these terms are not regulated, they are just as generic as the word “natural.” Not all environmentally sustainable coffee is labeled. Some roasters or distributors work directly with growers and see first-hand the production methods, but choose not to certify. The Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center has developed the most environmentally inclusive label that incorporates pesticide-free, 40-percent-shade requirements, and provisions for native trees. Unless one orders online, coffee with a Bird Friendly™ certification is offered at a store no closer than St. Louis, MO.

Find your beans or brew

Coffee fruits are grown and their seeds are processed at this station at the Maquipucuna Reserve in Ecuador and sold to a roaster for distribution in the United States.


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Several local roasters feature certified coffees and sustainable practices. The Roasterie offers seven types of both certified organic and fairtrade varieties. Its sustainability initiatives begin in the coffee fields. The company buys all origin coffees at least 30 percent above fair-trade pricing, composts grounds and chaff on site and at a nearby farm, sends used burlap bags to local organizations for reuse, and recycles hot air from the roasters to heat the building. Broadway Cafe, an organic certified roaster, won a national Good Food Award in 2012 for an organic, fair-trade coffee it produced. While that variety sold out, owner Jon Cates said they always have two to three fair-trade and/or organic varieties for sale in the cafe or at the roasting location, which is open to the public in Westport. The cafe also uses a

A male summer tanager, which breeds in Missouri, migrates in winter to the cloud forests of northwest Ecuador and other nearby coffee-growing areas.


roaster that is 60 percent more energy efficient than standard equipment. Burlap coffee bags are made available for reuse projects at $5 each. Parisi Artisan Coffee, Revocup Coffee Roasters and Oddly Correct are other local roasters that also offer some varieties of organic and/or fairtrade-certified coffees. Oddly Correct even offers bicycle delivery. Larger brewing companies offer products that are more widely available. Scan the coffee aisles at Hen House or Hyvee, and you’ll find USDA Organic, Rainforest Alliance and fair-trade labels. Since 1998, Starbucks has been working with Conservation International to require a percentage of shade-grown beans in its coffee and even developed its own third-party certification program to ensure Starbucks coffee meets high labor and environmental standards. In 2011, 86 percent of coffee beans Starbucks purchased went through a certification process, and Starbucks plans to have 100 percent of its coffee certified by 2015, according to Conservation International. Since my travels, I have found that getting sustainable coffee is a slow process, and I look forward to the day when I can get a Bird Friendly™ cup at my local cafe.


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Coffee plants are grown in full sun on this Rwanda farm.


Green Holidays


ways to love the Earth on

Valentine’s Day

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with an organic, vegan, gluten-free Strawberry Cheesecake Sundae cupcake from locally owned Brody’s Bakery.


hen love is in the air, pollutants and waste may be trailing right behind. Valentine’s Day is traditionally a day for flowers, chocolates and jewelry, gifts that far too often are grown or produced unsustainably. This year, we hunted around for entertaining, romantic and family-friendly ways to celebrate the day, while minimizing the environmental harm. Here are a few ideas we hope you enjoy and share.



1 Treat your sweetie to local eats

If eating out is part of your romantic tradition, take your sweetie to a local restaurant that mixes healthful, local ingredients into its menus. Many offer organically grown food or free-range raised meats, depending on the season. Find a list and a link to several local restaurants at When it comes to the sweets, choose a local, fair-trade or organic treat like Hippie Chow granola, Bread of Life brownies or Benish’s Bakery biscotti. They can all be ordered through Door to Door Organics ( or found at select grocery stores. Or try a local brownie or truffle that’s organic, vegan and gluten-free from Brody’s Bakery ( that you can order online and pick up locally. When considering packaged chocolate treats, look for certifications in fair-trade, Rainforest Alliance and organic from companies like Green & Blacks, Newman’s Own Organics and Endangered Species.

2 Create a heart-shaped dinner

Get the kids involved in creating a Valentine’s meal where everything on the menu is heartshaped, local and/or organic. Think of all the easy meals and desserts that could be cut or molded to fit the theme – pizza, grilled cheese, pancakes, cake and cookies. Then, take the kids to the farmer’s market or grocery store and challenge them to find local and organic ingredients. Badseed Market in the Crossroads District is open every Friday night through the end of February and the City Market downtown is open on Saturdays and Sundays. Grocery stores also offer some local and organic ingredients like milk, cheese, meat, eggs and root vegetables. Look for local growers’ labels like Good Natured Family Farms and Green Dirt Farm. For more creative heart-shaped menu ideas, check, and you’ll find more exotic dishes – from sushi to GyeRan Mali, a Korean side dish.

3 Find love outside

in Mother Nature

A day outside playing in the park, exploring the zoo or hiking a nature trail will be remembered longer than a box of chocolates. Bundle up and head outside to share your affection, and keep an eye out for that archetypal symbol of love. Check out 25 Awesome Hearts Found in Nature, an adventure blog ( of Sierra magazine writer Steve Casimiro. Take a look at some incredible heart shapes found in the natural world. Then photograph some of your own.

a bleeding heart 4 Nurture If you are buying for someone who likes to dig in the dirt, look for an old-fashioned bleeding heart (Dicentra spectabilis) perennial plant root. Don’t worry that it’s not pretty now; by late spring, gorgeous heart-shaped flowers will dangle from two-foot stems. Bleeding hearts are beautiful in a shade garden planted in front of ferns. A North American native, this woodland plant prefers partial shade and well-drained soil. It can be purchased at Soil Service in Kansas City and other local garden centers.


5 Let love blossom, organically

More than 200 million roses will be given this Valentine’s Day. However, the coveted red dozen can have a thorny impact on the environment. The U.S. floral industry is one of the heaviest users of pesticides in all of agriculture, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Flower production outside the United States is problematic as well. It’s estimated that 20 percent of the chemicals used on flowers grown abroad are illegal here. The results are tons of pesticides that pollute the ground and water, a carbon footprint of 5,000 miles from field to door, and Ecuadorian and Colombian flower workers plagued with a myriad of work-related health problems. The International Labor Rights Fund found that “flower workers experience higher-thanaverage rates of premature births, congenital malformations and miscarriages.” If you opt to buy flowers, look for locally grown posies (which can be hard to find in Kansas City in February), potted plants or organic flowers with the VeriFlora seal. Or BT_AD_GRN_FINAL.qxd:Layout 1 3/26/12 4:53 PM Page check the selection at,

a carbon-neutral company that sells pesticide-free flowers and provides its workers in underdeveloped countries with zero-interest loans, healthcare and education programs.

