Surge in political violence, bombing takes its toll on the press

first_imgNews December 2, 2005 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Surge in political violence, bombing takes its toll on the press February 26, 2021 Find out more Help by sharing this information News Reporters Without Borders voiced deep concern today about a dramatic deterioration in the security situation in Bangladesh and its impact on the press after three journalists were injured in an Islamist bombing, two reporters were beaten by police, a newspaper correspondent was threatened by the head of a madrassa and a minister’s supporters made a bonfire of copies of an independent daily, all in the past 10 days.“Despite government assurances that security is improving, the increase in attacks and bombings is exposing the press and public to new risks,” the press freedom organisation said. “This is partly a result of the attitude of the current government which, instead of combating these extremist excesses, has preferred to crack down on the journalists and human rights activists who issued warnings about this new threat.”Starting with the most recent, the incidents of the past 10 days are as follows:A member of the Islamist movement Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh set off a bomb outside a public building in Gazipur, north of Dhaka, on 1 December, killing at least one person and injuring about 30 others, including three journalists who were covering a demonstration. The three reporters were Nazrul Islam Badami, the correspondent of the daily The New Nation, who was very badly hurt, and Belal Hossain of the BSS news agency and Aminul Islam of the local newspaper Ajker Janata, who also had to be hospitalised.A group of supporters of housing minister Alamgir Kabir made a bonfire with dozens of copies of the daily newspaper Janakantha on 28 November after it ran a story about a physical attack by Kabir on one of the newspaper’s reporters.The principal of a madrassa in the southern town of Lohagora made death threats on 27 November against Maruf Samdani, the local correspondent of the national daily Prothom Alo, after the newspaper ran a story about alleged embezzlement by the principal.Channel I television reporter Mahbub Matin was beaten by police while covering a demonstration by the opposition Awami League on 21 November and had to spend the next six days in hospital, where plain-clothes police kept him under close surveillance. Matin’s cameraman, Jahid Hasan, was also injured during the demonstration. Matin told journalists he thought the attitude of the police was “strange.” He also questioned the seriousness of the enquiry into his beating, since the policemen who hit him were the ones in charge of the investigation. Bangladeshi reporter fatally shot by ruling party activists News News to go further Receive email alertscenter_img BangladeshAsia – Pacific February 22, 2021 Find out more RSF_en RSF calls for the release of Bangladeshi journalist Rozina Islam, unfairly accused of espionage Bangladeshi writer and blogger dies in detention Organisation May 19, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Bangladesh BangladeshAsia – Pacific last_img read more

Jamesie surges to take Navan spoils for David Marnane

first_img David Marnane’s 2-1 favourite was held up off the pace by Colm O’Donoghue, and still had ground to make up as Joe Eile led a furlong out. After switching towards the rail, Jamesie produced a trmemndous kick, putting daylight between himself and his rivals and easily holding the late charge of Alkasser by a length. Marnane said: “A drop in grade and a bit of confidence is what he needed. “The Group 3 at the Curragh last time was a strong contest and I was a bit worried about the pace today but it worked out well. “He’s a great horse to have around the yard and has always tried all his life. “He’s in two handicaps on Champions Weekend and may go for the six furlong handicap at the Curragh.” Press Associationcenter_img Jamesie showed a smart turn of foot to cut down his rivals in the Irish Stallion Farms EBF Race at Navan.last_img read more

Play-off and play-out volleyball matches during the weekend

first_imgVolleyball players from the team of OK ”Student” will play against the team from Lukavac in the first round of the League, in the play-out. The match will be played on the 2nd of March in Pekija at 15:30 p.m. The team from Pale is a favorite in this match. The second match of the play-out session will be played between the teams of Modrića and Čapljina.After playing all matches and winning the seventh place in the ranks of the Premier League, the volleyball players of ”Student” will take their maximum of nine points to the play-out competition.The pairs that will play in the quarter finals of the play-off are the team of Domaljevac against Mladost and the team Napredak against the team Gacko.Based on their placement the volleyball players from Kakanj and Jedinstvo are going directly to the semi-finals.last_img read more

