YERTpod29: Construction Is More Than OK in Oklahoma


First and foremost, a gigantic YERT shout out to any and all heroic YERTians who are still dutifully tuning in.  Thank you for your patience and understanding.  Yes, it’s been quite a while since our last YERTPod as I (Ben) have gotten sideswiped by fatherhood and premiering a new musical.  Sorry ’bout that.  Oh, how I’ve missed the weekly all-nighter editing sessions!  And so it is that I honor that YERT tradition once again tonight at 4:29am. You had to know that we’d get around to editing Oklahoma, SOONER or later.  Turns out it was later, but here it is…finally.

Once we arrived in Oklahoma City, we went "underground" and "dug in" at Oklahoma City University for a few days, giving ourselves some "constructive" criticism and "building" a plan to ask some "LEEDing" questions over the coming days.  Turns out we didn’t have to look too hard. 

Brad Thomas and Sam Johnson gave us the dime tour of all the nifty bells and whistles on BOLDT Construction’s very cool LEED Silver south regional headquarters building.  We thought it only fitting that a company which offers green construction services have a LEED-certified regional HQ.  And it’s the first private LEED building in OK to boot.

We then spent one cold and rainy day with Aaron McRee of Central Oklahoma Habitat for Humanity and liked it so much, we came back for another equally cold and wet interview the next day with Kelly Parker, President of Guaranteed Watt Saver, a engineering/inspection/consulting firm whose mission is "to assist in creating working and living environments which are durable, healthy, safe, comfortable, and resource responsible through a comprehensive application of building science principles."  Sounds pretty good to us.  Habitat and GWS have joined forces in central Oklahoma to bring energy efficiency savings into the lives of those who need it the most by building "the largest green development in Habitat for Humanity history" – an entire neighborhood of highly-insulated, geothermal-heated/cooled, extremely affordable homes.  We learned that, while it may have been the middle of December and we were freezing body parts off, there’s apparently still enough geothermal potential under the Oklahoma turf to warm even the chilliest home.  And not only is the heat home grown, but nearly everything in the houses’ geothermal systems (from the piping to the mechanical units) are made right in Oklahoma.  Now if only the state made geo-thermal-underwear, they really could have scored some points with us.  Get on that Oklahoma.

Finally, as luck would have it, Oklahoma City is the capital of Oklahoma, so we spent some quality time with OK State Representative, Randy McDaniel (R), who demonstrated to us that caring for the planet really is a non-partisan cause.  And, for balance, we hopped over to the other side of the political aisle and sat down with OK State Senator, Andrew Rice (D), the man looking to unseat America’s most notorious Global Warming Skeptic, US Senator James Inhoff.  Rice may have lost that bid last month, but he certainly gets kudos for trying.  

Oh, and not surprisingly, every Oklahoman we asked knew "Oklahoma," the song.  Apparently there’s this musical…

YERTfully Yours,

Ben, Mark, and Julie (Your YERT Team)

P.S. If you’re looking for more goodies related to the video, check out these yummy breadcrumbs….

  • Wanna find out just how much energy your house is leaking?  Or become a Home Energy Rater so you don’t have to hire someone else to tell you?  Guaranteed Watt Saver can help you here:
  • BOLDT may have a sweet building in Oklahoma, but the company HQ is actually in Appleton, Wisconsin.  Find out more about the company at:
  • Habitat For Humanity does remarkable work.  Learn all about "the largest green development in Habitat for Humanity history" including "20 things YOU can do to reduce your home’s energy impact" right here:
  • Last but not least, here’s a fun and funky website all about the wonders of geothermal heating and cooling.  If you wanna learn about how it all works, this site has everything…and we mean EVERYTHING —

3 thoughts on “YERTpod29: Construction Is More Than OK in Oklahoma

  1. Congratulations on your new addition! That was a good piece on Oklahoma. As an update, we are now LEED Silver certified on all our houses in the Hope Crossing Neighborhood. Out of the 40 or so Leed Certified Habitat houses built in the nation earlier in the year, we had half of them right here. (about 40 just for us in 2008). We are committed to our Green building program and continue to set the standard and raise the bar.


    Aaron McRee
    Construction Manager

    Central Oklahoma Habitat for Humanity

  2. Long live YERTians,
    great to see you pop up again,
    All the best, Merry Christmas, and continued success,
    Jim Augustin
    PS. YERTians could be YERTers, in which case we could celebrate Yerterday, just like the Beattles song.

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