6 Give “eco” tulips, help the honeybees


Skip the roses and pop for tulips for a cause. The Rodale Institute, a pioneer in organic farming research, is partnering with EcoTulips to raise funds and flowers to help save the honeybee as a valuable pollinator. When you order certified organic flower bulbs, the Honeybee Conservancy flower mix or other favorite blooms, the proceeds help the Rodale Institute add hives and expand honeybee forage plants on the farm. The Honeybee Conservancy at Rodale Institute was started in 2012 in response to colony collapse disorder, which kills an estimated 30 percent of the honeybee population in North America each winter. Check on the Honeybee Conservancy’s work at

Every timber has a story Old barns, abandoned warehouses and fallen oak trees all have their own stories. By reusing antique wood, we preserve the past, protect our environment and allow historic timbers and lumber to share their heritage with future generations. If you’re considering the beauty and appeal of reclaimed wood for your next home, retail or office project, look to Beaver Timber as your resource.

Supplied by Nature:Reclaimed and Restored




7 Sip a greener glass of wine

Add a bottle of local wine to your romantic dinner, or try a wine tasting at one of 30 local wineries. Check the Missouri Wine and Grape Board ( and the Kansas Grape Growers and Winemakers Association ( for lists of local wineries that may have special Valentine’s Day events and tastings. For wineries with even greener footprints, check out Jowler Creek Vineyard & Winery and Fahrmeier Family Vineyards. Located in Platte City, MO, awardwinning Jowler Creek Vineyard & Winery ( uses a 5 kW solar system to power the winery, sheep to control weeds, and chickens to reduce insects in its six-acre sustainable vineyard. With a goal of zerocarbon impact, Fahrmeier Family Vineyards ( in Lexington, MO, remodeled a 1930s barn for the winery and topped it with a 12 kW solar system. It’s all part of a 66-acre family farm and 20-acre vineyard. For organic wines, try a California bottle from Benziger Family Winery or Frog’s Leap.

Colleen and Jason Gerke, owners of Jowler Creek Vineyard & Winery, enjoy a glass of their wine for Valentine’s Day. Photo: Images by Allison.

a greener Valentine’s greeting 8 Give Who doesn’t want to get a Valentine’s card? This simple show of affection can be made greener with a few easy choices. Look for cards with logos that show the paper is recycled, chlorine-free or Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified and printed with soy-based ink. Go paperless, and send an e-card from or You can find both recycled and paperless options at Kansas City’s hometown Hallmark Cards. Or create your own message of love with repurposed paper and decorations.

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Get a home energy audit from an approved auditor Implement recommended changes Reduce your home’s energy use by at least 15% Receive your rebates

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seeds, composting, native plants, watching butterflies and scoping out animals in the garden. Worms for supper, anyone?

10 Look behind the sparkle

9 Enjoy winter, anticipate spring Take the kids to Lakeside Nature Center ( in Kansas City or the Ernie Miller Nature Center ( in Olathe to explore nature in winter. Or anticipate spring and give a child (ages 5–12) a membership to the Powell Gardens Kids’ Club. Once a month from April through October, they’ll get to explore the garden and learn about planting

Producing one gold ring can generate 20 tons of mining waste, according to Earthworks’ “No Dirty Gold” campaign ( Vintage or repurposed jewelry is a great choice for romantics who don’t want to support the environmental destruction associated with mining diamonds and gold. For a unique gift, consider a gently used bracelet, ring or set of earrings, or a locally-crafted bauble made from recycled metal, paper or other repurposed material. Check out Arts First Fridays in the Crossroads ( and West Bottoms ( for great one-of-akind vintage and recycled jewelry at the many shops and galleries featuring repurposed home goods and gifts.


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Green Homes

Photo: Michael Spillers


Green Homes

Homeowners Jane York and Jack Williams are enjoying their new LEED Platinum certified home in Leawood. Photo: Tim Sandweg

Leawood home reaches LEED Platinum level 17


By Teresa Kelly


ack Williams and Jane York liked their Leawood neighborhood and the conveniences of its location. But after 28 years in their ranch house, they decided it was time to have a home that better reflected their lifestyle. They wanted a

house designed with simplicity in mind and environmental sustainability as a top priority. Those personal guidelines led to their choice to deconstruct their house and rebuild to the highest (Platinum) level of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), making it the first privately funded, singlefamily LEED home in Kansas. The homeowners were additionally motivated after learning they could build their dream, green home at a cost of only five percent higher than conventional construction. Additional tax and utility rebates and incentives sealed the decision, and LEED Platinum certification was icing on the cake. They started the process by seeking an architect who would listen to their ideas, interpret them creatively and sustainably, and let them be part of the design process. This led to a dynamic team approach to sustainable design with Dominique Davison of DRAW architecture + urban design. “Dominique

was willing to explore all the poss-

ibilities that could apply to our home,” said homeowner Jack Williams. Davison calls her collaborative design process an “ecocharrette,” an intensive holistic planning process that takes time and includes all parties in the home building project. It puts the homeowners, architect and builder all

The stairs were built from sustainably grown bamboo. Photo: Michael Spillers

in the same room to discuss the project from their points of view. Experts can offer choices, homeowner research can be added to the mix, and the best option agreed upon after a discussion of system applications and benefits. For example, when Henderson Engineers looked at the home systems and took into consideration the incentives and the


climate, choosing a ground-source, high-efficiency heat pump and a solar system was the best combination for this particular home. “Building green and sustainably is about more than just the house,” said Davison. Williams is an engineer and wanted to set an example of what could be done in an established neighborhood. Builder Andrew Homoly of Homoly Construction brought a great curiosity, knowledge of sustainable alternative energy systems and a desire to share the process. These principles were built into the relationship with the homeowners and building team as the project proceeded. Green building does not need to be expensive, Davison said. There are more choices in materials and more efficient advance technology options than there were five years ago. Prioritizing between quality and quantity and being smart about where to invest is part of the conversation she leads. Understanding that the extra time devoted to research is time-consuming and committing The master bath uses low-flow water fixtures and has a wonderful view of the treetops. Photo: Michael Spillers

to the extra effort positively impacts the outcome of the project. Davison finds clients are as interested in the process as in building the home. They tend to be curious and smart. Like Williams and York, they find through the charrettes that curiosity, a sense of adventure, and a drive to try new things, go a long way to creating the home of their dreams. Besides the obvious energy-efficient systems, use of recycled materials, and recycling of waste, LEED standards

“This is our way to pay it forward and be kinder to the environment.”

required the homeowners to build to suit the site, which

– Homeowner Jack Williams

outside the critical zone, releasing them from the tree to

in this case has mature trees in the front and back yards. Williams consulted an arborist, who identified the trees’ critical root zones. A fence was erected to protect this area and keep the soil from being compacted by heavy equipment. A vertical saw cut was made through the roots prevent ripping. The site evaluation also included rating the walkability of the neighborhood and the close proximity of grocery shopping, yoga classes and other homeowner interests.



