Guest Blogs

Bringing Passive House to Production Building

Posted on November 6, 2017 by Zack Semke

It’s clear to me that if we hope to avert catastrophic climate change we need to start viewing our buildings as clean energy power plants. As I’ll show you below, it’ll be easier than you think. Global experts emphasize three things: we face a climate crisis emergency; we have the means to solve the crisis; and our future depends on determined local climate action, now.

With reversals in the U.S. climate policy underway and the Paris climate agreement in question, it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that the clean energy transition is already underway.

Huge Water Savings in a Small Product

Posted on November 2, 2017 by Ed Osann

A huge source of water waste lies buried in yards across California and the U.S.: the pop-up sprinklers many homeowners use to irrigate turf grass. Now California's investor-owned energy utilities, ledLight-emitting diode. Illumination technology that produces light by running electrical current through a semiconductor diode. LED lamps are much longer lasting and much more energy efficient than incandescent lamps; unlike fluorescent lamps, LED lamps do not contain mercury and can be readily dimmed. by Pacific Gas & Electric, are proposing new standards for spray sprinkler bodies that could save jaw-dropping amounts of tap water, as well as the energy to pump and treat it.

Flatrock Passive: Foam Sheathing and Window Details

Posted on November 1, 2017 by David Goodyear

Editor's Note: This is one of a series of blogs by David Goodyear describing the construction of his new home in Flatrock, Newfoundland, the first in the province built to the Passive HouseA residential building construction standard requiring very low levels of air leakage, very high levels of insulation, and windows with a very low U-factor. Developed in the early 1990s by Bo Adamson and Wolfgang Feist, the standard is now promoted by the Passivhaus Institut in Darmstadt, Germany. To meet the standard, a home must have an infiltration rate no greater than 0.60 AC/H @ 50 pascals, a maximum annual heating energy use of 15 kWh per square meter (4,755 Btu per square foot), a maximum annual cooling energy use of 15 kWh per square meter (1.39 kWh per square foot), and maximum source energy use for all purposes of 120 kWh per square meter (11.1 kWh per square foot). The standard recommends, but does not require, a maximum design heating load of 10 W per square meter and windows with a maximum U-factor of 0.14. The Passivhaus standard was developed for buildings in central and northern Europe; efforts are underway to clarify the best techniques to achieve the standard for buildings in hot climates. standard. The first installment of the GBAGreenBuildingAdvisor.com blog series was titled An Introduction to the Flatrock Passive House. For a list of Goodyear's earlier blogs on this site, see the "Related Articles" sidebar below; you'll find his complete blog here.

The Unequal Burden of Noise

Posted on October 31, 2017 by Anonymous

By Joan Casey, Peter James, and Rachel Morello-Frosch

Self-Driving Cars Will Mean More Sprawl

Posted on October 24, 2017 by Anonymous

By Timothy Hodgetts

Self-driving cars will change how we live, in all sorts of ways. But they won’t just affect us humans — the coming revolution in autonomous transport has significant implications for wildlife as well. Nature conservationists and planners need to think hard about the impact of driverless vehicles, most notably in terms of renewed urban sprawl.

Urban Rustic: Up on the Roof

Posted on October 23, 2017 by Eric Whetzel

Editor's note: This post is one of a series by Eric Whetzel about the design and construction of his house in Palatine, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. The first blog in his series was called An Introduction to a New Passive House Project; a list of Eric's previous posts appears below. For more details, see Eric's blog, Kimchi & Kraut.

Rebuilding After the Hurricanes

Posted on October 19, 2017 by Anonymous

By Siddarth Narayan and Michael Beck

The Latest Trend in Home Performance: Why You Should Be Concerned

Posted on October 17, 2017 by Charles Cormany

For the past couple of years there has been a lot of conversation in the industry about indoor air quality and the health benefits of home performance upgrades. Even the certification folks have jumped on the bandwagon, offering special certifications for home inspections that focus on health and indoor air quality. There is no question that energy upgrades can improve the indoor environment of a home or building; this has always been one of the non-energy benefits of home performance upgrades. The real question is, does this warrant a change in messaging for the home performance industry?

Is It Time to Move Our Cities?

Posted on October 12, 2017 by Crawford Kilian

The end of this wretched summer will go unlamented by all North Americans: raging wildfires from British Columbia to California, no fewer than three catastrophic hurricanes (so far), and two disastrous earthquakes in southern and central Mexico.

Home Energy Performance Data: Why It Pays to Go First

Posted on October 10, 2017 by Kelly Vaughn

There is tremendous risk and reward to being a first mover. News that Tesla overtook Ford in market value is perhaps the most illustrative example of what’s possible when innovative technologies disrupt the market.

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