Florida Sheriff Says He Will Deputize Gun Owners if Violent Protests Erupt

first_imgDaniels provided no indication in a three-minute video that was released Wednesday of any imminent demonstrations in his county.Still, he said that if anyone begins “tearing up Clay County,” he would deputize gun owners if needed. Daniels said his office has a “great relationship” with the community. A Florida sheriff is getting noticed for using social media to make a statement that could put gun owners on equal footing with law enforcement.Clay County Sheriff Darryl Daniels says he will deputize every gun owner in his county, if that is what it takes to put down violent protests that his deputies cannot handle on their own.last_img

Sea Bright Taxes To Rise By Less Than A Cent

first_imgBy John BurtonSEA BRIGHT — At a regular meeting of the governing body Tuesday, the borough council introduced its proposed municipal budget of $3.9 million, one that would increase the tax rate to .765 cents for each assessed $100 of property.Councilman William Keeler, who chairs the council’s finance committee, said the borough has lost nearly $600,000 in state aid in the last decade, with $135,000 lost to the borough in 2012.“If not for this loss of funding,” Keeler said, “the borough’s conservative strategy would have resulted in no tax increase for 2011 nor 2012.”Keeler went on to say borough property owners pay $1,000 less a year in property taxes than the county or state average.The projected increase would mean that the owner of a $300,000 home would pay an additional $80.10 for the year, Keeler said. That would bring the municipal portion of the tax bill for the $300,000 homeowner to $2,295, according to Michael Bascom, the borough’s chief financial officer.This budget reflects a 2.3 percent spending increase from the 2011 budget, Keeler said.“I feel that it is a responsible and practical budget that maintains our present level of service,” Mayor Dina Long said following the meeting.“Just like everywhere else,” she continued, “in Sea Bright we’ve perfected the art of doing more with less.”Officials plan to hold their formal budget hearing on April 17, Keeler said.last_img read more

One Special Universe: Take It or Leave It

first_imgIf you think this universe is odd, to what would you compare it?  Adrian Cho asked this and other basic questions in a whimsical review of cosmology since WMAP in Science.1  Closer analysis of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB), as revealed in detail by WMAP (03/06/2003, 05/02/2003, 09/20/2004, 03/20/2006), has uncovered features so surprising (e.g., 08/29/2007), some cosmologists are entertaining an idea that would seemed heretical a decade ago: i.e., the Copernican Principle might be wrong (cf. 06/30/2006).    Investigators looking for harmonics in the CMB seem to have found surprising alignments.  The quadrupole, octupole and other harmonics appear to have axes that line up with each other.  Furthermore, they are in the plane of our solar system.  Even more bizarre, they are aligned with the line of equinoxes.  What’s going on here?  Is this a clue that we occupy a special position in the universe?  Some cosmologists, uncomfortable with such notions which the Copernican Principle was supposed to dismiss, have called this alignment the “axis of evil.”But the map led to some mysteries, too.  Within 6 months, one team had found a curious alignment of certain undulations in the CMB.  Others soon found more correlations that suggested that the cosmos might be skewered like a meatball on a toothpick by an “axis of evil.”  That axis might show that the universe has a strange shape or is rotating.  It could trash cosmologists’ cherished assumption that the universe has no center and no special directions, the so-called cosmological principle that traces its origins to Copernicus.  Or it could be a meaningless fluke.  “Everyone agrees it’s there,” says Kate Land, a cosmologist at the University of Oxford in the U.K.  “But is it significant?”    There’s the rub: With only one universe to measure, it may be impossible to tell.Maybe there is a foreground effect in the local neighborhood influencing the CMB.  Even if true, however, it would not do away with the conclusion that there is some pretty weird physics going on around us.  We can’t get outside our universe to compare it to any others, obviously.  “We have only one universe, and in some ways perhaps it just is as it is.”1.  Adrian Cho, “A Singular Conundrum: How Odd Is Our Universe?”, Science, 28 September 2007: Vol. 317. no. 5846, pp. 1848-1850, DOI: 10.1126/science.317.5846.1848.Cho’s discussion assumes inflation, dark matter, dark energy and multiverses, so his statements need to be understood in that context.  Still, even within that worldview, things are not going the way the materialists wanted.  It was hard enough on them to find out the universe is not eternal and had a beginning.  Now, they must entertain the possibility that we occupy a privileged position after all.    The only escape from the design inference is to keep repeating the joke that things are as they are because they were as they were.  If your debate partner does that, keep the joke going.  Ask the next logical question, “Why were they as they were?”  If he replies that it’s turtles all the way down, you win.(Visited 39 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Hops production picking up in Ohio