As a result, inhabitants of a LEED home feel connected to the community.

A focal point and the homeowners’ favorite spot is the solarium that runs the length of the south side of the new,

With the original foundation compromised, the team

2,598-square-foot house. To obtain energy efficiency, Davison

looked at a complete deconstruction and recycling of the old

designed the house using passive solar design for heating.

home and rebuilding of a new home. Eighty-two percent of

The passive system takes advantage of natural sunlight

the old construction was recycled. Usable building materials,

through a south-facing solarium. It allows for natural light to

roof tiles, flooring, trim, cabinets, fixtures, doors and other

flow throughout the home. The sun’s warmth is absorbed by

items were donated to Habitat Restore. But the team had

the 12-inch concrete floor slab that radiates heat back into

to get more creative when it came to recycling the extensive

the house during the winter months. Solar shades at the top

amounts of concrete from the basement, sidewalks and

of the windows are angled to let the winter sun warm the

drive. The old concrete slabs were removed, separated from

floor, generating thermal heat. As the sun climbs to a higher

the rebar and crushed. Large piles began to take shape along

angle in the spring and summer, the shades block the rays,

the southern fence line of the property, which the owners

allowing the floor to remain cool. The solarium doors can be

affectionately called the “Tetons of Leawood.” None of the

opened and closed to take advantage of the solar heating.

crushed material left the property, as it was all reused as backfill around the new foundation.

In total, the house has four bedrooms and three and a half baths. The exterior walls, ceiling, windows and

The solarium provides natural light and warmth during winter months, and helps bring the natural environment into view. Photo: Tim Sandweg


From the front, the home of Jack Williams and Jane York has a contemporary design. From the back, visitors can see the solar system, passively designed solarium and native plant garden. Photo: Sharon Guttula

Sustainable Home Comfort Products from Your Backyard cfm Distributors is the Midwest’s employee-owned provider of sustainable heating, cooling, and refrigeration solutions for home, office and industry. We feature York and Coleman products made right here in the Midwest.

800-322-9675 21


doors are insulated to help the house maintain consistent

treetops and rooflines down the street. The master bath uses

temperatures at about 20 percent less cost than traditional

natural light, and includes a water-conserving jetted tub that

construction. The wall and roof structures were built with a

has an internal cleaning system that reduces bacteria and

Structural Insulated Panel System (SIPS), a five-inch layer of

other contaminants.

polyurethane insulation sandwiched between thin oriented

The homeowners wanted their home to stand as an

strand board (OSB). This construction technique gives the

educational tool and a resource for others. During the

walls a high R40 rating and the roof an R60 rating.

construction process, they put placards on the fence to

The heating and cooling system includes a geothermal

educate the neighbors about the different stages of the

heat pump, a de-superheater for water, and a heat recovery

project and the technology being used. There were mixed

ventilation system to bring in fresh air. A 4 kilowatt (kW) solar

reactions to the process of deconstruction, the construction

system was integrated into the concrete tile roof to reduce

process and the finished “not so big” house. More than 400

the home’s electric bills. A rainwater catchment system

people have toured the house, including real estate agents,

provides water for low-maintenance native plants.

students and curious onlookers.

Inside, the homeowners wanted a sense of serenity and

“This is our way to pay it forward and be kinder to

peace. They chose neutral tones and textures with low-

the environment, with lower energy consumption and

VOC paint finishes and the use of recycled materials. The

conservation for generations to come,” said Williams.

appliances and lighting fixtures are all Energy Star-rated. In

The Mid-America Regional Council recently honored

the kitchen and baths, they chose recycled glass countertops.

Williams and York as one of seven 2012 Sustainable Success

The stair treads are custom-made from bamboo, with leftover

Stories. They were the only private homeowners among the

material used to build the console for the living room.

award winners.

The upstairs was designed to feel like a tree house.

“Design-wise, the homeowners drove the process,” said

Energy-efficient windows face treetops above the neighbors’

Davison. “They knew what they wanted. The transformation

rooflines, affording privacy. A few lower windows have been

from prior home to new is quite fantastic and built completely

frosted with a textured adhesive shelf liner. On the private

around the life they want to live.”

deck, the view from the second story leads the eye past

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Green Homes

Andy and Cathy Homoly and their four children live in a new Parkville home that uses renewable energy to create all the electricity they need.

Southern-style Parkville home surpasses net-zero energy use 23


By Teresa Kelly Photography by Lauren Smulcer


hen you own a green home construction




renewable energy company, the challenge to building your own home is choosing well. For Andy

Homoly, the opportunity to build his family’s home brought the typical challenges of making it work for him and his wife, four children, two dogs and a cat. But Homoly wanted more. He wanted his home to demonstrate the best in energy efficiency and renewable energy, be built in traditional Southern style — and be replicable by others. Homoly, who owns Homoly Construction and Wind & Solar KC, describes himself as a practical green builder who wants to build for the masses applying traditional techniques, using common materials in a style no one would necessarily term “green.” His own home is designed to fit his family’s lifestyle and is a replicable model for others, even though homeowners may not need all of its energy features. By adding more renewable options than needed, Homoly achieved more than netzero energy use. In fact, he estimates the renewable energy will surpass his family’s needs over the course of a year, and the extra will be fed back to the electric grid.

The new eco-friendly Homoly home is a perfect fit for the family: (from left) Mason (17), Cathy, Megan (12), Andy, Morgan (10), and Madeline, (15).

For Homoly and his wife, Cathy, the dream home journey began with a plan for energy efficiency and a vision of what they have always wanted — a Southern plantation-style home complete with columns and porches in a picturesque setting. That vision seemed atypical of common images of Earth-friendly design. In the 1970s, the first generation of green pioneers didn’t worry as much about a home’s aesthetic as they focused on ways to make it energy independent. They found the

The dream home journey began with a plan for energy effeciency.

designs weren’t always attractive, the technology wasn’t


The large plantation-style windows let in plenty of natural light, but are energy-efficient to keep cold breezes out. Throughout the house, LED lights are used for their energy efficiency.

easy to figure out, and the prices were out of reach for the

given to the current energy needs of the homeowners, so

average homeowner.

systems are designed appropriately.

