Eric Corey Freed (aka the Organic Architect) is a busy man. When he isn't writing books like Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies, or blogging, or designing green homes for his clients, he's fielding questions from curious people like us.
Check out his full bio
When you are designing a home, what is your No. 1 priority?
I am looking for new problems to solve. Obviously, the issues of budget and schedule are important, but those are things we can control. Since the basic layout of a home (kitchen, dining room,bedrooms, etc.) are so well known, I look for these new problems to pull out the unique personality of the clients and the landscape. We do this with a series of in-depth and very personal interviews at the beginning of the design process.
In your opinion, what is the most promising green building product (or concept, or method, etc.) you've seen recently?
There are so many! I am currently obsessed with thin film solar technologies, contour crafting and solar concentrators.
If you could make or change one law in the interest of green, what would it be?
That is easy, stop the $78 billion in subsidies that our government provides to the oil and coal industries. To give you a sense of scale, the government only provided $1 billion for solar for the 2008 budget.
What advice would you give someone who wants to live a greener life in their home?
The key is to just start. So many people are waiting for someone else to step in and do something. But that help is not forthcoming. We each need to take responsibility for our environmental footprint.
A great place to start is changing your buying habits. Buy the natural, organic, or non-toxic versions of your soaps, lotions, cleaners, and food. Not everyone can put solar on the roof of their home, but everyone can remove these toxins from their lives.