Walker Wells's blog

Walker Wells is director of the green urbanism program for Global Green USA and a lecturer at Pomona College and UCLA.
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Eco Districts - The Next Frontier

Moving beyond the building is critical to effecting transformative change toward urban sustainability. Several Swedish projects offer points of inspiration. The Eco District Summit is bringing together people engaged in district-scale sustainability.

Green Building in Affordable Housing Reaches Critical Mass

Green building has become a fundamental element of many states Qualified Allocation Plans (QAPs), which guide the distribution of the Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program.

Sanitary City vs. Sustainable City - Who Wins, Who Loses?

Net Positive Urban Retrofit - Is It Possible?

Lapped on Urban Sustainability - can the US ever catch up?

Summer travel took me out of the US and back to Sweden for the first time in five years.  While my initial reaction was that things seemed much the same, I quickly realized that the Swedes had quietly pushed forward a number of projects that, if located in the US, would be on the vanguard of sustainability.  But over there it's just called urban planning.

What is Green Urbanism?

The term Green Urbanism keeps showing up unexpectedly in newspaper articles, conference session titles, blog posts, and casual conversation.  While there is an innate, intuitive sense of the meaning, green urbanism may also seem as elusive as it is evocative.  Having given this topic a fair amount of thought over the past several years, I, and my colleague and collaborator Ted Bardacke, arrived at the following working definition:

green urbanism: the practice of creating communities mutually beneficial to humans and the environment

Building Green in Los Angeles

Last Tuesday was a big day for me and an even bigger Earth Day for the City of Los Angeles. After 18 months of meetings, focus groups, workshops, conference calls, briefings, and a lot of collective putting together of heads the City Council unanimously passed a landmark green building ordinance. Three hours later it was signed into law by the Mayor.

When will Earth Day come for the APA?

Typically I have fallen into the “every day is earth day” camp. But this year, April 22nd offered a moment for reflection, although of a more professional than personal nature.

Green is everywhere these days – from Vanity Fair to the Wall Street Journal. The decades long debate about the validity of climate change appears to be over – as the discussion seems to be quickly shifting to either: a) how do we make it less dramatic, or b) how we prepare for the inevitable.

Can Everything Be Green?

As the current fascination with all things green grows with leaps and bounds, the question arises – are there any limits to what can be green?