Today, Homoly takes full advantage of improved renewable

In his own home, Homoly chose some big-picture energy

energy technology and government and utility rebates,

options and some low-hanging fruit. Building a new home

while incorporating old-fashioned ideas about getting the

allowed the Homolys to build energy savings into virtually

homeowner, builder and architect involved in the planning

every system. The big energy savers and producers include

and design process. He starts by respecting the lay of the

a 25 kilowatt (kW) ground-mount solar system, a geothermal

land, whether it is a city lot or rural landscape. Homoly

HVAC system, a demonstration 1.5kW wind turbine, a micro-

applied these principles to his own home, which will serve as

hydroelectric generator from pond to lower creek, and a

a demonstration house all the way down to the monitoring

solar-powered pump from creek to upper pond.

systems that track renewable energy production and financial

The house is framed with 2x6 inch studs, instead of standard

savings. Last summer, the energy bill for the Homolys’

2x4s. This allows more space for insulation, including a rigid

4,200-square-foot home was a grand total of $1.90.

foam insulation that insulates walls from the foundation to

“Building a net-zero home requires more planning

roof peak. The walls have an insulation rating of R30, much

and about 10 -15 percent more cost than conventional

higher than the typical R13 rating. The roof insulation is rated

construction,� Homoly said.

R45. Windows are low-e coated with suspended film and inert-

At the beginning of the process, careful consideration is



gas-filled cavities for energy efficiency. Doors and windows

are sealed tight to prevent the house from “breathing away” energy. Even the doggie door is insulated.

Purification. The second part is an air filtration system that screens and disinfects circulating air with ultraviolet (UV) light.

The easier energy choices include Energy Star appliances,

Dehumidifier. The goal is to dehumidify the air to 30-50

LED lights, repurposed construction materials, and an

percent relative humidity. From March to August, it is not

energy-saving recirculating hot-water system that delivers

uncommon to see the humidity levels in homes rise above 50

hot water on demand.

percent, Homoly said. When the humidity reaches this level,

Water-saving features include a 1,500-gallon cistern to

conditions are perfect for mold to grow. A dehumidifier is the

capture rainwater for flushing toilets, dual-flush toilets, low-

last leg of the air quality trifecta, operating only when needed

flow faucets and showerheads, xeriscaping and buffalo grass

to keep humidity levels below the mold-growing zone.

for landscaping to minimize water use and mowing.

Interior finishes also received many green features,

Special consideration also was given to the home’s interior

including the use of recycled and repurposed products. More

air quality. For a tight home, the solution to eliminating

than 3,500 square feet of hardwood flooring was reclaimed

interior pollution is an option the Homolys used — an air

from a 90-year-old Amish barn in Missouri through Elmwood

exchange system that brings fresh air into the heating and

Reclaimed Timber. Recycled glass tiles were used on the

cooling system. He also used low-volatile organic compound

backsplashes, and a recyclable counter with no-VOC content

(VOC) paint, caulk and glue in interior finishes to reduce

was sourced within 500 miles through Elements of Green.

air pollution.

Crossville porcelain bathroom stone tiles from Floor Décor

“Air quality studies show that most homes are four times

have 20 percent pre-consumer recycled minerals. Plus, 95

more polluted on the inside compared to the air outside,”

percent of the wood, foam, metals and plastic waste material

Homoly said.

generated on-site was recycled.

That is one reason owners of older homes are encouraged

When using innovative new technology or building

to get an energy audit. It will include testing for leaking gas

materials, Homoly recommends working closely with the

or carbon monoxide. This helps ensure they are not trapping

local codes inspector. Codes have been written for commonly

toxins when they seal up leaks with insulation.

accepted construction practices and materials, but solar

Homoly describes what he calls the “trifecta” approach to air quality and energy conservation in heating and cooling.

panels or rainwater collection systems may not be included. The Homoly home is on track to receive a Leadership in

Fresh Air. An energy recovery ventilator brings in the fresh

Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum rating, a

air that takes on the energy of the stale interior air. This small

National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Emerald rating

feature saves the system from some of the energy expense

and Energy Star certifications. For its homeowners, it’s a dream

of heating cold winter air to the desired temperature and the

house that suits their family’s lifestyle, produces its own energy

reverse in summer of cooling hot air to comfortable levels.

needs, and provides a healthy home environment.

A 25kW solar panel system is ground-mounted behind the house and positioned to receive the maximum hours of southern sun.


Green Homes

Brookside homeowners cut electric bills in half By Teresa Kelly


uring the 18 years Matt and Jeanette Doll have lived in their three-bedroom Brookside airplane bungalow, they’ve grown increasingly interested in finding ways to be more energy-efficient and decrease their carbon footprint.

Their first logical step was to schedule a home energy audit

through the Metropolitan Energy Center to find out where their house was leaking energy and what would produce the greatest return on investment. With results in hand, the couple had a roadmap for making improvements that would help them reduce their energy bills by more than 50 percent. Throughout the process, the Dolls actively participated in the research, decision-making and implementation of the energyefficiency plan to lower energy consumption. Matt Doll took the lead, researching ways to keep material costs down. He made some Matt and Jeanette Doll researched how they could make their Brookside home more energy efficient.

improvements on his own to reduce labor costs. The couple decided to reduce their energy load by insulating and replacing old, inefficient appliances with Energy Star-rated technology. During the remodel of the second floor a few years ago, they had the walls stripped to the studs and insulated with foam insulation. Matt added new energy-efficient windows and fiberglass insulation in the ceiling. Another major upgrade was replacing an old hot-water boiler to achieve 93 percent energy efficiency. Once the energy-efficiency efforts were complete, the Dolls considered adding solar panels. When Matt learned that his employer, SunGard, a financial services company, was offering an incentive to employees for Sunpower solar panel technology, he jumped on it. He contacted Brightergy, a Sunpower dealer, and learned that a system that in the past had a 25-year payback was now priced, with rebates and incentives, for an eight-year return on investment. Since he and his wife plan to be in the house for years to come, this seemed like a great opportunity.



A 4kW solar system installed on the Doll family’s historic Brookside home helps them produce some of their own electricity. Photo: Matt Doll

Susan Brown of Brightergy said the company helps clients

An additional feature of the system is that the homeowners

install the most effective system by starting with a site

can see the total energy being produced on a meter.

evaluation, which leads to an analysis and proposal, system

Brightergy maintains a link on its website to a monitor that

design, permitting and incentive processing, installation and

shows cumulative hourly, daily and monthly energy readings.

continued service and support after installation. Brightergy

A homeowner can use the website link or download a mobile

installed a 4 kilowatt (kW) system on the south-facing roof

app to monitor the meter readings remotely.

of the Dolls’ house to offset 60 percent of their electric use.

