Big Easy Being Green

Last Tuesday, on the 2nd anniversary of Hurricane Katrina hitting New Orleans, Brad Pitt was on hand for Global Green’s “board cutting” ceremony of the Holy Cross Project’s first sustainable house in the city’s Lower 9th Ward. As a leading sponsor of this green housing effort, along with Home Depot, Pitt accompanied a tour of the construction, which features solar panels, FSC certified woods, toxic-free paints, soy-based insulation, wheatboard, energy-efficient appliances, and green products to protect against mold, reduce pollution, and conserve water.

“This home proves we can build more thoughtfully, affordably and provide a better quality of life for the families within,” said Pitt. By rebuilding these homes with environmental alternatives and carbon neutral methods, utilities can be cut by 75 percent, for an estimated savings of $56 million in energy bills and elimination of half a million tons of carbon dioxide annually.

The event unveiled plans for a complex including five single-family dwellings, 19-unit apartment building, and community center. This first model home, scheduled for completion this fall, will serve as a green info center for the Sustainable Design and Climate Action Institute. Global Green USA President, Matt Petersen, announced the campaign to raise $10 million for these long-range plans, allowing residents to return home.

Pitt made a pit-stop with Angelie Jolie in the Hamptons this weekend for his “Make It Right” org’s fundraiser with Ellen Barkin, Jimmy Buffet, and Christie Brinkley contributing to the cause. Pitt also promoted the project on Today, showing off the design by New York’s Workshop/APD winners from among 125 concepts submitted for competition. The Bradster gives new meaning to the phrase, "all yak, no shack"…

Across the pond: Actress Sienna Miller, appeared on British chat-shows to discuss her recent trek to India for Global Cool, wearing their "The People Versus Global Warming" T-shirt…Okay, isn't taking celebs to task for flying airplanes/copters getting old? Unless we all walk to work, bike to the movies, and take trains to vacations, let’s give it a rest…

Down under: Cate Blanchette launched the Who On Earth Cares campaign to mobilize Australians to reduce greenhouse pollution. The actor/activist, whose house is already juiced by the sun, also commits to laundering in cold water. Me, too. What about you?