Peter Pfeiffer—Energy Efficient Architectural Design

Posted by on Tuesday, August 8th, 2017 in Blog

Reported by Phil Thoden

President Sara Pantin called the meeting to order. Lillian Aaron led the pledges and Bill Davies gave our invocation of the day. Larry Rieber led us in saying The Four Way Test. David Palmer greeted each member and guest as they arrived and Myron Burse introduced the guests and visitors.

Andy Swanson came forward to announce the Membership Soiree scheduled for Thursday, September 7, at the Headliners Club beginning at 6pm. More details are coming soon but please begin thinking now about who you can invite. This recruitment event will be the only one of the Rotary year!

Past District Governor Rich Kaye then introduced Loren Hamilton, the Rotary District 5870 Global Grant Scholarship recipient who is working in Rwanda (Africa). In addition, he surprised RCA member Ellen Hunt with the District Service Award for her work on behalf of the Global Grants Committee. Congratulations Ellen!

President Sara then made the following announcements:

  • The Downtown Breakfast Cluster meeting will be held August 9 at the Magnolia Café on Lake Austin Boulevard
  • The Executive Committee meets August 15th at 1:30pm, and this is a great way for Red Badgers to complete their membership requirements
  • Thank you to Harold and Julia Benkoski for hosting the Wine Tasting event
  • Thank you to all who helped at the HHH Splash Bash last Saturday
  • Don’t forget to use to sign up for weekly Club meeting
  • Don’t forget to sign up to volunteer on a Club Committee

Rich Fikani hosted the Thank Goodness Basket and reminded us that the $20 collected from each speaker goes to our Club Foundation. Laraine Lasdon was first up and thanked the Global Services Committee for their outstanding work. Next, Girish Altekar recognized his guest Richard Spencer for leadership at the New School of Music here in Austin. Then Mary Bird Bowman proudly noted that she and Bob just celebrated their 44th wedding anniversary. Vlad Bahrencu shared an amusing anecdote about his infant son’s new ability to crawl. Stanley Bullard said his daughter and former RCA member, Jeanne Arnold, is now a member of the Corpus Christi Rotary Club and sends her regards to old friends here at the Rotary Club of Austin. Last, Gaines Bagby thanked Vlad for encouraging kids at the Splash Bash to showcase their singing abilities.

Ellen Hunt then introduced our speaker and fellow RCA Member, Peter Pfeiffer, who is a professional Architect, Building Scientist, Interior Designer, Property Manager and licensed Texas Realtor. He came to the University of Texas in the early 1980s where he earned a Masters in Architecture degree, emphasizing energy conservation and efficient design. He was involved in the 1984 formation of our local Austin Energy Star program that served as a catalyst for North America’s first Green Building program established in 1991.

Peter spoke about the evolution of Green Building, a design and building movement begun several decades ago that serves as a checklist approach for integrating various “green” building products and technologies into our homes and buildings. He delivered a fast-paced and very informative talk about “high performance” buildings that help lower the cost of ownership, improve occupant health and provide more user comfort through better use of natural lighting and temperature control.

He emphasized that smart design is the most important step toward reaping green building benefits. For example, orient your home/building in a direction that reduces solar radiation (i.e. heat) through windows while still allowing for the benefits of indirect lighting. Also, consider installing a metal roof that reflects sunlight and thereby reduces energy required for air conditioning. These types of basic design steps will provide a solid foundation for the effective addition of other green building options such as solar panels, tankless water heaters and other popular technologies.

Next week’s speaker is Allison Ivey, Executive Director of Learn All the Time.

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