The Doll home sets an example of how energy conservation

The Dolls’ annual home electric use averages 10,000-12,000

and renewable energy technology can work in a historic

kilowatts, while the home’s solar energy system produces

home. The owners’ step-by-step process to energy-efficient

5,500kW hours to offset half of the home’s energy cost in the

systems is now rewarding the Dolls with a more comfortable

first year. Their summer electric bills went from $200 to less

home that aligns with their goal of reducing their carbon

than $100 a month.

footprint – and with lower electric bills.



It’s YOUR choice.

Millions of tons of American electronics are shipped overseas annually, where they are processed in dangerous, primitive conditions that contaminate our world. The Surplus Exchange, however, recycles all of its electronics in the United States and guarantees that no harm comes to the environment or the workers.

Never ght over the blankets again

Schedule your Home Energy Assessment today for a more comfortable home!


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Green Homes

The energy efficient home of Lee and Soon Clevenger sits on 10 acres in Independence.

Independence couple strives for self-sufficient homestead By Teresa Kelly


or Lee and Soon Clevenger, the scientific

The couple grows food in a garden plot, and this year added

evidence of global climate change is enough to

a 30-x-70-foot high-tunnel greenhouse. Lee is refurbishing an

make them want to invest in a lifestyle that will

old glass-pane greenhouse to make it more efficient. They

make them self-sufficient. They eat a vegetarian

added a chicken house and are enjoying fresh eggs from their

diet, grow their own food, raise chickens for the

hens. Extra vegetables are preserved for winter use. Their

eggs, and invested in a solar system to help them get off the

large garage is piled high with neatly organized, reclaimed

electric grid eventually.

building materials for Lee’s projects. They are designing a

The Clevengers live in a nearly all-electric, 1,600-square-

new growing site closer to the house with composted wood

foot, split-level house built in 1973 on 10 acres in Indepen-

chips brought in by a tree-trimming company. They believe

dence. Although they are in their 70s, they are actively

their lifestyle of eating well and exercising regularly affords

working to make their small homestead more sustainable.

them health and wellness.

Lee has done much of the work himself, calling in professionals when necessary.



During the process of trying to figure out how to decrease their energy use, the Clevengers consulted Josh

Frankeberger of FreeEnergy, who recommended a three-

gasification furnace used for cold days, their home remains

step approach. First, an energy audit was performed to

100-percent electric.

get a baseline of energy use and waste. It helped answer

After the review and conversation with the Clevengers,

questions like, where are you using and losing energy? What

Frankeberger suggested a 5 kilowatt (kW) solar array that

repairs or improvements does the house need? And what

would produce the balance of their energy needs. FreeEnergy

are the options from here? This laid the groundwork for a

installed a ground-mount 24-panel solar system that most

successful project plan that achieves the homeowners’ goals,

months will produce more energy than they use. During the

Frankeberger said.

summer, their lowest bill was 10 cents.

Secondly, they determined their energy needs and

Early on, Soon was not keen on the solar system’s location,

prioritized the first steps. With 50-60 percent of the home’s

because she could see it from the house. Now, she sees it as

energy load in the heating, cooling and hot-water systems,

a genuinely cool feature of the landscape and feels a sense of

the Clevengers looked for improvements to reduce the

pride that it supplies the energy for their home.

energy load in these critical areas.

The current system meets the Clevengers’ conservative

Finally, FreeEnergy helped them determine how much

energy consumption needs, although it is designed to

renewable energy would be needed to offset the electricity

accommodate 10kW of power, if needed. The couple

they did need even after energy conservation improvements

chooses to use more electricity while the sun is shining, and

were made.

reduce their use at night and during the winter when the sun

“Lee was willing to do the research and compare different

is not as abundant.

technologies to make good decisions for their home,” said

“Why pay for energy, when sun energy is free?” Lee asked.

Frankeberger. “He had been heavily involved and active in

Well, almost free. Frankeberger acknowledges that even

the ‘greening’ of his home since before we met.”

though incentives are great, one of the challenges in the

After reviewing the Clevengers’ energy audit and discussing

industry is funding. With the “time released” return on a

needs, Frankeberger found that first steps had already been

substantial upfront investment, many homeowners would

taken to bring down the energy load. Insulation had been

benefit from good financing options.

installed and the house tightened up with caulk and sealing.

The Clevengers’ ultimate goal is to be totally off the

The Clevengers were conservative with their energy use and

electric grid, meaning their home would not be connected to

had been proactive in finding ways to keep energy costs low.

any electric utility. For now, that is a task that requires more

Together, they reviewed all the available incentives, benefits and payoff of installing a renewable energy system. “Lee sets the standard. He has a clear goal and through his actions is achieving that goal. His motivation is altruistic and economic. He is investing in energy independence,” said Frankeberger. “The customer is integral to seeing a return on investment.” The couple considered a geothermal system with a payback of five to seven years and decided to stay with their existing heat pump, which was only four years old. Lee researched energy-efficient heating/air conditioning systems and found a wood gasification system best suited their situation. Wood gasification systems are smokeless, and with a source of free wood, this worked for the Clevengers. FreeEnergy reviewed the plan and the system requirements and provided the technical assistance for the installation. Except for the wood

Lee and Soon Clevenger are working toward a self-sufficient and energyindependent lifestyle. Photo: Teresa Kelly


infrastructure investment. A battery storage system and

carbon a year is equal to saving 264 trees. Their solar system

separate inverter are needed, and the couple is preparing for

is creating enough energy to power 493 homes for one day,

those additions.

or one home for more than a year.

The Clevengers are getting very close to their goal of living

For Frankeberger, the best outcome is when the

a sustainable life with minimal impact on the planet. They

homeowners are empowered by their participation in the

have already seen a 90 percent reduction in energy use from

process. The Clevengers are there.

the electric grid. They figure their energy offset of 10.3 tons of

A 5kW solar array provides almost all the electricity needed to power the Clevengers’ home in Independence.

Congratulations Zarco 66, Inc., our 2012 Agent of Change, for its dedicated efforts to bring American biofuels to traditional retail stations.

Metropolitan ENERGY CENTER

A public/private coalition that really works! We are transforming the vehicle market to create energy independence and cleaner air, and we’re doing it now. Midwest Region Alternative Fuels Project Replacing 365 polluting vehicles with clean technology. Installing electric charging stations and public-access alternative fuel stations. Total investment near $35 million. Electrify Heartland Preparing communities across Kansas and Missouri for electric vehicles. 31


Start saving today! EnergyWorks KC makes saving easy. Make the energy efficiency upgrades to your home or business that help you save money and increase your comfort.

Save energy. Save money. Save now.

