Team Orange County's entry into Solar Decathlon 2015

Team Orange County Focuses On SoCal Issues In Solar Decathlon 2015

Team Orange County’s entry into this year’s Solar Decathlon addresses some of the issues found in the Southern California home market, including the use of solar energy and landscaping without water. Casa del Sol, as their entry is called, is inspired by the resilient and diurnal characteristics of the California poppy. It is designed with appropriate shading and natural ventilation to allow it to open and close in tune to the path of the sun. Strategically positioned windows automatically open…

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Smartflower supplies solar power

Solar Power Takes The Form Of A Sunflower

smartflower POP+ enables anyone to start their own personal energy revolution. The integrated power storage unit makes this all-in-one solar power system – the only one of its kind in the world – up to 100% independent of the grid day and night. How does smartflower work? With the first rays of the sun, smartflower deploys its circular 18 m2 solar module panels and produces electricity. Both the design and the efficiency are inspired by the sunflower – with two movable…

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Yale Team's entry into this year's Solar Decathlon - Y House

First Yale Team Ever Provides Efficient Design for Solar Decathlon 2015

For the first time, Yale is participating in this year’s Solar Decathlon. The design focuses on the use of modules, with all of the unit’s plumbing, ventilation, and electrical components being housed in just one section of the house. “Our team has been really looking at how we can embed sustainability into the house itself,” said Kate McMillan, a senior architecture student from Houston. The team, composed entirely of students, has been working on the project for two years. “We’ve…

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DURA House, designed and built by NYC College of Technology

New York City Team DURA Designs Stackable Post-Disaster Home for Solar Decathlon 2015

One of the teams in this year’s Solar Decathlon, is from New York City’s College of Technology. This team focused on the issue of providing disaster housing that can be easily transported and stacked, if needed, to provide a high density of housing in a small footprint. Team DURA (Diverse, Urban, Resilient, Adaptable) created a stackable design to provide relief after catastrophic storms that can also be used for mobile and low-income housing in urban areas. “A lot of our…

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2005 Solar Decathalon entry from NYIT

Collegiate Teams Target Net Zero At Solar Decathlon 2015

Sixteen collegiate teams from over 27 different schools will soon be vying for the ultimate in home energy efficiency. The US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon – America’s premier collegiate competition that challenges students from around the world to design, build and operate highly energy efficient, solar-powered houses – will open October 8, 2015 in Irvine, California. Teams are already working on the construction of their homes, as they have to be shipped and erected in California in just a…

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Building Materials, Fossil Fuels’ Ugly Cousin

We still live in a time when we do plenty things that are very harmful to our planet. It seems we’re all aware that fossil fuels like oil and coal create a considerable portion of our greenhouse gas pollution. But many people don’t understand that we also do a lot of harm to our planet with the materials we use to build and remodel our homes and buildings. If you examine some our most prominent building materials, it quickly becomes obvious…

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Solar power program in California

New Partnership Helps California Businesses Get Solar Power for Less

Renew Financial, a leading clean energy finance company, and SolarCity recently announced a partnership that creates a unique financing option for small and medium-sized businesses that combines low-cost SolarCity-structured financing with Renew’s PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) program through the CaliforniaFIRST program. CaliforniaFIRST provides affordable financing for efficiency upgrades — including drought-tolerant landscaping, energy efficiency improvements and solar energy installation — to more than 20 million Californians. Over the past year, Renew Financial has expanded the availability of CaliforniaFIRST to more…

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EnergyBar 100 Provides Long Life With Green Battery Technology

AspectSolar, an innovator in Lithium Iron Phosphate (LiFePO4) solar-powered batteries, has announced an industry-leading, environmentally friendly and portable power solution for every aspect of work, play and home. With a lightweight and compact design, the EnergyBar 100 affords users twice the battery life of similar products and up to five times the duration of traditional batteries. Esmond Goei, CEO of AspectSolar stated, “Our customers are savvy users who understand what they need. The EnergyBar 100 serves their needs better in…

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The US leads the world in investment in electric vehicles

US Leads World In Clean Energy, Electric Vehicles, and High Energy Consumption

Next 10’s Green Innovation Index, International Edition for the first time analyzes and ranks the economic and energy performance of the world’s 50 largest greenhouse gas emitting nations. While the US ranks high in investment in clean energy and electric vehicle ownership, it also leads in having the highest energy consumption and emissions, but we are improving. “Some of the world’s largest economies are now decoupling economic growth and energy use, actually growing their GDPs [gross domestic products] while shrinking their…

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Sustainable power systems rating system

Sustainable Power Systems Rating Program Launched

Green Business Certification Inc (GBCI) launched the newest green rating system earlier this week – this one is for sustainable power systems. PEER, as it is called, stands for Performance Excellence in Electricity Renewal, and it evaluates power generation, transmission and distribution systems through the lens of the customer, focusing on efficiency, quality, reliability, resiliency and the environment. The PEER rating system is modeled after the US Green Building Council’s LEED green building certification program (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design),…

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The first power-to-gas plant in the US opened in California

First US Power-to-Gas Plants Open in California and Colorado

Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) is bringing science fiction to life, launching two demonstration projects to create and test a carbon-free, power-to-gas system for the first time ever in the U.S. The technology converts electricity into gaseous energy and could provide North America with a large-scale, cost-effective solution for storing excess energy produced from renewable sources. Using electrolyzer-based methods, the power-to-gas concept uses electricity from renewable sources, such as solar and wind power, to make carbon-free hydrogen gas by breaking…

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LEED recognizes Living Building Challenge credits

LEED to Recognize Living Building Challenge Credits

The U.S. Green Building Council recently announced that it will recognize energy and water requirements from the Living Building Challenge (the Challenge) green building system within the LEED green building program. Projects achieving the energy and water requirements in Living Building Challenge will be considered as technically equivalent to LEED. “USGBC and the International Living Future Institute, developers of the Living Building Challenge, share a common commitment and goal to transform the way we design, build and operate our buildings,”…

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Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower Goes Green

An ambitious remodel project at the Eiffel Tower is making its operations greener. The first floor of the landmark building was recently refurbished for a better visitor experience and to improve the environmental impact of the historic building. First floor glazing was changed to provide a 25% reduction in solar heat gain during the summer months. This will significantly reduce the need for air conditioning, saving money and energy. Almost all of the lighting in the first floor was changed…

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Are You Buying a Green Home? Use These 6 Tips to Find Out!

When looking to buy or rent a new home, most buyers today want to be sure they are getting an energy efficient house. A green home, compared to one that’s more conventional, can save its residents thousands- but how can you be sure you’re getting a green home BEFORE you sign the papers? Here are 6 suggestions that should help ease your mind. 1. Get Copies of Past Utility Bills This makes so much sense, it’s a wonder more people…

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A House Fire Cut One Family’s Energy Bills in Half

When an electrical fire struck their home in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, Keith and Jan Giezentanner never expected the repairs they made afterwards would save them over $1000 a year on their heating and energy bills! But, with the help of Garfield Clean Energy, they were able to learn about modern, energy efficient windows and doors and state of the art heating and cooling systems. Garfield Clean Energy even showed them how to qualify for (and get!) rebates totaling almost $1500 on…

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