Thursday, September 20, 2007

Farm preserved and enviro-friendly Animal Hospital

Once you plant a house, it’s there forever.”

Another place a Wal-Mart or housing subdivision won't be built.

Turnbach farm in Sugarloaf Township joins program that prevents development

The Turnbach farm is the 16th preserved by the county since 2000. More than 1,680 acres of county farmland are protected... and 13 farms are on the waiting list.

Luzerne County’s Agricultural Preservation Program is doing good things. Luzerne County has been losing people for almost a hundred years yet more farmland and forests are being paved over then the storm water runoff creates havoc every other year.

Caring about planet, not cost, the priority for Doug Ayers in constructing new animal hospital

Gort family veterinarian and life long friend Dr. Douglas Ayers is building a state-of-the-art veterinary clinic in Plains and is making the building as eco-friendly as possible.

Many of the design elements are basic. The structure was built next to the current one to minimize its footprint and preserve virgin land. Rain gardens in low areas will trap storm water and retard its flow into the river. In exchange for oil-dependent asphalt, crushed stone of various sizes will be mixed together to create several hard-packed, semi-porous parking surfaces. Highly polished steel tubes will capture and reflect light into the building, reducing the electrical lighting demand. Finally, the building faces south, taking advantage of solar heating and leaving the potential to install solar energy cells.

Other elements are more complicated. The heat-cycling system uses sensors to analyze the desired temperatures for each area and calculates the most efficient way to transfer heat within the building, instead of heating one area and cooling another. Fan blades spinning between the air intakes and vents will capture heat, or the lack thereof, from outgoing air and transfer it to pre-heat, or pre-cool, incoming air.

Doug was also recently successful in preserving the Hillside farm and dairy in Dallas and is Chairman of the The North Branch Land Trust and is this year's local recipient of the Jefferson Award for Public Service. It's nice to see the local paper catch up on this project because I wrote about it last year.

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