Resources are available. Contact EnergyWorks KC today! Save energy. Save money. Save now.

816.531.SAVE n


returns to the



February 8-10 American Royal Center Kansas City’s largest exhibition of products and services that showcases sustainability and eco-conscious living!

Extreme Storm Chaser, Reed Timmer, will speak on climate change and storm safety all three days of the Show on the GreenZONE stage at the following times: Friday ................... Noon, 3pm & 6pm Saturday .............. Noon, 2pm, 4pm & 6pmSunday .......... Noon, 2pm & 4pm

Individuals from FEMA will also speak on Disaster Preparedness, all three days of the Show.

Friday and Saturday 10 am-9 pm; Sunday 10 am-6 pm Tickets: $10.00 for adults; children 12 & under FREE $1 off per ticket with Price Chopper Shopper Card For info call (816) 931-4686 or visit 33


The Green Pages

Book Reviews

By Mary Lynn Coulson

Water Matters Edited by Tara Lohan One-sixth of the earth’s population doesn’t have reliable access to clean drinking water to meet the minimal daily requirements of 13 gallons a day. Nearly 2.6 billion people do not have access to adequate sanitation, a condition that kills a child every 20 seconds. By the year 2025, researchers predict that 3 billion people will be without access to drinkable water. Clearly, water is one of our most critical resources. In Water Matters, some of the world’s leading writers, activists, photographers and artists discuss solutions for the impending global water crisis. Authors take on both the good and the bad – the impact of climate change on water resources, the threat of privatization and the challenge of industrial agriculture, as

well as a growing grassroots water justice movement, tools for watershed literacy and success stories in conservation and efficiency. “Our decisions about water – how to use, allocate, and manage it – are deeply ethical ones,” Sandra Postel writes in Water Matters. “They determine the survival of most of the planet’s species, including our own.” Contributing writers include Barbara Kingsolver, Bill McKibben, Maude Barlow and Kelle Louaillier. They argue that we must act now to conserve water, taking actions that range from protecting wetlands and rivers to working for public control of water resources. Many call for increasing education about conservation and advocating for water justice in our communities.

Homemade Living: Keeping Bees By Ashley English Honeybees pollinate more than 75 percent of the foods humans eat every day. In Keeping Bees, Ashley English explains how raising honeybees in your own yard can take you one step farther in championing the homegrown food movement, benefit your food supply and multiply the production of your vegetable garden. English shares her own journey in keeping bees and describes all the steps

necessary to safely keep your own hive (or two, or three). She takes readers through the process of incorporating bees into a home garden. Before purchasing your first package of bees, learn what you need to know about hive hierarchy, hive housing, location and feeding requirements, obtaining and installing honeybees and how to extract honey. Keeping Bees also includes 10 honey-based recipes.

The Farmer’s Cookbook By Marie Lawrence Winter is the perfect time to plan a spring garden. This year, start with the recipes you want to make, and grow the ingredients you will need. Lifelong gardener and cook Marie Lawrence brings her wealth of experience with fresh, seasonal cooking to novice and experienced cooks in The Farmer’s Cookbook. The return to seasonal cooking from local ingredients is taking root in communities across the country. More

and more cooks are turning to their own gardens or to local farmer’s markets to find ingredients at their peak of flavor. Organized by month to correspond with the growing calendar, The Farmer’s Cookbook includes recipes for everything from biscuits, breads, pies and cookies to soups, stews, ribs and roasts. Lawrence also shares her tips for making cheese, curing meats, canning and preserving.



Recycle e-waste

Recover valuable metals and reduce toxins By Bob Akers


nother year is over, and we’re all picking up and putting away after the holiday season. Sadly, one of our most exciting and joyful times of the year is also an environmental nightmare. We Americans love shiny new products. We lust after the latest thing, and consumer electronics are a prime example of our need for the newest gadget. We often discard perfectly functional products for new ones that have features or capabilities that – if we’re being honest – we will never use. Even during these years of U.S. economic downturn, including prolonged unemployment for many, the consumer products industry has enjoyed steady growth.

When any electronic product is beyond its useful life, it should be properly recycled. I still see, on a weekly basis, everything from televisions to computers sitting at curbside. These products contain toxins that should never be put into landfills, and they often contain materials that can be recovered and reused. Lead, phosphor, barium, chromium, beryllium, mercury and PBDE are all common toxins found in electronics. If placed in a landfill, these toxins can reach ground water. Yet, we still bury them for future generations to deal with. Along with toxins, we unknowingly bury reusable materials. Gold, silver, palladium and copper are common in electronics. These metals are harvested through hard–rock mining, one of the most

Lead, phosphor, barium, chromium, beryllium, mercury and PBDE are all common toxins found in electronics. If placed in a landfill, these toxins can reach ground water. The Consumer Electronics Association reports some surprising numbers. Average households: • Spent $1,380 on consumer electronic products last year. • Reported owning 25 consumer electronic products – two more than the previous year. Clearly, we love new electronics, but what are we doing with the old ones? Unfortunately, electronics recycling is still a rare occurrence in our country. Finding a company that actually recycles your electronics with the environment and community in mind is just as rare. Your old electronics often can be useful to others. Retired computers can be refurbished and given new life to serve a low-income student, a start-up business or a non-profit organization. Sometimes, all an older computer needs to be useful is a little more RAM or a larger hard drive. Many cast-off computers are perfect for home use -- for searching the Internet, checking e-mail or keeping family budget records. The latest, greatest, high-powered computer is wasted on these simple tasks. Unfortunately, many retired machines go into storage because we don’t know what to do with them. 35


environmentally damaging industries on the planet. If we bury 5,000 tons of computers in one year, we potentially bury 650 pounds of gold, 3,500 pounds of silver, 39,500 pounds of copper and 200 pounds of palladium. It takes 350,000 tons of earth moved to harvest one ton of gold – yet we’ve thrown a quarter ton of gold away without a thought. Electronics can be recycled through certified recycling companies. Unfortunately, there are companies claiming to be “green” that are simply waste brokers. The bulk of our “e-waste” ends up in underdeveloped countries being burned in pits or smelted over open fires, harming the humans involved as well as our planet. When you replace an electronic product, please recycle it as soon as possible. Recycle only with certified recyclers; demand information on where your items will go downstream and proof that your e-waste is being properly recycled. Bob Akers is executive director of The Surplus Exchange, a local non-profit electronics recycling, reuse and business waste reduction organization that is certified by the Basel Action Network e-Steward program.


