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DECEMBER 20, 2008

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The foundation of the Sustainable Living Center is complete.

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Professor David Fisher, Chairman of the Sustainable Living Department.

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Developer Dal Loiselle and students Tom Lassota and Soren Pearson make earth blocks.

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The 80-foot wind-tower provides electricity to the Sustainable Living Department.

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The Sustainable Living Center is scheduled to be completed in fall 2009.

Sustainable Living Center Receives Grant From Kresge Foundation

The internationally renowned Kresge Foundation’s Green Building Initiative just awarded Maharishi University of Management a $50,000-dollar Planning Grant for the Sustainable Living Center. The funds will cover some of the higher costs associated with designing a sustainable building such as ecological site planning, energy analysis and modeling, and LEED certification. “Receiving this prestigious grant communicates to other potential funders that we are making a significant contribution to improving our world,” says June Oliver, grant writer for the Sustainable Living Department.

Meanwhile, construction of the Fortune-CreatingSM, off-the-grid Sustainable Living Center is already underway. The “ultimate green building”, featured in our August 15 issue, will provide home to the rapidly expanding Sustainable Living program. “The foundation has been completed for the outer walls, the east and west verandas as well as the north porch,” says Dr. David Fisher, Department Chair.

In addition, 13,000 pressed-earth blocks have been made from soil removed during the construction of the Argiro Student Center, and the next batch of blocks is already being produced. Students Tom Lassota and Soren Pearson researched the brick-making machine and helped organize production of the blocks. The earth blocks will constitute all the inner walls and the interior part of the exterior wall assembly to form a thermal mass moderating temperature winter and summer. Depending on the weather, construction will continue over the winter to make the projected completion in fall 2009.

At the same time, the thirty-foot tall wind generator behind the library has just been rebuilt to a hight of eighty feet and is now providing 50 percent more energy. “The Sustainable Living Department now receives up to 20 percent of its electricity from wind and solar,” says Sustainability Coordinator Mark Stimson.

Plans for the current home of the Sustainable Living program include additional solar panels for electricity and a geothermal heating and cooling system to lower heating costs.

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