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Matt ReeseNext month more than 75 Ohio hop growers will gather for the 2019 Ohio Hops Conference and Trade Show in Columbus. The Jan. 9 and 10 event is a sign that, as Ohio’s craft beer production has boomed in recent years, agriculture is starting to follow to meet the exploding demand for one of the key ingredients for brewing beer.Members of the Ohio Hops Growers Guild (OHGG) have more than 70,000 hop plants under cultivation and many craft beer brewers and drinkers put a premium on Ohio-grown ingredients. Ohio’s climate, however, does make hop production challenging.A century ago, Ohio was home to very robust hop production to match the state’s substantial brewing industry. In subsequent years, though, Ohio’s insect and disease issues pushed the nation’s hop production to the drier climates in the Pacific Northwest. But with the recent brewery boom, many farms are again taking a look at Ohio hop production.“Today less than 2% of the hops brewed in Ohio are grown in Ohio. The fact that we have so few Ohio hops available helps with the demand. The Ohio Craft Brewers Association and the breweries are extremely supportive of the Ohio hop grower industry and most of them do pay aDried hops are similar in weight to packing peanuts.premium price to support their local growers,” said Jamie Arthur, who serves on the OHGG board. “If we growers get a premium price, we have to show up with the best product we can. Many of the Ohio growers hand deliver and don’t charge freight. And they are establishing and deepening relationships with their local brewers. Again, because of the premium for locally grown hops and to sustain these grower-brewer relationships, we cannot compromise on quality. Our quality has to be as good or better than out-of-state suppliers or we will not get a premium price for very long.”The potential for hop production appealed to Jamie and his wife, Krista Arthur, for their Little Miami Farms in Greene County near Xenia.“We purchased two small farms — less than 100 acres — back in ‘02. We had no real farm background, but 5 years ago wanted to focus more on the farm and less on the corporate careers. We were in a basic corn/soybeans rotation at first. We then started to bale hay and do other related things, which led to a more serious look at specialty crops,” said Jamie Arthur, who serves on the board of the OHGG. “I was getting less interested in a corporate career and this opportunity with hops was sort of a catalyst to pursue specialty crops. The market was right with a lot of new breweries opening. That was in ‘13 and we started researching hop production and in ‘14 we started growing hops. We’ve just completed our fifth year. We were lured by the demand and unmet opportunity. At that time there were maybe 150 breweries and maybe three or four hop growers in Ohio. Michigan already had some pretty good-sized hop yards and Brad Bergefurd with OSU Extension South Centers saw the opportunity. He was testing hops and putting on seminars down in Piketon. We learned the basics through what Brad was doing.”The challenges in getting started were substantial.“We had to decide how big we wanted to start out, what varieties to grow and where we were going to do it. We wanted a nice setting for people to come and visit the hops,” Jamie said. “Southern Ohio is a little far south for ideal growing conditions. Hops like sandy, well-drained, lighter soils. The soils here are pretty thick with clay. We probably did not do enough soil amendment. You need a high organic matter content. We had between 1% and 2% and it needs to be more like 3% to 5%. We put in some compost and we probably should have added much more. We installed a French drain and some tile. We dug a trench for tile, put gravel down then 6-inch tile 2 feet down. We created raised, 4-foot wide rows with a two-bottom plow and a three-point hiller. We started with a one-acre hop yard, which is tiny for Pacific Northwest hop yards, but about average for Ohio growers to start with.”A significant part of the high upfront cost is the substantial trellis system for growing hops.The trellis system is an important (and expensive) part of growing hops. Photo provided by the Arthurs.“If you do a poor job on the trellis you can lose a lot of hops during summer storms. We took a three-point auger, to drill the holes and purchased and installed 25-foot utility poles — a total of 75 for an acre. We then had to run cables and rigging. The cables hang between the poles and the poles have to be anchored down with guy wires,” Jamie said. “It is similar to a vineyard trellis but three times taller. Most of our cables are 20 feet high. Each year, we use coir, which is coconut fiber string, and tie one length of that string to the cable in the air and run it down to each hop plant which are planted every three feet. We used baler twine the first few years, but it is no longer strong enough to hold the weight of mature hop plants. We can purchase the coir in pre-cut lengths which means we don’t have to measure it out while standing on a scissor lift. The cost is comparable.”Typically, there are 1,000 plants per acre, but the Arthurs’ acre is divided into two yards with 700 plants. The layout of the hop yard is also important to consider.“Fewer, longer rows are easier to manage but you have to consider the prevailing wind so it blows down and through the rows to reduce disease,” Jamie said. “Our rows are planted on 12-foot centers so we can more easily move equipment through the yards.”Variety selection is also very important, and challenging.“We can’t sell what we can’t grow, so we tried to select varieties common in beer recipes that are disease resistant and grow well in our soils. We also didn’t want them to all mature at the same time. You get full production from a hop plant for 15 or more years and if you ask brewers what they are looking for, it could easily change in a couple of years. So we planted what we can grow well and find demand for,” Jamie said. “And, of the top 10 hop varieties that brewers want, at least seven are trademarked so we can’t grow them. That is a bit of a challenge since if you ask any brewer in Ohio, the majority of hops they want can’t be legally grown in Ohio. We started off with Nugget, Chinook, Cascade, Centennial, and Zeus hops. Our advice is to not load up on one variety because you don’t know what the demand will be and they may not grow well. Later we added Crystal and Southern Cross.”Hops can be started with plants or rhizomes. The Arthurs got most of their hop plants from a greenhouse in Michigan.