Explore extreme weather and climate change at the


eed Timmer, extreme storm chaser and weather expert, will speak on climate change and storm safety at the GreenZONE of the Kansas City Remodeling Show February 8-10 at the American Royal Center, 1800 Genessee St. Timmer will speak several times each day on the connections between the Earth’s changing climate and its impact on extreme weather events like tornadoes, hurricanes and drought. Drawing from his experience in getting up close to document more than 200 tornadoes and other natural disasters, he will share what the homeowner can do to protect home and family in a changing world.

on-the-job training


In its sixth year, the GreenZONE showcases businesses and organizations promoting products, services and ideas that support eco-conscious living and sustainable lifestyles. These include renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainable home design, green remodeling resources, recycling and organic food. Greenability magazine is the GreenZONE media sponsor. Show hours are 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets are $10 for adults and free for children 12 and under. For more information, contact Pat Riha Productions at 816-931-4686 or

skill assessment system

Meteorologist REED TIMMER brings climate change updates and storm safety tips to the GreenZONE February 8-10 American Royal Center

region-wide recruitment

In this economy, it’s important that your employees possess the skills for today’s green collar jobs and provide the maximum productivity for your company and clients. The Full Employment Council/Missouri Career Center 21st Century Workforce Innovations system is tailored to meet your recruitment, hiring and skill development needs. InstaMatch Recruitment System - For your immediate hiring needs, we’ll match your company with qualified candidates from our source of 30,000 skilled job-seekers using Missouri Career Center’s in the Greater Kansas City area. Accelerated Job Training/Just In Time Skills Assessment - Job seekers using the Missouri Careers Centers will be trained and assessed specifically to fit your workforce requirements. On-the-job training can be held at your workplace and fund reimbursement can range from 50% to 100%. Workforce Support - For eligible Full Employment Council/Missouri Career Center referrals, financial support includes: transportation, supplies or work clothing specific to your workforce requirements. Contact the Full Employment Council/Missouri Career Center today at or call the Employer Services Line, (816) 691-2281.

The Full Employment Council, Inc., a provider of employment and training services, is an Equal Opportunity and E-Verify employer. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. TDD/TYY: (816) 283-8439

Your Workforce Is Our Career™




Bennett Home Improvement & Building

Johnson County Community College

708 NW R.D. Mize Road Blue Springs, MO 816-564-1251 cell 816-229-4711 office

Center for Sustainability 12345 College Blvd. Overland Park, KS 913-469-8500

Bennett Home Improvement installs “green” technologies that will enhance your home’s value while saving you money and protecting our environment.

Want a new “green” career? Explore JCCC’s sustainability programs and train for a career in the growing “green” industry.

Mid-America Regional Council (MARC)

Homoly Construction

600 Broadway, Suite 200 Kansas City, MO 816-474-4240

1301 Burlington St., Suite 150 North Kansas City, MO 816-891-2444

MARC is a non-profit association of city and county governments and the metropolitan planning organization for the bi-state Kansas City region.

Homoly Construction, a family-owned business since1997, specializes in green, sustainable, high-performance buildings in construction, remodeling or renovation services.


SunSource Homes Inc.

McCarthy Olathe Nissan

7832 Rosewood Lane Prairie Village, KS 816-783-3863

683 N. Rawhide Road Olathe, KS 913-232-2625

SunSource Homes offers net-zero design/build construction services, solar PV system design/installation, net-zero energy design, architectural services and sustainable remodeling.

Find the widest selection of Nissan vehicles, including the all-electric, plug-in Nissan Leaf, at McCarthy Olathe Nissan.

B:7.25” (14’ 6”) T:7.25” (14’ 6”) S:6.75” (13’ 6”)

Visit us | Call us 816.860.4862

Count on More® Rewards Checking.


T:3.125” (6’ 3”)


B:3.125” (6’ 3”)

Get rewarded. Just for living your life.

For more information about Bridging The Gap, visit

S:2.625” (5’ 3”)

Nothing feels more rewarding than donating to a good cause. When you open a Count on More® Rewards Checking account, your normal every day purchases will earn points you can use toward donations to select environmental organizations like Bridging The Gap in Kansas City. Donation gifts are available in $50 increments. The feeling is much bigger.

Randy Reed Nissan 9600 NW Prairie View Road Kansas City, MO 816-459-4800

Heartland Utilities for Energy Efficiency (HUEE) 816-459-4800

9600 NW Prairie View Road, KCMO HUEE promotes energy efficiency

Randy Reed Nissan offers fast, friendly, simple and fair service and is now featuring the 100-percent electric Nissan Leaf.

ENERGY EFFICIENCY cfm Distributors, Inc. 1104 Union Ave. Kansas City, MO 816-842-5400 Cfm Distributors is the Midwest’s employee-owned provider of sustainable heating, cooling, and refrigeration solutions for home, office and industry.

EnergyWorks KC 816-531-7283 EnergyWorks KC provides resources to help you make smart, easy, energy-efficiency improvements to your home or business to save energy and enhance comfort.

through Atmos Energy, Independence Power & Light, Kansas City Board of Public Utilities, Kansas Gas Energy, Platte-Clay Electric Cooperative and Metropolitan Energy Center.

Metropolitan Energy Center 3810 Paseo Kansas City, MO 816-531-7283



The mission of the Metropolitan Energy Center is to help create resource efficiency, environmental health and economic vitality in the Kansas City region.

Missouri Gas Energy Missouri Gas Energy offers an energy-efficiency rebate for customers who purchase a qualifying energy-efficient, tankless natural gas water heating system.

Small Step Energy Solutions The Hayes Company Kansas City, MO 816-444-6352 The Hayes Company offers Home Performance services for energy efficiency through energy audits, insulating, duct sealing, weatherization and HVAC balancing.

Shawnee, KS 913-708-8004 Small Step Energy Solutions specializes in home energy auditing and green energy building consultations for both new and existing homes.

Your Company Name and Color Logo Here




First Affirmative Financial Network

Posty Cards, Inc. 1600 Olive Street Kansas City, MO 816-231-2323

913-432-4958 First Affirmative Financial Network is an independent, fee-only, fiduciary investment management firm specializing in socially and environmentally responsible investing.

UMB Financial Corporation Featuring Sustainable Sentiments® locally grown, green greeting cards. Build client and employee relationships with environmentally inspired cards for birthdays, holidays and other occasions.


1010 Grand Boulevard Kansas City, MO 816-860-7000

Elements of Green UMB offers complete banking, asset management, health spending solutions and related financial services to personal, commercial and institutional customers nationwide.


1919 Wyandotte Kansas City, MO 816-842-0500 Kansas City’s source for sustainable building, remodeling and finishing solutions like cabinets, countertops, flooring, tile, paint, solar and cleaning supplies.

