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May 11 Lunch forum: Joel Sisolak and Katie Spataro of Cascadia Green Building Council: "TOWARD NET ZERO WATER"



Wednesday, May 11, 2011
12:00 noon at The Landing Mall, 2nd Floor Banquet Room
Brown Bag lunch
No charge

Our presenters will be traveling to Port Angeles from the Cascadia Green Building Council in Seattle to put on our forum.  Many thanks to Joel and Katie for being willing to share their time and knowledge with the people on the Olympic Peninsula.


Continued growth of the U.S. population means more demand on the water supply and strain on aging wastewater infrastructure.  The green building movement has raised public awareness of vulnerable water resources and encouraged the implementation of water conservation techniques.  Yet regulatory, financial and cultural obstacles still hinder widespread adoption of alternatives to conventional water systems.  Cascadia Green Building Council's new report, "Toward Net Zero Water: Best Management Practices for Decentralized Sourcing and Treatment" takes a comprehensive look at what must be done now in order to address this growing crisis.

The report, primarily authored by Joel Sisolak and Katie Spataro, contains an overview of best practices and technologies for decentralized and distributed water systems, with special focus placed on rainwater harvesting (including strategies for potable and non-potable uses), greywater reclamation and reuse, and onsite wastewater treatment for reuse (including composting toilets).

"Our communities need infrastructure that's both affordable and resilient, adaptable in the face of shifts in terms of population and climate.  Big pipe infrastructure and limited reuse isn't going to get us where we need to be to meet these challenges," states Joel Sisolak, Advocacy and Outreach Director for Cascadia.  "It's important that communities know there are other options."  Katie Spataro, Cascadia's Research Director, adds, "Successful project examples at the building and neighborhood scales are critical in advancing greater acceptance of net zero water strategies."


The Cascadia Green Building Council is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit whose mission is to lead a transformation toward a built environment that is socially just, culturally rich and ecologically restorative.  It is the originator of the Living Building Challenge, authored by Jason F. McLennan, and it is the creator of the International Living Building Institute. www.cascadiagbc.org .

JOEL SISOLAK, LEED AP, Advocacy and Outreach Director, Seattle, WA

Joel joined Cascadia in October 2008 where he continues his work of 15 years in the non-profit sector promoting social and environmental sustainability.  Prior to joining us, he directed an environmental organization that partnered with local  public and private agencies to protect King County, Washington’s primary drinking water supply.  He's also served in various consulting and leadership roles with organizations promoting affordable housing, habitat conservation, and the arts.  Joel brings rich experience with and a strong commitment to collaboration with public and private organizations in the stewardship of the region’s natural capital.  Joel holds a masters of urban planning from the University of Washington with an emphasis on sustainable land use and infrastructure.  When he's not working, spending time with his wife and daughter, or off planting trees with some habitat restoration effort, Joel dabbles in acrylic painting and organic gardening.

KATIE SPATARO, LEED AP, Research Director, Seattle, WA

Katie has over fifteen years of experience working in the building industry as a construction project manager, program manager and green building consultant to support her role at Cascadia where she provides research on code and regulatory pathways in support of green building. Working collaboratively across jurisdictional boundaries, Katie’s efforts to address obstacles and identify solutions to more sustainable development practices has assisted in the creation of policies, programs and code-related curriculum around the region. Katie holds a BS in Construction Engineering and Management from Purdue University, a certificate in permaculture design, and is a certified Sustainable Building Advisor. Nonetheless, she finds that her most critical (and most rewarding) role is her on-the-job training as a mother.

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