Green Building Blog

Blog Review: Green Building in Denver

Posted on November 3, 2011 by Scott Gibson

Kevin Dickson was an early convert to solar energy. He earned a bachelor of science degree from the Colorado School of Mines in 1977, and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and solar technology from Colorado State University in 1979. In the early 1980s, he was involved in hundreds of solar thermal systems and received several design patents.

A Bucket List for Contractors’ Kids

Posted on October 20, 2011 by Michael Strong, LEED Associate, CGP

Here's a list of favorite things that every contractor’s kids should experience before they turn 18! Enjoy the list — and feel free so suggest additions.

1. Visit the dump. Nothing will better impress your kids about the consequences of our actions than seeing and smelling the detritus our society generates and then buries!

2. See spray foam being sprayed. This is about as cool as it gets. Put on the body suit and respirator and get ready to see some smiles. Psshhhhhhht and watch it expand. Then have fun poking it full of holes!

Blog Review: MinnePHit House

Posted on October 6, 2011 by Scott Gibson

Paul and Desirée have three young daughters, two dogs, a flock of chickens and a 1935 house in Minneapolis that needs a ton of work.

Although the house was extensively updated in the 1990s, the 1400-sq.-ft. structure still has a host of problems: an under-insulated attic, single-pane windows, thin exterior walls, an awkward layout, aging interior finishes, and an air handler located in the unconditioned attic.

Utilities Offer Programs That Can Benefit Your Customers

Posted on October 4, 2011 by Michael Strong, LEED Associate, CGP

In Texas, as in many other states, local electric utilities offer homeowners a variety of free services to help lower energy bills.

Twenty-Three Reasons Why I Love

Posted on September 22, 2011 by Michael Chandler, GBA Advisor

When I want to get an inside look at the amazing innovation happening around the world in service of a more sustainable future, I look to Flavio Souza in Tokyo. Souza curates a glorious collection of innovation news and images at his website,

Blog Review: Voices From BuildingGreen

Posted on September 20, 2011 by Scott Gibson

Unlike most of the blogs we review here, BuildingGreen is not the voice of a single author. Rather, it's a portal to a broad collection of blogs, news articles, product information, and other posts written by many people.

Stuff I Learned at Joe Lstiburek’s House, Part 2

Posted on September 13, 2011 by Michael Chandler, GBA Advisor

In the Southeast where I live and build, we mostly rely on ducted HVAC(Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning). Collectively, the mechanical systems that heat, ventilate, and cool a building. systems for heating and (especially) for cooling. So when I attended the Westford Building Science Symposium in early August, I was very excited to sit in on David Hill's presentation on HVAC systems, especially as Dr. Joe's introduction paraphrased Samuel Clemens’ observation: "It ain't so much the things we don't know that get us into trouble; it's the things we know that just ain't so."

Job-Site Recycling: PVC

Posted on August 25, 2011 by Scott Gibson

Few building materials have caused more of a ruckus than polyvinyl chloride.

PVC is a light, durable and versatile plastic. Formed into a variety of building materials, it requires virtually no maintenance, and it never needs painting. These attributes make it seemingly ideal for door and window frames, pipe, floor tile, wall coverings, siding, and many other products.

Blog Review: NB Superinsulated House

Posted on August 16, 2011 by Scott Gibson

Richard Lachance, an architect, spent 22 years working in the Missouri state park system before relocating to Cocagne, New Brunswick. He now researches “the transition to a new economy,” including the role of energy-efficient housing design.

Cocagne is a small community at the mouth of the Cocagne River in this Canadian Martime province. Across the Northumberland Straight is Prince Edward Island. Given its location and sometimes harsh weather, LaChance’s interest in superinsulated house design makes sense.

Stuff I Learned at Joe Lstiburek’s House, Part 1

Posted on August 10, 2011 by Michael Chandler, GBA Advisor

The invitation was too cool to be real: My name was somehow on a list of “experts” who were invited to take part in a Building America Water Heater Expert Session on combo systems. The invite noted that the session was to be the day before Joe Lstiburek’s Building Science Summer Camp, and “it is expected that the information obtained will lend itself toward the eventual production of a guide for the best practice application of combination space and domestic water heating systems for new and retrofit residential construction.”

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