Habitat ReStore

Full Employment Council

4701 Deramus, Kansas City, MO 303 W. 79th St., Kansas City, MO 816-231-6889

1740 Paseo Blvd. 816-471-2330 Kansas City, MO

Your Workforce Is Our Career™

The Full Employment Council, Inc. (FEC) supplies employers with a skilled workforce and job seekers with successful training in greater Kansas City. Habitat ReStore collects quality, new and used building materials and sells them to the public at a discount. Proceeds benefit Habitat for Humanity home building.

Greenability Job Network


Hendrickson Tree Care Company

The Greenability Job Network offers a free, online search service for job seekers, and a targeted, affordable place for companies to post jobs.

913-381-6339 (KS) 816-523-1181 (MO) Take the guesswork out of maintaining your trees by consulting an ISA Certified Arborist for all of your tree care needs.

Larsen & Associates  Reliable geothermal drillers specializing in residential installations



Flush & Fill

Phone: 785.841.8707 Email:    



Missouri Organic


7700 East 40 Highway Kansas City, MO 816-483-0908

Platinum Realty Missouri Organic offers a convenient and affordable facility for customers to drop off green waste and purchase quality compost, topsoil and mulch.


Dan Martin Green certified realtor 816-686-3959


knows Kansas City Kansas City’s expert in green homes helps buyers find their perfect homes and sellers market their homes with green features.


Adopt-A-Highway Litter Removal Service of America

Beaver Timber Inc. 3133 Merriam Lane Kansas City, KS 913-831-2518

800-540-8694 Beaver Timber provides reclaimed, recycled, restored and salvaged wood building materials for architects, builders, contractors, designers and homeowners.



Good Natured Family Farms

Deffenbaugh Industries




Sponsor-A-Highway and receive promotional signage. We take away the trash, you take all the recognition. Be seen as we clean.



Good Natured Family Farms is an alliance UY of more than 150 family farms that raise LOCA animals humanely and care for the Earth in a sustainable way.

Hen House Market

2601 Midwest Drive Kansas City, KS 913-631-3300 Deffenbaugh is Kansas City’s hometown hauler for more than 50 years and the first to launch weekly residential and business recycling.

13 locations

The Surplus Exchange

Hen House is locally owned, specializes in Buy Fresh Buy Local food, and offers customers a seasonal Community Supported Agriculture membership.

518 Santa Fe Kansas City, MO 816-472-0444 The Surplus Exchange responsibly recycles electronics locally and offers pickup from metro commercial locations. Visit the Tech Shop and furniture showroom.

Sustainable Investment Solutions™ We help socially and environmentally conscious investors manage their money to make a positive impact on their own lives and our whole world. Investment Advisory Representative

• Fee-only services from an Accredited Investment Fiduciary™ • Focused exclusively on SRI financial planning for over 15 years • Customized screening, shareholder activism and community investing

Email or call today for your free one-year subscription to our quarterly newsletter on socially responsible investing, Affirmative Thinking.

Jim Horlacher MBA, AIF® | 913.432.4958 | First Affirmative Financial Network, LLC is an independent Registered Investment Advisor registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Jim Horlacher is an Investment Advisory Representative of First Affirmative Financial Network.


Solar and Wind KC


1301 Burlington St., Suite 150 North Kansas City, MO 816-891-2444

Brightergy Solar 1617 Main Street, 3rd Floor Kansas City, MO 816-866-0555 Brightergy is the region’s most experienced solar design, installation, financing and leasing firm with hundreds of commercial and residential installations across the Midwest.

Solar and Wind KC installs solar photovoltaic and wind turbine systems on commercial buildings, homes and multi-family projects. Financing, grants and rebates are available.

SunSource Homes Inc. 7832 Rosewood Lane Prairie Village, KS 816-783-3863

FreeEnergy 816-461-8877 FreeEnergy is a full-service sustainability company. We design and install solar PV, solar thermal hot water and geothermal GSHP.

SunSource Homes offers net-zero design/build construction services, solar PV system design/installation, net-zero energy design, architectural services and sustainable remodeling.

Larsen & Associates, Inc. 785-841-8707 Contact: Jessica Pryor Larsen & Associates provides geothermal installation services including loop installation, line purging and charging, pressure grouting, thermal fusion and drilling.

Do you want your green business or service to be seen by environmentally conscious readers? List it in the GREENABILITY DIRECTORY. For information, contact Julie Koppen 816-931-3646 or

Nature Wise Compost Is Ranked as Kansas City ’s #1 Compost *

*Source: Andover Group Research 2010

Our Nature Wise Compost is a 100% Natural Soil Amendment. It’s made totally from lawn, garden and tree trimmings collected from the Kansas City area.

Benefits of Nature Wise Compost:

• Fine texture, less bulk • Safe to handle • Contains no poultry or human waste • Lab tested for pesticide and herbicide contamination • Free of weed seeds • Free of harmful pathogens

$25 Off Nature Wise Compost

3-9 yards minimum Hurry Offer Expires Soon.

7700 E. 40 Hwy., Kansas City, MO 64129



Ask about Missouri Organic products available in bags.

Solar Solutions TheSolar Solar Technology Technology Associate’s The Assocate’s Degree Degree and and Solar Technician Certifi cate at JCCC prepares students Solar Technician Certificate prepares students to sit for the NABCEP entry-level to entry level exam and provide the design fieldwork experience to qualify to take the installer exam. and fieldwork The in courses coursesthat thatapply apply Theprogram’s program’sfoundation foundation is rooted rooted in totoaawider in industrial industrial widerrange rangeofofjob job opportunities opportunities in maintenance maintenance and and electrical work.

Learn It. Live It. Save It. For information, call Dan Eberle at 913-469-8500, ext. 3388, or visit


Johnson County Community College 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, KS 66210

Fresh, Free Range Chickens & Eggs

Exclusively At

Good Natured Family Farms free-range chickens are raised without antibiotics or growth hormones. The chickens are fed a 100% vegetarian diet. With the Good Natured Family Farms Alliance Members’ commitment to natural farming practices and animal compassion, they manage their production to minimize stress to the chickens and avoid exposure to the chemicals commonly required in larger, commercial production operations. Good Natured Family Farms farm-fresh eggs taste the way eggs used to taste. To achieve this old-fashioned flavor and goodness Good Natured Family Farms Alliance Members allow their chickens to roam grassy fields and eat natural grains. The chickens are free-range and are raised without antibiotics or growth hormones.

Buy Fresh Buy Local ÂŽ is part of the FoodRoutes Conservancy, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to building a new sustainable local food system for generations to come.

January/February 2013  

january/february 2013