“We tried both and both were successful,” Krista said. “We found, though, that a couple of varieties we planted just didn’t do well. We pulled them out and replaced them with the varieties that are successfully growing in our yards.”The hops are planted in holes made with a small auger on a cordless drill and then we train them to grow up the strings on the trellis.”They are “bines,” not vines.“We hang two strings per plant in a v-shape in order to train two or sometimes three bines per plant. We start training them by wrapping the plant around the strings,” Jamie said. “They want to grow up and around something. A wire runs along the surface of the ground but above the plants.Once they got up and running, the Arthurs discovered a significant issue they had not thoroughly researched.“We underestimated the need for water. We installed all the irrigation after planting and I wouldn’t recommend that to anyone. The cost was something we did not factor in. We use the pond for our water source and we have to keep pond clean enough so that murky water doesn’t clog the irrigation lines. The irrigation was the biggest miss for us,” Jamie said. “Now we have drip irrigation to maintain soil moisture.”Nutrients are also important to consider.“We soil test and use a prescribed nutrient program. Generally, hops require a lot of nitrogen — up to 200 pounds per acre,” Jamie said. “We apply nitrogen three or four times a year from May to July. After July 1 we cut back. You can negatively affect the quality of hop cones if you apply nitrogen when the cones start forming.”With all of this initial work and significant investment lined up, Ohio’s real challenges start to show and need to be monitored and controlled carefully.“The major disease impacting hops in this part of Ohio is downy mildew. Most hop growers are spraying four to five kinds of fungicide in five to eight applications a year. You need to follow a preventive maintenance program. Once you see downy mildew, it’s too late and the quality of effected hops will be poor. You have to stay ahead of it,” Jamie said. “However, powdery mildew and most other disease problems can be treated when the problem arises.”In the first year, hops growers can expect a 20% production from the plants. The plants will reach full production after three or four years.“We test the moisture content of the cones and they are ready for harvest around 78% to 80% moisture,” Jamie said. “The brewers gauge the hop quality on the alpha acid percentage so that, too, is how we gauge the peak maturity.”The harvest is very labor intensive. There are mechanical harvesters for-hire in Ohio but the Arthurs still pick by hand.“We started off hand picking, which involves cutting the bine down, taking it to the barn and picking the cones off. We contemplated either buying a harvester or outsourcing the harvesting, but after 5 years we are still hand picking. We could not do it without friends and family. We’ve partnered with OSU on hop research projects and as an added bonus they’ve helped with the harvest. Harvesting takes a significant amount of time and many of our fellow hop growers probably think we are crazy,” Jamie said. “We have a big table in the barn and we have hop picking parties with food, beer and music. We start harvesting in early August and finish by Labor Day. My mom is 86 and she’ll pick hops all day long so it must not be as bad as it sounds.”Hand picking is challenging, but it helps ensure a high-quality end product.“It really helps with quality control,” Krista said. “We only pick the best cones and harvesting is time sensitive. You can’t just cut down a bine and set it aside until you have time to pick the cones. We pick them off the bine within an hour of cutting the bine down. If you let a bine sit, the cones wilt and the bine pulls moisture and nutrients out of the cone.”Most brewers then want pelletized hops. The Arthurs’ air dry the cones and send them off to be pelletized.“The hop cones are about like handling foam packing peanuts,” Jamie said. “We air dry them and put them in grain bags and take them to the pelletizer. There are at least five pelletizers in the state and they are all inspected by the Ohio Department of Agriculture. We get the pellets back in approximately one month. We can get them in different sized weights and bags, but the standard packaged amount is 11 pounds for brewers.”Some brewers want whole cone hops for specific recipes.“There is a small market for dry whole cone hops and fresh, wet hops. For that you have to get them picked and brewed within 24 hours. We do about 25% of our business in fresh hops,” Jamie said. “It creates very intense, unique beer with a fresh aroma.”Because of the production challenges, yields are a bit lower in Ohio than the western states.“We usually get a half pound to three-quarters of a pound per plant. In Ohio, a good yield is typically 800 pounds of dried hops perAfter being hand harvested, the hops are dried before being pelletized.acre. In the Pacific Northwest, it will be 1,000 or more,” Jamie said. “There is not a set market price but most pelletized Ohio hops sell from $8 to $12 per pound. Pelletizing costs $2 per pound so it is our biggest production cost. And even though the pelletizing cost is significant to a grower, it is still not high enough for those with the pelletizing machines to make much money.”The Arthurs’ longtime friend Amy Forsthoefel is part owner of their hop yard and responsible for marketing and getting a foothold in the booming brewery business in nearby Dayton. Given the craft brewing trends she was observing, she strongly encouraged the Arthurs to make growing hops one of their specialty crop endeavors.“There are 20+ breweries in the Dayton area at this point and there is also a healthy home brewer community. We have gotten great support from our customers and haven’t had to go beyond this region to sell our products,” Jamie said. “Our favorite part of this is when the brewery releases the beer. We can see patrons enjoying it and we get to hear the brewer say, ‘Wow — this is a great beer.’ That makes all the work worth doing. We never got that feeling from our corporate careers.”last_img read more

