Friday, June 25, 2010

New CSA in Crown Heights

The recently established Central Brooklyn CSA just had its second week of distribution at the Hebron SDA Church at 1256 Dean St. in Crown Heights.

This CSA is one of only a few citywide to accept food stamps/SNAP benefits as a form of payment. The Central Brooklyn site is the fourth CSA organized by the NYC Coalition Against Hunger (NYCCAH). It is located in the 10th Congressional District in Central Brooklyn, where 30.8 percent of residents faced food hardship in 2008-2009; the district has the sixth highest rate of food hardship out of all the country’s 436 congressional districts.

In addition to providing access to healthy food, the Central Brooklyn CSA supports both local agriculture and Grow NYC’s New Farmer Development Project, which helps immigrants with agriculture experience establish small farms in the region. The Central Brooklyn CSA produce comes from MimoMex farm, operated by Martín and Gaudencia Rodriguez in Goshen, N.Y. Mr. Rodriguez is the first farmer out of the New Farmer Development Project to own a farm.

Building Brooklyn Awards Coming up July 15

The Building Brooklyn Awards, presented by the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, will take place July 15, and as per usual, one of the awards highlights excellence in green design. The National Grid Award for Energy Efficiency this year was given to Toren, the 37-story, 399-foot tall condo building at Myrtle Avenue and Flatbush Avenue Extension that contains 240 units, including studios, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments.

Toren is LEED gold certified, in part because it has its own cogeneration plant, which generates heat and power for the entire building, costing less than traditional methods.

Also a winner of a Building Brooklyn Award in the retail category is Brooklyn Bowl. Though not honored for its eco-consciouness, Brooklyn Bowl is green. It uses 100 percent wind-powered electricity; wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC); pin-spotters that use 75 percent less energy than regular pin-spotters; draught beers sourced locally; no bottles or cans; 100 percent reclaimed cork floors in the bowler’s lounge; and a stage floor made of 100 percent recycled truck tires.

"The judging panel reviewed an excellent group of nominated projects and selected those representing the best of Brooklyn. This year's trends included an abundance of projects with sustainable features, many of them LEED-certified, and a high volume of interesting, local retail projects," said said Carl Hum, Brooklyn Chamber president and CEO.

Visit for the full list of winners and ticket information. 

With reporting by Linda Collins. Photos courtesy of Toren and Brooklyn Bowl. 

Greening Brooklyn Bridge Park

It's looking pretty green down at Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 1, which was recently honored by the Municipal Art Society. 

To keep the park looking so lovely, you can join the Green Team, a volunteer stewardship team that provides hands-on care for Brooklyn Bridge Park from April through October. Green Team activities include mulching, planting, removing debris and environmental education, among other things. Visit the web site for more information on how to join.