Greenest Cities in the US in 2015

  WalletHub analysts recently released their list of the greenest cities in the US, based on their study of 100 cities across the nation. Cities were measured on thirteen key metrics across four dimensions: 1) Environmental Quality, 2) “Greenness” of Transportation, 3) “Greenness” of Energy Sources and 4) Green Lifestyle & Local Policies. Here are the metrics they used in each category: Environmental Quality – Total Points: 40 Median Air Quality Index: Full Weight (~10 Points) Greenhouse-Gas Emissions per Capita: Full…

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Washington-Based zHome Sets National Net-Zero Precedent

Originally published on CleanTechnica Builders seeking a net-zero energy home showcase can look to BuiltGreen’s zHome townhome complex in Issaquah, Washington. White paper released According to a BuiltGreen white paper, the zHome development is the first net-zero energy townhome complex in the US, a project meant to spur the market toward deep green housing for the average person. Built Green is an environmentally friendly, non-profit residential building program of the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties. When launched. this project…

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Delta Americas Opens LEED Platinum & Net Zero Headquarters

Delta, a global specialist in power and thermal management solutions, announced opening its new Americas headquarters in Fremont, California. The facility was designed to meet LEED Platinum and net zero standards. According to press information, this 180,000 square-foot facility is a testament to Delta’s commitment to sustainability. Over 1,000 MWh of electricity is expected to be generated per year through Delta’s solar photovoltaic power system. Additionally, the new building features a geothermal heating and cooling system that reduces HVAC energy consumption…

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RELi Resiliency Standards Complement LEED Certification

Doug Pierce is the senior project engineer at Perkins + Will. Over the past 2 1/2 years, he has developed what he calls the RELi resiliency standards as the chief investigator for the Washington, D.C.-based Capital Markets Partnership. “Resiliency is the next step in the entire green ecological design framework,” said Pierce, who is based in Minneapolis. “It’s important because over the past 30 years, we have not acted with foresight relative to the science on climate change or the…

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Solar Decathlon 2015 Kicks Off

Solar Decathlon 2015 Kicks Off

Solar Decathlon 2015, a design and build competition involving university teams from around the globe, kicked off today with keynote speaker US Secretary of Energy Dr. Ernest Moniz. The Decathlon asks teams to design and build homes powered by the sun that are affordable, energy efficient, attractive, and easy to live in, which are judged in several competitions. The homes are on display throughout the competition so spectators can tour them. “These inspiring collegiate teams show the world how energy-efficient building design…

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How to Upcyle Doors and Windows for Garden Projects

We are always so excited to see cool projects that reduce waste, decrease the need for new products to be made, and help build a more green and beautiful world. Upcycling, the reuse of products for different uses, is a fun trend that you can take advantage of both inside and outside the home. You can upcycle old wood to make gorgeous coffee tables, or reuse it for functional garden boxes to grow a ton of fresh veggies. There is…

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First Passive House School In Maine Is Also Net Zero Energy

The Friends School of Portland in Maine is the first Passive House school building in the state, and only the third in the country. The neighboring OceanView Retirement Community is donating solar panels for the school to use, making the facility net zero energy (NZE). “One of our core values is stewardship and we certainly apply that to our environment,” said Jenny Rowe, Head of School at the Friends School of Portland. “This new facility not only provides a symbol…

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Three Ways to Grow Green Things at Home

I propose that the next thing you add to your home to-do list on the weekends is the goal of growing something—anything! All the reasons and ways to grow flowers, plants, herbs, and vegetables—heck, even a tree once a year, if you can manage it—are of course too numerous to cover in one post. However, I’ll start with three benefits for both yourself and the planet.   Build a green roof! You might be wondering the purpose behind them, but…

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Solar lamp design winner

Solar Lamp Design Winner Will Be Distributed Throughout Africa To Dispel Darkness

The winning design for a solar lamp, shown above, will be distributed to off-grid communities in Africa to help people living there dispel the darkness without the use of carbon-emitting kerosene lanterns. About 14,500 lamps, powered by the sun, will be distributed throughout Zimbabwe, Senegal, and Zambia. The Natural Light contest, sponsored by skylight manufacturer VELUX and Little Sun, which is a social business and a global project founded by internationally renowned artist Olafur Eliasson and engineer Frederik Ottesen, asked teams to…

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Free single family home design

Sustainable Home Designs Now Free Online

The Australian government has begun making free sustainable home designs for single family homes available online. The plans showcase modern, sustainable designs featuring a large main bedroom with a generous walk-in closet and ensuite bathroom. There is also an open plan living and kitchen area with cathedral ceilings, bathroom and laundry. The flexible, functional floor plans are available in two size options: 3 bedroom plus study and 2 bedroom plus study. Both include a single car garage. Karen Andrews, parliamentary secretary for industry and…

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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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