Questions to Ask Your Prospective Builder

first_imgRELATED ARTICLESGreen Building for BeginnersEnergy Upgrades for BeginnersQuestions and Answers About Air BarriersAll About Water-Resistive BarriersKeeping Ducts IndoorsDesigning a Good Ventilation SystemWho Can Perform My Load Calculations? You can ask the builder about their previous airtightness test results. Here in Georgia, all new homes have to come in below 7 air changes per hour at a pressure difference of 50 Pascals (ACH50).2. What is your preferred water resistant barrier (WRB)? Controlling liquid water outside the house is the most important thing you can do to prevent failure. Yet, because water control failures often show up after the warranty period, some builders don’t care that much about them. There’s some pretty basic rules about controlling water, and although it’s not universally true, I find that builders who use the cheapest WRBs often seem to do the worst job controlling the water.Perforated plastic housewrap is at the bottom of the list in my opinion. Housewrap can work well if it’s installed properly. It works better if it’s made of spun-bonded polyolefin, like Dupont’s Tyvek HomeWrap. Better yet is a non-house wrap WRB, like Huber’s Zip System sheathing, liquid-applied membranes (like Prosoco’s R Guard or Tremco’s Envirodry), or peel-and-stick membranes. [Disclosure: Huber is an advertiser in the Energy Vanguard Blog.]3. How do you handle penetrations in the building enclosure after the WRB has been installed?Controlling liquid water is critical. The WRB does that, but when it gets penetrated by wires, pipes, or dryer vents after it’s installed, it needs to be flashed properly. The best answer here would be if the builder tells you they plan ahead for every penetration and make sure each one has proper flashing ready to go before the hole is ever cut.4. How do you ensure good installation quality of insulation?If a prospective builder starts talking about insulation installation grades (I, II, or III), you’ve found one who knows something about this issue. Good answers here would include:We insist on Grade I installation quality for all insulation.We make sure all cavities are filled completely with as little compression as possible.We hire a third party inspector to make sure it’s done right.5. How are the heating and air conditioning systems designed?“We leave that up to the HVAC contractor” is not an acceptable answer. That doesn’t mean the HVAC contractor doesn’t do it, but the builder should know how they’re doing it. And the way it should be done is with room-by-room load calculations, proper equipment selection, and ducts designed for the right air flow to each room. Better would be for them to say they use a third-party HVAC designer, but you’re more likely to hear that from your architect than from a builder.6. Do you have a preference for duct location?Not so good if they answer that they always put them in the attic, and the attic is unvented. That’s a common practice outside of cold climates, but that doesn’t make it right. What you want to hear here is that they try to get the ducts into conditioned space. Sometimes that means moving the conditioned space boundary to include the attic or the crawl space.7. What measures do you take for combustion safety?Probe for any awareness of this issue. If they ask what you mean, ask what their stance is on natural draft water heaters and ventless fireplaces. You don’t want either of those things inside the conditioned space.8. Do you normally install whole-house mechanical ventilation systems?If you get this far into your list, that means you’re talking to a builder who believes in airtightness. That means they must believe in whole-house mechanical ventilation. The building code requires mechanical ventilation when the house tests at 5 air changes per hour or lower in the blower door test. If you’re getting a new house and want it built right, you definitely want it to be tighter than 5 ACH50, so you’ll need some type of mechanical ventilation. I recently wrote about some ways to do balanced ventilation, which is the best way to go.9. Have you used third-party inspections or had your homes certified in voluntary programs like Energy Star?If your prospective builder has experience with building to the standards of programs like Energy Star, LEED, or Passive House, you’ll probably have an easier time getting them to get the details right. That’s because these and similar programs have requirements that help ensure a house is built better. It’s not a guarantee, of course, but at least they’ll have some familiarity with checklists and good installation practices.10. Would you be willing to have a design review with the critical trades?Some builders don’t want you involved with the process at all. They just want to take the plans, build the house, and have you show up when it’s all done. Everyone’s busy now that the housing market has heated up again, and extra meetings take time away from other stuff.But, a good builder realizes the importance of getting everyone on the same page and that it can save time down the road. Getting the architect, the builder, the HVAC contractor, the plumber, the electrician, and the insulation contractor together to go over the plans and goals for the house can prevent a lot of problems that might crop up otherwise. If your builder is willing to have such a meeting, it can make everything go smoother.Builders can be like wild animalsIf you live in an area with a lot of green building happening, you may have an easy time finding a builder who believes in building science. Even in those places, however, there are a lot of builders who think that high-quality building simply means high-quality finishes. What you’re looking for is that builder who is at least on the path to understanding that a high-quality house is high-quality to the core. But they may be a little shy about it.Experienced home builders have developed ways of doing things that work for their businesses. Many are changing with the times, but they may still be a bit shy about jumping in with both feet. If you come at them with both barrels blasting them building science questions, you may scare them off. They’re like wild animals in that way. You have to approach them slowly because they spook easily.Even a bad builder will know a lot more than you about the whole process of building a home. As long as they’re still in the running with you, show respect for that. Even when they’re out of the running, it’s best not to antagonize them. What you’re looking for is a builder you can work with, someone who is at least open to the idea of putting extra time and attention into the building enclosure and mechanical systems. The questions above should give you a good picture of which ones might be able to do a good job in building your dream home. Allison Bailes of Decatur, Georgia, is a speaker, writer, building science consultant, and the author of the Energy Vanguard Blog. You can follow him on Twitter at @EnergyVanguard. You’re having your dream house built. You’re into the design phase, working with an architect or looking through collections of house plans. You’re doing your homework, trying to find out how to ensure you get a top quality house. And that’s when you run into all this stuff about building science, high performance homes, HVAC design, blower door testing, and the like. Now you’re hooked.The problem you run into next is figuring out how to get that knowledge applied to your dream home. If you’re building the house yourself (as I did back in 2001), it’s on your shoulders. But most people aren’t owner-builders, instead hiring a professional home builder to bring their dreams to reality. If that’s you, keep reading. Hiring a builder is arguably your most important decision, so here are some questions you can ask prospective builders to find out how likely they are to do things the right way.1. What is your view of airtight homes?The builder’s answer to this question can tell you a lot. If they tell you, “A house needs to breathe,” you probably don’t need to waste any more time with them. Save your time to find a builder who appreciates the importance of an airtight building enclosure. You may not find a builder who gives you the ideal answer, but you want one who recognizes that greater airtightness is a good thing. If you can find one who’s had blower door tests even when they weren’t required, that’s a plus. And of course you want them to agree to have your house tested.last_img read more